Communication & Culture Ethnography

You will complete an interpretive, field-based, original research paper. In order to complete this ethnography of communication, you will spend an extensive amount of time in a particular culture with the goal of describing and understanding your groups valued ways of communicating. Now traditionally you would physically go somewhere and be a participant observer. However, you could do online/virtual participation observation.


This paper should be transcript-centered: its main claims grow out of the process of recording, transcribing, or collecting already recorded naturally-occurring dialogue which you will analyze by selecting and interpreting excerpts.

Step 1: Create a paper proposal which includes the following information for each option:
-Who is the cultural group? What binds them together? (From what you can tell now)
-What kinds of conversations/discourse do you anticipate? Why might this be worth studying?
-What is the purpose of your study? What is your research question(s)?
-How will you be ethical?
-How INTRUSIVE is this work?
-What level of PERCEIVED PRIVACY do people have in this community?
-How VULNERABLE is the group?
-What POTENTIAL HARM is there in doing research?
-Can you realistically get INFORMED CONSENT?
-How will you protect CONFIDENTIALITY?
-Are there any questions of posted material being INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY?

Step 2: Re-Watch Youtube link and create lots of field notes:

Step 3: Write paper:
Analysis is part writing, part thinking, part playing around with ideas. Spend some time writing out sections or main claims to your paper. Paper should be about 5-6 pages and include the following:
-Introduction with research question and working thesis.
-Methods (with description of informed consent, data collection & data analysis).
-Preview of main claims
-At least 1 main claim describing a pattern of communication and its purpose/ importance/function written out like an evidence sandwich with transcript and field note excerpts as your backup.

***PLEASE REFER TO Sample Paper C & Paper Assignment Grading Rubric attached.

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