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Direct Observation

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Carry out an unstructured observation on a segment of ... jokes. 5 reasons to do participant observation to learn about culture ... Clean. Dirty. Reliability ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Direct Observation


1
Direct Observation
  • Describe methods and goals of direct observation
  • Carry out an unstructured observation on a
    segment of video, writing up notes, with as
    little analysis as possible

2
Direct Observations
  • Participant Observation
  • Unstructured Direct Observation
  • Structured Observation

3
6 differences between (ordinary) observer and
participant observer
  • 1 PURPOSE
  • engage in activities appropriate to the situation
  • observe the activities, people physical aspects
    of the situation

4
2. EXPLICIT AWARENESS normally filter out much of
what goes on in an activity, but not as a
participant observer 3. WIDE-ANGLE LENS take in a
much broader spectrum of information 4. INSIDER/OU
TSIDER Experience do the activity and see what
people around you are doing too, so can be both
at the same time 5. INTROSPECTION -Normally take
most of an experience for granted -As a
participant observer, find out what it feels
like to do something 6. RECORD KEEPING
5
Get close enough to people and make them feel
comfortable enough in your presence so you can
record information about their lives

6
Alternate between roles of
  • participant observer
  • (active to passive),
  • participating observer (usual role for social
    research), passive
  • observing participant, active

7
What to do?
  • attend ceremonies (funerals, seasonal festive
    events)
  • do the work
  • be around and talk when conversation comes up
  • jokes

8
5 reasons to do participant observation to learn
about culture
  • 1 Can collect sensitive data, impossible as a
    stranger
  • STUDENT EXAMPLES

9
reasons to do participant observation to learn
about culture
  • 2. Reduces reactivity, get higher validity of
    data
  • (Beloksi visit)

10
reasons to do participant observation to learn
about culture
  • 3. Helps formulate questions, as you understand
    culture better
  • (supervision in health post workers)

11
reasons to do participant observation to learn
about culture
  • 4. Helps understand meanings, can make strong
    statements about cultural data you have collected
  • (telling mothers to boil water)

12
reasons to do participant observation to learn
about culture
  • 5. Basis for general understanding of how social
    organization works
  • (emic concept of poverty absent)

13
5 rules to follow for making an entry into
fieldwork
  • 1. Choose easy site over a difficult one, if all
    else is the same

14
rules to follow for making an entry into fieldwork
  • 2. Bring documentation about yourself and project

15
rules to follow for making an entry into fieldwork
  • 3. Arrange to be introduced, have a contact
  • (Gongtala, Ephrosini)

16
rules to follow for making an entry into fieldwork
  • 4. Prepare answers to questions expected to be
    asked

17
  • What will you do with this information?
  • What are you doing here?
  • What are your qualifications?
  • Why do you want to do this?
  • Who sent you?
  • Who is paying you?
  • What good to us is the work that you do?
  • Why are you working with the other group and not
    us?
  • How many children do you have?
  • Is it true about American women that they.......?
  • How much money do you make?
  • What does your camera cost?
  • Do you have some medicine?

18
rules to follow for making an entry into fieldwork
  • 5. Get to know the physical and social layout of
    the scene
  • Ethnographies
  • Maps
  • Organizational charts
  • Internet

19
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20
Skills
  • Establish rapport
  • eye contact?
  • physical contact?
  • (materials about yourself, pictures)

21
Skills
  • Language esp. the sounds

22
Skills
  • Explicit awareness (facial expressions, body
    language)
  • (Newars nose piercings)

23
Skills
  • Naiveté

24
Skills
  • Memory

25
Skills
  • Writing skills to expand what you observed
  • THICK DESCRIPTION

26
Possible conflicting roles
  • participant or observer

27
Reactivity
28
Objectivity
  • Record your feelings and reactions to what you
    observe

29
Studying your Own Culture
30
FIELDWORK Gender, Parenting, Personal
Characteristics, Sex
31
Consent issues
  • Many political aspects

32
Unstructured focused observations
  • Purpose is exploration
  • Speak in 5 different ways
  • Body
  • Face
  • Eyes
  • Tone of voice
  • What we actually say (20 of communication)

33
Emphasis on note-taking
  • record what you see and hear, emphasize thick,
    detailed description
  • video and film technology helpful, but limited to
    field of lens

34
Scripting format
  • Time, activities in sequence
  • Can record a timeline when activities occurred

35
Levels of observation
  • regional (often impractical)
  • community (walk around, do a map, go to markets,
    stores, temples)
  • neighborhood/compound (types of buildings, where
    walls are, how used)
  • household/event
  • individual

36
Focal topic or subject
  • person (follow child around)
  • location (meeting room for village committee?)
  • event (wedding or meal, or disciplining behavior)
  • have a guide like EFG

37
What to record?
  • who
  • where
  • when
  • what (break behaviors into discrete units)

38
What to record?
  • why
  • key behaviors
  • what does not happen
  • maps and diagrams

39
Description Question Matrix
  • Spradley Participant Observation
  • Descriptive Question Matrix Pg. 82-3

40
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41
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42
Practice Exercise
  • Observing at mall

43
Structured observation
  • always preceded by unstructured observations
  • Quantifiable record of behavior(s) or the
    outcome(s) of behaviors collected by a trained
    observer through the use of a pre-coded or
    partly coded data instrument

44
Continuous Monitoring
  • behavioral stream
  • behaviors observed in order, in context, get a
    sense of flow, duration of behaviors
  • prioritization, develop set of rules, focal actor
    (e.g. child age 2-5 in the kitchen), set of
    priorities in relation to actor other
    activities in order, develop a sense of what
    comes first
  • use codebook of key behaviors which are
    behaviors you have identified defined from
    unstructured observations, Birdwhistell 1970
    example lists body language

45
Continuous monitoring
  • observer watches a subject(s) for a specific
    period of time records their behavior as
    faithfully as possible, following a structured
    format with time, location features of
    importance, tend to observe for an extended
    period of time

http//www.filmsdulosange.fr/kitchen-stories/
http//videodetective.com/home.asp?PublishedID998
43
46
spot check observations
  • observer appears at randomly selected
    places/times and records peoples activities when
    they are first encountered, recording behaviors
    in isolation from other behaviors (not part of
    behavioral stream)

47
New York Times Sept 17, 1996
48
Rating observations
  • need to make a decision based on observation
    about the presence or absence of a particular
    feature or abstract quality, often along some
    sort of scale, may need judgment

49
Rating observations
  • clear definitions essential,
  • Clean
  • Dirty

50
Reliability
  • clear operational definitions required,
    considering all possibilities (determined from
    key informant what if situations)
  • need to train standardize observers, look at
    intra-observer consistence over time, kappa or
    other measure

51
Reactivity (observer effect)
  • record what you see (e.g. people eat with their
    backs to you)
  • ways to reduce
  • repeated observations
  • extended visits
  • interact or not (perhaps minimal interaction is
    best?)

52
Reactivity
  • identify reactive/non-reactive behaviors
  • determine those behaviors which are highly
    reactive those that arent
  • observing reactive behaviors is problematic

53
Continuous monitoring
54
Child feed / care and Xerophthalmia
  • Case-Control Study in Nepal 78 pairs aged 1-6 (hh
    with Vit. A Def.)
  • 7 day-long (6a-8p) (blinded) continuous
    monitoring over 15 months, 2 months apart,
    recording key behaviors, one record per 5 min.
    (time, location, actor (of behavior), recipient,
    behavior, food/quantity
  • Findings
  • Cases tended to receive food from another's
    already served food (? Small initial servings, so
    child requests food from others, more 2nd
    helpings
  • Large meal gatherings protective
  • Child neglect during feeding and other aspects of
    child care and care giving nurturing may directly
    influence quality of child's diet
  • Caregiver-child and child care behaviors more
    important than intra-household food allocation
    behavior in determining rural Nepali child's risk
    for xerophthalmia

55
Participant Observation-- Int.
56
Participant Observation of homeless youth in SF
  • June-Sept. 1997, Castro District, San Francisco
  • Two 4-5 hour sessions a week during afternoons
    and early evenings
  • Alternating week-end and weed-days to sample
    youth in neighborhood at different times
  • "sitting on sidewalks with youth while they were
    panhandling or selling goods and walking around
    the site with a youth as they interacted with
    their peers"
  • Included being ask to "move along" by police
  • Led to finding key informant and interviews

57
Observation Exercise
  • Observe segment of video (no sound)
  • Write continuous monitoring notes
  • Do not analyze, report what you see

58
Exercise 2
  • Visual information, not dialogue, or description
    of etic events, explanations, etc.

59
Coding
  • Develop a scheme
  • Consider what are behaviors, observations, events
    in the setting that are significant and make up a
    mnemonic code (discuss with team what elements
    will be) place in margin
  • Bernard and in exercise
  • Can modify afterwards
  • Discussed Session 7

60
Sampling
  • samples are usually not random but purposeful, or
    convenient
  • could do a cluster sample exercise, if wanted
    some element of randomness, and could also
    observe at random times
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