Ethnography is when the researcher participates actively in an extend period of time observing every single detail in others people life, gathering information and data through formal or informal interviews. It’s focused in a particular group of people which is based on Naturalism and Positivism.

Positivism involves testing hypothesis and theorist while maintaining control over variables while Naturalism involves that the study of the world in its natural state.

According to Fetterman, ‘The ethnographer is a human instrument. With a research problem, a theory of social interaction or behaviour, and variety of conceptual guidelines in mind, the ethnographer strides into culture or social situation to explore its terrain, to collect and analyse data. Relying on all its sense, thoughts, and feelings, the human instruments is a most sensitive and perspective data gathering tool’

Observe how Fetterman breaks down and explains the meaning of Ethnography in the most simple and understanding way, quoting the significance of an ethnographer work.

In our weekly task, we were assigned an Ethnographic method, which is Auto-Ethnography to study the use of technology in Ellen Terry building (Coventry University).

Auto-ethnography is an approach to research and writing that seeks to describe and systematically analyse (graphy) personal experience (auto) in order to understand cultural experience (ethno)

We conduct a research using this method to observe how students and staff in Ellen Terry building make the use of technology, right from the entrance to the building up to when living the building.  Starting point is the touch pod we use to enter the building, as well as the TouchPoints we use to check into classrooms to acknowledge our attendance. Connecting into WI-FI, the usage of the Media Loan Shop to acquire a professional equipment, CCTV cameras watching us daily, and even the the vendors machine are technology used in a every day basis.

This project was planned in a certain way, I wouldn’t change much from what was done, but I would add more precise definition and talk to people how do they use the technology in the building same as making a survey to know for how long they make use of the technology during the hours they spend in the building.

By using the Auto-Ethnography method it’s concluded we are all ethnographic researchers directly or indirectly. We research subconsciously every day as the result of the development in the current generation.


Fetterman, D.M. Ethnography: Step by step, Newbury Park, Sage Publications, 1989. R4_Fetterman_gearing_up.pdf





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