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Introduction to Cognitive Ethnography and Systematic Field Work
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Introduction to Cognitive Ethnography and Systematic Field Work



October 2021 | 184 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Introduction to Cognitive Ethnography and Systematic Field Work by G. Mark Schoepfle and Oswald Werner provides a guide to the fundamentals of cognitive ethnography for qualitative research. A focus of this technique is collecting data from flexible but rigorous interviews. These interviews are flexible because they are designed to be structured around the semantic knowledge being elicited from the speaker, not around some pre-conceived design that is based on the researcher’s background, and they are rigorous because the basic linguistic and semantic structures are shared among all cultures. Written by two of the founders of this technique, this text provides a wealth of concentrated knowledge developed over years to best suit this collaborative and participant-centric research process.

Eight chapters show how intertwined data collection and analysis are in this method. The first chapter offers a brief history and overview of the cognitive ethnography. Chapter 2 covers planning a research project, from developing a research question to ethics and IRB requirements. The next two chapters cover interview background, techniques, and structures. Chapter 5 addresses analysis while Chapter 6 covers transcription and translation. Chapter 7 covers observation, while a final chapter address writing a report for both consultants and outside audiences.

 
Preface
 
CHAPTER 1 • Orientation to Ethnography and Cognitive Ethnography
Ethnography

 
Material Culture and Cultural Durability

 
Kinds of Ethnography

 
Abductive Reasoning in Cognitive Ethnography

 
How Ethnography Differs From Journalism

 
Everyone Is Biased and Must Cope With the Fact

 
Preparation for an Ethnographer’s Career: Ethnographer as Expert Witness

 
 
CHAPTER 2 • Planning and Proposing a Research Project
The Proposal

 
The Parties Involved: Peer Review and Institutional Review Boards

 
 
CHAPTER 3 • The Semantic Unity of the Ethnographic Interview
The Lexical-Semantic Field Theory and the MTQ Schema

 
Specialized MTQ Interview Techniques

 
 
CHAPTER 4 • The Natural History of the Ethnographic Interview
The Natural History of the Interview

 
Grand-Tour and Mini-Tour Questions About People Through Personal Networks: The Crystalized Structure of a “Snowball Sample”

 
 
CHAPTER 5 • Ethnographic Analysis With Complex Logical-Semantic Relationships
Enhancing MTQ Analyses

 
Analysis of Complex Semantic Relationships

 
Ethnographic Decision Models: Entering Choice Into VAPs

 
Applying Decision Models in Cognitive Ethnography

 
 
CHAPTER 6 • Language Transcription and Translation
Interview Transcription

 
Interview Translation

 
 
CHAPTER 7 • Observation
Proposed Justifications for Sole Reliance on Observation

 
Kinds of Observation

 
The Application of Photography to Interview and Observation

 
Observation and Evidence

 
 
CHAPTER 8 • Writing the Ethnographic Report
Four Major Report-Writing Styles: Descriptive, Analytical, Synthetic, and Case Study

 
When Schema Are Not Available or Have Not Been Generated

 
Organizing the Report

 
A Final Word on Native Coresearchers

 
 
References

This is an exceptional text that manages to cover topics and materials that many students approach with a degree of trepidation in manner that is student friendly, while at the same time providing them with a solid theoretical foundation to build on.

Jason R. Jolicoeur
Southeast Community College