internet research methods methodology Methods qualitative research teaching research methods

Seminars in Estonia: “social science 2.0: methods and ethics”

Seminars in Estonia: “social science 2.0: methods and ethics”

Annette Markham


This week, I’m skipping the Aarhus University holiday week to teach a PhD course in Estonia.  One might ask, “What were you thinking!?” ….In fact, I asked myself this question about a dozen times last week as I was getting ready.  I’m looking forward to it, however, despite the somewhat rigorous schedule.  And for the first time, I have organized a course specifically around my own ideas about methods, ethics, and internet-related research.  If you’re in the area and want to attend, let me know and I’ll give you locations!

October 14, 2013: 

We set the stage by talking about how ideally, good ethics emerge from good methods and vice versa.  This morning, we’ll talk about the ethical and methodological challenges of doing social research in digitally saturated contexts.  Along with a discussion of how we can consider both ethics and methods from a “Critical Junctures” perspective, we’ll review the latest ‘best practice’ guidelines from the Association of Internet Researchers (AOIR).

10.15 -12.30 Lecture/Discussion: Ethics as method, method as ethics: A critical junctures approach

In the afternoon, we’ll expand the idea of a ‘critical junctures’ approach and discuss various metaphors for thinking about method. Rather than offering a set of  new methods, this talk emphasizes that (re)mixing methods can facilitate innovation at all stages or phases of qualitative inquiry.

14.00- 17.00 Lecture/Discussion: Remix as a framework for innovative thinking about the process of inquiry

October 15, 2013:  

Today, we’ll experiment with 3-4 different tools for close level analysis of materials, including situational mapping (inspired by Adele Clarke); visual metaphor analysis (using both the rhetorical critical method of discourse analysis and Lakoff and Johnson’s ideas about surface and root level metaphors); and stage/frame analysis (drawing on a blend of Kenneth Burke’s pentad analysis, Goffman’s frame analysis, and Goffman’s ideas about presentation of self in everyday life). The morning will be me, talking about how these work, and the afternoon will be a series of exercises where we analyze the same materials from three different perspectives.  (the specific tools may change once I take a closer look at the student projects, to see what they’re interested in)

9.30 – 11.45 Lecture/Discussion:  Beyond the Basics: Engaging with a range of different tools for close level analysis

13.15 – 17.00 Analytical Exercises (with small breaks in-between)

October 16:

More exercises today, this time in reflexive writing techniques.  We’ll start with a lecture/discussion about writing as a way of knowing followed by exercises that facilitate development of alternative patterns for exploring the situation or phenomenon through writing crystalline (drawing on Laural Richardson and Laura Ellingson) and layered (inspired by Carol Rambo-Ronai and Lisa Tillman Healey) accounts.

9.30 – 11.45 Practicing Reflexive Ethics through layered accounts: Writing Exercises

This afternoon, we’ll have open discussion about individual projects.

13.15 – 17.00 Guided discussion of individual projects, focused on methodological and ethical concerns

October 17:

9.30 – 11.45 Independent work, using workshop format to develop engaged presentations of analytical innovations.

13.15 – 17.00 Students working individually on projects

October 18: 

9.30 – 11.45 Student presentations and feedback

13.15 – … student presentations and feedback continued

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