This lesson encourages students to use skills and knowledge they may not realize they already have. A classroom game introduces students to the basic concepts of lobbying for something that is important to them or that they want and making persuasive arguments. Students then choose their own persuasive piece to analyze and learn some of the definitions associated with persuasive writing.
The content represents the researcher's interpretation of meaning found in data that has been gathered during one or more observational events.
How to Approach Writing a Field Report How to Begin Field reports are most often assigned in disciplines of the applied social sciences [e. Field reports are also common in certain science disciplines [e. Professors will assign a field report with the intention of improving your writing a research action plan of key theoretical concepts through a method of careful and structured observation of, and reflection about, people, places, or things existing in their natural settings.
Field reports facilitate the development of data collection techniques and observation skills and they help you to understand how theory applies to real world situations.
Field reports are also an opportunity to obtain evidence through methods of observing professional practice that contribute to or challenge existing theories. We are all observers of people, their interactions, places, and events; however, your responsibility when writing a field report is to create a research study based on data generated by the act of designing a specific study, deliberate observation, a synthesis of key findings, and an interpretation of their meaning.
When writing a field report you need to: Systematically observe and accurately record the varying aspects of a situation. Always approach your field study with a detailed plan about what you will observe, where you should conduct your observations, and the method by which you will collect and record your data.
Continuously analyze your observations. Always look for the meaning underlying the actions you observe.
What's going on here? What does this observed activity mean? What else does this relate to? Note that this is an on-going process of reflection and analysis taking place for the duration of your field research. Recording what you observe should not be done randomly or haphazardly; you must be focused and pay attention to details.
Enter the observation site [i. Consciously observe, record, and analyze what you hear and see in the context of a theoretical framework. This is what separates data gatherings from simple reporting. The theoretical framework guiding your field research should determine what, when, and how you observe and act as the foundation from which you interpret your findings.
Techniques to Record Your Observations Although there is no limit to the type of data gathering technique you can use, these are the most frequently used methods: Note Taking This is the most commonly used and easiest method of recording your observations.
Tips for taking notes include: See drop-down tab for additional information about note-taking.
Photography With the advent of smart phones, high quality photographs can be taken of the objects, events, and people observed during a field study. Photographs can help capture an important moment in time as well as document details about the space where your observation takes place.
Taking a photograph can save you time in documenting the details of a space that would otherwise require extensive note taking. However, be aware that flash photography could undermine your ability to observe unobtrusively so assess the lighting in your observation space; if it's too dark, you may need to rely on taking notes.
Also, you should reject the idea that photographs are some sort of "window into the world" because this assumption creates the risk of over-interpreting what they show.
As with any product of data gathering, you are the sole instrument of interpretation and meaning-making, not the object itself. Video and Audio Recordings Video or audio recording your observations has the positive effect of giving you an unfiltered record of the observation event.
It also facilitates repeated analysis of your observations.Pamela Wilson is the author of Master Content Marketing: A Simple Strategy to Cure the Blank Page Blues and Attract a Profitable Audience.
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