LIBR 285-02
LIBR 285-11
Research Methods in Library and Information Science
Topic: Ethnography (with a focus on technology)

Fall 2011 Greensheet

Dr. Kristen Radsliff Rebmann
E-mail
Office: Hayden, Idaho (same timezone as CA - pst)
Office Hours: By appointment.
Elluminate Sessions (NOT MANDATORY): Thursdays 10:00 am to 11:00 am pst (password is donut).


Greensheet Links
Textbooks and Readings
Course Requirements
Course Calendar
Resources
D2L
iSchool eBookstore
LIBR 285 Resources
Online Resource
Supplemental Readings

This is an online-only class using D2L and Elluminate. Students will be automatically enrolled in the D2L class site on the first day of the semester. I will send more information about course access as we approach this date through MySJSU.

The course begins via D2L on Wednesday August 24th. Elluminate sessions will begin on Thursday, September 1st at 10:00 am pst.

***Student attendance at the Elluminate lectures is not mandatory - recordings will be available. HOWEVER... This is a GROUP-INTENSIVE class where collaboration and participation in joint Elluminate sessions (scheduled by student groups) is mandatory.***

Course Description

Principles of ethnographic research methods and their application to technology-rich contexts. This introductory course emphasizes models of ethnographic methods of data collection and analysis. Class activities will be carried out in D2L, Elluminate, video, and audio formats. Enrollment in the D2L class is mandatory.

Course Prerequisites: LIBR 200, 202 and 204.

Course Objectives

Student Learning Outcomes:

  • Students will be gain a fundamental understanding of ethnographic methods and apply them to the collection and analysis of data.
  • Students will be able to define a set of terms reflecting core concepts of ethnography and use them in discussions of their projects for the class.
  • Students will understand principles of good research design and be able to evaluate scholarly work using those principles.

LIBR 285 supports the following SLIS Core Competencies:

  • understand the nature of research, research methods and research findings; retrieve, evaluate and synthesize scholarly and professional literature for informed decision-making by specific client groups;
  • demonstrate oral and written communication skills necessary for group work, collaborations and professional level presentations;

Course Requirements

Help! How do I …?
I will create a discussion forum in D2L for general questions regarding due-dates, structure of assignments, and clarification of concepts. Please post your general questions here so that all students may benefit. Feel free to contact me via email at kristen.rebmann@sjsu.edu . Placing the words: 285 question and your section number in the subject field will guarantee that your email will get to my high priority folder so that I can get back to you promptly (usually within 24 to 48 hours). Sometimes you might see me in google chat - feel free to talk with me this way as well.

Assignments and Exams
Students will complete a short introduction of themselves via Discussion Forum, 3 fieldnotes, and 2 field reports. I will assign 1% extra credit if students complete SOTES. Simply complete the survey and post a message (to let me know) in the SOTES-Extra Credit discussion forum at the end of the semester. More specific information regarding all assignments and extra credit will be made available on the course website.

ASSIGNMENT WEIGHT
Introductions/Short Biography via Discussion Forum
5%
Fieldnotes (3 @ 5% each)
15%
Field Report #1
35%
Field Report #2

45%         

Extra Credit - Completion of SOTES 

1%
*******************************
*******
TOTAL
101%

Weekly D2L and Elluminate Participation
I hold weekly Elluminate lecture/workshop sessions on Thursdays and occasionally use the discussion forum in D2L to discuss course ideas and issues beyond the scope of the course. Posting in the discussion forum is not mandatory. Attendance at the Elluminate sessions is also not mandatory - recordings will be available. **Part of participation in this course includes listening well to others and engaging with opposing viewpoints. You are expected to be respectful and thoughtful in responding to each other and in responding to the course materials.

Course Calendar

Subject to change with fair notice

Week 1 – Introduction to Ethnography and Qualitative Research (8/24-9/3)

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Documents: Greensheet, Readings, Field Work Handouts.
Readings: Fetterman Chapter 1.  Completely read this book as soon as possible so that you may move on to the applied readings.
Handouts: Field Report #1 (due Saturday Week 7; "Brief introduction via Discussion Forum" (due Thursday Week 2)

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(Assignments):

Attend First Elluminate Session: Thursday (9/1) @ 10am pst - donut

Week 2 – Ethnographic Roots in Anthropology (9/4-9/10) 


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Readings: Fetterman Chapter 2;

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(Assignments):

By Tuesday of this week: Brief introduction via Discussion Forum. Please follow the guidelines in the handout to introduce yourselves!
Attend Elluminate Session: Thursday @ 10am pst - donut

Week 3 – Methods and Techniques; Classic Ethnographies (9/11-9/17)

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Readings: Fetterman Chapter 3; Geertz.

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(Assignments):
Attend Elluminate Session: Thursday @ 10am pst - donut

Week 4 – Ethnographic Equipment; Classic Ethnographies  (9/18-9/24)

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Readings: Fetterman Chapter 4; Geertz cont.

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(Assignments):

Attend Elluminate Session:  NO LECTURE THIS WEEK.

Week 5 – Anaylsis; Cognitive Ethnography (9/25-10/1)


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Readings: Fetterman Chapter 5; Hutchins.
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(Assignments):
Attend Elluminate Session: Thursday @ 10am pst - donut

Week 6 – Writing and Reports; Cognitive Ethnography (10/2-10/8)


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Readings: Fetterman Chapter 6; Hutchins cont.
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(Assignments):

Attend Elluminate Session: Thursday @ 10am pst - donut

Week 7 – MIDTERM WEEK (10/9-10/15)


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Readings: NO READINGS THIS WEEK

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(Assignments):

By Saturday of this week: Send completed Field Report #1 (containing first 2 fieldnotes) to me via dropbox.
Attend course lecture via Elluminate: Thursday @ 10am pst - donut

Week 8 – Ethics; Ethnographic Research in the Classroom (10/16-10/22)


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Readings: Fetterman Chapter 7; Dyson.
Handouts: Field Report #2 (due Final day of Instruction - Thursday, 12/8)
 
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(Assignments):
Attend Elluminate Session:  NO LECTURE THIS WEEK.

Week 9 – Ethnographic Research in the Classroom (10/23-10/29)


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Readings: Dyson cont.
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(Assignments):
Attend Elluminate Session: Thursday @ 10am pst - donut

Week 10 – Ethnographic Approaces to LIS Evaluation (10/30-11/5)


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Readings: Seadle.
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(Assignments):

Attend Elluminate Session: Thursday @ 10am pst - donut

Week 11 – Ethnographic Approaches to Studying IS (11/6-11/12)


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Readings: Cunningham, Reeves, & Britland.
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(Assignments):
Attend Elluminate Session: Thursday @ 10am pst - donut

Week 12 – Ethnographic Research in Online Contexts (11/13-11/19)


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Readings: Leander

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(Assignments):
Attend Elluminate Session: Thursday @ 10am pst - donut

Week 13 – Online Contexts cont. (11/20-11/26)


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Readings: Turkle
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(Assignments):
Attend Elluminate Session: NO LECTURE THIS WEEK

Week 14 – Catch-up & Review (11/27-12/3)


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Readings: NO READINGS THIS WEEK.
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(Assignments):

 Attend Elluminate Session: Thursday @ 10am pst - donut

Week 15 – Wrap-Up (12/4-12/8)


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Readings: NO READINGS THIS WEEK.
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(Assignments):
By Thursday, 12/8 of this week: Send Field Report #2 (containing ALL 3 fieldntoes) to me via dropbox.
Attend course lecture via Elluminate: NO LECTURE THIS WEEK.

FALL 2011 Academic Calendar

http://www.sjsu.edu/includes/calendars/academic/1112aycalendar.pdf

Textbooks and Readings

Required Textbooks:

  • Fetterman, D. M. (2009). Ethnography: Step-by-Step (3rd ed.). Newbury Park, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc. Available through Amazon: 1412950457. arrow gif indicating link outside sjsu domain

Grading Scale

The standard SJSU School of Information Grading Scale is utilized for all iSchool courses:

97 to 100 A
94 to 96 A minus
91 to 93 B plus
88 to 90 B
85 to 87 B minus
82 to 84 C plus
79 to 81 C
76 to 78 C minus
73 to 75 D plus
70 to 72 D
67 to 69 D minus
Below 67 F

 

In order to provide consistent guidelines for assessment for graduate level work in the School, these terms are applied to letter grades:

  • C represents Adequate work; a grade of "C" counts for credit for the course;
  • B represents Good work; a grade of "B" clearly meets the standards for graduate level work;
    For core courses in the MLIS program (not MARA) — INFO 200, INFO 202, INFO 204 — the iSchool requires that students earn a B in the course. If the grade is less than B (B- or lower) after the first attempt you will be placed on administrative probation.  You must repeat the class the following semester. If -on the second attempt- you do not pass the class with a grade of B or better (not B- but B) you will be disqualified.
  • A represents Exceptional work; a grade of "A" will be assigned for outstanding work only.

Students are advised that it is their responsibility to maintain a 3.0 Grade Point Average (GPA).

University Policies

General Expectations, Rights and Responsibilities of the Student

As members of the academic community, students accept both the rights and responsibilities incumbent upon all members of the institution. Students are encouraged to familiarize themselves with SJSU's policies and practices pertaining to the procedures to follow if and when questions or concerns about a class arises. See University Policy S90-5 at http://www.sjsu.edu/senate/docs/S90-5.pdf. More detailed information on a variety of related topics is available in the SJSU catalog at http://info.sjsu.edu/web-dbgen/catalog/departments/LIS.html. In general, it is recommended that students begin by seeking clarification or discussing concerns with their instructor. If such conversation is not possible, or if it does not serve to address the issue, it is recommended that the student contact the Department Chair as a next step.

Dropping and Adding

Students are responsible for understanding the policies and procedures about add/drop, grade forgiveness, etc. Refer to the current semester's Catalog Policies section at http://info.sjsu.edu/static/catalog/policies.html. Add/drop deadlines can be found on the current academic year calendars document on the Academic Calendars webpage at http://www.sjsu.edu/provost/services/academic_calendars/. The Late Drop Policy is available at http://www.sjsu.edu/aars/policies/latedrops/policy/. Students should be aware of the current deadlines and penalties for dropping classes.

Information about the latest changes and news is available at the Advising Hub at http://www.sjsu.edu/advising/.

Consent for Recording of Class and Public Sharing of Instructor Material

University Policy S12-7, http://www.sjsu.edu/senate/docs/S12-7.pdf, requires students to obtain instructor's permission to record the course and the following items to be included in the syllabus:

  • "Common courtesy and professional behavior dictate that you notify someone when you are recording him/her. You must obtain the instructor's permission to make audio or video recordings in this class. Such permission allows the recordings to be used for your private, study purposes only. The recordings are the intellectual property of the instructor; you have not been given any rights to reproduce or distribute the material."
    • It is suggested that the syllabus include the instructor's process for granting permission, whether in writing or orally and whether for the whole semester or on a class by class basis.
    • In classes where active participation of students or guests may be on the recording, permission of those students or guests should be obtained as well.
  • "Course material developed by the instructor is the intellectual property of the instructor and cannot be shared publicly without his/her approval. You may not publicly share or upload instructor generated material for this course such as exam questions, lecture notes, or homework solutions without instructor consent."

Academic integrity

Your commitment, as a student, to learning is evidenced by your enrollment at San Jose State University. The University Academic Integrity Policy F15-7 at http://www.sjsu.edu/senate/docs/F15-7.pdf requires you to be honest in all your academic course work. Faculty members are required to report all infractions to the office of Student Conduct and Ethical Development. The Student Conduct and Ethical Development website is available at http://www.sjsu.edu/studentconduct/.

Campus Policy in Compliance with the American Disabilities Act

If you need course adaptations or accommodations because of a disability, or if you need to make special arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please make an appointment with me as soon as possible, or see me during office hours. Presidential Directive 97-03 at http://www.sjsu.edu/president/docs/directives/PD_1997-03.pdf requires that students with disabilities requesting accommodations must register with the Accessible Education Center (AEC) at http://www.sjsu.edu/aec to establish a record of their disability.

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