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Final Project

Page history last edited by Morgan Allen 15 years, 1 month ago


Final Group Digital Ethnographic Research Project and Presentation:


At the end of the semester, in lieu of a final exam, you and your assigned group will be required to propose and complete a digital ethnographic research project and then present your findings in class. This will be your group’s opportunity to further explore some aspect of virtual communities or cyberculture. Your presentation of your findings can take any number of forms (i.e. a YouTube video that your group creates, a hypertext document, or an interactive, visual presentation).


Your project, in the end, must include the following elements


  • Digital ethnography: your group must perform a substantial amount of "fieldwork" within the cyberculture you propose to study, so that you can experience and reflect upon the culture you will be investigating. So if, for example, you are studying role playing within gaming cultures, such as WoW, then you would spend time actually involved in that culture.
  • Survey/Recorded data: You must include either the results of a survey you conduct within this culture or transcripts of conversations you have had while performing digital ethnography, to provide supplementary examples and data.
  • An analysis of this culture, object, or phenomenon: guided by well-formed questions, using your own experiences, the data you collect, and at least six scholarly articles (three from in-class, three from outside the course) as a framework for discussion, you will provide a thoughtful analysis of the culture you propose to study.
  • Visual evidence: you must provide some kind of visual evidence to help support your analysis and digital ethnography via photos and/or video.
  • Publishable presentation: each group must present their final work both in class (see schedule below) and online (whether through YouTube, from your wiki, as a separate blog, etc).


Your final project will count for 25% of your final grade.


Do not forget that if you plan to survey people or take photos/video, you must either block out their virtual and real names or acquire their permission! Use your notecards (or design one similar for your purposes if your project in not in Second Life that will enable you to inform your subjects of the research you are doing and get their permission. For more information about these guidelines, please visit the HSP facts page.


Each group should post a formal research proposal (as a separate page on your group wiki) by March 30th that outlines the following: 


  • What is the primary question (or set of questions) that will drive your research? What questions or problems will you attempt to address by your project? 
  • Which cybercultural object, site, phenomenon, or event you plan to study; and what do you hope to learn about it? This will be guided, of course, by your questions (above).
  • How does your group plan to approach your digital ethnography? How do you plan to spend your time experiencing this culture or event and for what purpose? Do you plan to take a survey? (If so, what kinds of questions might you ask and/or what would your goals of the survey be?) Will you provide transcripts of discussions (and to what end?).
  • What kind of research or conceptual framework do you intend to employ, and why? For example, if you are researching cyberstalking, what kinds of article or concepts (in general) do you think might help guide your analysis? You don't need to actually know yet which articles you will be using, but rather have a general idea of what you will be looking for.


By April 6th, your group should list, on a specifically designed wiki page attached to your group page, a draft annotated bibliography that outlines the scholarly work you plan to (re)consider and use as a framework to guide your research project. You must offer at least three significant, scholarly readings from class and three significant outside scholarly sources (which we have NOT read or discussed within this course).


Presentation Schedule


Week 14 / April 27th: Group Digital Ethnographic Research Presentations (Groups 1 & 2)


Week 15 / May 4th: Group Digital Ethnographic Research Presentations (Groups 3, 4 & 5)



Comments (2)

Morgan Allen said

at 11:30 am on Mar 30, 2009

Krysti said

at 8:38 am on Apr 6, 2009

We did our bib's on a new page and linked it to our project proposal page, so you can access our bib's by going to out proposal page and cliking on the link, or by the new page address: http://rockout.pbwiki.com/DRAFT-Annotated-Bibliography.

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