Summer 2023 - SA 356W E100

Ethnography and Qualitative Methods (SA) (4)

Class Number: 2300

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Tu 5:30 PM – 9:20 PM
    BLU 9655, Burnaby

  • Prerequisites:

    SA 255.



An examination of qualitative field methods, including participant observation, interviewing, archival research, cross-cultural research, life histories, network analysis, mapping, and ethical problems of fieldwork. Writing.


This course explores a diversity of ethnographic & qualitative research methods used by sociologists & anthropologists. Through the use of a variety of recent and historical publications, in addition to a core course text, this course will touch on the theories & practical elements of various qualitative methods, & foster students’ ability to compare & contrast methods. Additionally, through Research Portfolios students will gain practical skills with three different qualitative research methods. This course also examines motivation, benefits, detriments, politics of representation, & other ethical issues related to the use of ethnography & qualitative methods.



  • Team & Individual Participation (25%):
  • - Team Quizzes 10%
  • - Team Evaluation 10%
  • - General Participation 5%
  • Research Portfolio (65%):
  • - Literature Review 14%
  • - Ethics Overview - Pass/Fail
  • - Autoethnography, Participant Observation, Interview, Focus Group 3 x 12% 36%
  • - Final Reflection & Revisions 15%
  • Group Presentation 10%


Grading: Where a final exam is scheduled and the student does not write the exam or withdraw from the course before the deadline date, an N grade will be assigned. Unless otherwise specified on the course syllabus, all graded assignments for this course must be completed for a final grade other than N to be assigned. An N is considered as an F for the purposes of scholastic standing.

Grading System: The Undergraduate Course Grading System is as follows:

A+ (95-100) | A (90-94) | A- (85-89) | B+ (80-84) | B (75-79) | B- (70-74) | C+ (65-69) | C (60-64) | C- (55-59) | D (50-54) | F (0-49) | N*
*N standing to indicate the student did not complete course requirements

Academic Honesty and Student Conduct Policies: The Department of Sociology & Anthropology follows SFU policy in relation to grading practices, grade appeals (Policy T20.01), and academic honesty and student conduct procedures (S10‐S10.05). Unless otherwise informed by your instructor in writing, in graded written assignments you must cite the sources you rely on and include a bibliography/list of references, following an instructor-approved citation style. It is the responsibility of students to inform themselves of the content of SFU policies available on the SFU website.

Centre for Accessible Learning: Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need classroom or exam accommodations are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (1250 Maggie Benston Centre) as soon as possible to ensure that they are eligible and that approved accommodations and services are implemented in a timely fashion.

The Sociology and Anthropology Student Union, SASU, is a governing body of students who are engaged with the department and want to build the SA community. Get involved! Follow Facebook and Instagram pages!



Mason, Jennifer. 2018. Qualitative Researching. Third Edition. SAGE.

Additional readings available online through Canvas or the SFU library.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating. Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the university community. Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the university. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the university.