Non Participant Observation In Field Research

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Participant observation: It involves through participation in the socio-cultural life of the people under study. It refers to the informal field methods which form the basis for most fieldwork and also it provides opportunity for coming closer to the subject of study. The ideal participant observation begins with the learning of the native language, knowledge about their customs and traditions, religious beliefs and practices. Field research method also requires the researcher to reside with the respondents. The fieldworker may assume the role of “friend, philosopher and guide” of the people under his study. The researcher should maintain very good relation with the people and try to win total confidence of at least some persons in the field who serve as “key informants”. Participant observation also requires a good “impression management” on the part of the researcher. The problem with this method is that, there is a possibility for field researcher to get emotionally attached with native respondents. However, if one able to maintain some distance even after going to fieldwork, then he/she is an excellent field researcher.…show more content…
The field researcher physically keeps himself detach from residents. He only becomes a bystander. Several social scientists have been advocating this method in the interest of objectivity, and maintenance of posture of detachment. Some scholars call it as ‘quasi-participant observation’ because, the researcher remains completely detached from real life situation. One disadvantage with this method is that, the researcher may get hostility of the residents because of detached posture but still poke into many sensitive areas of social behavior of the group under
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