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AT3537: ETHNOGRAPHY (2022-2023)

Last modified: 31 Jul 2023 11:19

Course Overview

What is ethnographic writing and how do we learn to write ethnographically? This course seeks to familiarise students with the craft of ethnographic writing through a series of lectures, seminars, reading and writing exercises.  

Course Details

Study Type Undergraduate Level 3
Session Second Sub Session Credit Points 30 credits (15 ECTS credits)
Campus Aberdeen Sustained Study No
  • Dr Nancy Wachowich

What courses & programmes must have been taken before this course?

  • MA Anthropology
  • Either Programme Level 3 or Programme Level 4

What other courses must be taken with this course?


What courses cannot be taken with this course?

Are there a limited number of places available?


Course Description

The course will familiarise students with a range of different ethnographic genres, such as: realist, critical, experimental, phenomenological, and historical. Through careful attention to the range and scope of ethnographic reading and writing, the course will address the ways in which anthropologists, both historically and in the present-day, have chosen to conduct fieldwork, establish ethnographic authority, and present cultural realities. We explore how, as they are read, ethnographies are able to stimulate comparative theoretical thinking. As the course proceeds, anthropology emerges as both a science and an art form.

Contact Teaching Time

Information on contact teaching time is available from the course guide.

Teaching Breakdown

More Information about Week Numbers

Details, including assessments, may be subject to change until 31 August 2023 for 1st half-session courses and 22 December 2023 for 2nd half-session courses.

Summative Assessments

Alternative Assessment

Ethnographic description 2- 500 words (10%)

Ethnographic description 3- 500 words (10% )

Ethnographic description 4- 500 words (10%)

Ethnographic description 5- 500 words (10%)

Journaling Exercise 1,500 words (20%)

Final Essay 2,000-words (40%)



Formative Assessment

Ethnographic description 1- 500-words (formative)

Course Learning Outcomes

Knowledge LevelThinking SkillOutcome
ReflectionEvaluateUnderstand how theoretical and anthropological positioning has determined the shape of ethnographic knowledge production and analysis.
ProceduralEvaluateDevelop students’ knowledge of the range of ethnographic writing styles through an in-depth reading and evaluation of four ethnographic monographs.
ReflectionCreateInviting students to apply their understandings of particular genres as they experiment with different writing styles. These writing assignments are creative, interpretive and evaluative.
ReflectionEvaluateTraining students on how to provide and receive peer evaluations. Students are asked to offer useful and constructive feedback on short creative ethnographic writing assignments of their peers.

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