• Take a minute to think about what you learned from the Swales reading.
    • This particular source will play a role in each of your Ethnographies; it's important that you understand it well!
    • Next, freewrite about what you think you need to do to be successful as an ethnographer of discourse.

Preparing for Research in the Field

  • You'll be doing two kinds of research simultaneously for this project:
    • Compiling academic sources about your discourse (and discourse communities in general), and
    • Conducting ethnographic study by visiting the site(s) where your chosen discourse occurs!
  • On Friday, we'll discuss the former kind of research, from which you'll be building your Annotated Bibliography.
  • Today, we need to familiarize ourselves with the latter. Let's explore both active and passive forms of ethnographic research!


  • To whom do we talk (and how)?
  • Possible Interview Questions:
    • How long have you been a member of this community?
    • Why are you involved?
    • What do X, Y, and Z words mean?
    • How did you learn to write A, B, and C?
    • How do you communicate with other people within this community?
    • How does this community interact with other communities?
    • What does belonging or citizenship means in this community?
    • How and why does this group participate (or not participate) in our political system?

Topic Selection

  • Brainstorm ideas for Ethnographic Research
    • Let's begin by defining discourse communities in our own words
    • Your homework reading has some specific ideas of it's own; let's see how they compare to yours!
  • In a new wikilink on your student page, let's take another shot at listing as many discourse communities that you belong to as we can.
    • This list might begin with some of the same ones you've listed earlier in the semester, but you should be able to get more specific or narrow down some details that define the community now that we've explored these ideas more fully!


  • Draft an interview question list or a survey instrument and bring it to class on Friday!