Music 666 Fall 2017 outline

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General course website including science and equipment links:



Professor Michael Frishkopf
Meetings: Fall 2017, Mondays, 9 – 11:50 am, Old Arts 403
Office: 347 Old Arts Building
Office hours: by appointment
Tel: 780-492-0225, email:


Ethnomusicology is "the meaningful social practice of studying music as a meaningful social practice" (Frishkopf 2011) Within music studies, ethnomusicology's distinguishing practical feature is fieldwork, a principal component of the ethnographic enterprise upon which most ethnomusicological (and anthropological) research is based. This course aims to provide you with strategies for the aquisition of field methods (procedural, declarative, and critical knowledge) enabling you to perform critical ethnographic fieldwork, to gather ethnomusicological data, and develop ethnographies.

For the first few weeks, we take up theoretical and critical overviews of fieldwork and ethnography (along with a heavy reading load), including – most importantly – issues of truth, power, and ethics. Subsequently, that load will be reduced as we begin to focus on acquisition of perspectives, knowledge, and methods—technical and social—pertinent to critical ethnomusicological data collection via participant observation, interviewing, field notes, audio and video recording, and still photography. Here the course shifts gears, from reading about fieldwork to actually doing it. You will learn to transcribe and edit field materials, and to analyze and code fieldwork data in preparation for ethnographic writing. We will discuss techniques and strategies for molding multimedia materials into presentable formats, including documentary film, and development of multimedia websites, blogs, wikis, and podcasts.

You will also learn to develop effective ethnographic research proposals centered on fieldwork (including preparation of budgets and timelines), suitable for funding and guiding your research project. Most students should consider this course as an initial step towards their MA or PhD thesis.

Ethnomusicology is a diverse set of practices, and complete training in its field methods is not possible in the span of 13 sessions. In particular, we will not have time to study the technical subjects (audio recording/editing, photography, video recording/editing) in depth. Mastery of any one of these subjects requires an enormous investment in study and practice. Nor will there be time to transform fieldwork products into ethnography. Rather the focus here is on a broad spectrum of introductions—methods for acquiring methods, learning how to learn—in the hopes that you will thereby be enabled and motivated to explore further on your own.

Course objectives

  • To develop a theoretical understanding of ethnographic fieldwork—its nature, uses, aims, methods, and (ethical or epistemological) limitations—as a social practice.
  • To become familiar with various modalities of ethnographic fieldwork, their strengths and weaknesses.
  • To develop some practical fieldwork skills, particularly participant observation, interviewing, and fieldnotes, and the development of rapport.
  • To understand the principles of multimedia recording and editing (audio, video, and image), and develop basic competencies in their technologies.
  • To learn how to organize and analyze fieldwork data, in preparation for ethnographic writing, including transcribing and coding.
  • To develop an ethnographic research proposal centered on a fieldwork project, and to carry out a portion of the latter.

Course requirements

  • Regular, punctual attendance.
  • Reading (or skimming, as appropriate) each week's reading assignments prior to the class in which it will be discussed, and preparation of presentations. Note: it is very important to learn to locate and absorb the gist of a reading without actually reading every word! Otherwise you may find the quantity of reading to be overwhelming. (We'll talk about this skill in class.) For each reading, I suggest you prepare a brief report (a few sentences), comprising a synopsis and a critique, for your own use, and keep these for future reference. (They'll come in especially handy for the 3-4-page critical synthesis, due week 7.) Naturally this task is even more important when you will be leading the discussion.
  • Submission of a 3-4-page critical synthesis on fieldwork and ethnography (referencing assigned readings for weeks 1-5 only)
  • Submission of a preliminary research proposal defining an ethnographic project focusing on music (in the most general possible sense of this word), due week 4 (budget section due week 8). Note: your proposal should be related to your MA or PhD thesis plans, but must center upon fieldwork to be performed locally. See me if you're not sure how to do this.
  • Submission of 6 fieldwork/analysis practica applying techniques presented and demonstrated in the previous week's class. As far as possible, these practica must all be directed towards execution of the research proposal, in a shared field setting.
  • Presentation of final research proposal and project on the last day of class, when you will receive critical feedback.
  • Submission of a final web-based research proposal and report (including an ethics board application), containing edited excerpts of collected field data (fieldnotes, audio-recordings, photographs, video-recordings), and synthesized in a short descriptive ethnography incorporating critical feedback from your presentation. Due: Dec 15th.

Please submit all text assignments by depositing them in your named Google Drive folder, using a subfolder named for the week in which the assignment is due. I will also provide any feedback or comments in that same folder.


Assignments and weights

  • Preliminary research proposal (a) and budget (i): 5%
  • Three to Four-page critical synthesis on fieldwork and ethnography (b): 5%
  • Six ethnographic practica @ 6% each: 36% (fieldnotes (c); audiography (d); interviews (e); photography (f); videography (g); coding (h))
  • Final project proposal, and presentation (j): 34%
  • Participation & assigned presentations: 20%


  • There will be no exams.
  • Unexcused late assignments will be downgraded one quarter point per day.
  • When page counts are given they refer to 1" margins, single-spaced, Times New Roman font, or equivalent. "References cited" or "bibliography" does not count towards the page total.
  • Be sure to cite all references using the (author year:pages) format, and list all references cited at the end of your paper.

Grading scale

Evaluations of each assignment are on a scale from 0-4.3 points. These scores are combined according to the percentages indicated below in order to produce a final numeric grade. This grade is rounded to the nearest numeric value in the table below, in order to determine the final letter grade.

  • A+: 4.3
  • A: 4.0
  • A-: 3.7
  • B+: 3.3
  • B: 3.0
  • B-: 2.7
  • C+: 2.3
  • C: 2.0
  • C-: 1.7
  • D+: 1.3


  • Readings. Most readings are available on reserve. Many of the books containing these readings should be available for purchase at the University Bookstore. It is not necessary to purchase all the books. However you may wish to invest in your fieldwork future by purchasing some of them, particularly the practical manuals (Bartlett, Grimm, and Hampe), which are general works for reference and self-study. Some readings are available online as well. See bibliography below for links.
  • Online films and videos.
  • Class lectures, discussions, and presentations. Take notes on your colleagues' presentations!
  • Multimedia equipment in the Canadian Centre for Ethnomusicology, including a minidisc recorder, a digital video camera, and an audio recorder. We will establish hours of use.
  • Your own multimedia equipment (audio, video, photo, laptop) (optional but good to assemble your "kit")
  • Other software for qualitative data analysis (HyperRESEARCH), scorewriting, audio/video editing, etc. (see below for a listing)
  • The CCE wiki: (see How to write these wiki pages). I will create a wiki account for everyone so that you can use the wiki.
  • The Field.


  • Each week lists in-class activities (for the collective Monday session, including discussions), and assignments (to be carried out individually during the remainder of the week, and to be completed by the following class). Note: Anything to be discussed in a given week also constitutes an implicit assignment for the previous week!
  • Full citations for all readings are listed in the bibliography below.
  • Note that due to holidays our first official class day is Monday September 11 (week 1).

week 1 (Sep 11 - 17): introduction to fieldwork and the ethnographic project in ethnomusicology

In class

  • Welcome and overview of course. Basic questions, purposes, goals.
  • Introductions: who are we? Share some fieldwork stories, motivations...
  • Some operating concepts: source/reference, explanatory/interpretive/critical, descriptive/prescriptive, experience/inference, hermeneutics/positivism, meaning/structure, meaning/action, lifeworld/system, signifier/signified, structure/process, system/environment, semantic net/social net, constructivism/realism, reflexive/unreflexive, experiment/observation/participation, emic/etic, insider/outsider, ethnocentric/chronocentric, thought-feeling=meaning/discourse/practice, culture/society, ideational/material, idiographic/nomothetic, theoretical/applied, exploratory/hypothesis testing, qualitative/quantitative, inductive/deductive, synchronic/diachronic, cross-sectional/longitudinal, phenomenological/empirical, subjective/intersubjective/objective, micro/macro, researcher/informant(collaborator, participant...), arts/humanities/social science/science (and their "methods")

This week

Consider the ethnographic project, as carried out through fieldwork, and how its products (books, films) represent culture, by considering several instances:

As you read or watch, take a few notes, both descriptive and critical. Ask questions of value and try to classify the samples.

Assignment (due next time)

  • Write 1-2 pages about these ethnographic examples (books and films). How is music and music culture represented? What contrasting approaches do ethnographers take? How can you evaluate and classify their research approaches and products? What are their assumptions? What sorts of representations do they produce, and what are the consequences for the work as a whole? Which of these approaches do you like, and why? Conversely, which ones do you dislike, and why? In sum, what is ethnographic fieldwork for ethnomusicology? How does it differ from other kinds of ethnographic fieldwork, or fieldwork generally? You don't have to write about every example - be selective.
  • In 1-2 pages, outline your ethnographic research proposal by filling in a few sentences using my proposal template, Research Proposals in Ethnomusicology, parts I, II, III, IV, as a guide. Focus on I and II primarily for now. (We'll discuss this in class when we meet.) Note that you will not complete this research during the semester, but you will direct your assignments towards it whenever possible. Ideally the proposal should outline research you intend to carry out for your graduate thesis, though it is also possible to propose other (e.g. narrower, or even completely different) projects.
  • Complete readings on theory of fieldwork and ethnography (as listed for discussion in week 2), for individual presentations and discussion next week.

Note that all references to readings are fully explicated in the list below.

week 2 (Sep 18 - 24): a critical examination of fieldwork and ethnography. Defining your own ethnographic project, planning your fieldwork

How does one frame an ethnographic fieldwork-based research project (book, article, or film) in ethnomusicology? We'll review Research Proposals in Ethnomusicology We'll discuss the research proposal format, and your incipient ethnographic fieldwork project ideas.

Note: it's very important for you to "do" all the readings. BUT "do" doesn't mean read every word; you may skim some more than others, concentrating primarily on the one you (or others) will present, and those marked "all". On the other hand, it is not enough to focus on your own reading presentation, otherwise discussion will be limited.

If you'd like to share reading notes, or engage in on-line discussions centered on individual readings, please use this page.

In class

  • Review course mechanics - submission by email but with fixed subject headers
  • What is fieldwork? What is ethnography?
  • What is ethnomusicology (EM)? (3 extensions....) its aims? (academic knowledge? social practice?)
  • Why is fieldwork central to the discipline of EM? Differentiate: EM, CM (comparative musicology), HM (historical musicology), PM (popular music studies), MT (music theory)....FS (folklore studies).
  • Does EM have to deploy fieldwork?
  • Theory and method: how do they relate? Does theory imply method? Or the reverse?
  • This course: introduction to fieldwork
  • Review some of the categories and contrasts from last time (emic/etic....).
  • Some new ideas - tools for thinking:
    • Explanation/understanding :: Science/humanities :: experimental method/interpretive strategy :: nomothetic/idiographic :: law/meaning
    • Inductive vs. deductive (theory/method)
    • Networks, social and semantic
    • S-nets: interleaving social (intersubjective) network, semantic (symbolic) network (cf: society and culture).
    • Fieldwork as repositioning of the self within such nets. Phenomenology and Hermeneutics as tools of understanding.
    • Degree of network immersion (time, space, language, life)
    • Agency vs. Structure , or Lifeworld vs. System
    • Rapport as key element of the positioning
    • Truth : between the objectivistic and the solipsistic
    • Units of social analysis ("community", "culture", "city", "scene"...)
    • Problem of boundaries: Culture areas as a partition of humanity into non-overlapping sets (e.g. eHRAF or Global Jukebox vs. social identity as set of overlapping circles representing affiliations
    • Ethnography: description vs. grounded theory; localized vs. comparative/multisited; linguistic vs. multimediated (ethnomedia?)
    • Wide range of methods available (browse Sage research methods map (and many other valuable materials on their site)
    • Culture as self-observing (E.g. El Mastaba (; fieldworker as "second order observer", the "observer observing observation" (Luhmann system theory)
  • Discussion of sample ethnographies (African).
  • Project proposals. Feedback loops: (a) between goals and methods; (b) between proposal and fieldwork.
  • Presentation of fieldwork project proposal ideas, for class feedback (continued in week 3).
  • Reading presentations as assigned (be prepared to lead a critical discussion of your reading) and discussion of other readings.

Readings for class discussion

(Everyone read whatever is marked 'all' and be prepared to discuss them; read/skim readings to be presented by others; read with care those you will present for discussion, highlighting the main ideas, critiquing the work, and noting issues for collective debate, discussion, and analysis.) See bibliographic list below for full references and links where available. Note that any reading marked for class discussion in a given week must be read in advance! Take notes or mark up a copy (or PDF).

Please limit your presentation to 3-5 minutes max, plus a few minutes for questions and discussion. Your presentation should be divided into two parts: (a) Treat as reference: what is this about? main points? (b) Treat as source: critique. What are the limits of what is being stated? How should it be contextualized?

All: Faubion 2001, p. 39 (ch. 3 - skim for mentions of fieldwork - how is the word used?); Fetterman ch. 1-2 ; Jackson: chapters 1-4 (skim); Charmaz and Mitchell 2001 (grounded theory; skim).

Assigned for presentation: Sign up for a reading you'd like to present in class using this wiki page... everyone skim everything: Clifford and Marcus – essay by Marcus p. 165-188; Marcus 1998: Intro, chapters 1, 2; Barz chapters 2 (Titon) and 3 (Rice) and other chapters (your choice; note which chapter you'd like to present.); Robben & Sluka (part VIII – your choice; note which chapter you'd like to present.)

See bibliography below for full listings of these works, some of which are online, otherwise on reserve or at bookstore.


(due next time): readings on ethics, for presentation and discussion next week. Also try logging onto the Human Ethics Research Online (Hero) system .

week 3 (Sep 25 - Oct 1): ethical issues in fieldwork and ethnography

In class

1) Fieldwork - review. Overview of last session. Student presentations of last week's readings (to be completed).

2) Ethics. Some introductory ideas; case studies and field stories; institutional ethics. Next, your reading presentations (be prepared to lead a critical discussion of your reading). Discussion of ethics as philosophy (what are the various positions?), and organizational codes of ethics (how and why do they differ?).

We can also discuss the African ethnographies with an eye towards their ethical dimensions, and pages about research ethics at the UofA. What principles inform these documents? What are the underlying motivations here? How do institutions condition "ethics" - on what bases?

Your fieldwork projects, from an ethical perspective. Consider the ethical dimension of your projects - what aspects of your method might prove problematic? How will you address these issues? Review the required format for research proposals in ethnomusicology.

3) Positionings and modes of research, preliminary for next week.

Readings and pages for today's class discussion

All read: Jackson: chapter 16; Murphy and Dingwall 2001, ch. 23 (p. 339 ff); Fetterman chapter 7; Kvale chapter 4; materials at pages about research ethics at the UofA. Sample ethnographies (review).

Week 3 assigned readings (click to indicate which reading you'd like to present; everyone read all that have been selected): Barz chapter 9 (Shelemay); Faubion & Marcus p. 73 (Hamilton); Faubion & Marcus p. 145 (Faubion); Robben & Sluka (part VI – your choice); DeWalt chapter 10.

Please also browse the following:

Philosophy resources:

Institutional and Organizational statements & codes of ethics (focus on ethnographic research disciplines):


For next time: readings on positionings & modes of research (see next week for list and signup). Review, once again, the African ethnographies and think about what sorts of positionings and modes their authors have adopted. Also: work on your research proposals, thinking about (a) how to introduce comparative and multisited perspectives; (b) ethical dimensions of your methodologies (we'll discuss these aspects next time). Finally: think about whether or not ethnographic research (anthropological, sociological, ethnomusicological, ethnochoreological) is moving towards applied work? How can we know?

Note: You may like to enroll in one of the scheduled REMO training sessions.

week 4 (Oct 2 - 8): positioning yourself in the field; modes of research


  • Preliminary research proposal and ethics application is due next week (there is no class due to Thanksgiving; submit via google drive)
  • Synthetic critical essay is due in three weeks (just a heads-up)
  • Make use of reference management software for all your assignments. I recommend Zotero or refworks. Some like Endnote.

In class

Positioning and modality of fieldwork depends on research aims:

  • towards accumulation of knowledge, depending on theory of knowledge = epistemology (for "pure research")
  • towards positive change, depending on theory of action = praxis ("applied research")


Field positioning and modes

  • Positioning
    • Where are you located (socially, culturally, geographically, physically)? Do you (can you) occupy more than one location (social status...)?
    • What is your angle of view?
  • Modes of field research, epistemologies of culture and society, and attitudes towards action
    • participation, observation, interviewing, surveying, archival research.
    • fieldwork as action research

Implications of choices: the embedding of the self

  • S-nets (sonet, senet)
  • Self-embedding through positioning and modality

More practically consider the range of choices before you:

  • entry into the field (now considered as an s-net). (Recall entry scenes in the African ethnographies)
  • self-presentation and social distance
  • establishing alliances and making commitments
  • positioning and angling (literally - and metaphorically)
  • defining infield and outfield boundaries
  • defining rhythms of fieldwork, to and from infield/outfield, and especially to/from homefield
  • how and how much to participate
  • how much of prior connections to put on hold or leave behind
  • the social network of connectivity, relationships
  • the ineffable rapport
  • ethics of the field position: local and global
  • experiencing vs. measuring (qualitative vs. quantitative, empirical vs.
  • exploratory vs hypothesis testing research, and the role of iteration
  • collaboration and participation (e.g. Participatory Action Research)
  • living in the infield vs. living in the outfield


  • via paradigm/theoretical assumptions
  • via media technology
  • via formalizing methodologies
  • via authority or inexperience of outsider
  • via disjunctions of the self - "going native"

Consider the various authors whom you've read this past week - how do their approaches differ? Are the differences disciplinary, idiosyncratic, or a little of each? How are they shaped by aims or by the field itself?

Personal safety issues

  • While not generally filed under the rubric of "positioning" (or "ethics") taking your own safety into account is obviously very important! Furthermore your safety may affect the safety of those around you (and vice versa) so that this issue is not isolated from a broader ethical one.
  • Consider the risks, and weigh them against benefits (e.g. learning, musical experience, academic degree, personal growth and self-realization, etc.)
    • Endemic disease; precautions and medications required
    • Pre-existing conditions and how they can be managed
    • Transportation hazards (seatbelts? motorcycles? helmets? crossing the street??)
    • Random street crime (from pickpockets to violent crime), time of day
    • Relationship issues with project participants
    • Becoming a target
    • Government hostility to foreigners
    • Political instability, demonstrations
    • Armed conflict
  • Examine the following resources on and off campus:

Presentations for today

Readings for today

Reading presentations (be prepared to lead a critical discussion of your reading). Readings for class discussion:

All: Fetterman: ch. 3 (esp. 31-37, 57-62; we'll cover interviewing later); Jackson: chapters 5-8 (skim, esp. chapter 7 which we'll cover later); DeWalt chapters 1-4, Kvale chapter 1

Week 4 assigned readings: Marcus 1998: chapters 3, 4; Kvale chapter 1; Barz chapters 4 (Berger), 6 (Virtual fieldwork), 16 (Advocacy); Robben & Sluka (parts II or VII – your choice).


(for next time): preliminary research proposal (a) including ethics component (via REMO), and readings for next week (see below), which you should read and critique (as usual!).
Also prepare to present your research proposals next week for group feedback (don't forget to include Comparative and multisited perspectives). Also critique our various applied projects as instances of applied/action/advocacy ethnomusicology.

week 5 (Oct 9 - 15): writing; participation, observation, and participant observation. Fieldnotes (THANKSGIVING - no class on Oct 9)

NOTE: Oct 9 is a holiday; there will be no class this week but please do submit assignments and continue with your readings as outlined below. Out of respect for Thanksgiving you may submit assignments on Wednesday of this week (Oct 11)
Due (Oct 11): Preliminary ethnographic fieldwork research proposal (a), including a preliminary ethics application via REMO.
Note: budget section (i) is not due until week 8.

  • Follow the format presented in the document Research Proposals in Ethnomusicology.
  • Remember, this is a draft!
  • Don't spend a lot of time on background (III: area, scope; VI: literature review) at this point. In area/scope (III; maybe a page?) you should primarily strive to clarify your project, by defining terms (whether topical or theoretical) and introducing needed context and environmental factors. Most important is topic, aim, problems, and especially methods (Sections I, II, IV). Omit the resources/workflow section for now (budget, timeline, in section VII). References cited should be included, but this can be generated automatically if you're using bibliographic software (refworks, endnote, etc.).
  • The ethics application is entirely separate from the proposal in form (i.e. they're two separate documents), but not in content. Generally you'd provide the ethics review board with a condensed version of the project proposal, getting more specific on issues that matter to them (e.g. the kinds of questions you intend to ask in interviews, also part of your methodology section), less so on others (e.g. background). So while they're two distinct documents, you can certainly do a considerable amount of cutting and pasting from one to the other. Create your ethics application on REMO by logging in and creating a new study (but don't press "submit" until we've had a chance to review everything together), then print it to PDF format. If you have trouble please contact help via REMO. You may have to request a PI role for yourself before you are allowed to create an online ethics app.

[NB: No class due to Thanksgiving; happy holidays! But please do all the readings and note assignments for the following week, this week's class activities will be split between last week and next week.]

Readings to complete by today (include in your synthetic-critical bibliographic essays):

All: Fetterman, chapter 6; Dewalt (read chapters 5-8 selectively; skim the rest according to your interests); Emerson et al (book): Preface, chapters 1, 2 (you can also glance through their chapter in the Handbook of Ethnography); Barz chapter 13 (Barz)
Note: from now on there are no individually assigned readings, but do read everything, take notes, and be prepared for critical discussion.

Assignments (for next time):

Additional theoretical and critical perspectives for the coming week. Read selectively from the following, according to relevance for your project (pick at least three chapters or articles you haven't read previously): Marcus 1998 chapters 8-10; Marcus 1999 (any); Barz (any); Marcus, J. 2001 (Orientalism); Maso (phenomenology); Van Loon (cultural studies); Spencer (postmodernism); Lather (postmodernism); Robben & Sluka (parts IX and X on reflexive and fictive ethnography), or anything else from the works listed in the bibliography. You'll incorporate these readings, along with others from weeks 1-5, in your critical synthesis, due week 7.

PO (participant observation) fieldnotes assignment: infield and outfield (c):

  • Purchase a small, pocket-sized notebook (you can experiment with different sizes).
  • Select a site (perhaps a store, restaurant, class…) , and visit it regularly each day - i.e. 7 days total - throughout the coming week - applying all the strategies of participant observation we've been reading about. If this site can be part of (or close to) your project, great. If not, fine too. (But do focus on a setting that includes music.)
  • The aim: describe the physical site, the social interactions/discourses of the site, and their meanings for participants. Try to include something with music in it, and make a special focus on music in what follows. Try situating yourself closer to the P or O in P-O (participant-observation). What's the difference?
  • Infield: Practice the various techniques of infieldnotes (open or covert jot, mnemonics, headnotes)
  • Outfield: using your computer, writeup outfieldnotes – expand your jottings, mnemonics, or headnotes into your journal entry for the day. How much can you remember? Try various strategies: writing immediately after withdrawing from the infield, later that evening, the next day. How much do you remember? Try various techniques
  • For each entry, also include a meta-entry: your observations of yourself as a fieldworker, i.e. fieldwork of fieldwork (reflexivity). Observe yourself, situate yourself. How did people react to you? What was the effect of your presence in the field? What relationships were established? What techniques were most fruitful? How did you feel doing them – what modes of working do you feel comfortable in?
  • In your outfieldnotes: invent typographical means of differentiating the various registers and categories of content. [e.g. separating descriptions from
  • Bring everything with you next time.

week 6 (Oct 16 - 22): More theoretical and critical perspectives on fieldwork & the ethnographic enterprise.

Due: Fieldnotes (c). (Submit this and other assignments via your Google Drive folder.)

In class:

  • Discussion of PO assignments (due today) and proposals/ethics applications (due last week)
  • Discussion of readings that have not yet been discussed..
  • Discussion of readings assigned last week (please prepare to present one of your selected readings).
  • Introduction of Soundwalk (to be explained).

Assignment (for next time):

Critical synthesis on fieldwork and ethnography. Three to four-page (single-spaced, 1" margins, Times New Roman or equivalent font) critical synthesis on fieldwork and ethnography, addressing key issues of method, representation and ethics, and gathering theoretical, methodological, and critical readings to date (as many as possible) from weeks 1-5, whether assigned for everyone to read together, or for a particular person to present (b). (However it is not necessary to read every word of every reading in order to include it in your critical synthesis.) Focus on comparing, contrasting, thematizing, and critiquing. Group multiple readings together - you won't have space to talk about each one individually. Rather, the idea is to highlight the main ideas, to emphasize what's important, what's controversial, and what's lacking. Show me that you've done the readings...and thought about them critically as sources (to be understood in context) not merely references (to be accepted as authorities). Three to four single-spaced pages is a minimum. Note that your grade will depend in part on the number of readings you critically discuss, and how well you critically synthesize them. You needn't cover every last one, and you can be selective, but please don't stint either. You must cover all readings assigned for everyone to read, those that you presented in class, and those that you selected (when there was a choice). Very important! As you mention a reference, be sure to cite it in-text using the (author date:pages) format, and append an alphabetical list of references (not counted in the 3 pages) cited at the end. If you use bibliographic software (Endnote, Refworks, etc.) this list will be generated automatically. Remember, Refworks is free - available on the UofA Library site. Another wonderful tool is Zotero, a Firefox plugin - a highly recommended research tool.

Soundwalk. Also due next time: soundscape/soundwalk assigment (to be further explained in class): select a route of approximately 1-2 km. At 4 or 5 points along this route, pause and listen for a while, eyes open, then eyes closed. Consider: sonic texture, timbres, pitch, loudness, rhythms, tempos, sources, locations. Before moving ahead, notate your listening experience in a small notebook, in 2 ways: (a) using linguistic description, (b) using any kind of graphical notation. How does opening or closing the eyes affect your experience? Also note your exact location. Record the sound at each stopping point using a mobile phone. Afterwards, compare notations and sound recorded. Create a google map (go to [2], click on the menu button, then select "my maps", "create map", and add markers numbered sequentially. If possible upload your sound files to youtube or soundcloud (providing you haven't recorded conversations) and link to these markers. You can also draw lines connecting the markers to indicate the route you followed. For some background on these techniques read [3], [4], and browse [5] and [6]. This assignment will not be graded.

week 7 (Oct 23 - Oct 29): field recording: an overview of physical principles, formats, technologies, equipment, supplies, methods, storage, labeling, basic metadata concepts. Budgeting.

Due: Three to four-page critical synthesis on fieldwork and ethnography (b).

In class:

Readings to prepare for class:

Jackson: chapter 9; Fetterman: chapter 4. Entries for "Metadata", and "Dublin Core" in wikipedia (follow available links).
Also see Dublin Core Usage Guide and other documents at
Harvard's guide to metadata standards is very useful as a summary of the various types (descriptive, technical, structural, preservation, rights...)

Note: Equipment (electrical plugs and sockets)

Assignments for next time:

  1. Consider: how will technology enabling you to record sound and light waves contribute to your project? What are the advantages, what are the risks? How does such technology supplement, complement, support, or undermine your humanistic aims? Work technology into your methodology and consider it critically in relation to your project. Write 2 pages on this topic (what methods would you adopt? & how would you evaluate them critically?), ultimately to be added to your research proposal methodology.
  2. Begin to search for appropriate equipment and sketch a preliminary budget (i).
  3. Complete readings for next week and prepare to discuss or apply them.

Also: review theory from last class - and play around with Audacity to get a better sense of how sound works in practice!

week 8 (Oct 30 - Nov 5): audio-recording and editing. DAW, Audacity, Praat, pitch detection, spectral analysis. MIDI, music transcription and scorewriting software.

Due: (2017: you can submit these next week) Proposal’s preliminary budget (i) and critical review of technology (2 pages; see assignment above).
Continue to develop your proposal generally. At this time you should have fleshed out the following sections of your proposal: aim; area (briefly); scope; research questions; research methods; budget (still sketchy); bibliography (include annotations if you have them). (Please develop some familiarity with bibliographic software!) You should also have completed a draft ethics application. (As we learn more about equipment your budget section will expand, as it's an equipment list as well.)

Have a look at audio editing and analysis software, including scorewriters, sequencers, digital audio editors, and analysis tools and consider related metadata issues. Continue to play around with Audacity.

Review entries for "Metadata", and "Dublin Core" in wikipedia (follow available links) as well as the Dublin Core site overview.

In class:

  • Where we are, what you've completed
    • I've reviewed synthetic-critical essays, but they are not all in...
    • Hold makeup class?
  • Soundwalks?
  • History of recording technology (watch especially video #5 in the First Sounds series)
  • What are the implications of "sending the past into the future"? Is this not unprecedented in the universe? Or is it?
  • Early sound archives, Berlin Phonogram Archiv and audio CDs representing the phases (wax cylinders, tapes)
  • Science of waves and sound
  • Human and machine: chains of perception and production; Ethnography and technology: a critique (lecture notes)
  • Range of equipment and software
  • Demos of software tools (audio, linguistics, scorewriters).
  • Audio recording: technical, pragmatic, and ethical issues
  • Metadata concepts and issues: in theory and in practice
  • Budgets

Readings for class discussion (to be read in advance):

Jackson chapters 10, 11; Ives: chapter 1 (dated, but fun to read); Bartlett (browse for basic concepts about microphones and digital recording). Wikipedia: "scorewriter".
Also, browse the outcome document for the Sound Directions project (Harvard and Indiana U.)

Assignment: audio recordings of music, plus metadata and transcription/analysis; begin to become familiar with software tools (d).

Recording: Try making a variety of recordings of the same music event, with different hardware/software settings, in different physical positions (close, far), using various kinds of equipment at your disposal. For each recording, document these parameters (part of "technical metadata") so you can relate the different "inputs" (equipment and settings) to "outputs" (recordings themselves).

Metadata: Create a basic table (in Word or Excel) to record metadata, focussing on descriptive and technical metadata. Descriptive metadata will include everything about recording content (e.g. date, place, time, composer, title, musicians, etc.) Technical metadata (which falls under the broader heading of administrative metadata) will include such things as: kind of microphone, details about the recording setup, distance from music, etc.

Transcription and analysis: Also try using various tools (Finale, Sibelius, abc, Sonic Visualiser, Speech Analyzer, Audacity, Praaat) to transcribe and analyze the music. See Scorewriters. Some tools will also enable you to embed metadata, i.e. tie a comment to a particular moment in time. We'll also explore this procedure using HyperRESEARCH later on. You may also try a low-tech solution: transcribe to staff paper!

See Making an audio recording for some helpful hints on making recordings, in addition to your readings above.

week 9 (Nov 6 - 12): interviewing

Due: Rough edits of audio recordings (using Audacity), plus metadata (Dublin Core) and short music notation transcription/analysis, for discussion and critique in class (final edits due with final project). Use of Audacity and a scorewriter for transcription/analysis. (d)
Also: from last week: Proposal’s preliminary budget (i) and critical review of technology (2 pages).

Readings for today:

Review Fetterman, pp. 37-56 and Jackson ch. 7 which we covered in week 4; add: Kvale (read chapters 2, 3, 10; skim chapters 5, 6, 7, 8, and others selectively, according to your interests); Emerson et al: chapters 3, 4, 5; Ives: chapters 2 & 3; DeWalt chapter 7; Heyl 2001

Please make a list of summarizing the important issues in interviewing, as gleaned from the readings. Prepare to discuss this list, as well as how you intend to apply the interview method to your project.

In class today:

  • Soundwalks - examples?
  • Wrapping up Science of waves and sound
  • Human and machine: chains of perception and production; Ethnography and technology: a critique (week 7 notes)
  • Critical review of technology: present your ideas (from papers).
  • Range of equipment and software
  • Demos of software tools (audio, linguistics, scorewriters).
  • Audio recording: technical, pragmatic, and ethical issues
  • Your audio recordings, metadata, notation/transcription, analysis - for discussion and collective critique
  • Preliminary budgets: what kinds of items did you include for Audio? Expanding and elaborating the budget
  • Issues in interviewing: your lists, and my introduction (week 9 notes)
    • Kinds of interview (formality & structure: formal and structured and closed, vs. informal and semi-structured and open)
    • Ways of preserving interview data (recording: audio, video, still photography)
    • Transcribing the interview (macro/micro)
    • Interview metadata
    • Interview ethics

Assignment (due next time): Conduct one interview, about an hour long, in three segments. Try three techniques: audio recording, simultaneous notes, and memory (subsequent notes). In each case there are advantages and disadvantages - make note of both.

  • Audio recording: make a recording of your interview. (Consider microphone type, direction. Who are you recording? Be sure to monitor the recording while you're interviewing. Note the difficulties in doing so! How does the presence of technology affect the interview?)
  • Simultaneous notes: take notes while you're interviewing. (What is the impact of this "technology"?)
  • Memory: no simultaneous notes! You can maintain perfect engagement and eye contact throughout. But try your best to remember the main points and any striking quotes you may want to preserve. Afterwards try your best to record the interview - paraphrasing or even jotting down snippets of conversation if you can remember. (What are the difficulties this time?)

Try two levels of formality: (a) formal interview (with definite questions and limited time for each; you might experiment with even having the questions before you, as on a form), and (b) informal interview, bordering on participant-observation conversation. You can try both in a single interview, perhaps by starting with an informal conversation, before launching into the "official interview" (or the reverse) - make note of the impact of this switch.

After you've completed the interview: Write up your notes. Transcribe and analyze a portion of the recorded interview using two levels of etic detail:

  • (a) microtranscription possibly with IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet) or temporal notation; in this case the idea is to record the minutiae of the interview as a linguistic interaction - with all its phonetic variations, pauses and other nuances of pronunciation and conversational flow; you may even wish to develop a notation that is capable of (roughly) indicating timing (including pauses) and pitch (high/low if not actual frequency). You may use a technical tool (like Praat) or develop your own notation (for instance in MS Word you could make a table, using one column for timing information, another for pitch information - or adapt diacritical marks for either purpose). [How does this microscopic focus alter your perception of what transpired?] You can install free IPA fonts and keyboards from SIL - I recommend (and use) Charis along with an IPA unicode keyboard. IPA allows you to record sounds corresponding to all standard linguistic phonemes from any language - try it!
  • (b) content transcription, in which the main point is to get at the content of what was said, rather than its form (sometimes in such transcriptions might also include a translation to English), whether capturing the "gist" or even through paraphrasing. [What are the major issues in this case?] Again consider various forms of notation (for instance: I used to use a triple quote mark to indicate paraphrases, so I'd remember that this was not literal speech; you could also mark for language).

[In all cases: consider issues that arise; advantages and disadvantages of each technique. How did you transcribe your own speech, or did you?]

Record a commentary (a sort of metadata) about your experiences (as in the parenthetical questions above) to share with the class. Bring all materials next week. (e)

Note: there are a number of transcription packages out there, including Transcriva (though it's not free, unfortunately). You can also transcribe using Audacity to slow a recording down, or to provide timings and sonic details (by adding transcription to the comments), or use a dedicated linguistic software tool like Praat or Speech Analyzer

week 10 (Nov 13 - 19): photography and image manipulation software (Photoshop, Gimp) (READING WEEK - but we DO have class on Nov 13)

Due: Interview results (questions, recording, transcription, analysis) (e), for discussion and critique (next week, since there's no class this week)

This week: review websites and do readings, as listed below.

  • Transfer assignments to instructor via google drive (if files are too big we can do this next week via memory stick):
    • Week 8: Revised proposal, budget, ethics application
    • Week 9: Audio recording rough edits, with metadata, and a short notation/transcription
    • Week 10: Interview results (questions, recordings, transcription, analysis - if you have physical notes bring them to class).
  • Notes on the above: please review this week...
    • Your proposal (and your budget is part of that) is an evolving document! Keep working on it.
    • Budgets are equivalent to equipment lists with prices. The more complete, the better. I want everyone to select and price all the varieties of technology we describe in class, even if you think you can get away without them, e.g.: various microphones (lavelier, wireless?), A/D converter, backup solution, speakers for feedback interviews, headphones for transcribing, DSLR with different lenses, flash, software (free or not)...Detail is what I'm looking for: a camera bag that holds everything, cleaning solutions for lenses, cables and electrical converters...extension cords, mic stands, camera tripods, software you need to download before heading to the field, even special notebooks or pens. And don't forget budgets for room and board! Everything should be clearly identified not only by generic type, but by manufacturer and model, with accurate prices. Be creative, and be thorough!
  • Notes on software tools: please check these out...
  • Review Signals, Waves, Acoustics, Psychoacoustics, and music (and do the homework assignment!)
  • Review Multimedia editing and analysis software and Fieldwork hardware suggestions
  • Audio recording in theory (review) and in practice


Jackson chapters 12, 13; Grimm (browse as needed).

Assignment (for next time): photography (f). Prepare a photo essay on a music-related (ideally, project-related) topic, including various kinds of photography (portrait, performance scene; flash, no flash; zoom, wide-angle etc.) If you use a "point and shoot", fine - but experiment with all possible settings (on manual mode) as well as lighting conditions, camera movement, stabilizing the camera (tripod, table..) or not, etc. Basically: experiment and document the conditions of each photo in metadata. In other words, take lots, and lots of pictures, but in a scientific way - in order to understand the consequences of camera settings and picture setup! Photos should be edited (cropped), possibly image-manipulated captioned, and uploaded to a google site (see below) for general display (NB: ethics! restrict visibility as needed). Also prepare a parallel table of metadata (technical and descriptive). Bring for discussion next week.

week 11 (Nov 20 - 26): videography and video editing software

Due in class: Preliminary photography results, plus metadata and text analysis, for discussion and critique in Monday's class (f)
(Everyone prepare to present and discuss fieldwork from the previous three weeks - photography at least briefly, and audio recordings and interview assignments if you didn't get to do this last week).

In class:

  • Review coming topics (video and coding), and how to submit final assignments (including website).
  • Student presentations: present the assignment you'd most like to discuss with your colleagues (soundwalk, interviews & transcriptions, audio recordings, photography)
  • Issue: How does fieldwork feed back into the research process while you're still in the field? The proposal (methods, even aims) as a rewritable document...
  • Progress: your proposals, your budgets...
  • Review Multimedia editing and analysis software and Fieldwork hardware
  • Complete Light, vision, and photography
  • Videography, theory, practice, & fieldwork. Videography simply ties together two media technologies: audio and image. But it gets a lot more complicated...
    • First of all, raw video data requires enormous storage. At 30 frames per second, and 1920 x 1080 frame size (only 2 MP) x 24 bits per pixel, we'd get nearly 180 MB per second, or 11 GB per minute and 670 GB per hour! That's nearly 1500x more storage than CD-quality audio (and we didn't even add in the audio storage requirements for video yet!)
    • Therefore nearly all video is subjected to lossy compression. But unlike audio there are many many standards.
    • Aspect ratios vary a lot, unlike still photography's standard 3:2 frame.
    • Resolution:
    • Frame rates and sizes: the former doesn't arise in still photography or audio
    • Encodings: known as codecs. In video we can compress each frame (intraframe), or we can compress between frames (interframe)
      • H.264 codec (MPEG4)
      • MPEG1
      • MPEG2
      • WebM codec
      • Many others
    • Containers: hold video and audio, metadata, and sometimes subtitles, etc. Many are also associated with particular codecs (but not necessarily...)
    • Editing

Note: software you should be mastering includes:

  • Audacity - audio editing, analysis
  • The Gimp - still photography/image manipulations
  • video editing and analysis software. I'll demonstrate using iMovie, which is free on the Mac. If you don't have that, you might like to try Shotcut and its tutorials.
  • HyperRESEARCH - qualitative data coding, for text, images, audio, other words, everything! (we'll come to this next week if not this one...)

Please refer to this wiki page to review the scientific bases for fieldwork, the basics of recording audio and image, and links for relevant software and hardware.

Readings for discussion (prepare in advance of relevant class):

Jackson chapter 14; Hampe (browse as needed); Weynand (browse as needed if you're using Final Cut Pro). Wikipedia: "List of video editing software"

Assignment : Note - These can all be drafts of the final versions, to be submitted by Dec 15.
Videography, completed budget, and rough draft of presentation websites.
1) The Videography assignment: select a few events and locations (ideally, related to your topic, for instance a performance, a lesson, an interview... but you can stretch that: e.g. a street scene outside the rehearsal you're intending to shoot), and shoot video. Try different camera features, and experiment with different angles, lighting, time of day, indoors and outdoors. If possible try different cameras (e.g. your phone, a still camera capable of video, and a video camera). Examine the resulting video files on your computer, and prepare metadata (descriptive and technical). Using any technique you like, create a transcription and analysis of your video (for instance, you might simply make a list of events, or dialog, or music - or you might note who interacts with whom, or when particular actions occur ....) Add some of this information to the video itself (using subtitles). Then edit the results into a single video. Try editing both video and audio tracks, rearranging the order, applying transitions and filters, subtitles. Try a voiceover using your own voice at some point. Create a big file (to be uploaded to Google Drive) as well as a smaller file (suitable for YouTube; some video editors will send a file straight to YouTube). (g)
2) Budget: You've already prepared a draft. Now think it through and be sure to add all needed equipment, accessories, and supplies, as well as travel expenses. Does your project perhaps require more than one trip? Ground transport as well as air travel? Be sure to include everything you need!
3) Website: This covers all the assignments to date (except coding) and will be presented next week, or the week after that - for class feedback. Organize according to the course template. Before adding, edit and compress your materials, e.g. cropping photos, excerpting fieldnotes, etc. and include metadata for everything you present on the site (you may present metadata in a single spreadsheet, or distribute metadata according to media type - your choice). Note that the process will be much easier if you store all your files on google docs first- it's very easy to include these on a google site. (You'll include everything -- edited and unedited -- in the Google Drive version.) Consider this website to be a first draft: you can continue to edit the site and all its constituent materials, but please do your best to make it as perfect & beautiful as possible, including:

  • Final research proposal (key: brief overview (aim/significance/background) then: method (in theory, in practice), timeline (prose or diagram), budget/equipment (detailed - with prices, model #s....); and ethics proposal - can also include some of the media/practica if relevant)
  • Practica:
    • Fieldnotes (illustrating infield and outfield notes)
    • Interviews (audio recordings, and transcriptions - (a) microtranscription, (b) content transcription - see above), with metadata
    • Music recordings (and notations) - edited using Audacity, transcribed with abc (soundwalks?), with metadata
    • Photography (images - to be cropped and adjusted using the Gimp or other software), with metadata
    • Videography - edited video footage, using iMovie or other software. Put together selected edited clips, with attention to sequencing & transitions, and including titles and subtitles as appropriate. Try voiceover if you want to (and add metadata)

week 12 (Nov 27 - Dec 3): data organization, protection, storage, and use, in the field and beyond. More about metadata (kinds, representations). Archiving, digital repositories, databases, web 2.0 (blogs, wikis, podcasts). Data coding, using qualitative analysis software.

Due: Rough edits of video footage (including titles and subtitles), with metadata and in-video transcription/analysis, for discussion (you can continue editing later edits due with final project) (g). Please bring your video work in progress to share with the class. Talk about difficulties and issues involved in editing, whether technical or thematic. You can also use this opportunity to talk about previous practica, particularly if you haven't presented any of yours yet (audio recordings, photography, interviews...).

Also: Preparation of google site summarizing your edited multimedia work. This will include everything you've prepared over the term.

In class:

First half:

  • More on shooting video
  • Discuss video results
  • Cataloging and archiving workflows, considering issues:
    • metadata (descriptive, technical/administrative, structural)
    • data security
    • data dissemination
  • Digital repositories: combine
  • Intro to qualitative data coding: multilevel process (memos/annotations, open coding, closed coding, thesis chapters/sections):

Second half:
Student project presentations, using Google sites websites. 5 minutes each (plus time for critiques), including proposal/budget, raw data, edited media, plus discussion.

Background readings (prepare in advance) for discussion:

Fetterman chapter 4 (again); Jackson chapter 15; Emerson: chapter 6
Review metadata material: Entries for "Metadata", and "Dublin Core" in wikipedia (follow available links).
Also see Dublin Core Usage Guide and other documents at

Assignment (for next time): data coding using HyperRESEARCH (h).
Practice by coding the various types of document as generated by prior practica: fieldnotes, interview transcripts, audio, image, video. Select a small set of codes, and refine it as you go. Think about how you might assign codes to chapters in your thesis or dissertation, allowing you to analyze, synthesize, and write up fieldwork materials as an ethnography (which you don't need to write for this class!). Also: Refine your project proposals (including budget), and develop your practica further (e.g. if you haven't prepared a metadata sheet for one or more practica, please do so).

week 13 (Dec 4 - 10): Moving out and writing up: from field data to ethnography (analyzing, sorting, searching, synthesizing). Publication media (print, disc, web, documentary film).

Submit your coding assignment, and have a look at the following readings.

Note: Dec 4 is the last class; no class next week.

Note: Final due date for all assignments - Dec 15.


Data coding assignment (h).

In class:

Fielding 2001; Fetterman: chapters 5, 6; Emerson: chapters 7, 8; Kvale chapters 11-15 (skim); DeWalt chapter 9; Hampe (again, browse what interests you); selections from Clifford and Marcus (introduction, other essays). Skim HyperRESEARCH documentation and tutorials (download at

In class:

  1. Review construction of websites and use of Hyperresearch
  2. Moving Out and Writing Up - some strategies and observations
  3. Some additional research and analysis strategies; see also Sage methods map
    1. Social network analysis - see my course Music Culture as a Social Network; excellent newer tools available include socnetV
    2. Content analysis - see My PhD diss
    3. Interventions - see Singing and Dancing for Health
    4. Narrative analysis
    5. Biographical
    6. Surveying - e.g. from Singing and Dancing for Health private
    7. Music analysis - e.g. My MA thesis (
    8. Archival work - e.g. finding historical lists of cassettes issued
    9. Collecting material culture (especially: books, cassettes, instruments...)
    10. Diachronic historical analysis
    11. Synchronic system analysis
  4. Remaining student presentations (in the second half of class): 5 minutes each (plus time for critiques), including proposal/budget, raw data, edited media

Time permitting:

  1. Return to Sample ethnographic introductions and consider how fieldwork was woven into a completed ethnography.
  2. Review the ethnographic fieldwork process: preparing a proposal and budget, collecting data in the field, editing media, coding/organizing/archiving data, and moving on to writing.

week 14 (no class): final assignments all due: Dec 15

Submission by the end of Dec 15th must include proposal, budget, ethics application, and partial ethnography (including text, audio, image, video, with metadata, transcriptions, analyses…). You will create two versions:

  1. A complete submission in Google Drive. Please be sure to label the folders according to the assignment: letters (a) through (i).
  2. A public website version, using the class template on Google Sites (the template contains some sample files - just to demonstrate how they work - that you can delete from your own site). This site should be easily browsable - please don't add materials only with download links; they should display in the browser, or you can add pointers to YouTube and SoundCloud to hold media. Be sure to include metadata for everything (but may do this in captions). Polish and prune your media - you can edit/crop, filter, add subtitles, captions, fades in/out...also compress so that sizes are suitable for a website.

The google drive folder contains all your fieldwork results, uncompressed, and somewhat raw. The online website presentation can be more selective and polished - and everything is compressed and linked for convenient web viewing. (You've already created this site for class presentation - the only missing item is the coding.)

The assignment list follows, together with weights for each assignment:

  • Three-page (minimum) critical synthesis on fieldwork and ethnography (b): 5%
  • Final project proposal with budget and ethics, and website presentation of your fieldwork (see below) (j): 34%
  • Six practica @ 6% each: 36% (fieldnotes (c); audiography (d); interviews (e); photography (f); videography (g); coding (h)). Each practicum may consist of a number of files of different formats, and should be accompanied by metadata whenever appropriate.

Of the remaing 25%: 5% is for your preliminary project proposal (a) and budget (i), handed in earlier this term. Participation & assigned presentations count for 20%

1) Google Drive. Upload all final assignments to a single google drive folder called "<your name> Music 666". Once again these assignments are as follows:

  • Preliminary research proposal (a)
  • Three to Four-page critical synthesis on fieldwork and ethnography (b)
  • Six practica @ 6% each: 36% (fieldnotes (c); audiography (d); interviews (e); photography (f); videography (g); coding (h))
  • Budget (i)
  • Final project proposal (j)

Organize the folder using subfolders (one for each assignment). Each folder should contain a file called README including a file list, explaining what that folder contains. Put all related materials together to the extent possible. You can include a metadata sheet with each practica, or - if you prefer - a single metadata sheet in the main folder. Please also include a link to your online presentation (see below). Make sure you provide me with access to everything.

Feel free to augment, rewrite, supplement, complement what you originally submitted or presented in class. For instance, over the course of the past several weeks, you may have revised your budget significantly, added material to your project proposal, complemented photographs with metadata, refined your metadata model, or performed additional practica (repeating interview, audio recording, video recording, etc.)

2) Google Sites. (or another website creation service) Putting things online is a preferred mode of dissemination these days. I'd like you to compress (because full resolution may be too big) and edit all your materials (polished a bit - photos cropped, video edited, shortened - and you may be selective also; not everything has to be placed here but only your best work) in order to create an online portfolio , using a google site within University of Alberta google apps, organized as a private "virtual exhibit" of your work (to make the google site private click the blue "Share" button at the upper right, then change to private access. Include metadata, and captions for media where appropriate. Add my email (and those of your colleagues in the class, if you wish) to the list of those who can access the site.

Please use this template to build your own site. OR you may use any other website building tools with which you may be familiar.

You should provide captions for audio, video and still photography, on their respective pages. Illustrate interviews and fieldnotes with images and sound, on their respective pages. Include metadata for each of the practica as well as proposal, budget, and ethics.


Course readings

Available on reserve; several items available online; many also available in the SUB bookstore for purchase.

Bartlett, Bruce and Jenny Bartlett. 2009. Practical Recording Technique (Fifth Edition). Amsterdam: Focal Press.

Barz, Gregory F. and Timothy J. Cooley. 2008. Shadows in the Field: New Perspectives for Fieldwork in Ethnomusicology (second edition). Oxford: Oxford University Press. (Available online via UofA Library.) second edition first edition (contains many of the same essays)

Brunt, Lodewijk. 2001. Into the Community. In: Handbook of Ethnography, edited by Paul Atkinson, Amanda Coffey, Sara Delamont, John Lofland and Lyn Lofland. London: Sage. (ch. 5)

Burawoy, Michael and Joseph A. Blum, Sheba George, Zsuzsa Gille, Teresa Gowan, Lynne Haney, Maren Klawiter, Steve H. Lopez, Sean Riain, Millie Thayer. 2000. Global Ethnography: Forces, Connections, and Imaginations in a Postmodern World. University of California Press.

Cerwonka, Allaine and Lisa H. Malkki. 2007. Improvising Theory: Process and Temporality in Ethnographic Fieldwork. Chicago: U. Chicago Press.

Charmaz, Kathy and richard G. Mitchell. 2001. Grounded Theory in Ethnography. In: Handbook of Ethnography, edited by Paul Atkinson, Amanda Coffey, Sara Delamont, John Lofland and Lyn Lofland. London: Sage. (ch. 11)

Clifford, James and George Marcus. 1986. Writing Culture: The Poetics and Politics of Ethnography.

Dewalt, Kathleen M. and Billie R. Dewalt. 2002. Participant Observation: A Guide for Fieldworkers. Walnut Creek, CA: Altamira Press.

Emerson, Robert M., Rachel I Fretz, and Linda L. Shaw. 2001. Participant Observation and Fieldnotes In: Handbook of Ethnography, edited by Paul Atkinson, Amanda Coffey, Sara Delamont, John Lofland and Lyn Lofland. London: Sage. (ch. 24)

Emerson, Robert M., Rachel I. Fretz, and Linda L. Shaw. 1995. Writing Ethnographic Fieldnotes. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.

Fargion, Janet Topp, ed. 2001, 2nd edition. A Manual for Documentation, Fieldwork, and Preservation for Ethnomusicologists. 91pp. $6 for members / $12 for non-members. 91 pages. Technologically out of date, but containing sound advice otherwise; order your copy here.

Faubion, James D. and George E. Marcus (editors). 2009. Fieldwork Is Not What It Used to Be: Learning Anthropology's Method in a Time of Transition. Ithaca: Cornell University Press

Faubion, James D. 2001. Currents of Cultural Fieldwork. In: Handbook of Ethnography, edited by Paul Atkinson, Amanda Coffey, Sara Delamont, John Lofland and Lyn Lofland. London: Sage. (ch. 3)

Fetterman, David M. 1998. Ethnography (second edition): Step by Step. London: Sage.

Fielding, Nigel. 2001. Computer Applications in Qualitative Research. In: Handbook of Ethnography, edited by Paul Atkinson, Amanda Coffey, Sara Delamont, John Lofland and Lyn Lofland. London: Sage. (ch. 31)

Grimm, Tom and Michelle Grimm. 2003 The Basic Book of Photography: the Classic Guide (5th edition). New York: Plume Press.

Hampe, Barry. 2007. Making Documentary Films and Reality Videos : A Practical Guide to Planning, Filming, and Editing Documentaries (Second Edition). New York: Holt.

Heyl, Barbara Sherman. 2001. Ethnographic Interviewing. In: Handbook of Ethnography, edited by Paul Atkinson, Amanda Coffey, Sara Delamont, John Lofland and Lyn Lofland. London: Sage. (ch. 25).

Ives, Edward D. 1995. The Tape-Recorded Interview: A Manual for Field Workers in Folklore and Oral History (2nd edition). Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press.

Jackson, Bruce. 1987. Fieldwork. Urbana: University of Illinois Press.

Kvale, Steinar and Svend Brinkman. 2009. InterViews: An Introduction to Qualitative Research Interviewing (Second Edition). London: Sage

Lather, Patti. 2001. Postmodernism, Post-structuralism and Post(Critical) Ethnography: of Ruins, Aporias and Angels. In: Handbook of Ethnography, edited by Paul Atkinson, Amanda Coffey, Sara Delamont, John Lofland and Lyn Lofland. London: Sage. (ch. 33)

Marcus, George E. 1998. Ethnography Through Thick and Thin. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Marcus, George E. (editor). 1999. Critical Anthropology Now: Unexpected Contexts, Shifting Constituencies, Changing Agendas (School of American Research Advanced Seminar Series)

Marcus, Julie. 2001. Orientalism. In: Handbook of Ethnography, edited by Paul Atkinson, Amanda Coffey, Sara Delamont, John Lofland and Lyn Lofland. London: Sage. (ch. 7)

Maso, Ilja. 2001. Phenomenology and Ethnography. In: Handbook of Ethnography, edited by Paul Atkinson, Amanda Coffey, Sara Delamont, John Lofland and Lyn Lofland. London: Sage. (ch. 9).

Murphy, Elizabeth and Robert Dingwall. 2001. The Ethics of Ethnography. In: Handbook of Ethnography, edited by Paul Atkinson, Amanda Coffey, Sara Delamont, John Lofland and Lyn Lofland. London: Sage. (ch. 23)

Robben, Antonius and Jeffrey A. Sluka (Editors). 2006. Ethnographic Fieldwork: An Anthropological Reader (Blackwell Anthologies in Social and Cultural Anthropology) (Paperback)

Spencer, Jonathan. 2001. Ethnography after Postmodernism. In: Handbook of Ethnography, edited by Paul Atkinson, Amanda Coffey, Sara Delamont, John Lofland and Lyn Lofland. London: Sage. (ch. 30)

Van Loon, Joost. 2001. Ethnography: A Critical Turn in Cultural Studies. In: Handbook of Ethnography, edited by Paul Atkinson, Amanda Coffey, Sara Delamont, John Lofland and Lyn Lofland. London: Sage. (ch. 19)

Weynand, Diana. Apple Pro Training Series: Final Cut Pro 7 (Paperback). Peachpit Press; 1 Pap/Dvdr edition (August 21, 2009)


Encyclopedia of Sociology

Encyclopedia of Social Theory

Encyclopedia of Social and Cultural Anthropology

Resources for Ethnomusicological Research

Official statements

Course prerequisites: none
Course-based ethics approval, Community service learning: NA
Past or representative evaluative course material: NA
Additional mandatory instruction fees: No

Policy about course outlines can be found in Section 23.4(2) of the University Calendar. (GFC 29 SEP 2003).

Academic Integrity
“The University of Alberta is committed to the highest standards of academic integrity and honesty. Students are expected to be familiar with these standards regarding academic honesty and to uphold the policies of the University in this respect. Students are particularly urged to familiarize themselves with the provisions of the Code of Student Behaviour (online at and avoid any behavior that could potentially result in suspicions of cheating, plagiarism, misrepresentation of facts and/or participation in an offence. Academic dishonesty is a serious offence and can result in suspension or expulsion from the University.

Learning and working environment
The Faculty of Arts is committed to ensuring that all students, faculty and staff are able to work and study in an environment that is safe and free from discrimination and harassment. It does not tolerate behaviour that undermines that environment. The department urges anyone who feels that this policy is being violated to: • Discuss the matter with the person whose behaviour is causing concern; or • If that discussion is unsatisfactory, or there is concern that direct discussion is inappropriate or threatening, discuss it with the Chair of the Department. For additional advice or assistance regarding this policy you may contact the student ombudservice: ( ). Information about the University of Alberta Discrimination and Harassment Policy and Procedures is described in UAPPOL at

Academic Honesty:
All students should consult the information provided by the Office of Judicial Affairs regarding avoiding cheating and plagiarism in particular and academic dishonesty in general (see the Academic Integrity Undergraduate Handbook and Information for Students). If in doubt about what is permitted in this class, ask the instructor. Students involved in language courses and translation courses should be aware that on-line “translation engines” produce very dubious and unreliable “translations.” Students in language courses should be aware that, while seeking the advice of native or expert speakers is often helpful, excessive editorial and creative help in assignments is considered a form of “cheating” that violates the code of student conduct with dire consequences. An instructor or coordinator who is convinced that a student has handed in work that he or she could not possibly reproduce without outside assistance is obliged, out of consideration of fairness to other students, to report the case to the Associate Dean of the Faculty. See the Academic Discipline Process.

Recording of Lectures:
Audio or video recording of lectures, labs, seminars or any other teaching environment by students is allowed only with the prior written consent of the instructor or as a part of an approved accommodation plan. Recorded material is to be used solely for personal study, and is not to be used or distributed for any other purpose without prior written consent from the instructor.

Attendance, Absences, and Missed Grade Components:
Regular attendance is essential for optimal performance in any course. In cases of potentially excusable absences due to illness or domestic affliction, notify your instructor by e-mail within two days. Regarding absences that may be excusable and procedures for addressing course components missed as a result, consult the Calendar regarding Attendance and Examinations sections of the University Calendar. Be aware that unexcused absences will result in partial or total loss of the grade for the “attendance and participation” component(s) of a course, as well as for any assignments that are not handed-in or completed as a result. In this course, 25% of your grade depends on regular attendance and energetic participation.

Policy for Late Assignments:
See section on Evaluation, above.

Student Accessibility Services:
If you have special needs that could affect your performance in this class, please let me know during the first week of the term so that appropriate arrangements can be made. If you are not already registered with Student Accessibility Services, contact their office immediately (1-80 SUB; Email; Email; phone 780-492-3381).

Media Archives and Departmental Broadcasting of Audio-visual Material
Audio or video recording of performances, lectures, seminars, or any other academic or research environment activities are carried out by the Department of Music for archival purposes. These archives may be collected and housed in the Music Library. Recorded material is to be used solely for non-profit, educational, research, and community outreach purposes, and is not to be used or distributed for any other purpose without obtaining the express permission from all parties involved. Please be advised that your solo or group performance may be featured on the University of Alberta's Department of Music website and/or social media platform(s). If you object to this use of audio and/or video material in which you will be included, please advise your instructor or the Department of Music in writing prior to participating in any performance, lecture, seminar or public event held by the Department of Music.