‘Written in a clear, accessible style, this inspirational book is both a practical guide and a survey of the different ways of doing ethnography. Drawing on wide-ranging examples and using classic and contemporary ethnographies, the authors demonstrate the importance of developing an ethnographic sensibility. A most valuable resource’

- Cris Shore, University of Auckland

Ethnography in Education

is an accessible guidebook to the different approaches taken by ethnographers studying education. Drawing on their own experience of teaching and using these methods, the authors help you cultivate an ‘ethnographic imagination’ in your own research and writing.

With extended examples of ethnographic analysis, the book will introduce you to: ethnographic ‘classics’; the best existing textbooks; debates about new approaches and innovations.

This book is ideal for postgraduate students in Education and related disciplines seeking to use an ethnographic approach in their Masters and Doctoral theses.

David Mills is a University Lecturer in Education, University of Oxford.

Missy Morton is Associate Professor and Head of School of Educational Studies and Leadership, College of Education, University of Canterbury

Research Methods in Education series:

Each book in this series maps the territory of a key research approach or topic in order to help readers progress from beginner to advanced researcher.

Each book aims to provide a definitive, market-leading overview and to present a blend of theory and practice with a critical edge. All titles in the series are written for Master's-level students anywhere and are intended to be useful to the many diverse constituencies interested in research on education and related areas.

What Do I Do Now? Making Ethnographic Meaning

What do I do now? Making ethnographic meaning

What is in This Chapter?

  • A comparison of different ways of approaching ethnographic analysis
  • An introduction to ‘grounded theory’ and its critics
  • A review of ethnographic portraits
  • A new acronym (CAQDAS) and advice on using qualitative analysis software


This chapter asks about what it takes to make one's ethnographic materials and experiences meaningful: the art and science of analysis. For the careful reader of this book, this may not be the challenge it once seemed. Throughout we have underscored the importance of conceptualising research design and analysis in a holistic way. Ethnographers, we suggest, should not be worried by the ‘I've collected all my data, what do I do now?’ question. If writing is always ...

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