NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1145933
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Jul
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0092-055X
Playing Goffman's Information Game: A Classroom Activity Involving Student Interactions
McCoy, Charles Allan
Teaching Sociology, v45 n3 p260-268 Jul 2017
Goffman's dramaturgical approach is frequently used to introduce undergraduate students to the sociological understanding of human interaction. While a number of scholars have designed engaging student activities that highlight Goffman's approach, most of these activities tend to involve atypical embarrassing interactions or norm-breaking behaviors that happen in front of a large public audience. In this way, they are unlike the mundane face-to-face interactions that were the focus of much of Goffman's work. I have used Goffman's notion of interactions as an "information game," discussed at the start of "The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life," to create a stimulating in-class exercise that involves students having a routine one-on-one interaction with another student. Responses from 170 students in four Introduction to Sociology classes suggest that students found the activity engaging and believed it gave them a richer understanding of Goffman's approach to human interaction.
SAGE Publications. 2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320. Tel: 800-818-7243; Tel: 805-499-9774; Fax: 800-583-2665; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New York
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A