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ERIC Number: EJ1064058
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1935-3308
Untold Stories of Fieldworkers Working Amid Adverse Conditions
Serekoane, Motsaathebe; Sharp, Carla; Skinner, Donald; Marais, Lochner
Journal of Ethnographic & Qualitative Research, v8 n3 p157-172 2014
Working in unfamiliar contexts and often alone, fieldworkers may face challenges for which their training and previous experience has not prepared them. While there is literature about the technical, ethical and moral aspects of fieldwork, there is little focusing on fieldworkers' actual experiences. Additionally, there is little constructive discussion regarding coping strategies for fieldworkers, resulting in underpreparedness for fieldwork challenges. The article had two aims: firstly, to share fieldworkers' experiences by drawing on fieldworker journal entries; and secondly, to encourage reflective debate about fieldwork conducted in harsh fieldwork settings. Concerning the former, emerging themes include pre-fieldwork training; the site; the first day; role confusion and boundary setting; working with people from similar backgrounds; dealing with deception, emotions and feelings; and learning to cope. We therefore argue for rigorous training concerning matters related to the field setting before commencement of data collection, systematic documentation of context-specific challenges, and continuous debriefing.
Cedarville University. 251 North Main Street, Cedarville, OH 45314. Tel: 937-766-3242; Fax: 937-766-7971; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: South Africa