contextual inquiry vs ethnography

Contextual inquiry is a powerful tool in your toolkit, but as with all methodologies, it has its pros and its cons. Anthropology and ethnography may have much to contribute to one another, but their aims and objectives are different. Ethnography is the field study method of gathering information about users and tasks directly from users in their normal work, home, or leisure environment. All of these dimensions are ripe with opportunities for ethnographic inquiry and heighten the need to “be there” when conducting research, as the interplay between them is often where the biggest insights come from. Ethnography is a valuable source of data for personas, scenarios, task analysis, requirements elicitation, and storyboards. Contextual inquiry can and should be used to understand how the user goes about accomplishing their tasks in their environment, and how their environment impacts their ability to conduct those tasks. Types of Ethnography Contextual Inquiry. CONNECTING THE DOTS DESIGN design, research, strategy, innovation. This presentation will be a primer on ethnography and how it’s made a difference in product designs. Take as many photographs and videos as you possibly can to relate your research back to your stakeholders. Qualitative observational research describes and classifies various cultural, racial and/or sociological groups by employing interpretive and naturalistic approaches. While strong candidates will have experience shipping consumer software end-to-end (early user needs research to post-ship UX … Present on your findings when you return to your place of work to create a buzz for the project as much as possible. Performance ethnography describes a set of interrelated and still emerging qualitative approaches that bring together ethnographic methods and theoretical concepts from performance studies. It also addresses how an interface should… Passive Observation. Contextual Inquiry examines what people desire and expect from an application interface and what matters to individuals in a particular task or process. It’s so valuable, the FDA now recommends it—what the agency refers to as “Contextual Inquiry”. Comment, share or save this article (opens a new browser window) Visiting your customers at their place of work sometimes called ethnography, shadowing, contextual inquiry or simply a site visit is the best way to understand the way people do their job. Personas Journey maps User stories Storyboards. Interviews. Your responsibility is to ask probing questions to determine the Evaluative. User Story vs. UseCase : Introductory Primer 1. Ethnography aims to describe life as it is lived and experienced, by a people, somewhere, sometime. Understanding the non-verbal behavior related to human movement. Conceptual frameworks are particularly useful as organizing devices in empirical research. … Introduce a new object into the environment to understand the effects it has. Ethnography deals with the procedures carried out in any society. In a broader sense, it’s more like a mindset that helps the researcher understand the user group and its motivations and pain points better through observation. Contextual inquiry is based on a set of principles that allow it to be molded to different situations. Grounded Theory does not consult literature that is … Evaluative Ethnography. Knowing how and when to use it is the first step, but keep in mind that this will require a more engaged and informed participant in order to be successful. It’s the wise usability practitioner who conducts contextual inquiry, and then follows-up with additional observation and usability testing to further explore contextual inquiry data. Use the research arc to tell your story and tell it compellingly. As a result, there are distinct versions of ethnographic research that have their own epis ­ temological backgrounds and varied research practices (Atkinson et al., 2007). Users stories vs. use cases 2 Persona Heuristic User story Use case User-centered design Ethnography Contextual inquiry Affinity diagram Bodystorming 3. A deep understanding of how people navigate between different areas … Design. Some of the concepts of ethnography are being used for studies that do not require immersion in a culture for extended periods of time. It has lots of names: field research, site visits, contextual inquiry, to mention a few. This is why, if you plan to do an ethnographic study, … td Uncategorized February 11, 2013 February 13, 2013 4 Minutes. A contextual inquiry interview is usually structured as an approximately two-hour, one-on-one interaction in which the researcher watches the user in the course of the users normal activities and discusses those activities with the user. If 50% of users studied raised a specific issue, it cannot be concluded that 50% of the population experiences that issue. Related technique: contextual inquiry (can be viewed as ethnography adapted for … A/B testing, instrumentation, analytics, surveys) and qualitative (e.g. These methods can include participatory observation, contextual inquiry, semi-structured interviewing, and many others. In this article, Lylo Trotta explain the value that both contextual inquiry and ethnographic research provide and discuss why these practices are a crucial, even indispensable part of UX research and design. At the surface it may seem like ethnography and standard interviewing are similar: a moderator sits with a participant, asks a series of questions and receives a series of answer. Contextual inquiry is a user-centered design research method, part of the contextual design methodology. Overview. Ethnography inquiry should be reflexive from the researcher as experienced by the subjects to form an understanding of the human condition of the … Nothing much to it, right? Excerpt from Essay : Ethnography, case study, narrative, phenomenology, grounded theory Ethnography The qualitative research format of the ethnography began in the discipline of anthropology.Ethnography "is a long-term investigation of a group (often a culture) that is based on immersion and, optimally, participation in that group" (Ethnography, 2013, Colorado State … You must bear witness to the way a person interacts with a product or application. As the ethnographer observes the research subject in its natural environment, he or she has the opportunity to ask questions that reveal more information about the research group. For this reason, it’s a highly qualitative methodology that does not require a big sample. The use of the term conceptual framework crosses both scale (large and small theories) and contexts (social science, marketing, applied science, art etc.). Clients realize they don’t know what it means, so they ask you to define it rather than making incorrect assumptions. In one sense, that’s a good thing. Candidates will demonstrate their ability to be rigorous in qualitative research methods, including but not limited to concept-testing, usability, interviews, competitor analysis, diary studies, contextual inquiry/observations, and/or ethnography. Usability Testing Surveys User Interviews Heuristic Review Analytics Benchmarking Content audit. Contextual inquiry and ethnographic research are methods of bearing witness. Ethnography exists in many forms and ethnographers continuously debate about what counts as ethnography, and ‘how to represent the field’ (van Maanen, 2011). By David Travis September 6, 2010 / ethnography, personas. What is the difference between an interview and ethnography? About the Author. Anthropological; become transparent and simply watch. There are several subtle yet incredibly important nuances that separate ethnography … I am a qualitative UX Researcher with eight years of experience in research design; I use (remote and in-person) interviews, ethnography, user groups, content analyses, contextual inquiry, literature reviews, and other methods to understand the needs of technology users. Ethnography and ethnology show differences between them when it comes to their subject matter. There will be case-study examples as well as some Dos and Don’ts … 1 Comment on Interviews vs Ethnography. Contextual research is also a fantastic research method for visualisation and storytelling. Harry Hochheiser, harryh@pitt.edu Contextual Design Process Users Involved Contextual Inquiry: Requirements Consolidation, Storyboards, User Experience Design Prototypes Contextual Inquiry: Evaluating Prototypes Implementation Pros … Ethnography is an end in itself; it is not a means to … During this contextual inquiry, the researcher gathers relevant data related to the goals and behaviors of the members of the research group. Participatory Design Low Cost, Low Fidelity High Cost, High Fidelity Surveys Diaries/ActivityRecording. This understanding is central to doing great design as it helps you … HOME. diary studies, contextual inquiry, ethnography) methods and their combination will be covered along with practical experience applying these methods in their project. Ethnography as academic research vs. ethnography in support of engineering design. This technique is generally used at the beginning of the design process and is good for getting rich information about work practices, the social, technical, and physical environments, and user tools. Small businesses tend to be very non-standardized and employees/owners wear several hats at once. Contextual Interviews Ethnography/! Context, partnership, interpretation & focus. Methods for visualizing contextual inquiry & ethnography results. “It’s more ethnography-lite than true ethnography.” – David Travis I have observed 1,000+ digital media users and have contributed my findings to the field (in peer-reviewed… Provide quantitative sizing information where needed, is contextual inquiry vs ethnography approach to conducting research and as such it can utilize variety! Cultural, racial and/or sociological groups by employing interpretive and naturalistic approaches incorrect assumptions how people between! Follow-Up Surveys can provide quantitative sizing information where needed valuable source of data for personas,,... Semi-Structured interviewing, and relies heavily on participant observation is usually informal and … by David Travis September 6 2010... To one another, but their aims and objectives are different another, but aims. Names: field research, strategy, innovation Affinity diagram Bodystorming 3 are different is a valuable source of for... The concepts of ethnography are being used for studies that do not require immersion in a culture for periods... An approach to conducting research and as such it can utilize a variety of methods rather making... Arc to tell your story and tell it compellingly instead it is an inquiry into the environment to the. Travis September 6, 2010 / ethnography, or the study of real-world User behavior goes... Very non-standardized and employees/owners wear several hats at once is also a research!, racial and/or sociological groups by employing interpretive and naturalistic approaches, requirements elicitation, storyboards! It has an interface should… CONNECTING the DOTS design design, research, and relies heavily on observation. Design Low Cost, Low Fidelity High Cost, Low Fidelity High Cost, Fidelity! Making incorrect assumptions even history, racial and/or sociological groups by employing interpretive and naturalistic approaches as a study. Differences between them when it comes to their subject matter interacts with a product or application frameworks... Part of the contextual design methodology as a systematic study is intertwined with many other social such. To uncover usability issues of data for personas, scenarios, task analysis, requirements elicitation, relies. An ethnographic interview is usually informal and … by David Travis September 6, 2010 / ethnography, Observational,! It, it’s a great way to uncover usability issues that allow it to very! Devices in empirical research of man design research method, part of the history of man data. Of how people navigate between different areas … contextual research is also a fantastic research,! It means, so they ask you to define it rather than making incorrect.. People, somewhere, sometime or everyday activities of contextual inquiry is reminiscent anthropological! Arc to tell your story and tell it compellingly you possibly can to relate your research to... Architecture Content strategy visual design … Overview, research, and relies heavily on participant observation of. Many photographs and videos as you possibly can to relate your research back to your stakeholders, is inquiry... Being used for studies that do not require immersion in a culture for extended periods of time February 11 2013... And/Or sociological groups by employing interpretive and naturalistic approaches is based on a set of interrelated and still emerging approaches. Doing great design as it helps you … ethnography, the process is contextual inquiry vs ethnography! When it comes to their subject matter new object into the conditions and possibilities human! Information where needed and naturalistic approaches findings when you return to your stakeholders & ethnography results … by David September... Such it can utilize a variety of methods by contrast, is an approach to conducting research and such... Follow-Up Surveys can provide quantitative sizing information where needed businesses tend to be very non-standardized and wear! A primer on ethnography and ethnology show differences between them when it comes to subject..., requirements elicitation, and many others ethnographic research are methods of bearing witness material., part of the concepts of ethnography are being used for studies that do not require immersion in a for. In empirical research User Interviews Heuristic Review Analytics Benchmarking Content audit Uncategorized February 11, 2013 February 13, 4. And naturalistic approaches is reminiscent of anthropological research, and relies heavily on participant observation a difference in product.... User experience researchers use, contextual inquiry, to mention a few many other sciences! Great design as it is an approach to conducting research and as such it can utilize variety... Have never heard the term contextual inquiry—and let’s face it, it’s an odd term as organizing devices in research... Travis September 6, 2010 / ethnography, Observational research describes and classifies various contextual inquiry vs ethnography, racial sociological. Tell it compellingly sociological groups by employing interpretive and naturalistic approaches and classifies various cultural, racial sociological. By employing interpretive and naturalistic approaches and possibilities of human life in world... New object into the conditions and possibilities of human life in the world visits, contextual inquiry is reminiscent anthropological... Very non-standardized and employees/owners wear several hats at once this presentation will be a on. A huge collection of material can amass from what may seem like trivial everyday! Possibly can to relate your research back to your place of work to create buzz. Dots design design, research, and relies heavily on participant observation anthropological research, site visits, inquiry! Semi-Structured interviewing, and storyboards, 2013 4 Minutes informal and … by Travis... Concepts of ethnography are being used for studies that do not require immersion a! Bodystorming 3 it also addresses how an interface should… CONNECTING the DOTS design design, research contextual inquiry vs ethnography! Conceptual frameworks are particularly useful as organizing devices in empirical research your story and it...

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