About the Ethnographic Encounters Project


“Ethnography provides the means, and the mind-set, to develop those dimensions of intercultural interaction which have¬†hitherto been ignored…which are crucial to being a successful intercultural speaker, not merely an unsuccessful imitator¬†of a native speaker”

– Language Learners as Ethnographers, p240.

The Ethnographic Encounters project, which ran from February 2014-September 2015, has developed materials and support for students carrying out ethnographic research during their Residence Abroad, encouraging reflective intercultural learning and developing research skills. It was funded by the Higher Education Academy and is based at the University of Southampton.

Find out more about what was achieved during the project here.

Why Ethnography?

  • Through the ethnographic project, students gain experience of designing, managing and ultimately disseminating their own research project and findings, both to their own fellow students and to wider communities.
  • Ethnography facilitates the development of intercultural knowledge, which is an integral part of the year abroad and of language learning.
  • Ethnography requires¬†students to engage¬†with their host societies.
  • The reflexivity involved in ethnographic research allows students to transform their cultural encounters¬†into meaningful learning experiences.

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