Introduction to Qualitative Methods (Ethnography) Summer School

Summer School


1) Understand what qualitative methods are and how they are different from quantitative methods; 2) Learn to design and implement a qualitative study; 3) Learn core qualitative skills such as interviewing, observing, coding and publishing. Ethnographic methods will be used as primary examples throughout the course. 


I. Qualitative Basics (overviews, “myths”, comparisons with other methods) & Introduction to Ethnography

II. Preparation Work (e.g., selecting context, research question, access)

III. Observing

IV. Interviewing

V. Coding

VI. Writing & Publishing (as time permits)


Preparation and participation. 100% attendance is required. Students must also do various technique-building exercises as well as assigned readings for class.


Spradley’s Ethnographic Interview & Participant Observation (selected chapters)  

Specific readings:

  1. Pre-Course: Good, bad, ambivalent (Pratt)
  2. Pre-Course: Organizational ethnography (Rosen)
  3. Qualitative research in I-O psychology: Maps, myths and moving forward (Pratt & Bonaccio)
  4. Crafting and selecting research questions and contexts … (Pratt)
  5. A researcher's toolkit for observational methods. In Oxford Encyclopedia of Business and Management. Oxford University Press. doi: 10.1093/acrefore/9780190224851.013.283 (Pratt & Sala)
  6. Making descriptive observations (Spradley) 
  7. Interviewing an informant (Spradley)
  8. Fact of fiction in organizational ethnography (Van Maanen)
  9. Oval pegs (Pratt)
  10. Realist tales (Van Maanen)
  11. Post-Course: Designing for drift… (Pratt & Kim)
  12. Post-Course: For the lack of a boilerplate (Pratt)

Additional info

For the timetable of this course, please click here. The timetable is in the local time of Rotterdam, which is CEST (UTC+02:00).

This course is given in a fully online format.


This course is full and we cannot accept any more registrations.