It's a question of trust: Balancing the relationship between students and teachers in ethnographic fieldwork

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The experiences encountered as a young, novice, female, white, northern English ethnographer investigating the sensitive topic of student resistance are examined. Research was conducted in two comprehensive secondary schools in Birmingham (England) and a state governed school situated in Sydney (Australia). The implications of investigating student resistance and the importance of how the researchers' personal dispositions influence the research process are discussed. The significance of the role the researcher adopts in the school and how this impacts upon how the researcher experiences leaving the field are examined. The predicaments an ethnographer can find themselves in when trying to balance the trust relationship between students and teachers are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-199
Number of pages19
JournalQualitative Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - May 2005


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