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Field Research
Field research is the study of social life in its natural setting: observing and interviewing people where they live, work, and play. Some kinds of behavior can be studied best by "being there"; a fuller understanding can be developed through observations. face-to-face discussions, and participation in events. Researchers use these methods to generate qualitative data: observations that are best described verbally rather than numerically. Although field research is less structured and more flexible than the other methods we have discussed. it still places many demands on the researcher. To engage in field research. sociologists must select the method or combination of methods that will best reveal
what they want to know. For example. they must decide how to approach the target group. whether to identify themselves as researchers. and whether to participate in the events they are observing

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