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Center for Applied Anthropology

Field School Benefits

Beyond the general benefits of study abroad (see What Statistics Show about Study Abroad Students, Studying Abroad Can Help You Stand Out from Peers, and Recent Research on the Benefits of Study Abroad), the Ethnographic Field School in Belize aims to specifically benefit student participants in several ways.

Ethnographic Field Methods Training

While in Belize, students will be primarily engaged in guided applied ethnographic fieldwork. Students will learn about the local culture by doing participant-observation and conducting ethnographic interviews in a community-based research project. Students will learn research ethics, unobtrusive observation, participant observation, field note writing and coding, ethnographic and life history interviewing, ethnolinguistic data collection, community mapping, rapid assessment procedures, qualitative data analysis, and other ethnographic methods in addition to basic ethnographic writing.

Community Service

The ethnographic field school, as part of the CfAA, is partnering with the Belize Sugar Cane Farmer's Association, National Institute of Culture and History, Progressive Sugar Cane Producer's Association, and Sugar Industry Research and Development Institute in Orange Walk Town, Belize. Among other things, our partners are interested in our contribution in understanding the household economy and agricultural knowledge of sugar cane farmers in the Orange Walk District village communities. Our partners will use our results and recommendations to develop and conduct workshops for farmers on agricultural techniques, economics, health, and other community development topics.

Scholarly Writing and Presentation Experience

Each spring, students will be encouraged to present our findings in a scholarly panel at the Society for Applied Anthropology/Society for Anthropological Sciences annual spring meetings. NKU students will be encouraged to present their findings at NKU's spring Celebration of Student Research and Creativity. Students who wish to learn additional ethnographic analysis methods or prepare a short ethnography for publication may arrange independent studies with the director, Douglas Hume.

Scholarly presentations and publications may be cited in resumes for job applications as well as curriculum vitaes for application for graduate programs. The following are the publications and presentations that have resulted from previous field seasons:

Publications

Presentations

  • 2019 Gilbert, Autumn. Perceptions of Greek Life at Northern Kentucky University. Poster. Celebration of Student Research and Creativity, Northern Kentucky University, April 9, 2019.
  • 2019 Mejia, Fantasia. Perceptions of Student Success. Poster. Celebration of Student Research and Creativity, Northern Kentucky University, April 9, 2019.
  • 2019 Haupt, Rachel, Karin Floyd, Autumn Gilbert, and Fantasia Majia. Ethnographic Research on Child Labor in Northern Belize. Poster. Celebration of Student Research and Creativity, Northern Kentucky University, April 9, 2019.
  • 2019 Hume, Douglas William, Karin Floyd-Glutz, Autumn Gilbert, Rachael Haupt, Fantasia Mejia, Laura Oprisch, Adriane Pontecorvo, and Andrea Shiverdecker. Community Development and Sugar Cane Farming Knowledge: Findings of the 2018 Ethnographic Field School in Belize, Parts I & II. Roundtable. Society for Anthropological Sciences 2019 Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon, March 19-23, 2019.
  • 2018 Hume, Douglas William. Expert Knowledge Networks: Sugar Cane Farming Knowledge in Northern Belize. American Anthropological Association Annual Meeting in San Jose, California, November 16, 2018.
  • 2018 Hume, Douglas William. What is an Expert? Sugar Cane Farming Knowledge in Northern Belize. Society for Anthropological Sciences 2018 Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, April 6, 2018.
  • 2018 Hume, Douglas William, Sage Boyers, Anna Cloud, Allison Cate, Emily Fox, Laura (Bronte) Murrell, Cailey Radcliffe, Emily Stephen, Samuel Velasquez, and Kourtney Zigelmier. Perceptions of Child Labor among Sugar Cane Farmers in Northern Belize. Society for Applied Anthropology 2018 Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, April 5, 2018.
  • 2018 Hume, Douglas William. Sugar Cane Farming Knowle dge in Northern Belize: A Report on the Progress of the Ethnographic Field School in Belize. Sociology, Anthropology, and Philosophy Department Speaker Series, Northern Kentucky University, January 29, 2018.
  • 2017 Fox, Emily. Gender Roles Among Sugar Cane Farming Communities in Northern Belize: Preliminary Research Findings. Poster. American Anthropological Association Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C., December 1, 2017.
  • 2017 Hume, Douglas William, Anna Cloud, Allison Cate, Emily Fox, Kristi Haik, Laura (Bronte) Murrell, Cailey Radcliffe, Emily Stephen, David Thompson, Samuel Velasquez, and Kourtney Zigelmier. Sugar Cane Farming Folk Knowledge: Findings from the Ethnographic Field School in Orange Walk District Belize, June 2016. Roundtable. Anthropologists and Sociologists of Kentucky 49th Annual Meeting, Western Kentucky University, April 22, 2017.
  • 2017 Hume, Douglas William and Emily Fox. Cultural Models of Nature among Farmers in Belize and Northern Kentucky: Preliminary Research Findings. Society for Anthropological Sciences 2017 Annual Meeting in Sante Fe, New Mexico, March 31, 2017.
  • 2016 Hume, Douglas William. Sugar Cane Farming Knowledge and Community Development: Findings from the Ethnographic Field School in Belize, June 2015. Belize Archaeology Anthropology Symposium, San Ignacio Town, Belize, June 28, 2016.
  • 2016 Hume, Douglas William, Hannah Howard, Stefan Kienzle, and Marguerite Kinne. Schemas of Sugar Cane Farming Folk Knowledge: Findings from the Ethnographic Field School in Belize, June 2015. Roundtable. Anthropologists and Sociologists of Kentucky 48th Annual Meeting, Jefferson Community and Technical College, April 23, 2016.
  • 2016 Ragland, Kaitlyn. Sugar Cane Varieties and a Changing Industry in Northern Belize. Poster. Celebration of Student Research and Creativity, Northern Kentucky University, April 12, 2016.
  • 2015 Kienzle, Stefan, and Douglas William Hume. Sugar Cane Farming Knowledge in Northern Belize: Attribute Analyses of Qualitative Ethnographic Interview Data. Poster. Kentucky Academy of Sciences 2015 Annual Meeting at Northern Kentucky University, November 13-4, 2015.
  • 2015 Hume, Douglas William, Colin Bindas, Nicholas Thaxton, Jade Michel Underland, and Gina Yoon. Narratives and Cultural Models of Sugar Cane Farming Folk Knowledge: Findings from the Ethnographic Field School in Belize, June 2014. Anthropologists and Sociologists of Kentucky 47th Annual Meeting at Centre College on April 18, 2015.
  • 2015 Yoon, Gina, Nicholas Thaxton, Gabriella Locke, Stephanie Feltner, and Colin Bindas.Cultural Models of Sugar Cane Farming Folk Knowledge: Findings from the Ethnographic Field School in Belize, June 2014. Poster. Celebration of Student Research and Creativity, Northern Kentucky University, April 18, 2015.
  • 2015 Locke, Gabriella, and Nicholas Thaxton. An Un-Belizable Experience. Six@Six: Student Series, Northern Kentucky University, Scripps Howard Center for Civic Engagement, Baker Hunt Art & Cultural Center, March 16, 2015.
  • 2014 Bricking, Adelle, Gabriella Locke, Nicholas Thaxton, and Stephanie Zach. Sugar Cane Farming Community Ethnography in Northern Belize: You’d Better Belize-it! Poster. Celebration of Student Research and Creativity, Northern Kentucky University, April 16, 2014.
  • 2014 Hume, Douglas William, Jessica Boggs, Adelle Bricking, Rosa Christophel, Jesse Hendricks, Gabrielle Locke, Lydia Schuldt, Evan Steelman, Nicholas Thaxton, and Stephanie Zach. A Cultural Sketch of Sugar Cane Farming Communities: Findings from the Ethnographic Field School in Belize, June 2013. Anthropologists and Sociologists of Kentucky 2014 Annual Meeting at Centre College, April 5, 2014.