What Does the University Know?: Ethnography of the University

Bertram (Chip) Bruce

Graduate School of Library & Information Science
U. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

WebArchive Version Also Available (supported by Macs and some other types of software - see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Webarchive.

What Does the University Know?

  •   diverse disciplines
  • X  about itself (the "learning community")
  • X  about its relation to the communities in which it participates
  • X  how to inquire within and beyond its walls

Ethnography of the university (2002->)

  • engage undergraduates in research
  • 50 courses in various disciplines
  • build a repository of knowledge from the inside
  • use Inquiry Units for ethnographies
  • participatory design

Making ethnographies—EOTU Live


Emergence of the inquiry cycle

inquiry cycle "Genuine intellectual integrity is found in experimental knowing." John Dewey

The Inquiry Page (1997)

  • web-based means to articulate and engage in inquiry
  • virtual plus place-based communities
  • uses: courseware, online journals, community groups, individual inquiries
  • international connections

Community Inquiry Laboratory

  • Community: Collaborative activity around creating knowledge that is connected to people's values, history, and lived experiences
  • Inquiry: Open-ended, democratic, participatory engagement
  • Laboratory: Bringing theory and action together in an experimental and critical manner

Student inquiries

  • Michael Cozza, The Introduction of a Neophyte into Gaming Culture
  • Kaitlin Sulkowski, A Look into the Social Phenomenon of Facebook
  • Aly Marchetti, The Daniels Street ATM on Wednesday Nights
  • Jonathan Wassell, The Life of the Off-Campus Student
  • Christina Miceli and Kari Schmehil, Two Tattoo Parlors
  • Jennifer Mull, Unethical Treatment of Volunteers
  • Amy Franco, Technology in the Illini Union Vending Room
  • Ben Krop, Justin Meyer, and Nipa Patel, University Grading Issues and Policies

Student inquiries

  • Kurt Rottunda, Chinese Students on the U of I Campus
  • Louis Morton, Coffee Talk: Language in Cafes Across Campus
  • Suzanne Perkins, Ethnography of the Language of Creative Writers
  • Nate Harmann, Acting and Acting Myths
  • Nicholas Murphy, The MTD 22 Illini
  • Christine Travers, Ethnography of the Urbana Fire Department
  • Andrew Meyer, Three Hours that Changed the World: T. K. Cureton
  • Tiffany White, Student Workouts at WIMPE
  • John Noble, The Canopy Club and Its Culture
  • Bryan Calip and Laura Haning, Scott Hall and Video Gaming

Student inquiries

  • Cole Cullen, Residents' Use of the Gregory Drive Computer Lab
  • David Lai, College Gamers: Their Technology, Their Academics
  • Allie Wyler, Technology Used in Special Education
  • Angela Marconi, WPGU: Technology and Tension of Corporate Media
  • Daniel Edgerton, The UIUC Account Billing Office
  • Joe Bottalla, The Behavior of Aviation Students
  • Maria Frias, Coming Out Stories at the U of I
  • Lissette Uriostegui, The Technology and Creativity of the Metal-Smithing Community
  • Andrea Henderson, Greenhouse Workers in the Plant Biology Conservatory and Their Technology
  • Chris Manna, Those Who Work Out in the ISR Weight Room

Inquiries into the University

  •   creating tools for further inquiry
  •   learning about self and responsible action
  •   learning how to make positive social change
  •   learning in the disciplines

The End: Credits

  • Community Informatics Institute Directors: Ann P. Bishop, Bertram C. Bruce
  • EOTU
    • Directors: Nancy Abelmann, Peter Mortensen
    • Program Coordinator: Gardner Rogers
    • Graduate Assistant: Teresa M. Ramos
  • Video production: Matt Beth