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Session Overview
RN20_01b_P: Digitization and Mobility in Qualitative Research
Wednesday, 30/Aug/2017:
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Session Chair: Bernd Rebstein, Bayreuth University
Location: PC.4.23
PANTEION University of Social & Political Sciences 136 Syggrou Avenue 17671 Athens, Greece Building: C, Level: 4.

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Using interactive maps with young people – scanning diverse mobilities

Sinikka Aapola-Kari1, Tarja Tolonen2, Matilda Wrede-Jäntti3

1Finnish Youth Research Network, Finland; 2University of Helsinki, Finland; 3Finnish Youth Research Network, Finland

In this paper, we present a method based on using interactive maps with Finnish young people. We have utilized an internet cloud map application with groups of young people. We have interviewed 125 young people, born in year 2000, from five research sites around Finland, in relation to our study ’Youth in Time’. This is a qualitative, longitudinal project coordinated by the Finnish Youth Research Network, in cooperation with researchers from the universities of Eastern Finland and Helsinki. We aim to follow the lives of the same young people for at least ten years.

In the map workshops, young people worked in small groups and pairs, and marked their ’important places’ in their localities, as well as places they avoid. In addition, they showed us where they had travelled, and/or where significant people in their lives lived. The groups’ results have been transferred to the same base maps, which has allowed us to make comparisons along the divisions of gender, mother tongue, ethnic background as well as locality.

The method has proved to be fruitful, both in terms of increasing research participants’ own participation and agency in the research relationship, and in producing interesting results about young people’s diverse mobilities. In our longitudinal research, we also aim to return to this method later with the same participants, which will reveal any significant changes in young people’s mobilities as they move from one stage of education to the next.

We shall present the technical details of the method as well as some results in our presentation.

Exploring social worlds in migration and sports – Challenges of mobile research

Bernd Rebstein, Ajit Singh

Bayreuth University, Germany

Dramatic changes of modern societies, often described in connection with differentiation, fragmentation and globalisation, are most obvious and force people to being mobile. Thus social and spatial mobility as a ‘mundane’ concept refers also to the explicit requirements of different social worlds as work, leisure, education, politics or economy (Sheller/Urry 2006). In the last decades especially the ‘mobility turn’ considers these changes and sheds light in a broader sense on multiple forms of interleaving movements of people, objects, information, knowledge and ideas.

Our paper discusses this perspective and focuses on the relevance of mobility for the constitution of social worlds. Reflecting method(olog)ical challenges of different research projects in the fields of migration (festivals and events) and sports (trampoline training) we address the questions (1) how to examine different phenomena of mobility and (2) how to empirically access and follow (Marcus 1995) mobile subjects, objects and ideas within multi-sited ethnographic research.

Using different sorts of data, it will be shown, that on the one hand mobility becomes empirically observable through collaborative embodied practices and the communicative construction of spaces, knowledge and materials. On the other hand we foreground the adequate and flexible use of qualitative methods to capture and investigate social forms of mobility as a constitutive part of the (multi-sited) research fields. Finally we argue that mobile research sensitizes to consider mobility and sociality as a ‘fluid’ and mutual accomplishment of communicative actions.

Metaphor about MOOC power: systematic metaphor analysis

Tatiana Semenova

National Research University Higher School of Economics, Russian Federation

There are different and at the same time opposite points of view about massive open online courses (MOOCs). Some researchers believe that MOOC is a way to break national borders and expand democracy among developing countries as well as a means to overcome inequality. Since this is an open source of knowledge for everyone despite race, gender, socio-economic status, educational background etc. Nevertheless studies have shown that the majority of MOOC participants are citizens of developed countries with higher education. Moreover the achievement of MOOC participant is affected by their characteristics (for example, educational background, social status, learning style, previous experience in online learning, previous experience in course subject). That is why other researchers consider MOOC as a means of supporting and increasing inequality in society. The third and the last point of view is that MOOC is a tool to expand one ideology, one belief about course subject (especially the ideology of Western countries), propagandizing their cultural values. In our study we will show metaphors which underlie different views on the MOOC power. Systematic metaphor analysis (SMA) is used as a method for the analysis qualitative data. SMA, developed by Rudolf Schmitt, is based on the George Lakoff and Mark Johnson’s theory of metaphor. The research sample is the articles about MOOC power issued in the last four years. In our work, we will also show the pros and cons of SMA and compare it with the discourse analysis.

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