Department of Sociology

Field Research Training

Field Research Training Program

Winter Semester 2012
Tentative Program

Research site:
Sarnath Temple, Banaras, India

March 31, 2012 to April 7, 2012

The planned research field trip is part of the Research Methodology course, being offered in the winter 2012 semester. The objective of the research trip is to provide students with hands-on experience of research techniques and procedures−−data collection, analysis, and reporting. During the field work students apply research techniques they learn in their course to the real field. The Department of Sociology believes that the field trip helps students become better producers and consumers of sociological knowledge. The field trip is mandatory and will be supervised by two faculty members. The tentative plan for the trip is as follows:

Pre-departure preparation (the details will be announced in research methodology class):
Discussion with the concerned authorities at the Saranath Temple.
Each student reads at least one (ethnographic) article on a religious site.
Students identify potential interviewees (officials, visitors, devotees etc.) and prepare an interview checklist. Students identify types of documents they will collect and analyze.

Students will be divided into different groups to carry out the proposed activities (interviewing, observation, social mapping, and document collection). They will be initially trained in interview and observation techniques in research methodology class, which will later be practiced in the field under supervision.

A two-hour preparation workshop will be held on March 28 2012. Students and faculty members will discus and share final research plans, expectations, and objectives of the field research.

Field activities; Students will be primarily involved in:
Social mapping/document collection

Field Program
April 1: Students reach Banaras and inspect the site at Sarnath.
April 2 to 5: Intensive field work

Daily activities (April 2 to 5):
8:30 AM to 1:00 PM Field research
1:00 PM to 2:00 PM Lunch break
2:00 PM to 3 PM: Finalization of field report
4:00 PM to 5:00 PM: Review workshop*
*In review workshops, students share their daily experience and plan for the next day’s activities. Two or three students will coordinate the workshops. The review workshops will be held at different places, which will be announced in the field.

Soc Announcements

April 6 and 7: City tour; Final preparation of field notes (typed and/or hand written), which must be handed over to the supervisors. Departure on the 7th.

Post-field work activities:
Students submit their individual field notes and reflections by April 13th. Students will practice data analysis in Research Methodology class.
Three groups of students submit group research papers (about 2000 words) by April 30.
Students are encouraged to write individual experience and post their write-ups in the departmental students' blog.

Ongoing Programs

Department of Sociology, South Asian University, Martin Chautari, Kathmandu, and the Central Department of Anthropology, Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, are organizing a one day international workshop on Debating Development in South Asia:Revising Dor Bahadur Bista's Fatalism and Development 25 Years Later" on 29 December 2016 at Martin Chautari, Kathmandu. (Poster)


Department of Sociology, SAU coorganizes an international conference on Buddhist Cultural Pluralism in South Asia: Explorations in Popular-Contemporary Buddhist Imageries , with Royal University of Bhutan and Sherubtse College,Bhutan, on 17-18 March 2017 (Note Attached)


An Oxford Sociologist, from Department of Sociology, University of Dhaka and prolific theater artist Samina Luthfa, is going to be delivering a series of talks and performance at Department of Sociology, South Asian University.Follow the poster-invite for schedule of events. (Poster)


Department of Sociology, South Asian University and Department of Anthropology, University of Dhaka are coorganizing an international conference on Visual South Asia: An Anthropological Exploration in Media and Culture on 10 – 11, MAY, 2017.Kindly refer to the call for papers to submit an abstract.(Call For Papers )


Department of Sociology, Young Scholars' Conference, 20-22 October 2016, Youth Geographies in / of Contemporary South Asia - ( Call For Papers )



International Conference on Marxism and South Asia, 11-12 November 2016 (Call for Papers)


^ Back to Top