Undergraduate Module Descriptor

POC3126: New York Field Trip

This module descriptor refers to the 2021/2 academic year.

Please note that this module is only delivered on the Penryn Campus.

Module Aims

This module is intended to familiarise you with using ethnographic fieldwork within a safe and controlled setting, and under the supervision of Exeter University staff, to develop and expand your independent scholarship. The course highlights the interconnections between space and politics through an exploration of various social and geographical spaces that form the background of political activity in New York – at once a place of communities and boroughs, a key state in US politics, a global city and a site of transnational governance. It does so by enabling you to visit symbolic spaces of commemoration, negotiation, learning and debate, while taking you on fieldwork in New York. You will gain the capacity to integrate field methods such as participant observation of everyday events and sites, exploratory conversations with community members, situated analyses of grassroots organizations and visual, aesthetic, spatial, and economic analyses of politicised spaces and public forums. You will learn how to keep an ethnographic notebook of your travels, collect photos of meaningful sites, and carefully observe the landscape (‘natural’ and built environment). You will visit places such as museums and memorializations, community organizations, 9/11 memorial sites, and other Universities and practice approaching these sites through various lenses, working in student groups organized around substantive theoretical, practical and methodological research themes.

Intended Learning Outcomes (ILOs)

This module's assessment will evaluate your achievement of the ILOs listed here – you will see reference to these ILO numbers in the details of the assessment for this module.

On successfully completing the programme you will be able to:
Module-Specific Skills1. demonstrate in both oral and written work substantive knowledge of major political dynamics affecting New York City, across multiple scales, in the various subfields we examine;
2. demonstrate in the field and in assessments the ability to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of different research methods in oral and written work;
3. demonstrate in written and oral work the ability to apply a range of theories about politics and change to historical and contemporary debates in New York City;
Discipline-Specific Skills4. demonstrate in oral and written work the ability to apply political concepts and theories to specific case study sites;
5. synthesize field observations and research to support critical engagements with and extensions of existing literatures;
6. demonstrate in your oral and written work understanding of the implications of new evidence for a given political perspective;
7. demonstrate in your oral and written work that you understand different methods of research in the field and their implications for findings;
Personal and Key Skills8. work independently and in groups, including presentations for class discussion, and in spontaneous discussion and defence of arguments in class, and to manage conflict;
9. demonstrate analytical, creative, critical and organizational capacity in essays, group presentations and group discussion;
10. write essays and complete assessments to a deadline.