Advantages and Disadvantages of Non Participant Observation



Advantages and Disadvantages of Non Participant Observation


  • Allows researcher to see what goes on with their own eyes - can make judgements and observe body language used
  • Researcher can be more open minded as they're an outsider looking in - less likely to feel sympathy and therefore produce bias data
  • More ethical if done overtly - no ethical issues if people are aware they are being observed


  • can lead to Hawthorne effect - people act differently as they know they are being observed
  • May be hard to gain accurate results as watching from a distance
  • Impression management
  • Time consuming/costly


Tryona and Hatcher - studied racism in childrens livesthrough observation in mainly whit schools - focused on 10 - 11 year olds and looked at their behaviour, interactions and responses. Found where black students are a relative minority racism and harrasment more likely. By not participating they could watch body language closely . However presence of researcher results in hawthorne effect 




thanks bubby