The emic perspective is perceived by educational scholars as being more relevant in the interpretation of a culture and in the understanding of cultural experiences within a particular group. The reason for this is that it is impossible to truly comprehend and appreciate the nuances of a particular culture unless one resides within that culture. When a researcher takes an etic perspective to their study, they use preexisting theories, hypotheses, and perspectives as constructs in order to see if they apply to an alternate setting or culture. The use of an etic perspective or approach to research is beneficial as it enables comparisons to be made across multiple cultures and populations which differ contextually.
Is a solely emic perspective possible to achieve? What would happen if a researcher took a purely etic perspective to a study?
There is an article on focused ethnography and how it has gained further ground in nursing research. Through focused ethnography research nurse researchers have the ability to generate understandings about health and illness phenomena as studied in cultural context. Nurse researchers also gain a better understanding of social issues that affect nursing practice. What are your thoughts about this article?
Cruz, E. V. & Higginbottom, G. (2013). The use of focused ethnography in nursing research. Nurse Researcher, 20(4), 36-43. doi:10.7748/nr2013.03.20.4.36.e305