Resources to support the Society's principles for undergraduate fieldwork courses.
All fieldwork should be planned and conducted in a way that is ethical, responsible and safe, for students, staff, visited communities and all other stakeholders. Programmes are expected to follow good practice in terms of health and safety and ethical reviews as codified in University Safety and Health Association (USHA) guidance (below). Codes of conduct should be in place for all those who undertake taught fieldwork - staff and students - that make explicit responsibilities.
The following list of online resources is dynamic. If you know of other relevant resources you think we should be sharing, we’d be happy to hear from you at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Society does not accept responsibility for the content of the external sites. Inclusion on this list does not equate to an endorsement of any content or organisation. Please contact the external site for questions regarding individual resources.
Universities Safety and Health Association (UK)
Including all offsite visits and travel in the UK and overseas
EGU General Assembly
Risk assessment forms and suggested approaches to considering hazards and appropriate mitigations that particularly affect protected characteristics.
Universities Safety and Health Association (UK)
A list of all available USHA guidance documents.
British Standards Institution (UK)
Queen Mary, University of London (UK)
A sample departmental safety checklist.
Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (UK)
Current UK Government travel advice for 226 countries and territories.
Elizabeth Adams explores issues around traning and support for field researchers.
Sara Perry (UK)
Blog discussing and constructing a fieldwork code of conduct for undergraduate archaeologists.
Jennifer McKinnon, East Carolina University (USA)
Code of conduct from the program in Maritime Studies, East Carolina University.
Northumbria University (UK)
Institutional example of a fieldwork code of conduct.
University of Leeds (UK)
Short course to promote understanding of what biosecurity risks are, why they are important and how they can be reduced. On completion, participants receive a certificate that may be included in fieldwork or other risk assessments.
University College London (UK)
Department of Geography notes on the spread of invasive and non-native species.
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affaris (UK)
Key aims and actions to deliver a co-ordinated approach for addressing the threats posed by non-native species
Economic and Social Research Council (UK)
ESRC framework for research ethics.
Luis A. Vivanco (USA)
From 'Field Notes: A Guided Journal for Doing Anthropology'
Bashir, N. (2018) Doing research in peoples’ homes: fieldwork, ethics and safety – on the practical challenges of researching and representing life on the margins, Qualitative Research, 18(6):pp. 638-653. DOI:10.1177/1468794117731808
Butler, R. (2008) Teaching geoscience through fieldwork. GEES Learning and Teaching Guide. ISBN 1-84102-1458-8
Daniels, L.D. and Lavallee, S. (2014) Better Safe than Sorry: Planning for Safe and Successful Fieldwork. The Bulletin of the Ecological Society of America, 95: 264-273. https://doi.org/10.1890/0012-9623-95.3.264
Higgitt, D. and Bullard, J. (1999) Assessing Fieldwork Risk for Undergraduate Projects, Journal of Geography in Higher Education, 23:3, pp. 441-449, DOI: 10.1080/03098269985407
Kovats‐Bernat, J.C. (2002) Negotiating Dangerous Fields: Pragmatic Strategies for Fieldwork amid Violence and Terror. American Anthropologist, 104: 208-222. https://doi.org/10.1525/aa.2002.104.1.208
Nash, D.J. (2000) Doing Independent Overseas Fieldwork 1: Practicalities and pitfalls, Journal of Geography in Higher Education, 24:1, pp. 139-149, DOI: 10.1080/03098260085234
Sluka, J.A. (2020) Too dangerous for fieldwork? The challenge of institutional risk-management in primary research on conflict, violence and ‘Terrorism’, Contemporary Social Science, 15:2, pp. 241-257, DOI: 10.1080/21582041.2018.1498534
Featured image: Priscilla Du Preez
A practical guide for higher education teaching assistants, teaching fellows and demonstrators.
Dr Lynda Yorke (Bangor University) and Dr Simon Tate (Newcastle University)
Online tools for experiential learning
A teaching-focused blog for academics in Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
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