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Applying participatory methods for social change: A hands-on learning session


Course Information

Four colour National Centre for Research Methods logo

This two-day in person course aims to provide participants with an opportunity to learn about and practice creative participatory methods that have been applied with people and communities to understand needs, set priorities and co-develop actions for social change.

The methods presented will include transect walks, photovoice, body mapping, stepping stones and others. Learners will hear how researchers and community partners globally have used these methods to co-create new knowledge together and the impact these have had. They will then be provided with tools to practice these methods within a group or individually, and to reflect on being a participant, facilitator, or observer/documenter. Participants will also be involved in a discussion about power and inclusion in participatory research.

This will be followed by hands-on experience of facilitating a co-analysis exercise, triangulating data across methods and developing themes. The session will end with a space to design your own research protocol using creative methods; participants will be able to bring their own projects to work on or a scenario will be set as a practical example. Feedback will be provided by experienced participatory researchers and peers, including a discussion of adapting methods to suit different contexts and communities.

Course Code


Course Leader

Dr Kim Ozano and Dr Laura Dean
Course Description


The course covers:

  • Overview of selected creative participatory methods and a useful toolkit
  • Examples of how creative methods have been applied in projects globally
  • Practical experience of implementing and reflecting on a creative method
  • Understanding power and inclusion when designing and applying creative participatory methods
  • Theory and practice of co-analysis with communities
  • Triangulation and theme development when using multiple creative methods
  • Ethics, safeguarding, risk management and ethics when using creative methods in different contexts
  • Tools and techniques for deciding which method to use when
  • Practical example of how to plan and adapt methods to a project


By the end of the course participants will be able to:

  • Choose, justify and apply different participatory methods (collective and individual) to projects
  • State and define the main concepts and principles of creative participatory methods
  • Critique and analyse power and inclusion when using creative participatory methods in different community contexts
  • Undertake co-analysis with communities who have different levels of capacity and skills
  • Identify and demonstrate an awareness of the limitations and challenges of creative participatory methods
  • Design and implement techniques to safeguard participants when using participatory methods


StartEndPlaces LeftCourse Fee 
06/07/202307/07/20230[Read More]

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