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field experiment

Definition of Field Experiment

(noun) An experiment conducted in people’s natural environment.

Example of Field Experiment

  • Breaking a minor norm to observe reactions such as facing the back wall of an elevator instead of the door around others.

Field Experiment Pronunciation

Pronunciation Usage Guide

Syllabification: field ex·per·i·ment

Audio Pronunciation

– American English
– British English

Phonetic Spelling

  • American English – /fEEld ik-spAIR-uh-muhnt/
  • British English – /fEEld ik-spE-ri-muhnt/

International Phonetic Alphabet

  • American English – /fild ɪkˈspɛrəmənt/
  • British English – /fiːld ɪksˈpɛrɪmənt/

Usage Notes

  • Plural: field experiments
  • In this instance, “field” refers to the natural settings of people instead of research conducting in a laboratory or library.
  • Field experiments try to negate the Hawthorne effect.
  • Field notes are collected during field experiments.

Related Quotations

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Additional Information

Related Terms


Kendall, Diana. 2006. Sociology in Our Times: The Essentials. 5th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Spradley, James P., and David W. McCurdy. 2008. Conformity and Conflict: Readings in Cultural Anthropology. 13th ed. Boston: Pearson Education.

Works Consulted

Kornblum, William. 2008. Sociology in a Changing World. 8th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Macmillan. (N.d.) Macmillan Dictionary. (https://www.macmillandictionary.com/).

Merriam-Webster. (N.d.) Merriam-Webster Dictionary. (http://www.merriam-webster.com/).

Oxford University Press. (N.d.) Oxford Dictionaries. (https://www.oxforddictionaries.com/).

Wikipedia contributors. (N.d.) Wiktionary, The Free Dictionary. Wikimedia Foundation. (http://en.wiktionary.org).

Cite the Definition of Field Experiment

ASA – American Sociological Association (5th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2013. “field experiment.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Retrieved May 23, 2024 (https://sociologydictionary.org/field-experiment/).

APA – American Psychological Association (6th edition)

field experiment. (2013). In K. Bell (Ed.), Open education sociology dictionary. Retrieved from https://sociologydictionary.org/field-experiment/

Chicago/Turabian: Author-Date – Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2013. “field experiment.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Accessed May 23, 2024. https://sociologydictionary.org/field-experiment/.

MLA – Modern Language Association (7th edition)

“field experiment.” Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Ed. Kenton Bell. 2013. Web. 23 May. 2024. <https://sociologydictionary.org/field-experiment/>.