Wednesday, November 16, 2011

What is Action Research?

Action research is a way to pose a question or a wondering in your school(or business) and make a systematic study of question and then taking action based on results.  It is a way to collect data and then make changes needed in the school based on the findings.  Action research is a great way to improve the school and a way to focus on concerns or problems of the school.  This kind of research is carried out within the context of the school's environment with questions that deal with that school.  It is an on-going process of posing questions, gathering data, reflecting and deciding on a course of action.  Then the principal or teachers can then go on to pose other questions that need to be addressed.  It is essentially asking "How can I improve my school?"

Action research is not a research paper like we did in high school where you read lots of articles and then summarize what you read.  It is much deeper and systematic.  It is not about why we do things but how we can make things better.

An action research inquiry can be done by one person or preferably a group of people that want to improve the school.

I came across this graphic on the internet on
and I really liked how they made the model of the cyclical nature of action research:

Dan MacIsaac, "An Introduction to Action Research," 1995, (22/03/1998).

Dana, N.F.(2009).  Leading with passion and knowledge:  The principal as action researcher.  Thousand Oaks, CA:  Corwin Press.

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