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Introduction to Action Research in the Classroom

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Action Research is a process that teachers use to reflect on what they do in their classrooms and improve their teaching. And typically what they do is begin by focusing on the area of teaching that they want to improve or a problem in their classrooms and they find some information about that area, they do some background reading, they might read articles to find out what someone else has to teach them about that area of teaching, they might talk with colleagues to see if they have some ideas to share, and once they collect some information, then they start to brainstorm what they might do to improve the area of their teaching. They brainstorm some strategies and some ideas and things to test out in their classroom. And then the process of Action Research begins. It begins with a plan, of deciding what will be the change that'll be implemented in the classroom and what will be the evidence that will show that change is going to be effective. So a teacher would begin with that brainstorming list and then choose a plan of action, the one that seems the most practical, the one that seems to have the best chances of succeeding. Then the teacher will decide how to measure the success of that idea. It might be by surveying students or parents, then the teacher might have to develop a survey. The evidence might be test, so the teacher would have to develop a test to give the students. It might be focusing on an ability that the students have, that the students would be able to demonstrate. There are lots of possibilities. So the teacher might begin with a pre-test, or pre-survey and then implement that change or strategy in the classroom and then measure again to see if it was effective. Then the teacher would have the information to decide whether the change had been effective and the teacher would have learned a way to improve teaching, we hope - that's the goal. So the end result is the teachers more about their teaching; they would have some knowledge that they can use to decide on a change that they might be interested in making. The teacher can always decide to share their information with others, so there's not just one person who's benefiting from all their work and knowledge, but it's the profession. Some teachers publish their work in journals and magazines, some teachers post their work on website, some teachers present their work at conferences and they might have documented what they did by taking pictures or taking movies along the way so they can share with others what they've learned and ultimately, the teacher will become a better teacher through this reflection process and will have a chance to help colleagues and help students - that's the end of all. So through this project we hope that teachers will become interested in Action Research and will develop skills to be able to go through the process of Action Research so that education will improve.

Video Details

Duration: 3 minutes and 34 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: Terence Cavanaugh
Director: Terence Cavanaugh
Views: 166
Posted by: babi1954 on Sep 5, 2010

This video introduces the viewers to the concept of Action research - it is an interview with Dr. Cathy Cavanaugh.

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