The uses of writing in action research



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STELLA SOUTHGATE
Stella also taught Modern Languages on her second teaching practice and her question resolved itself to: ‘How can I ensure that my Year Eight Class actively participate in their French lessons without my having to threaten them into it?’ In her conclusion to her Final Report, she writes:
AN EVALUATION OF MY ENQUIRY AS ACTION RESEARCH:
What Action Research should be:
Classroom practice should be investigated through participative research. The teacher in the class may well be the best judge of her or his total educational experience, but it is imperative for it to be a collaborative process, too. The value of the critical friend - a third party with as much interest in the class as the researcher, but with the advantage of distance and objectivity - cannot be overstressed.

The model I used largely followed the format outlined below:


1: I have a problem because in my practice my educational values are in some measure being denied;

2: I imagine (or research) a solution;

3: I implement the chosen solution;

4: I evaluate the results;

5: I reformulate the problem in the light of my evaluation.
It is primarily his [the researcher’s] insights and understandings that are moved forward by his own involvement and his enquiries.” (McNiff)
but Action Research should not be such a personal thing as I made mine. Just as a theory is invalid if it cannot be demonstrated to have practical implications, the factors which the researcher claims to be important in her or his classroom must also be proven. There is thus a commitment on the part of the researcher to find evidence to show the improved present practice, not simply to describe the intervening action that led to this situation.




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