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A Working Session on Action Research for Literacy Educators. Karen Erickson (and David Koppenhaver ) Bridges to Learning 2010 May 15, 2010. Introduction & Overview. Center for Literacy & Disability Studies Engaged Scholarship You? What experience do you have with research?

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A working session on action research for literacy educators

A Working Session on Action Research for Literacy Educators

Karen Erickson (and David Koppenhaver)

Bridges to Learning 2010

May 15, 2010


Introduction overview
Introduction & Overview

  • Center for Literacy & Disability Studies

  • Engaged Scholarship

  • You?

    • What experience do you have with research?

    • What experience do you have with action research?


Does wilfrid gordon do the things that teacher researchers do
Does Wilfrid Gordon do the things that teacher researchers do?

  • Develop questions based on their own interest in their students’ learning and their teaching.

  • Determine effective methods for answering their questions.

  • Systematically document what happens.

  • Observe and reflect on observations.

  • Examine their assumptions, beliefs, and theories.

  • Discuss their research with their colleagues to validate their findings and interpretations of their data.

  • Present findings to others.

  • Write about their research (school-wide publication, national).


What is Teacher Research? (From Marian M. Mohr)Inquiry that is intentional, systematic, public, voluntary, ethical, and contextual..


Action Research

Research

Action

Problem solving and intervention that is not part of a research effort.

Investigations that are planned with specific hypotheses, plans and procedures.

Investigations that are planned primarily to address practical problems.


Action research definitions
Action research definitions

  • Family of research methods which pursue action and research outcomes simultaneously.

  • Trying out ideas in practice as a means of increasing knowledge about and/or improving curriculum, teaching, and learning (ERIC Digest)

  • Process used by educators to reflect on what they do in the classroom and improve their practice. (Action Research for Teachers Website)


Action research is
Action research is…

  • Cyclic

    • Plan, act, observe, reflect, repeat

    • Throughout career

    • Data collecting, data interpreting, decision-making

  • Participatory

    • Involve yourself

    • Doing--carrying out yourself

    • Participant-observation

  • Qualitative

    • Does not require numbers and statistics

    • Language/writing—themes

    • Less confining--more wiggle room to change & adjust than in traditional research


Action research is cont
Action research is (cont.)…

  • Reflective

    • Constant refinement, active involvement, commitment to understanding

  • Responsive

    • What you observe, continue/change/document

  • Emergent

    • Break down repeatedly (interpretability)--in sharing

    • Where you start and where you finish might differ

    • Multiple data sources revisited, evolving questions


Ex am ple of action research

Example of Action Research

Identify the steps of action research

as we work through the process.

http://www.slideshare.net/chewybar05/action-research-1353367


Annie s example

Annie’s Example

What steps did you identify?


Example of action research

Example of Action Research

Identify the steps of action research

as we work through the process.

http://www.slideshare.net/marqueA2/technology-integration-through-teacher-training-action-research-proposal-presentation


Developing a research question
Developing a Research Question

  • Look for things that are interesting to YOU.

  • Think in open-ended ways:

    • "how" or "why" or "under what conditions”

  • When possible focus on questions that address a group rather than an individual student


  • The questions you ask should focus on:

    • teaching and learning;

    • something in your control;

    • something you’d like to change or improve; and

    • something you feel PASSIONATE about.


Before identifying questions identify the problem you wish to address

Before identifying questions, identify the problem you wish to address.

What problems do you need to address in your work?



Once you have the problem identified it is easier to identify the question

Once you have the problem identified, it is easier to identify the question.

What makes a good research question?


Effective action research questions
Effective Action Research Questions identify the question.

• Are open-ended

– “How does word prediction influence writing for my students?”

• Are focused on your students and classroom, practical in nature

– “What are the effects of picture-supported text on reading motivation?”

– “How does my Smart Board influence interactions during group time?”

• Aren’t oriented to quantitative designs and statistical solutions


After you have your question you have to figure out what we already know about the topic

After you have your question, you have to figure out what we already know about the topic.

Literature Reviews


Literature reviews
Literature Reviews already know about the topic.

  • Guiding direction of your research

    • What is known, what has been tried, is your question already thoroughly answered?

  • Challenges

    • Finding relevant studies

    • Focus, focus, focus

    • Reconciling/synthesizing different findings

  • Conducting

    • Define topic/questions

    • Identifying sources of info (journal list)

    • Limiting review (when is enough, enough?)


Literature reviews1
Literature Reviews already know about the topic.

  • Keeping records

    • PDF or photocopies

    • Notecards, Inspiration, databases

    • ZOTERO (www.zotero.com)

  • Reading/note taking

    • Background book on topic is often a good starting place

    • Search for patterns in what you read

    • Look through the reference list of everything you read

  • Writing up

    • Clear, readable, concise

    • Intro, description of each study and main findings, conclusion leading into your research question(s)

    • Reference list:

      • http://www.noodletools.com/tools/freetools.php


Write something! already know about the topic.Because you’re going to share this eventually, take some time to write about what you learned doing the literature review.


What data do you need

What data do you need? already know about the topic.

Where will it come from?


Example measures
Example Measures already know about the topic.

  • What will you measure to gather data to answer your question(s)?

  • – Multiple measures for triangulation

  • – e.g., reading motivation

    • Msre#1: Garfield test

    • Msre#2: Observation of student behaviors during SSR

    • Msre#3: Student interviews

    • Msre #4: Anecdotal records

    • Msre#5: Transcript analysis of student conference about SSR


Questions about data

Questions about data already know about the topic.


Question 1
Question 1 already know about the topic.

  • Why are we collecting this data?

  • How is the data related to the focus area and question?

  • What will the data tell us about student learning and teaching strategies or client benefits?


Question 2
Question 2 already know about the topic.

  • What exactly are we collecting?

  • What kind of data will give us the best information about students learning and teaching strategies? Gather data on the same question in different ways, from different sources, and at different times (triangulation).


Question 3
Question 3 already know about the topic.

  • When are we going to collect it and for how long?

  • How much data is needed? 

  • How periodic should the collection be?


Question 4
Question 4 already know about the topic.

  • Who is going to collect it?

  • Is this data being collected by an individual teacher-researcher, study group members, or extended school-wide?


Question 5
Question 5 already know about the topic.

  • How will data be collected, analyzed and findings shared? 

  • Has a time-line been established? 

  • Where and how will the data be stored?

  • Has the criterion for analyzing the data (rubrics, implementation logs) been established before the data is collected? 

  • What is the system for recording and sharing the findings?


Staying organized
Staying Organized already know about the topic.

  • Develop a system to organize data as you collect it.

  • Don’t wait to figure out what you are finding.

    • Look at the data as it is collected.

    • Write in a journal, start a blog, but find a place to write and reflect upon what you’re learning

  • Share your thinking with others – seek the input of others.


Visually display your findings
Visually Display Your Findings already know about the topic.

  • Numeric Findings:

    • Charts in Excel

    • http://www.nces.ed.gov/nceskids/createagraph/

  • Text-based Findings:

    • Inspiration

    • Draft:Builder

    • Blogs


Share it

Share it! already know about the topic.

http://educationprogram.duke.edu/Research/Student-Action-Research

http://www.slideshare.net/


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