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Action Research for Classrooms, Schools, and Communities

Action Research for Classrooms, Schools, and Communities

January 2020 | 184 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Action Research for Classrooms, Schools, and Communities is a core textbook for the action research course. This book addresses the trend toward high-stakes testing and teacher accountability by focusing on understanding student outcomes. With edTPA rapidly becoming part of the requirements for teacher certification, teacher preparation programs will increasingly be looking to measure the impact of the teacher candidate on student learning. The book focuses on the potential for action research to lead to greater understanding about student outcomes from the perspective of teachers, school leaders, and community members. There is a special emphasis on helping pre-service and experienced teachers use action research to understand their impact on student learning. There is an emphasis on using action research to understand community impacts on schools; unlike other books, this text acknowledges the complex ecology linking classrooms, schools, and the community, especially regarding issues fundamental to school reform.

Read a review of Action Research for Classrooms, Schools, and Communities in Teachers College Record

Part I: Answering the Call to Action
Chapter 1: Action Research in Contemporary Contexts
Defining Action Research

Action Research and the Context of Contemporary School Reform

Complex Educational Systems

Systems Theory

Rationale for Action Research

Defining Action Research

Main Features of Action Research

Change as the Desired Outcome

Chapter 2: Approaches to Action Research
"Something That Matters"

Approaches to Educational Research

Identifying an Action Research Topic: Problem Posing and Reflection

Action Research Case Studies and Understanding Your Impact on Student Learning

Collaborative Action Research Projects

Action Research Across the Educational System

Methodological Approaches

Part II: Planning an Action Research Study
Chapter 3: Literature Review and Theoretical Frameworks
Planning Your Study

Reviewing Relevant Literature

Guiding Theoretical Frameworks

Selected Theories

Action Research Compared to Traditional Educational Research

Chapter 4: Research Questions and Ethics
Problem Posing: Developing Research Questions

Planning for Data Collection

Choosing Between Qualitative and Quantitative Methods

Ethical Concerns

Institutional Review Boards

Part III: Collecting and Analyzing Data
Chapter 5: Qualitative Approaches to Data Collection
Chapter Overview

Qualitative Data Collection

Chapter 6: Understanding Through Qualitative Data Analysis
Chapter Introduction

Data Analysis and Action Research

Procedures for Data for Qualitative Analysis

Understanding Validity and "Trustworthiness"

Chapter 7: Quantitative Approaches to Data Collection and Analysis
Chapter Overview

Working with Assessment Data

Surveys and Questionnaires

Statistical Analysis

Quantitative Content Analysis

Mixed Methods Approaches

Chapter Reflection

Part IV: Sharing Findings
Chapter 8: Reflection and the Action Research Report
Iterative Nature of Writing Up Findings

Reflection on Findings

Action Research as "Risky Business"

Alternatives to Traditional Written Reports

Advocating for Yourself and Others



“This book takes a fresh approach to action research by teaching others to use action research to understand how the community impacts schools and how this powerful link can be used to examine school reform endeavors.  I highly recommend it if you teach advanced action research courses.”

Tamarah M. Ashton
California State University, Northridge

“These chapters are also an excellent way of introducing students to the undergraduate research process and provides stepping stones for those who will be seeking graduate degrees and required to conduct research at that level.”

Regina M. Williams
Miami Dade College

“Practical, related to educational inquiry, appropriate to action research instruction.”

Joy F. Xin
Rowan University
Key features
  • Comprehensive yet succinct overview of action research for introductory courses
  • Presents action research as a response to contemporary educational reform 
  • Values insider or "craft" knowledge to leverage teachers' existing knowledge about their educational issues
  • Four distinct sections of the book break down the action research process into manageable steps for students
  • A separate chapter on literature reviews emphasizes the generative context of action research, while also incorporating specific needs and concerns of the researcher
  • Covers qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods strategies, students will be able to apply a wide variety of methods to action research contexts

Sage College Publishing

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