Thursday, April 14, 2011

Importance of Action Research

In order to be successful and to attain the best results, all teachers and administrators must have the passion to be lifelong learners.  Strategies implemented in schools are constantly changing and evolving with time.  It is essential that school leaders evolve and evaluate best practices along the way in order to best serve their campus and community.  One way to accomplish this is through action research. 

Action research can be accomplished in four steps.  The first step is self reflection.  This is where you reflect on curiosities, problems, or wonderings that could be used to improve the campus or student learning.  Next is the process of researching the aforementioned curiosity or issue.  This is traditional research and consists of collecting data, reading relevant literature, meeting with colleagues, and collaborating with professional learning communities.  The third step is to implement your findings and put new ideas into practice.  Lastly, and most importantly, is reflecting on and sharing the outcome of your research.  It is essential that leaders reflect and evaluate if the results accomplish what was set out to improve.  From here, action research is shared in professional learning communities and amongst colleagues. 

Action research is much more involved than the traditional research.  In education, it is imperative that action research be conducted by teachers and administrators.  This is an invaluable tool used to improve leaders, teachers, campus, classrooms, and most importantly student learning. 

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