Tuesday, January 15, 2013
Throughout my high school years, and even in college, I despised hearing the term "research paper". All I knew was that it consisted of me reading/skimming a plethora of articles, books, and internet sources to analyze a piece of literature. In addition, it had to include a certain amount of resources, be a set number of pages, and spend countless hours in the library. It is the dreadful paper that everyone dreads in the English Comp classes while in college, but know they must do it in order to pass the course. However, action research is a different approach to doing research. One identifies the problem that exists on their campus. After identifying the problem, one must be willing to be a part of the experiment/investigation, thus the term "action research". As Dana states, action research refers to "research intended to bring about change of some kind". We as teachers/administrators must identify the problems, implement a plan, and execute it. In addition, gathering and calculating data prior and after is also a part of the research. All of these characteristics encompasses the true meaning of action research. Furthermore, being able to include yourself in the research with your colleagues, students and community will provide that "action" and, in my opinion, make your journey to research more enticing.