Section archive - Research Methods
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Every effort of synthesizing research is inevitably premised on certain epistemological assumptions. The literature on research synthesis methods is dominated by publications premised on positivist assumptions. Contesting the hegemony of positivist research syntheses, this article makes a case for research syntheses that are informed by diverse epistemological orientations. The article illuminates how research syntheses with distinct epistemological orientations can serve complementary, equally worthwhile, purposes.
Updated: Jan. 20, 2014
The Construction of Researcher–Researched Relationships in School Ethnography: Doing Research, Participating in the Field and Reflecting on Ethical Dilemmas
This article draws upon the author's experience while conducting an ethnographic study in an international school in mainland China. The author reflected on two issues: what field relations were established in what ways, and what threads to ethics and research validity the author encountered in the course of the fieldwork.
Updated: Jan. 19, 2014
The present article explores how researchers’ social identities influence data gathered through ethnographic research in multiracial K-12 educational settings. The authors examine how the processes of conducting, interpreting, and analyzing ethnographic fieldwork are impacted when researchers belong to marginalized social groups. The authors suggest that researchers can act as critical participants to create opportunities for dialog about racism, sexism, and other inequities in educational settings.
Updated: Jan. 19, 2014
In this article, the authors describe the use of self-study as a frame for professional learning that grew out of a professional development program for teachers examining their practice in a dual-language K-4 school in Iowa. The authors argue that the use of self-study as the frame for their professional learning experience was seen as a powerful and positive experience overall, impacting both their own practice and the dual language program at large. The authors also argue that during the process of self-study, many of the teachers became supportive collegial friends, colleagues who appeared genuinely interested in working together to improve practice. By working as collegial friends, by engaging in critical discussions of genuine issues and teacher-chosen interests in improving practice, the dual language program as a whole benefited.
Updated: Jan. 15, 2014
In this collaborative self-study, the authors were interested to examine their own transition from doctoral students to assistant professors. Data revealed three turning points highlight the impact of the authors' new roles on all aspects of their practice as teacher educators and their thinking about teaching and teachers. The first turning point speaks to how the authors were challenged to reframe what counts as quality teaching in the academy. The second turning point revealed the authors' feeling that it is important to be strategic about the research they conduct to ensure sufficient opportunities for publication. Finally, the third turning point was an expression of the pressure the authors felt to do an outstanding job at each of the three components of their roles: teaching, research, and service.
Updated: Dec. 10, 2013
This article reports a self-study of the experiences of a teacher educator who has developed and taught a university-based action research course. The author adopted self-study as the methodology, using qualitative data collection methods. The article describes three themes which emerged during the action research: 1) Teacher culture clashes with the research world, 2) Teachers’ assumptions about teaching and learning and 3) Action research, domesticated by traditional research.
Updated: Nov. 24, 2013
Translating Autoethnography Across the AERA Standards: Toward Understanding Autoethnographic Scholarship as Empirical Research
This article aims to move readers toward a deeper understanding of and widened respect for autoethnography’s capacity as an empirical endeavor. The authors argue in favor of autoethnography as empirical by translating information from its epistemological and methodological history across the AERA standards for reporting empirical social science research. The article concludes by imagining a rubric that may assist researchers, editors, and reviewers in translating autoethnographic scholarship as credible and defensible empirical research.
Updated: Oct. 22, 2013
The author suggests that educators of preservice teachers begin to employ insights gained from the Gardner’s Five Minds for the Future. In order to show relationships between early childhood play and Gardner’s theory, the author crafted the framework. This framework takes into account both artistic and scientific aspects of the mind. The article describes each mind as interpreted from Gardner, and explores the implications for the instruction of preservice teachers. The author concludes that recognizing the importance of play, as captured within Gardner’s Five Minds for the Future, allows us to acknowledge that play is a meaningful and necessary feature in the contexts of school, and ultimately in the lives of the nation’s school children.
Updated: Oct. 21, 2013
This article examines how a community action research approach supported the implementation of an educational support programme for children, parents and local educators. The aim was the creation of a learning community that acknowledged, valued and used the expertise and experience of all involved. Five years of working together on action research projects has increased the educational capital in the community and has developed a sense of ownership and responsibility for the educational welfare of children from all involved.
Updated: Sep. 16, 2013
Teacher Professional Development through Collaborative Action Research: Impact on Foreign English-Language Teaching and Learning
The authors are a group of English-as-a-foreign-language teachers at a secondary school in Argentina. The authors decided in 2011 to investigate their teaching practices through collaborative action research so as to improve their students’ learning opportunities and thus revitalise English-language teaching in their context. This report particularly focuses on the evaluation facets of their collaborative action research project so as to encourage other teachers and teacher-researchers to adopt collaborative action research to improve their own practices.
Updated: Aug. 27, 2013