Action Research requires a process. With a shared vision you analyze data while developing a deeper understanding for what it is you are researching. You must self- reflect and explore patterns determining a direction and taking action for improvement making sure you sustain the improvement. To make it a little easier to understand, you take a problem and share it with your administrator or if for educational use, your students and collect data. You use trial and error finding a solution. Once you have found a solution that works, you then continue to make sure the solution stays. You can always tweak things in the process; after all you are trying to solve problems.
Here is an example of action research. Every day a teacher is using action research and does not realize it. There is trial and error in lessons that you teach or procedures that you use. With students that we struggle with we use action research. The vision that you share is, you want to help the child, by recognizing that, you analyze what the student’s needs are, where the student is struggling, know as much as you can about the student and hold conferences with the parents. You then set up a plan to reach certain goals with the student. You might fail at first but then find out ways to connect to the student and you find a pattern that works. You and the student are finally headed in the right direction and have made improvements. You meet with the parents and plan another meeting in a few weeks. This keeps helps sustain the improvement with your student.
With a good understanding with what action research is I can see areas where I could use action research around my school campus. With procedures that might be a bit outdated due to technology or trying to reach my students outside of school through technology, such a blog, or Facebook page, these can all be included in action research. Finding out what gets the attention of our students, taking surveys of how many students have a computer and internet at home, how many are allowed to access the computer from, how many students actually use the resources on the internet that have been given out can all be data for the action research process. As you go back to school this week, reflect on your day and see how many times you are using action research throughout the day.