(Participatory) Action Research: Principles, Approaches and Applications

Title(Participatory) Action Research: Principles, Approaches and Applications
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsSusskind, L, Cunningham, D, Cruxên, IAraujo, Calder, J, Foletta, J
PublisherNova Science Publishers
ISBN978-1-53613-042-3
Abstract

In this book, authors present current research on the implementation of reform mathematics in order to identify, explore, and evaluate five specific goals. Students were presented with problem solving activities that correlated with real-world situations. During this process, students tracked their confidence and growth as mathematicians. Next, the ways in which students learn to effectively engage in natural discussions related to the literature they are reading are examined. Barriers to the implementation of literature circles in the classroom are discussed, and ideas for successful execution are highlighted. Action research (AR) leaders’ roles are explored through two studies, with the frame constituting of K-20 science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education and how participant engagement leads to AR project insight. The authors provide suggestions for future AR leaders. This compilation goes on to discuss how teaching Participatory Action Research (PAR) in MIT’s Department of Urban Studies and Planning has led to focus on the responsibilities of action researchers and their obligations to the communities and places in which they work; and the importance of building the capacity of community members so that they can take control of the research being done about, with, and for them. The authors explore the way in which Curriculum Studies have addressed relevance and by proposing a framework for the study of curriculum relevance in general, which was adapted from literature on Science Education. The proposal considers three dimensions of relevance: societal, vocational, and individual. A chapter is included which fully addresses the analysis of one of the cases developed in the authors’ previous work, in which students have to reconstruct their memories about the experiences they had during compulsory education in order to compare them with the experiences they have during the practicum. The authors share their concerns about the process of accompaniment, the process of student participation in the design and assessment of the subjects, and the search for situated and transformative learning in a university context. The use of action research in higher education is proposed, especially in programs that use practical approaches such as residency programs in healthcare. The text discusses similar themes such as andragogy, meaningful learning, active learning, and systemic thinking. Additionally, a teacher-driven approach for changes in teaching chemical bonding was chosen, inspired by the PAR model suggested by Eilks and Ralle. The authors determine that remote networking of a teacher action researcher with a PAR-driven community of practitioners and academic educational researchers helped strengthen the process of research and development and contributed to strengthen the teacher’s continuous professional development. Subsequently, an application of participatory action research (PAR) conducted in Italy is illustrated. In describing the structure of action research, it can first be asserted that it is not a linear methodology of research but instead a cyclical process that proceeds through greater levels of complexity. In conclusion, the book aims to determine the relationship between the principles, approaches and applications of participatory action research (PAR) by using a case study of wood-carving workers. The authors maintain that although this project was successful in increasing health awareness of the workers and the community, long-term impact and sustainability of networking and activities need to be examined. (Nova)

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