Introduction to Critical Reflection and Action for Teacher Researchers provides crucial direction for educators looking to improve their teaching and maximise learning. While many students can grasp the basic elements of researching their practice and can write about practitioner research, some need guidance and assistance to reflect meaningfully on their teaching practice so as to articulate their educational values. This book provides this guidance.
By exploring how to engage in an authentic, practical and personalised framework, the book encourages critical reflection and action on educational practice. Moving through the process of reflecting on practice, engaging in critical thinking and planning and taking action, it helps the reader to subsequently generate educational theory from their own personal learning. Examples from the authors’ experiences illustrate the issues raised in each section, with ‘Pause and Reflect’ activities, guidelines for conducting a research project and annotated further reading available for every chapter.
Introduction to Critical Reflection and Action for Teacher Researchers is based on the idea that reflection is in itself a deliberate action and something we must live - it is key to understanding our practice and is a core component of action research. This book is a valuable guide for teachers, trainee teachers and researchers interested in reflecting on and enhancing their teaching practice.
Table of Contents
Section One: Where To Begin?
1 Pausing and Reflecting
2 What Is Action Research?
Section Two: Putting Your Research In Context
3 Thinking Critically
4 Experiencing Oneself As A Living Contradiction
Section Three: How Do I Evaluate Changes I Make?
5 Generating Data
6 Ethics, Rigour And Validity
Section Four: The Significance of your Research
7 The Teacher as an Agent of Change
8 Sharing and Sustaining your Action Research
Bernie Sullivan is a former principal of a primary school in Dublin, Ireland. She currently works as a tutor for second-level student teachers on school placement at St. Patrick’s College, Thurles, and also supervises action research projects for mathematics teachers undertaking postgraduate studies at the University of Limerick, Ireland.
Máirín Glenn works in Co. Mayo, Ireland, as a primary school teacher and school principal. She also works as a part-time tutor in the area of self-study action research with students on Masters programmes at St. Angela’s College, Sligo; St. Patrick’s College, Dublin and Hibernia College, Ireland.
Mary Roche is Senior Lecturer in Education at St Patrick’s College, Thurles, Ireland. Following a career in primary teaching, Mary lectured in Primary English at Mary Immaculate College, Limerick (BEd) and on Action Research (MEd) at University College Cork, Ireland. She is the author of Developing Children’s Critical Thinking through Picturebooks, which was highly commended for the UKLA Academic Book Award 2015.
Caitriona McDonagh spent many years as a primary teacher. Recently, she has supported teacher continuous professional learning and initial teacher education across a number of settings and teacher education colleges in Ireland.
"Serving as a comprehensive overview of action research, this book pursues two threads. First, it introduces critical reflection and action research, providing a wealth of relevant concepts, while emphasizing that teachers must examine and clarify their educational values. Second, it outlines practical aspects of engaging in a first action research project... One area in which this book excels is in inviting teachers to challenge their incumbent points of view regarding teaching and learning."— James Rigney, Educational Action Research