Action Research in Practice: Partnership for Social Justice in Education

Action Research in Practice: Partnership for Social Justice in Education

Action Research in Practice: Partnership for Social Justice in Education

Action Research in Practice: Partnership for Social Justice in Education

Synopsis

This book presents a collection of stories describing action research projects in schools and universities, showing how projects that have differed in a variety of dimensions reveal similar underlying issues, problems and themes. With an emphasis on the topic of social justice and partnership, Action Research in Practice reveals, through case studies and sustained, thorough analysis, how educational research can be transformative in its very practice, as well as in the practices it recommends.

Excerpt

This book is a collection of stories about action research projects written by people who are involved with the Participatory Action Research for the Advancement of Practice in Education and Teaching (PARAPET) Project at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT). PARAPET is a network of action research projects and researchers, including university staff, teacher support personnel, teachers and parents. Details of the aims and history of the project are given in Part I of this book.

In the second year of its operation, the PARAPET members discussed ways of disseminating the stories of the various projects and sharing the resulting learnings with a wider audience. It is customary for action research projects, especially ones that involve university people, to be published at conferences and in professional journals in the various disciplines. Specialised action research journals, some of which have wide international membership, contain many illuminating stories of projects around the world. However, the group of authors felt that writing a book to tell their stories would illustrate issues of commonality and differences between various researchers and projects not possible in isolated publications.

The projects involved in this collection differed in the educational setting of the practice (classrooms, schools, school community, School Support Centres, universities and so on). They differed in the size and roles of project teams (some were initiated by a sole researchers, some were collaborative). They also differed in their understanding of action research (some aligned themselves more than others to participatory action research concepts as discussed by Kemmis and colleagues). Planning the book allowed the participants an opportunity to look at the big picture view of the individual projects and ask serious questions about their professed aims, their processes, as well as their outcomes. As the group discussed the major issues arising from each project, significant similarities between the projects came to light.

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