Intellectual Output 2: Action research
Joint Staff Training Event 2, online on April 27th–29th 2020
One of the guiding ideas of DePTER is to support student teachers to engage in action research during their training program. Projects with an action research design open up to investigations that are close to everyday life in schools but at the same time firmly grounded in a theoretical understanding of the practice. In order to support the student teacher as an inquiring practitioner, a guide is developed by the project members.
The guide on action research is a brief introduction to the concept of action research and some suggestions for how to carry out an action research intervention. In addition to this, the guide presents a discussion on ethical considerations to consider when conducting an action research project.
The guide can be used as an inspiration by student teachers in the process of planning and conducting a student research paper, as well as by classroom teachers interested in investigating their teaching practices.
The action research guide was thoroughly updated within the DePTER project to suit our diverse teacher education contexts and schools. The prior version has been utilized substantially in the Estonian context, but was dated. Nevertheless, the fact that it has been used in teacher education for a decade suggests that it fills a gap of literature available in languages other than English. The significant revisions were made in the Estonian and English versions, and additionally it was translated into Swedish to further broaden the availability in a non-English context. The Swedish version serves student teachers and teacher educators in both Sweden and Finland. We consider action research to be a form of inquiry, especially suited for research in schools. This form of inquiry is motivating for student teachers. The extent of the research that student teachers are expected to conduct in Finland, Estonia and Sweden varies, but in all the three countries teacher education involve some degree of inquiry. The action research guide provides a positive and easily approachable outlook on the prospect of conducting research in schools.