Action research- an important method to improve teaching learning process
By: Tajamul Naseem Lone
Action research is a form of applied research whose primary purpose is the improvement of an educational professional’s own practice and it is equivalent to practitioner research, teacher research, insider research and self-study research when it is undertaken by a teacher or an educator personally.
It is a process wherein activities are to be carried out systematically to find solution to a problem related to any aspect of teaching. In order to reach certain conclusion in specified time various steps are to be followed while the basic steps are similar but the methods of data collection and analysis may vary depending on the topic and set variables.
At school level NCERT is conducting Action research every year for improvement of the teaching learning process and seeks applications from practicing teachers and selects them to carry out Action research for the problems they face in their classroom. I have personally applied for the same and was selected as well. The process is online and the selected scholars are provided with full support and proper guidance by renowned Professors of NCERT. I think it is a good initiative as the practicing teachers may provide us with best solutions to the day-to-day problems faced while delivering content and will make teaching learning process more effective. The teachers with a little research experience must apply whenever applications are sought and contribute something to the society in general and students in particular.
Steps to be followed during Action Research
- Identification of Problem
- Formulation of Hypothesis
- Method of Research
- Data collection
- Data Analysis
- Identification of Problem: – This is the first step in which the researcher has to select or decide the variable related to which the Action Research is to be conducted. After selecting the variable, the researcher has to write the title of Action Research. There are different Sources of Problem but in for conducting Action Research the problem or variable must be related to the school context or teaching which the teacher faces day-to-day in the classroom.
- Formulation of Hypothesis: – Hypothesis is the intelligent guess about the solution of problem. Since Hypothesis is the intelligent guess or tentative solution, so there must be a base. Without base one cannot formulate Hypothesis. The bases of Formulation Hypothesis are Review of Related Literature and Theory. The hypothesis may be Null, Directional or in the alternative form depending on the work done already about the set variable.
- Method of Research: – Under Methodology, the researcher has to give information about Sample, Tool, Experimental Design, Procedure of data Collection, and Data Analysis. The researcher should write the Methodology explicitly under different headings so that any researcher can follow the same steps if he wants to do similar Action Research as he also might be facing the similar problem in his class.
- Data collection: – Data collection is a must in each and every research. Research is incomplete in the absence of data. The quality of research to a great extend depends on Procedure of Data Collection. The Procedure of Data Collection is systematic in nature. The method of data collection may vary depending on the type of variable to be studied.
- Data analysis: – Data analysis often brings to mind the use of complex statistical calculations, this is rarely the case for the action researcher. A number of relatively user-friendly procedures can help a practitioner identify the trends and patterns in action research data such as, Correlated t-test or Paired Samples t-test which can be done with the help of SPSS (Statistical Package for Social Sciences) package or Excel.
- Conclusion: – After analyzing the datathe conclusion drawn are informally shared with colleagues or published as a brief report, ERIC (Education Resource information center) document or in conferences.
Difference between formal research and Action research
Action research differs from other research methods in many aspects some of which are given under:
- In formal research extensive training is needed which is not needed in action research.
- In formal Research knowledge produced is generalizable while as in Action research Knowledge is to be applied to local situation.
- In formal research emphasis is on theoretical significance, increased knowledge about teaching and learning in general while as in Action Research emphasis is on practical significance,improved teaching and learning in a particular classroom.
- In formal research the outcome is published as report, journal article or professional conference while as in Action research the conclusions drawn are informally shared with colleagues, as a brief report, ERIC (Education Resource information center) document or in conferences.
The writer is a Teacher at HSS Dangiwacha Rafiabad Baramulla.
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