Participatory Action Research for Educational Leadership : Using Data-Driven Decision Making to Improve Schools

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2007-07-17
  • Publisher: SAGE Publications, Inc
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While written for masters students in any Educational Leadership concentration, this is a core text for departments that teach action research as a primary research methodology or a supplemental text for those that place it in a range of research methods. The book provides a readable overview of the PAR process similar to professional learning communities in schools. Its design reaches out to visual learners as graphic elements guide graduate students through the research methods they need to successfully complete rigorous projects. The results of the original PAR study and continued work with educational leaders lead us to believe that this approach ultimately produces the results school leaders seek and appreciate. Key Features: o Clear process through both the PAR steps employing a research logic model throughout. This benefits the graduate student or educational leader by leading them to data driven outcomes that are valid, credible and reliableGraphic elements guide the reader through the process and aid the visual learner in keeping track of the concepts behind the theory. o Reflective questions precede each section. This increases the reflective practices and routines of the reader as appropriate to the PAR process. o Tasks, written for both groups and individuals, aid participatory teams in working towards consensus and strong research designs o Practitioner stories make the lessons real and ease the emotional unease that come from tackling research practices the first time. Intended Audience: This book represents the evolution of PAR from a soft science to a process appropriate for educators in todays data driven environments or for graduate students whose thesis needs to pass the recommendations of professors steeped in positivist traditions.

Table of Contents

Welcome to PAR for Educational Leaders
Our Approach to PAR
Our Readers
How to Use This Book
Final Notes
The Participatory Action Research Model
Reflective Questions
PAR---A Tool for Change
PAR as a Tool for Educational Leadership
Reflective Questions
Research and Action in the PAR Process
Reflective Questions
Participatory Research as a Tool to Address Adaptive Change
An Example of PAR Use in the Classroom
Beginning a Reflective Journal
The Tenets of PAR: Ethics, Purpose, and Logic
Reflective Questions
Ethical Elements
The Formation of an Ethical Plan for PAR Projects
Reflective Questions
The Power of Purpose
Format for Purpose Statements
Multiple Journal Entries Define Purpose
Reflective Questions
Logic Models
Planning Your First Draft of Your Logic Model
Starting to Research
Reflective Questions
Asking Good Research Questions
PAR Practitioners Reflect On and Share Their Initials
Ideas for Research Questions
Surfacing Assumptions
Surfacing Assumptions
Reflective Questions
Informal and Formal Reviews of Literature
The Mini "Lit Review"
Reflective Questions
A Brief Overview of the Basic Research Methods
Qualitative Methods
Quantitative Methods
Reflective Practice
Reflective Journal Practice
Qualitative Data Collection
How Is Qualitative Evidence Useful?
What Makes Qualitative Evidence Difficult?
Reflective Questions
Qualitative Data Collection Methods
Data Collected Directly in Words From People: Interviews and Focus Groups
Data Collected Through a Process of Change: Reflective Data
Field Notes
Anecdotal Accounts
Data Collected During the Event(s) Being Studied
Student Work
Collecting a Variety of Qualitative Data
Reflective Questions
Maximum Success and Rigor
Managing Time and Resources
How to Make It More Rigorous
Introduction to Mixed Methodology
Data-Planning Matrix
Qualitative Analysis
Reflective Questions
Stages in Analyzing Qualitative Evidence
Graphic Organizers
Rubrics and Multiple Observers
Similarities and Differences
Reflective Questions
Validity, Credibility, and Reliability in the Analysis of Qualitative Data
Practice Analysis of Data
Quantitative Evidence
Data Found in Schools
Standardized Tests
Reflective Questions
Questions Answered by Quantitative and Mixed Methods
Observations and Time Studies
Surveys or Questionnaires
Descriptive Statistics
Variance and Correlation
Complex Questions
Reflective Questions
Quantitative Data Collection
Questionnaires or Surveys
Time Series
Reflective Questions
Analysis and Statistical Information
Descriptive Analysis
Survey Analysis
Percentages and Mean
Standard Deviation
The t-TestCorrelation
Reporting Results
Preliminary Quantitative Analysis
Taking and Measuring Action
Reflective Questions
How to Know What Actions to Take
Three Continuums of Action
The Continuum of Actions From Emancipatory to Professional Development
The Continuum From the Individual to the Organizational
Examples of PAR to Foster School Improvement
Teachers or Support Staff in a Classroom or Whole-School SettingPrincipals
Whole Schools or School Districts
Reflective Question
Efforts at Change
The Challenge of Inertia
Defensive Behaviors
Analyzing Force Fields and Defensive Behaviors
Reflective Questions
Formative Evaluation
Focus and Responsiveness
Determining Variables With Which to Measure Short-Term Outcomes
Measuring Outcome Steps
Cycles of PAR: The Power of the Iterative Process
Reflective Questions
Messy Cycles
Reflective Questions
Iterative Growth
Time Line and Group Process for Significant
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