ACTION RESEARCH AND COLLABORATIVE COMMUNITIES FOR LEARNING AS A MEANS OF PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND IMPROVED PRACTICE Dr Donald Gray Dr Dean Robson Dr Laura Collucci-Gray School of Education, University of Aberdeen
Scottish Teachers for a New Era Scottish Executive Education Department Hunter Foundation University of Aberdeen Opportunity for Change Research Informed Development Developing teachers : increasing learner gains
What is STNE ?
Development and research
Build an evidence base – inform developments, add to knowledge
New collaborative model of teacher development
Decisions driven by evidence
Engagement with Arts & Sciences
Teaching as an academically taught clinical practice
To develop a :
Teacher for a New Era
New Learning Environment
New Framework for Continuous Learning
New Professional Culture
Review of ITE Stage 2 ‘ I want universities, local authorities and others to work together … in a way which allows them to develop theory and practice simultaneously …’ (Peter Peacock, Minister for Education and Young People, Ministerial Response, 2005, p6)
Research Aspects : Evidence-informed development
Building an evidence base
Six year plan for data collection, analysis and reporting
Reviews of Literature
Adding to knowledge and understanding
Building research capacity
Working in partnership to : Build a seamless continuum of teacher development from pre-service through induction to continuous professional development.
TTA: Teaching 2020 What sort of teachers will be needed then, and so what kind of teacher education and training? Whatever happens in 2020 schools and teachers will be very different. The teachers we are training now, and those currently teaching and engaging in CPD, need to be prepared to be flexible, to manage change, and more than that, to be agents of change.
Globalisation (Mortimore, 2001)
International comparisons show effects of – motivating staff, focusing on T&L, enhancing the physical environment, changing the culture of the school. However, while many similar strategies used, the different context meant similar actions did not always produce similar results .
Improvements must fit the grain of society; indiscriminate borrowing from other cultures may not achieve the desired results; there is no ‘quick fix’ for school improvement; change has to be carried out by the school itself.
Teaching and Research “ What constitutes the relevance of research, for instance, depends to a large extent on what questions are being asked, in what context, and for what practical ends.” Davies (1999) “ Teachers engaging in research is a third seed of professional knowledge creation.” Hargreaves (1999) “… the uniqueness of each classroom setting implies that any proposal needs to be tested and verified and adapted by each teacher in her or his own classroom.” McIntyre (2005) “ The evidence indicates how teachers’ involvement and confidence can be built in expansive learning environments characterised by specialist support, collaborative working, and the development of mutual trust.” Brown (2005)
STNE Research Impetus 2007
Programme Evaluation and Development
Action Research Initiatives
What is Action Research ?
‘ Applied to classroom, action research is an approach to improving education through change, by encouraging teachers to become aware of their own practice, to be critical of that practice, and to be prepared to change it. It is participatory, in that it involves the teacher in his own enquiry, and collaborative, in that it involves other people as part of a shared enquiry. It is research WITH, rather than research ON’.
[McNiff, J (1988) Action Research Principles and Practice. Basingstoke:MacMillan Education]
ACTION research investigates everyday problems experienced by teachers PLANNING ACTION MONITORING REFLECTION
Why Action Research ?
GTCS recognition of importance of teacher research.
Standards and Professional Recognition Frameworks (SITE, SFR etc).
Models of CPD.
Defined aims of STNE R&D project link to the continuous development of a research engaged teacher within the envelope of integrated whole career professional learning.
Classroom-based investigation of pupil (learner) gains.
S tandard for I nitial T eacher E ducation
Professional Knowledge and Understanding – 1.3.2
Professional Skills and Abilities – 2.4.1, 2.4.2, 2.4.3