One of the most persistent features of the research environment in the UK over the last decades has been the Research Assessment Exercise (RAE); now more and more countries are following suit by developing their own systems for research quality assessment. However, in the field of education, one of the difficulties with this policy has been that a great deal of educational research characterises itself as either applied or practice-based. These are forms of research that have been notoriously difficult to accommodate within the RAE in all disciplines, not just in education. But what is applied and practice-based research in education? How can we define it and how can we assess its quality? The authors in this book come from diverse traditions within educational research, but through their papers each aims to contribute to the debate about what applied and practice-based research is and how we can understand, articulate and assess its quality. This book was first published as a special issue of Research Papers in Education: Policy and Practice.
"This comprehensive publication rightly establishes early childhood as a critical phase in the education of young people and makes the case for developing our insights regarding early childhood education (ECE) practices through the eyes of practitioner inquiry in the context of collaborative partnerships. It achieves its goal through a series of insightful case studies that not only illuminate the text as stories from the field, but also contribute to our understanding regarding ECE learning and pedagogy."- Susan Groundwater-Smith, Honorary Professor, Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney. Bringing together theory and practice, this book draws on the projects and experiences of senior and new researchers implementing various forms of practitioner research. Chapter discussions are informed by international literature to provide insightful reflections on research processes and the contribution of practitioner research in changing practice. The diversity of perspectives across the chapters provides an excellent resource for those undertaking research within early childhood contexts. Features include: the contribution of practitioner research to curriculum and social change. professional development and strengthening learning communities how practitioners can be supported in documenting and articulating their work the relationships between the research community and field of practice through practitioner research projects contemporary problems and issues that frame the practices of early childhood educators case studies from Australia, South Africa, Sweden and Chile A diverse range of case studies that use a range of internationally recognised research methods are presented. The book offers guidance, support and inspiration to practitioners on how to research their implementation of meaningful and sustainable changes in early childhood contexts.
This volume offers a unique commentary on the diverse ways that educational inquiry is conceived, designed and critiqued. An international team of scholars examines cross-cutting themes of how research in education is conceptualised, characterised, contextualised, legitimated and represented. Contributions include specially commissioned essays, critical commentaries, vignettes, dialogues and cases. Each section discusses the significance of a complex terrain of ideas and critiques that can inform thinking and practice in educational research. The result is a thorough and accessible volume that offers fresh insights into the perspectives and challenges that shape diverse genres of research in education.
This book raises important questions about the extent to which policy can be derived from research and about the kind of evidence which should inform policy. Challenges contemporary orthodoxies and offers constructive alternatives Critiques the narrower conceptions of evidence which might inform policy advanced by the ‘what works’ movement Investigates the logical gaps between what can be shown by research and the wider political requirements of policy Examines the different educational research traditions e.g. large population studies, individual case studies, personal narratives, action research, philosophy and ‘the romantic turn’ Calls for a more subtle understanding of the ways in which different forms of enquiry may inform policy and practice Discusses the recognition and utilisation of the insights offered by the rich variety of educational research traditions available to us
For 50 years, educator and sociologist Geoff Whitty resolutely pursued social justice through education, first as a classroom teacher and ultimately as the Director of the Institute of Education in London. The essays in this volume - written by some of the most influential authors in the sociology of education and critical policy studies - take Whitty’s work as the starting point from which to examine key contemporary issues in education and the challenges to social justice that they present. Set within three themes of knowledge, policy and practice in education, the chapters tackle the issues of defining and accessing ‘legitimate’ knowledge, the changing nature of education policy under neoliberalism and globalization, and the reshaping of teacher workplaces and professionalism – as well as attempts to realize more emancipatory practice. Whitty’s scholarship on what constitutes quality and impact in educational research is also explored. Together, the essays open a window on a life in the sociology of education, the scholarly community of which it was part, and the facets of education policy, practice and research that they continue to reveal and challenge in pursuit of social justice. They celebrate Whitty as one of the foremost sociologists of education of his generation, but also as a friend and colleague. And they highlight the continued relevance of his contribution to those seeking to promote fairer and more inclusive education systems.
Tina Besley has edited this collection which examines and critiques the ways that different countries, particularly Commonwealth and European states, assess the quality of educational research in publicly funded higher education institutions. Such assessment often ranks universities, departments and even individual academics, and plays an important role in determining the allocation of funding to support university research.
Teacher Professional Learning in an Age of Compliance: Mind the Gap examines ways in which practice-based inquiry in educational settings, in a number of different countries and contexts, can transcend current ways of working and thinking such that authentic professional learning is the result. The authors contend that education policy, under pressure from a number of quarters, is retreating into a standardized, audited, and backward-looking arena, with the advances of more progressive educational philosophy being rolled back. In an age where practitioner inquiry and action research have often been ‘hijacked’ for the purposes of broad-based policy implementation, this book offers a rationale for reclaiming the critical edge so fundamental to inquiry-based professional learning. It examines the potential of inquiry-based forms of teacher professional learning to contribute to the growth of professional knowledge for and about teachers’ work. The authors intend that the book will assist in building new forms of professional knowledge that go beyond the current compliance model – engineered from less enduring materials – to inform a new model with its foundations in a strong ethical and moral framework. They also believe that this new model, if implemented, will help to reverse today’s conservative educational trends and make teacher professional development a force for genuine progress once again. They have consciously moved away from the celebratory tone of much of the academic reporting of teacher professional learning, adopting instead a genuinely critical edge. In covering a wide range of policies and practices from across the international spectrum, they have allowed themselves the freedom to engage in serious epistemological arguments about the nature of professional knowledge, as well as how it is constructed and employed.
Education has continued to grow in stature and significance as an academic discipline. In addition to world renowned research studies the growth of education has been seen in the methodology and methods underpinning its research. The BERA/SAGE Handbook of Educational Research provides a cutting edge account of the research and methodology that is creating new understandings for education research, policy and practice. Over two volumes, the handbook addresses educational research in six essential components: Section 1: Understanding Research Section 2: Planning Research Section 3: Approaches to Research Section 4: Acquiring Data Section 5: Analysing Data Section 6: Reporting, Disseminating and Evaluating Research Featuring contributions from more than 50 of the biggest names in the international field, The BERA/SAGE Handbook of Educational Research represents a very significant contribution to the development of education.
How might inquiry enhance the professional practice of student and practising teachers, teacher educators and other practitioners? What effect might this have on the learning of young people in and outside of the classroom? Based on the findings of an international colloquium and drawing upon a range of practices from the UK, USA, Canada, Europe and Australia, this book is designed to make explicit the connections between Practitioner Inquiry and Teacher Professional Learning in Initial Teacher Education and Ongoing Teacher Professional Development. Considering issues such as the relationship between practitioner inquiry and pedagogical content knowledge whether it is possible to scale up from small local and intensive innovations to more broadly-based inquiry inquiry’s role in professional identity, both individual and communal prevailing socio-political contexts and consequences for social policy formation. It brings together writers who work in designing teacher education courses, and those who are practice-based researchers and policy makers. Crucially, many of these writers inhabit both spheres, and their accounts of how they successfully combine their multiple roles will prove vital reading for all those involved in examining and improving practice leading to enhanced teacher professional learning.
This edited collection presents several research projects which examine issues concerning professional development, professional learning, and the ‘Education for All’ (EfA) ethos. The overall aim of the book is threefold: firstly, to explore the consequences for the education profession of EfA, and how professional development and professional learning may be made manifest as part of an EfA practice. Secondly, to examine how EfA practices intersect with theoretical notions of EfA. Finally, to explore how this intersection of theory and practice is rooted in different (Anglo-American, Continental and Northern European) traditions and contexts, and their implications for professional development and learning in education. Underpinning these three foci is a key principle of education as a human right in terms of participation, information and capacity building, regardless of people’s ethnic, cultural and religious backgrounds and/or physical and intellectual capacities. This book illustrates the complex conditions created in the nexus of social justice, EfA and professional development. The contributions highlight the educative nature of multi-relationships. In so doing, tensions, opportunities for learning, and the power relationships associated with professional development emerge, providing a resource for learning about good educational practice, authentic social justice practice, and genuine professional learning. This book was originally published as a special issue of Professional Development in Education.
The understanding of communication refers to canonical schemes from technologies to decisions on where, how, and why the semic act gains or is at risk; to hypotheses and limits; and to normal and unconventional exchanges of senses, despite the confrontations between codes, coding, and decoding. In this book, communication is defined as concept, skill, potential, behavior, mechanism, category of exchange, phenomenon, tool, and variable. This sophisticated view differs from previous studies and assumes the multiple systems of systems and meanings generated by various fieldworks that require/reclaim their primacy over communication. Basic Communication and Assessment Prerequisites for the New Normal of Education discusses the rivalry paradigms, ambiguities, new meanings, and mechanisms of the crossroad between communication and assessment. This book makes an inventory of developments in the area as well as analyzes new edumetrics and psychometrics and inserts new best practices. This involves creating new conversational networks of global best practices and metaparadigms in order to solve current disparities and unsolved problems from the fieldwork. Covering topics such as chronic conditions, online educational environments, and self-assessment competencies, this text is ideal for teachers, parents, students, trainers, decision makers, researchers, and academicians.