Development of a Level of Reflection Model in Conducting Classroom Action Research


Development of a Level of Reflection Model in Conducting

Classroom Action Research[1]

Lampong Klomkul[2]

Abstract

 

The purposes of this research were to study levels of reflection in classroom action research and to develop a level of reflection model in conducting classroom action research. This research had been designed by using documentary research and research data were collected from both academic and research article. There were two related literature review that had been used for this study which consisted of classroom action research and reflection in educational practice. The scope of this study was divided into 3 parts which included classroom action research cycle, levels of reflection, and levels of reflection in conducting classroom action research. The data was analyzed by the method of content analysis and analytic induction. Triangular method had used to examine the data during analysis.

      The research results were as follows:

            There were two main levels of reflection in classroom action research that teacher researchers should practise in order to improve their research efficacy in classroom action research cycle. The first level was self-reflection which happened individually during conducting research and was based on personal practice. The second level was reflection from others which also happened during conducting research and required an effective leader to guide into research practice. Levels of reflection would practise in five steps of classroom action research cycle those consisted of analyze and define research problem, develop and validate research innovation, trial with students and collect data, analyze and conclude new finding, and reflect finding with colleagues.

            A level of reflection model in conducting classroom action research had been developed in three loops of research cycle. Level of self-reflection had been practiced in each step of the first loop in research cycle. Reflection from others had been practiced in each step of the second loop in research cycle. Self-reflection and reflection from others had been practiced in each step of the third loop in research cycle.

 

Background/Problem

 

Using classroom action research into classroom teaching is an important process of learning for increasing professional development. The nature of classroom action research is the cycle process that use in the on-going development and evaluation of new knowledge. Classroom action research approach can be used to improve teaching and learning practice. It has also been used in many areas where an understanding of classroom situations that has been sought in order to improve the quality of teaching. Classroom action research is action research that teacher conducts during teaching as a part of their teaching duties. Classroom action research is research designed to help a teacher find out what is happening in his or her classroom, and to use that information to make wise decisions for the future. Methods can be qualitative or quantitative and can be descriptive or experimental research. (McKernan, 1991 cited in Riding, et al., 2008; Mettetal, 2008) 

A variety of forms of classroom action research have evolved. All adopt research methodology approach including problem identification, action planning, implementation, evaluation, and reflection. The insights gained from the initial cycle feed into planning of the second cycle. Classroom action research has been modified from action research by keep on going the same research process. Considering the action research cycle, it has been extended to offer a conception of the action research cycle as a learning process that people learn and create knowledge by critically reflecting upon their own actions and experiences, forming abstract concepts, and testing the implications of these concepts in new situations. Practitioners can create their own knowledge and understanding of a situation and act upon it, thereby improving practice and advancing knowledge in the field (Kolb, 1984; Carr & Kemmis, 1986 cited in Riding, et al., 2008).  Mettetal (2008) has also presented the steps of conducting classroom action research which consisted of  decide on a question, read literature on the topic,  plan overall research strategy and data collection strategies, collect data, make sense of the data, reach conclusions about the question, take action based on own conclusions, and share the findings with others.

In addition, Zuber-Skerritt (1982) has described that action research was critical collaborative enquiry by reflective practitioners who are accountable in making the results of their enquiry public, self-evaluative in their practice, and engaged in participative problem-solving and continuing professional development. Classroom action research methodology offers a systematic approach to introducing innovations in teaching and learning. It seeks to do this by putting the teacher in the dual role of producer of educational theory and user of that theory. This is a way of producing knowledge about higher education learning and teaching, and a powerful way of improving learning and teaching practice. The design and delivery of teaching and the process of researching usually combines and brings theory and practice closer together. Another motivation for conducting classroom action research was the systematically process from plan, act, observe and reflect and the process moved as cycle. In order to conduct a new research cycle, we needed reflection to reconsider the research findings before shifted to the next research cycle. Reflection is at the heart of effective educational practice and should be used as a practical tool for educational planning and professional growth. Moreover, reflection can lead to professional forms of inquiry and goal setting. Therefore, reflection can be an important tool to contribute teacher researcher in conducting classroom action research (Carr & Kemmis, 1986 cited in Freese, 1999; Sweeney, 1998; Boreen et al.,2000; White, 2002 cited in Pedro, 2006).

In this study, reflection is viewed as an educational practice in conducting classroom action research. As we know that reflection has been used for professional implementation of learning from continuing education into practice. It was related to educators’ view who mentioned that an action research approach can contribute very positively to activity within the tertiary sector concerned with teaching quality issues. Reflection in action research is the process of making sense of one’s experiences by deliberately and actively examining one’s thought and action to arrive a new way. Included in the definition is a consideration that reflection can be enhanced when conducted with another individual (Schon, 1983; Lowe, et al., 2007). In order to improve reflection in conducting classroom action research, the practical process can be the same process as in action research.

There has been a considerable body of research devoted to the area of reflection. The term of reflection can be interpreted in different ways and can take on various meaning.  Although there were different conceptions regarding reflection, there generally was agreement on the importance of actively and deliberately one’s thought in order to improve one’s teaching. Levels of reflection have been defined in various views as well and had been used in different contexts. One ordinary example about levels of reflection that most educators usually cited in was reflection-on-action, reflection-in-action, and reflection-for-action (Schon, 1983). For this study, levels of reflection in classroom action research will be focused as the below following research questions.

  

The following research questions guided this study:

      1. What should levels of reflection in classroom action research be presented?

            2. How would a level of reflection model in conducting classroom action research be developed?

 

Objectives

1. To study levels of reflection in classroom action research.

2. To develop a level of reflection model in conducting classroom action research.

 

Conceptual Frameworks

            This research has designed to study levels of reflection and to develop a level of reflection model in conducting classroom action research. The conceptual framework has presented the relationship between levels of reflection and classroom action research cycle as shown in figure 1.

Figure 1. The relationship between levels of reflection and classroom action research cycle.

Methods

This research has designed by using documentary research to study and develop a level of reflection model in conducting classroom action research. The data were collected from both academic and research article. There were two related literature review that had been used for this study which consisted of classroom action research and reflection in educational practice. The scope of this study has divided into 3 parts which included classroom action research cycle, levels of reflection, and levels of reflection in conducting classroom action research. The data was analyzed by the method of content analysis and analytic induction. Triangular method had also used to examine the data during analysis. A level of reflection model would be modified and used for support teacher researchers in order to enhance their classroom action research skills.

 

Results

     The research results found that there were two main levels of reflection in classroom action research that teacher researchers should practise in order to improve their research efficacy in classroom action research cycle. The first level was self-reflection which happened individually during conducting research and was based on personal practice. The second level was reflection from others which also happened during conducting research and required an effective leader to guide into research practice.

Levels of reflection would practise in five steps of classroom action research cycle those consisted of analyze and define research problem, develop and validate research innovation, trial with students and collect data, analyze and conclude new finding, and reflect finding with colleagues.

            A level of reflection model in conducting classroom action research had been developed in three loops of research cycle. Level of self-reflection had been practiced in each step of the first loop in research cycle. Reflection from others had been practiced in each step of the second loop in research cycle. Self-reflection and reflection from others had been practiced in each step of the third loop in research cycle.

      Teacher researcher can create his or her own knowledge and understanding of a situation by using self-reflection to define classroom problem and can conduct their own research design in order to improve advancing knowledge in classroom action research. Moreover, reflection from others is further shift of practice that teacher researcher can act upon it. In this step, practitioners will practise to reflect with each other and sometimes with effective leader or expert. Therefore, this reflective practice will enhance advance knowledge which approach into professional teacher researcher.

From the finding of this research, a level of reflection model in conducting classroom action research has shown as cycle. The process started from the initial cycle and shifted into analyzes and define research problem step of the second cycle. Then, the process repeated itself in second cycle. After that it shifted from reflect finding with colleagues step of second cycle into analyze and define research problem step of the third cycle as shown in figure 2.

Figure 2. A level of reflection model in conducting classroom action research

Discussion

            This study intended to study levels of reflection in classroom action research. The finding has shown three levels of reflection and a level of reflection model was the finding from documentary research. It still needs further study to validate the model and continues using the model for pilot study with teacher researcher who normally teaches and conducts classroom action research in their working routine. Reflection is an effective skill that appropriate in professional practice and it will be very useful for teacher researcher who tends to use it as a part of his or her research conducting.

After the model will be used in the next phase of this research, a model which will have been developed might change into practical model that can be very useful for teacher researcher in order to develop their further professional development in conducting classroom action research.

 

References

 

Dewey, J. (1933). How we think: a restatement of the relation of reflective thinking to the educative process. Boston : D.C. Heath.

El-Dib, M.A.B. (2007). Levels of reflections in action research: an overview and an assessment tool.  Abstract retrieved August 18, 2008, from http://search.epnet.com

Freese, A.R. (1999). The role of reflection on preservice teachers’ development in the context of a professional development school.  Teaching and teacher Education. 15(1): 898.

Lowe, M. and others. (2007). The role of reflection in implementing learning from continuing education into practice. Journal of Continuing Education in the Health Professions, 27(3): 143-147.

Mettetal,G. (2008). Classroom action research overview. Retrieved December 21, 2008, from http://mypage.iusb.edu/~gmetteta/Classroom_Action_Research.html

Pedro, J. (2006). Taking reflection into the real world of teaching. Kappa Delta Pi Record, spring: 129-130.

Riding, P., Fowell, S. & Levy, P. (2008). An action research approach to curriculum development. Retrieved  December 21, 2008, from http://informationr.net/ir/1-1/paper2.html

Schon, D.A. (1983). The reflective practitioner: how professionals think in action. New York: Basic Books.

Zuber-Skerritt, O. (1982). Action research in higher education. London: Kogan.

 



[1] Paper for presentation in the International Conference: Global Issue and Trends in Educational

Research,  Measurement, Evaluation, Statistics and Psychology Jan 29-30, 2009 Nakornnayok, Thailand

[2] Ph.D. student in Educational Research Program, Chulalongkorn University.

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