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FNED 547: Introduction to Classroom Research

Spring 2020
Subjects: Education Tags: classroom research

Business & Education Librarian

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Kieran Ayton
Adams Library Room 404
Subjects: Education

Research Proposal

Notepad and Pencil Clip Art

  • Conduct research in your classroom and emphasize the theories and methodologies of critical qualitative research.

  • Explore existing theories, methodologies, and examples of teacher/action research as a way to create educational change.

  • Analyze your thinking and practices to support critically minded research in the nonlinear, recursive process of planning, action and reflection.

  • Understand and appreciate the role of “teacher as researcher” as an opportunity to challenge deficit views of teachers and students.

  • Develop your skills in the genre of research writing.

Example Research Proposal

Some of the questions I had initially were:Flower Tree

  • Why aren’t emergent bilingual families of middle schoolers more involved? 
  • How can my colleagues and I further vocabulary instruction beyond the strategy that is pushed by the district?
  • What effect does so much testing have on student self-worth?
  • What causes the administrative duplicity between “our Els have so much to offer our school” and “ELs are the problem when it comes to state testing and accountability, they count twice in the accountability formula?”
  • How can I improve the co-teaching model in my building?

The question I eventually decided upon was What are two to three high-leverage, high-impact grammar instruction strategies that will boost content teachers’ confidence (excepting English Language Arts) in instructing emergent bilinguals when they do not have an ESL co-teacher?” the end goal being to improve the quality of and access to an education delivered primarily in English.

Since it would be a short study, I did not generalize strategies but rather specified that they should be high-leverage and high-impact. Secondary questions included:

  • How confident are these teachers now at teaching emergent bilinguals?
  • How confident will these teachers be at the end of the study?
  • Will the highest leverage strategies be around vocabulary, parts of speech, syntax?
  • Will students notice a shift in their teachers’ instruction?
  • Will student performance improve in the classrooms in which there is no direct ESL support?
  • Will there be a shift in teachers’ attitudes towards emergent bilinguals? in their understanding of English proficiency?
  • Do teachers understand the complexity of the English language, not having been emergent bilinguals themselves?