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MERN Abstract id=18
Source : MERN Forum 5, Concurrent Session 2C
Date: 3/4/2005
Author: A. Lande and S. Koloski
Title : Action Research in an Intensive Learning Program
Text : An action research project was framed to answer the question “Will a longer (80+ hours) time in an intensive reading-writing-learning program be significantly more effective in building independent learners than the current one of 55-60 hours?” The project began by looking for ways to measure the changes created by the intensive program. This highlighted the need for clarity regarding the program goals, so that tools could be designed to measure goal attainment. We ended up creating an assessment framework that was closely aligned with our learning objectives and practice. Specific observation tools have been created to measure students’ organization, risk-taking and self-help. These drive instruction which is tailored and scaffolded for each student in learning situations that incrementally develop self-reliance. Results are shared with home school to form an individualized follow-up plan, so that the home school can continue to build on what has been put in place. One outcome of the project is a better process for transition back to home school and a clearer understanding of what is needed for successful transition. We do not yet have data from the project to answer our initial question, but we are already seeing positive outcomes from the project. In action research learning and change can happen at any point in the project. One does not have to wait for research analyses and conclusions in order to improve practice. Teacher development has been cited as another of the benefits of action research, and our project supports this.
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