Plenary talk by Richard Smith at IATEFL Research SIG / Gediz University International Conference, ‘Teacher-Researchers in Action’, Izmir, Turkey, June 2014.
See also associated book chapter: details further below
Abstract of talk
In this talk I share some insights which have both informed and been derived from my recent experiences supporting teachers’ research in Chile, Cameroon and Nepal. Specifically, I explain and illustrate some practical principles which have emerged from these experiences, as well as from my previous work with pre-service teachers, and from my own teaching and teacher-researching experiences. My account of emerging practical principles will include highlighting the value of:
- · Teachers sharing success stories
- · Seeking initial answers through discussion
- · Explicitly countering positivistic preconceptions
- · Taking time for exploration before new action
- · Peer-to-peer and near-peer support
- · Informal reporting – speaking before writing
The specific relevance of these principles to teachers working in difficult circumstances (large-class, low-resource contexts, etc.) will be discussed, but I will argue that most of the principles are also relevant to teachers working in more ‘favourable’ situations.
Later, adapted write-up:
Smith, R. 2015. ‘Exploratory action research: why, what, and where from?’ In Dikilitas, K., Smith, R. and Trotman, W (eds). Teacher-researchers in Action. Faversham: IATEFL, Chapter 3 (pp. 37-45).