The analysis of data involves a sorting procedure which can be used in ordering and characterizing interview statements of the concerns and issues described in the problem. There are two major steps in analyzing the data. In the first step, the researcher summarizes the feelings and perceptions coming from the interviews and questionnaires, while in the second step, the researcher analyzes the content of the interview data to provide a picture of the overall concepts and needs.
Focussing and designing the change is another common characteristic between the two models. Focussing change is much like an architects task when beginning the process of renovating an old heritage building. The architect begins with ideas and sketches and works within the constraints of the existing construction to focus the renovation. In other words, an architects concepts and visions are adapted to the present construction needs of the tenant and community norms. The following section moves from these common aspects of the research process to a discussion on the nuts and bolts of conducting an action research project.
Steps in Conducting an Action Research Project
During the training workshop, most of the instructors chose to work with the model described by Altrichter, Posch and Smekh (1993). The model has three phases: finding a starting point and clarifying the situation; developing action strategies and analysis; and theory generation. What follows in this section is a further description of how the model was used in a seven step-wise fashion. Particular attention is given to the steps of collecting and analyzing data. The exercises and fact sheets completed in the actual training workshop appear in this manual in Part 3 Action Research Exercises and Annotated Bibliography. They can be used by those readers who are interested in trying out some of the mechanics of doing an action research project.
Step 1 Writing a Research Journal
The research journal is one of the most important methods and is commonly used by all kinds of researchers. Writing a research journal is a personal matter and some of the following suggestions may suit your learning style.
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