All You Need To Know About Action Research

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SAGE, Jan 10, 2006 - Social Science - 274 pages
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`Offers a guide to making a difference through action research that will build readers' confidence and acts as a "virtual mentor" to those thinking about, preparing, planning or undertaking an action research project. I thoroughly recommend it' - Journal of Advanced Nursing

What is action research? Why do action research? When should one use action research? How does one become an action researcher?

Leading practitioners Jean McNiff and Jack Whitehead provide a brilliantly written and easy-to-follow introduction to action research that will be essential reading for students, practitioners and seasoned researchers alike.

In All You Need to Know About Action Research, McNiff and Whitehead are your guides to a vast and fast-moving field.

This book provides:

- A clear guide to the history and philosophy that underpin action research

- Comprehensive coverage of the main theoretical debates in action research

- Essential help to anyone undertaking their own action research project

- Practical help in planning your research project and generating knowledge

- A vision for action research as a learning enterprise and as a transformational method

- A unique understanding of how action research can help your learning and your professional practice along with that of those around you

- Confidence-building advice about theorizing on the basis of your research and/or your professional practice

- Help with writing about your research and disseminating your findings

This book is essential reading for anyone interested in action research. It is equally essential reading for anyone interested in making a difference; in generating theory from research; and in learning from practice.


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What Do I Need To Know?
of Action Research
Where Did Action Research Come From?
Why Do I Need To Know?
How Do I Find Out?
How Do You Develop
Examples of Action Research Projects
Establishing the Legitimacy of Your Claims
Engaging With the Politics of Knowledge
How Do I Represent
Writing a Workplace Report
Writing a Report for Higher Degree Accreditation
Publishing and Disseminating Your Research
How Do I Show the Significance
Developing New Epistemologies for Organizational

How Do I Generate Evidence
Gathering Sorting and Storing Data
Turning the Data into Evidence
How Do I Test and Critique
The Amazing Potential Global Influence

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About the author (2006)

Jean McNiff is Professor of Educational Research at York St John University, UK. She is also a Visiting Professor at UiT the Arctic University of Norway, and at the Beijing Normal University and Ningxia Teachers’ University, People’s Republic of China.

Jean took early retirement from her position as deputy head teacher of a large secondary school in Dorset, UK. She went into business for herself, and developed her writing. Her textbooks on action research and professional education are now used internationally on workplace-based professional education courses and on higher degree courses. Jean provides interdisciplinary consultancy work to institutions around the world where she gives lectures and conducts workshops on planning, doing and writing action research.

Jean aims to contribute to personal and social betterment through educational research. She encourages everyone to make their stories public in the form of their personal and collaborative theories of practice; and she firmly believes that each individual is able to contribute to social and planetary wellbeing by explaining how they hold themselves accountable for what they do. In this way she links education with moral accountability. She tries to bring the university to everyday contexts, and everyday contexts into the university, for it is only by involving everyone, she feels, that the world will become a better place for us all.

Visit Jean at, or contact her at

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