“Educational Action Research refers to taking a systematic
look at some educational practice and recording what was done, why it was done,
collecting data, analyzing the data and reflecting on how the results might
influence future teaching endeavors. If done carefully and thoughtfully,
Educational Action Research can improve an individual's teaching. If done by
multiple teachers at a single school, it has the potential to enhance the
overall quality of the school.” (http://actionresearch.altec.org/)
Action Research may be
conducted based on the content of any professional development opportunity that:
was valued at 10
points or more AND
was completed during the
current or previous school year.
Completed activities may
include workshops, professional learning communities, book studies, etc.
Here are the steps to follow to complete an
Action Research Project:
Verify that the
foundational professional development opportunity 1) is showing as
'complete' in My Learning Plan, 2) is valued at 10 points or more, and 3)
was completed during the current or previous school year.
Complete all information in
My Learning Plan using the 'Action Research' link on the left margin or the
'Application Level' link on the activity page.
Continue to save the form as a draft
until all of the steps have been completed.
Click submit when all steps
have been completed and documented.
Teachers participate in many professional development activities
(strategies, content knowledge, etc.) but seldom determine the impact of
the new learning on student success. Action Research is a simple and
effective process that allows teachers to explore the effectiveness of
the new learning.
The steps to the Action Research process are detailed below. Read
through all of the steps before creating your implementation plan.
Save this form as a draft until all Action Research steps have been
completed and all responses are documented. Click
Related Completed Professional Development Activity:
Reminder, you can only complete an action research project for an PD
activity completed during the previous or current school year that is
valued at six points or more.
Title of Activity
Hours for Application
To be completed by approver
Timeline of Action Research Project
End Date (mm/dd/yy)
AREA OF FOCUS: (What is your chosen area of focus? How does it
directly impact student achievement? Why did you choose this area?)
Area of Focus
My chosen area of focus is implementing differentiated instruction to
meet the needs of my at-risk students. One of my students scored a
level 1 and three of my students scored a level 2 in reading last year.
I chose the area of reading to help impact the success of my students in
a meaningful way.
TARGET GROUP: (Who are the students you are trying to impact? (use
first names only or another identifier) How do you think this
strategy or content focus will benefit the target group?)
My target group consists of four students. Mary A., John B., Sam C.,
and Sue D. I believe that differentiating reading instruction by
student interest will increase engagement and make a positive difference
in the fluency of these students.
BASELINE DATA: (What are the baseline data that support your choice
for this area of focus? What patterns or trends do you see in the
The first administration of the DIBELS measure showed all four students
to be at high risk in the area of Oral Reading Fluency. Words per
minute scores were: Mary - 15, John - 22, Sam - 17, Sue - 31.
These scores are consistent with the FCAT data and confirm that I need
to try something different to assist these students.
IMPLEMENTATION PLAN: (What is your plan to implement the strategy or
content knowledge? How did you involve the stakeholders in the
When planning my reading instruction, I will include fluency practice as
one of my small group rotations. I will utilize the strategies learned
in the Differentiated Instruction Cohort training to provide choices for
students to practice fluency. For example, students will be able to
choose between a variety of fluency-building opportunities including
creating an audio podcast of a reading passage, acting out a passage
utilizing readers’ theater, creating an interview of a main character in
the book, using a karaoke machine to allow students to read aloud, etc.
These activities will be reinforced by practice at home and sharing the
finished products with parents. I involved the stakeholders by talking
to them about their interests. This is why I chose to include the
podcast and karaoke activities as choices.
SMART OBJECTIVES: (Identify at least one SMART objective related to
improved student performance.)
Time-bound and Tied to Student Achievement
All four students will increase their Oral Reading Fluency to move from
the high risk to either the medium or low risk zone by the second
administration of the DIBELS measure.
PROCEDURES & MEASURES: (What are the steps you will follow? How will
you measure student progress?)
lesson plans that include fluency practice with opportunities for
students to make choices based on interest.
Monitor student interaction and interest levels.
Administer teacher-made fluency checks every two weeks to gauge
Document student progress.
future lesson plans to better meet student needs.
DATA COLLECTION: (What data will be collected? How often?)
Administer fluency checks every two weeks and record student progress.
Graph results with students using a line graph to increase student
involvement and awareness.
IMPLEMENTATION: (Describe the actual implementation of your plan.)
Week 1 – Students were excited about new choices. Three students chose
to use the karaoke machine and one student worked with a partner to
create a readers’ theater script.
Weeks 2 & 3 – All students continued to show increased interest.
Administration of teacher-made measure indicated that one student was
not progressing as hoped. I increased the level of practice at home and
contacted the parent for additional support.
Week 4 – Students worked with peers to create an audio podcast of the
climax of the current reading selection (including sound effects).
Students participated in repeated readings in order to prepare for the
taping and I noticed a strong increase in the expression used when
Weeks 5 & 6 – The teacher-made measure shows that all four students are
making steady progress and seem to be more excited about participation.
Next week I plan to incorporate a play in one of the reading rotation
stations to allow for increased practice.
Weeks 7 & 8…
DOCUMENTATION OF ADJUSTMENTS: (How did the plan change during the
course of the AR timeline? What prompted the change in plan? What
were the effects of the changes?)
found that I needed to continue to look for new ways for the students to
practice fluency. I utilized online resource ideas and worked with the
school’s academic coach. I decided to increase the variety based on the
reaction of my students when the choices were too similar. I discovered
that their interest continued as long as the variety was present.
the students, Mary, needed reinforcement more frequently. For her, I
added opportunities for repeated reading of the same passage and we
charted her progress daily. This process provided tangible results of
growth and allowed her to see her own progress. After two weeks of this
added intervention, her motivation increased and she was on track.
the first six weeks, I administered the teacher-made measure every 3
weeks instead of every 2 weeks. I decided to extend the time because I
was seeing progress in the students’ abilities and wanted to ‘reward’
them with fewer check points. This change seemed to increase their
confidence in their own abilities.
REPORTING RESULTS & IMPLICATIONS FOR FUTURE: (What are your results
and how will you share them? How will the results impact your
teaching in the future?)
(What are your results? How does the baseline data compare to the ending
data? How will you share results with stakeholders? How will you share
results with others in your school? How will the results impact your
teaching in the future?)
The second DIBELS measure indicated that all four students made
progress. Mary remained in the high risk zone, but increased her
fluency level to 68. John (82), Sam (91), and Sue (102) all moved to
the medium or low risk zones. I will continue to utilize fluency
practice opportunities by providing the opportunity for choices. I
shared my results with the teachers at my school during a faculty
meeting and used charts of student progress to illustrate the gains
achieved by my students.
I enjoyed this experience and look forward to ‘testing’ some of the
other training ideas that I have learned through the differentiated
instruction cohort activities. Several of the teachers commented that
they would like to try similar activities with their students, and I
look forward to seeing if they have a similar result.