ERIC Number: ED342971
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr
Preparing Graduate Students To Carry Out Participatory Research.
Cassara, Beverly Benner
A growing trend in social science research is to reject those modes that treat individuals as objects of research and to accept the role of catalyst in helping the people to do their own research. Also, there is an increasing demand that results of social research must serve in a timely way to improve the situation of those involved. Participatory research meets these two requirements. Its basic premise is the democratic principle that oppressed and marginalized people can transform their social realities through education, research, and action. The facilitator does not choose the problem, the study method, or persons to carry out the study. The people set priorities and choose a problem, explore the roots of the problem, and research alternatives for correcting root conditions. The solution to one problem makes evident the next problem. Documentation is important but it need not be written. The cases of a group of indigenous women in India and a group of women in a city housing project in the District of Columbia, demonstrate participatory research's applicability in developing and industrialized countries. Adult education graduate students should learn this methodology because social science research is changing. Students need to be taught the following principles: people have to do it themselves; their values and not those of the students must prevail; people must choose their own methodology; people must choose their action priority; people must evaluate their own successes or failures; and what people learn will be the basis for further learning. (YLB)
Descriptors: Action Research, Adult Education, Adult Educators, Citizen Participation, Community Action, Community Control, Community Involvement, Developing Nations, Foreign Countries, Graduate Students, Graduate Study, Higher Education, Participative Decision Making, Participatory Research, Research Methodology, Social Action, Social Change, Social Science Research, Theory Practice Relationship
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Research Institute, University of Siegen (Siegen, Germany, April 1991).