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ERIC Number: EJ1022575
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Reference Count: 9
The Transformative Power of Taking an Inquiry Stance on Practice: Practitioner Research as Narrative and Counter-Narrative
Ravitch, Sharon M.
Penn GSE Perspectives on Urban Education, v11 n1 p5-10 Win 2014
Within the ever-developing, intersecting, and overlapping contexts of globalization, top-down policy, mandates, and standardization of public and higher education, many conceptualize and position practitioner research as a powerful stance and a tool of social, communal, and educational transformation, a set of methodological processes that generate local, contextualized, stakeholder-driven data upon which more critically informed decisions, strategies, policies, and initiatives can be cultivated, shared, and made public. This commentary seeks to first introduce a new practice for this journal in which each issue includes a central article or commentary intended to be generative for readership (academia, K-12 education, policy makers, parents, and students); and second to clarify the value of practitioner research for: (1) Generating local, practice-based knowledge that is deeply contextualized and meaningfully embedded in a specific milieu; (2) The construction of practice-based narratives that can be viewed and engaged with as a counter-hegemonic way of thinking about and approaching theory-research-practice-policy connections and integrations; (3) The development of individual and collaborative research projects that push against traditional expert-learner dichotomies which can serve to re-inscribe power asymmetries and support structural oppression; (4) The transformative possibilities of local research that works from decidedly relational, contextualized, person-centered and equity-oriented perspectives and methodologies; and (5) Contributing to an understanding of the methodological approaches that help practitioners cultivate the knowledge, skills and dispositions that support and generate taking an inquiry stance on practice. The two goals for this piece--creating dialogue and inquiry across communities while foregrounding the generative nature and value of practitioner research within and across fields--are connected and together speak to the changing nature and roles of research within and across multiple fields. In the remainder of this piece the author shares current conceptualizations of practitioner research, and discusses the central role of practitioner research in the broader context of an inquiry stance.
Descriptors: Inquiry, Global Approach, Teacher Researchers, Educational Research, Personal Narratives, Theory Practice Relationship, Research Projects, Power Structure, Local Issues, Transformative Learning, Research Methodology, Teaching (Occupation), Urban Education
University of Pennsylvania, Graduate School of Education. 3700 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104. e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http://urbanedjournal.org
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A