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Action research was here before, in the 1940s and ‘50s, developed by Kurt Lewin and his colleagues as a collective problem-solving cycle for improving organizations (Lewin 1947, 1948; Corey 1953).The term action research captured the notion of disciplined inquiry (research) in the context of focused efforts to improve the quality of an organization and its performance (action).Action research studies are generally conductors by educators, who also act as participants.
The primary reason for engaging in action research is to assist the “actor” in improving and/or refining his or her actions” (Sagor, 2000).
This type of research is typically used in the field of education.
The main difference between action research and case study is their purpose; an action research study aims to solve an immediate problem whereas a case study aims to provide an in-depth analysis of a situation or case over a long period of time. It may involve a variety of analytical, investigative and evaluative research methods designed to diagnose and solve problems.
It has been defined as “a disciplined process of inquiry conducted by and for those taking the action.
Four middle school teachers—Elitrus and Paula from Rogers School, and Angie and Robert from Wilshire School—experiment with mnemonic key words in their science classes.
They want to help students better retain and understand key science concepts and terms.The process allows them to experience problem solving and to model it for their students.They carefully collect data to diagnose problems, search for solutions, take action on promising possibilities, and monitor whether and how well the action worked.Today, action research remains a powerful tool for simultaneously improving the practice and the health of an organization.For teachers, principals, and district office personnel, action research promises progress in professionalization.They can be used to probe into community-based problems such as illiteracy, unemployment, poverty, and drug addiction.Case studies involve both quantitative and qualitative data and allow the researchers to see beyond statistical results and understand human conditions.Anita Simmons records her 1st graders' responses to questions about simple fractions after using different displays and activities with them.She wants to determine which presentations are more effective than others. The following action research projects were selected during Winter 2003 to provide exemplars of the possible range for teachers' action research project.The exemplar projects are arranged on this page according to the sample selected for the study and then, further sub-divided according to the manner of data collection.