Responses to Merry's Questions for April 16
1) As all of us will be teachers, we could at some point do educational case studies. What special considerations do we have to take into account when doing classroom or educational research?
- Aside from the concerns of participant safety and confidentiality, I think that we need to be highly aware of what outcomes our research will have. In any environment, but perhaps especially in educational settings, it’s important that our research work to affect change (at least I think so). Perhaps there are higher expectations for education based research to result in some action, whether it be policy or classroom related. I think this would be a great question for Lee-Ann, it seems like she has a lot of experience with classroom research and the ways that research results in change.
2) What model for an educational case study does Tebeaux present? It is still a feasible model for what we might report today?
- I think that her model is still feasible. Though the technology she’s talking about has changed, I think her approach and her methodology still make a lot of sense. I like that she shared her assignment sheets, and think that her visuals (tables and charts) were actually really helpful in communicating the research findings (it seems that a number of the articles we’ve read over the semester have been less effective with visuals). This article was interesting in a sense that while I was reading it, though I knew it was 12 years old, a lot of the findings and information still struck me as useful/applicable to distance learning today (i.e. the fact that students in the distance learning class received higher grades than the students in the ‘real’ class, though I guess this may not be true and/or generalizable anymore).
3) What differences would occur if the class being studied was classroom based or distance based?
- It would seem that there would be some significant differences in teacher/student interaction, student attitudes in and towards the class material, interaction between and amongst students, and other factors such as jobs, families, and home life that aren’t as big of a deal in distance learning.
4) In class we might try sketching out a plan for an educational or classroom case study. This could be for a course you are teaching or might be teach or for an observation of another person teaching.
- I think this sounds like a great activity, and though classroom research isn’t really my thing, I think we could all benefit from this kind of a plan – is Lee-Ann in on this?