The Action Research Guidebook A Four-Stage Process for Educators and School Teams by Richard D. Sagor


The Action Research Guidebook A Four-Stage Process for Educators and School Teams by Richard D. Sagor

Action research is a popular form of professional development and incorporates qualitative and quantitative methods, reflective practice, and educational pedagogy. Action research is conducted by the person or the people empowered to take action, for the purpose of improving their future action. Teachers know their particular students, classroom, and schools intimately - therefore, they are best equipped to pick a particular problem (or research question) and then use qualitative or quantitative techniques for further study. The book is organized around Sagor's four stage process developed from his many years of experience training hundreds of educators. The four stages are: 1. Clarifying visions/targets 2. Articulating theory 3. Implementing action and collecting data 4. Reflecting on data and planning informed action. The book includes numerous tables, charts, handouts, forms, and worksheets to demystify and simplify the action research process. Short examples drawn from the author's experience working on-one-on with teachers on their action research projects are also included - from raising reading proficiency to increasing the problem solving capacity of faculty members. Sagor shows how teacher teams can work collaboratively to identify and research problems related to the school's goals. Appropriate for use by individual teachers and teacher teams, as well as by preservice teachers in teacher education courses. Headteachers, counsellors, and other educators will also find the action research process useful for school improvement.


This new edition is simply outstanding! The descriptions, metaphors, and modeling of an everyday approach to the inquiry cycle reflect Sagor's deep understanding of the current challenges educators face in integrating action research into their practices. -- Lauren Childs, School Quality Consultant for Teacher Leadership Richard Sagor is one of a very small group of academic educators writing today who authentically and profoundly bridges the gap between research and practice. His conception of action research, developed over decades of experience with thousands of educators, is clear, robust and flexible. This book is both intelligent and accessible, and is fun to read and use. -- Deborah Court, Head of Curriculum Studies

About the Author

Richard Sagor recently retired from his position as professor and director of the Educational Leadership Program at Lewis & Clark College. In 1997 he founded ISIE (pronounced I see ), the Institute for the Study of Inquiry in Education, to work with schools and educational organizations on the use of action research and data-based school improvement while he was a professor of educational leadership at Washington State University (WSU). Prior to his work at the university level, Sagor had 14 years of public school administrative experience, including service as an assistant superintendent, high school principal, instruction vice principal, disciplinary vice principal, and alternative school head teacher. He has taught the entire range of students, from the gifted to the learning disabled, in the areas of social studies, reading, and written composition. Educated in the public schools of New York, Sagor received his BA from New York University and two MA degrees as well as a PhD in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Oregon. Beyond his work as a teacher and administrator, Sagor has had extensive international consulting experience. He served as a site visitor for the United States Department of Education's Secondary School Recognition Program and has worked with the Department of Defense's overseas schools, numerous state departments of education, and over 200 separate school districts across North America. His consulting has focused primarily on leadership development, the use of data with standards-based school improvement, collaborative action research, teacher motivation, and teaching at-risk youth. His articles on school reform and action research have received awards from the National Association of Secondary School Principals and the Educational Press Association of America. Sagor's books include The TQE Principal: A Transformed Leader; At-Risk Students: Reaching and Teaching Them; How To Conduct Collaborative Action Research; Local Control and Accountability: How to Get It, Keep It, and Improve School Performance; Guiding School Improvement With Action Research; Motivating Students and Teachers in an Era of Standards; and Collaborative Action Research for Professional Learning Communities. Sagor can be contacted at the Institute for the Study of Inquiry in Education, 16420 SE McGillivray, Suite 103-239, Vancouver, WA 98683, or by e-mail at

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Book Info


248 pages


Richard D. Sagor
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Publication date

19th January 2011



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