TL 6813 Teacher Research

University of Utah-Fall Semester, 2001 Wednesday 4:35pm - 7:35pm Room OSH 202
Office Hours: Wednesday 2:00pm to 4:00pm, Other times can be arranged
Instructor: Lisa Yamagata-Lynch
Office: MBH 131
*The University of Utah and the Department of Teaching & Learning seek to provide equal access to its programs, services, and activities for people with disabilities. Reasonable prior notice is needed to arrange accommodations *Upon discussion with students, the instructor reserves the right to make revisions to the course syllabus

The purpose of this course is for you to explore the teacher research literature in its historical and methodological context, including findings from teachers' studies. You will additionally be exploring and reflecting on the steps and actions involved in teacher research by conducting your own project. Through this course, I expect that you develop an understanding of (a) what teacher research is; (b) what are the theoretical background surrounding teacher research; (c) how to conduct teacher research, (d) how to make sense of teacher research data; and (e) how teacher research fit into the bigger picture of educational research. This course has been designed as an introductory survey course of the above issues that will give a jump-start to your ongoing inquiry into what teacher research is and how to conduct teacher research that matches your theoretical commitments. It is my hope that through this course you find the resources to continue your own further investigation.

  • Your understanding of teacher research
  • A community with your classmates as a team of collaborative learners
  • On your understanding of teacher research
  • On the actions you take for your teacher research project
  • On discussions that take place in this class
  • Your understanding of teacher research
  • The progress of your teacher research project
  • Designing a teacher research project in your area of interest
  • Conducting a teacher research project in your area of interest
D&R Journal Entries 20 pts
You have to complete 4 D&R journal entries. D&R journal entries are your description and reflection (D&R) on the assigned course readings, discussions that take place during class, and the progress you are making on your teacher research project. These journal entries should not exceed more than 2 pages single-spaced using 12-point Time New Roman font. The specific topic of the D&R journal entries will be discussed during class. The deadline of D&R journal entries will be at the beginning of class on: 9/17, 10/1, 11/19, and 12/3.

Seminar Project 30 pts
You and a team of 2 to 3 students will be responsible for leading a class session related to teacher research in your groups' shared interest area. One-week prior to your seminar project date, your team will be responsible for: (a) selecting 2 articles as the class reading materials for your seminar project date, and (b) providing the reading materials to the class.

On your seminar project date your team will be responsible for leading discussions and activities related to the readings you assigned the class and course objectives. The amount of class time that each team will be given on their seminar project date will be announced in class. One-week after your seminar project date your team is responsible for submitting the following written materials: (a) the reading list your team assigned to the class on the seminar project date, (b) the rationale to why each article was selected as the seminar project reading, and (c) what library research methods your team used to find those reading materials. Additionally, you need to submit a 1 page single spaced individual reflection paper that captures the following topics: (a) What went well about your seminar project? (b) What did not go well about your seminar project? and (d) What would you do differently the next time you do a similar project?

Teacher Research Project Paper 30 pts
You have to complete a teacher research project. The purpose of this project is for you to experience the steps and activities involved in a teacher research project, and to communicate your project in writing. In your written report you should follow the APA style, should be contained within 12-15 pages double spaced, and roughly include the following components:

I. Title Page (Name, affiliation, topic title, acknowledgments)
II. Review of the Literature (3-5 pages)
  1. Intro to Topic/Problem (purpose, history, importance)
  2. Review of Literature (introduce and contrast relevant literature on the topic)
  3. Research Questions (what are you trying to capture in your study)
III. Methods (3-5 pages)
  1. Participants
  2. Data collection method, include issues related to validation
  3. Data analysis method, include issues related to validation
IV. Findings (3-5 pages)
  1. Data Presentation
  2. Results
  3. Discussion
  4. Implications
V. Reflections (3-5 pages)
  1. What went well?
  2. What did not go well?
  3. What would you do differently next time?
VI. References (APA style: see syllabus for example)
VII. Appendices (e.g., pictures, charts, figures, models, tests, scoring criteria, coding procedures)

The deadline of your paper is 3pm on 12/6. Bring your paper to my office at MBH 131. I will not read any papers that exceed 15 pages (excluding references).

Teacher Research Project Presentation 10 pts
You have to present your project to the class. Prepare a poster that you can use during your presentation. Your presentation should be organized in the following manner:

I. Purpose and Research Question
II. Literature Review
III. Methods
IV. Findings
V. Reflections

This presentation will take place during the 12/3 class session.

Course Expectations
Class Participation 10 pts
You are expected to come to class and participate in a manner that provides evidence that you have read and reflected on the assigned readings and discussion that take place in class.

The definitions for the letter grades are as follows:

Outstanding performance; excellent command of course content.
Good, solid work; Good command of course content.
Meet minimum requirements; Satisfactory performance; Average command of course content.
Marginally; below average command of course content; Minimally acceptable performance.
Unsatisfactory performance; Inadequate knowledge of course content.

Required Text
  • Burnaford, G., Fischer, J., & Hobson, D. (Eds.). (2001). Teacher Doing Research: The Power of Action through Inquiry (2nd ed.). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  • 6813 Course Pack from empire publishing
Topic Readings Assignments
What is teacher research? Part I Cochran-Smith & Lytle (1999), Chandler-Olcott (2002), Schön (1987) Ch. 1  
What is teacher research? Part II and Using library research for reviewing the literature. BFH Ch. 1, Christenson et al. (2002), Schön (1987) Ch. 2, Hensen (1996)  
Teacher research theoretical background. McNiff & Whitehead Ch. 3, Kemmis & McTaggart (2000) Zeichner & Nofke (2001) D&R
Teacher research methodological issues. BFH Ch. 2, Ch. 3, McNiff & Whitehead Ch. 5  
Teacher research and professional development I BFH Ch. 7, Hibert, Gallimore, & Stigler (2002), King (2002) D&R
Teacher research and professional development II Meet the Author reading: Settlage (1996),
Student Seminar Project Readings
Reading teacher research I BFH pg. 121-170 Written assignments for the Student Seminar Project
Teacher research and university partnerships I. BFH Ch. 5&6, Greenwood & Levin (2000)  
Teacher research and university partnerships II. Meet the Author reading: Burbank & Kauchak (in press)
Student Seminar Project Readings

Reading teacher research II BFH 239-325 Written assignments for the Student Seminar Project
No Class Individual Work Day
Analyzing and validating teacher research data McNiff & Whitehead Ch. 7 & 8 D&R
Teacher research and the bigger picture. BFH Ch. 8 & 9, Lieberman & Darling-Hammond (1997) 69-95 Miller (1999) 19-38  
Student research presentations.    
Research Paper Due 3pm

Last Maintenance Update January 1, 2011