Product reviews for Educational Research

Jill Berry, former head teacher, educational consultant and researcher
Following a 30-year career as an educational practitioner, I embarked on a professional doctorate in 2010. I really wish this book had been available then! It is a comprehensive, clear and accessible guide to how to conduct research, particularly single, small-scale projects, in a responsible and rigorous way.

The chapter outline at the outset reflects the extensive nature of the guidance, and provides a useful overview to help fledgling researchers decide which sections to focus on depending on the stage they have reached - for example, ethical considerations, choice of methodology and methods, or data generation and analysis. The introduction charts the growing interest in educational research since 2010, which has moved from a simple focus on -˜what works' in the classroom to a wider exploration of the multi-faceted benefits of reflective practice within an educational context. The authors supply a useful definition of research and consider general, overarching principles before going on to offer practical advice; well-illustrated with specific examples about how best to navigate the process of embarking on, and successfully completing, a research project. They explore pitfalls to avoid and good practice to emulate, and include an extremely useful annotated list of recommendations for further reading.
The readable style and accessible language reflect the book's intended audience of professionals, rather than the academic community. The key message is communicated in a compelling way - the importance of being -˜positively critical', of avoiding bias and ensuring ethical principles underpin all stages of the research process. Wood and Smith argue convincingly that the best way to develop research literacy is to conduct your own research. This book will help you to do so in a way which is informed and robust. My only complaint is the timing of the publication of the book - just as I submit my doctoral thesis -¦
Guest | 20/01/2016 00:00
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