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‘I’ is for ‘Insider’: Practitioner Research in Schools


  • Schaenen, Inda
  • Kohnen, Angela
  • Flinn, Pablo
  • Saul, Wendy
  • Zeni, Jane


In this paper we five teachers and teacher educators draw upon our personal classroom experiences in order to explore the definitions, descriptions, and nature of educational practitioner research, what we call teacher research. We highlight the tensions that can exist between and among teacher research, institutional needs and macro-policies, and argue that as both stance and method, teacher research can complement traditional, outsider-driven social science research. Further, practitioner research can check the errors and inequitable outcomes which may result from educational policies strictly reliant on the large-scale quantitative research designs currently dominant in the United States.

Suggested Citation

  • Schaenen, Inda & Kohnen, Angela & Flinn, Pablo & Saul, Wendy & Zeni, Jane, 2012. "‘I’ is for ‘Insider’: Practitioner Research in Schools," International Journal of Action Research, Rainer Hampp Verlag, vol. 8(1), pages 68-101.
  • Handle: RePEc:rai:ijares:doi_10.1688/1861-9916_ijar_2012_01_schaenen

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    teacher research; educational action research; teacher inquiry; practitioner research in schools; insider research;

    JEL classification:

    • A12 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Other Disciplines
    • A13 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Social Values
    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics


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