04 SES 05 C, Teacher Training
To date, many studies have shown that the way teaching staff interact with children with special needs at school can have a great impact on their learning (Kossyvaki, 2012). However, few studies have focused on modifying adults’ behaviour and even fewer were conducted in school settings actively involving teaching staff. To this end, literature has highlighted the effectiveness of teacher education when the latter reflect on their own practice (Wenger, 1999). A very powerful medium of data collection when asking people to reflect on their practice is video recordings. Videos are increasingly used in classroom research but they have been more extensively used in research with parents. In that field the work of Kennedy (2011) is pioneering. She video recorded parents naturally interacting with their children and then videos of the best aspects of interaction were shown to them in order to build on their existing parenting skills.
The aim of the present study was to explore the extent to which staff were able to build on their good practice and alter their interactive style using action research and video recordings. Action research is a practice-driven approach where researchers and practitioners work in close partnership to produce viable improvements to real world problems. It encompasses a number of advantages as well as challenges. Bridging the gap between academic research and practice (Somekh, 1995), staff’s professional development (Denscombe, 2010) and empowerment (McNiff and Whitehead, 2006), team work (Koshy, 2005) and the close collaboration between the practitioners and the researcher are significant advantages of using action research. However, there might be some challenges. Because of the participants’ active role, the ownership of action research is a recurring debate (Reed, 2005). Criticisms against the rigour of action research and the generalisability of the findings (Koshy, 2005) are also frequent. Lack of control over real world environments (Denscombe, 2010), significant ethical restrictions (McNiff and Whitehead, 2006) and challenges to the researcher’s objectivity (Denscombe, 2010) are some other challenges which may arise.
The use of video recordings as a method of data collection has a number of strengths and limitations. The openness of the data to multiple scrutiny (Heath et al., 2010), their objectiveness (Cummins and Hulme, 1997) and their ‘longer shelf life’ (Stigler et al., 2000) are some of the strengths whereas the camera effect (Stigler et al., 2000) and the likelihood that some participants may be put off by its presence (Heath et al., 2010) are among the limitations. The present paper aims to highlight the advantages and challenges of using action research and video recordings in a special school setting. Doing action research in a special school is of substantial importance for two reasons. Firstly, teaching staff working with pupils with special needs are reported to experience high rates of stress and burnout (Male and May, 1997) and as a result need to be heard. Secondly, nowadays with teacher education for inclusion spreading across Europe (Donelly and Watkins, 2011) involving teachers’ voice and experiences in their training should be a high priority.
Cummins, K. and Hulme, S. (1997) Video- a reflective tool, Speech and Language Therapy in Practice, autumn: 4-7. Denscombe, M. (2010) The good research guide for small-scale research projects. 4th ed. Berkshire: Open University Press. Donnelly, V. and Watkins, A. (2011) Teacher Education for Inclusion in Europe, Prospects, 41:341-353. Heath, C., Hindmarsh, J. and Luff, P. (2010) Video in qualitative research: analysing social interaction in everyday life. London: SAGE. Kennedy, H. (2011) What is Video Interaction Guidance (VIG)? In: Kennedy, H., Landor, M. and Todd, L. (eds.) Video Interaction Guidance: a relationship-based intervention to promote attunement, empathy and wellbeing. London: Jessica Kingsley, pp. 20-42. Koshy, V. (2005) Action research for improving practice: a practical guide. London: Paul Chapman Publishing. Kossyvaki, L., Jones, G. and Guldberg, K. (2012) The effect of adult interactive style on the spontaneous communication of young children with autism at school, British Journal of Special Education, 39(4):173-184. Male, D.B. & May, D. (1997) Stress, burnout and workload in teachers of children with special educational needs, British Journal of Special Education, 24(3):133-140. McNiff, J. and Whitehead, J. (2006) All you need to know about action research. London: SAGE Publications. Reed, J. (2005) Using action research in nursing practice with older people: democratizing knowledge, Journal of Clinical Nursing, 14(5):594-600. Somekh, B. (1995) The contribution of action research to development in social endeavours: a position paper on action research methodology, British Educational Research Journal, 21(3):339-355. Stigler, J.W., Gallimore, R. and Hierber, J. (2000) Using video surveys to compare classrooms and teaching across cultures: examples and lessons from the TIMSS video studies, Educational Psychologist, 35(2):87-100. Wenger, E. (1999) Communities of practice: learning, meaning and identity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
- Search for keywords and phrases in "Text Search"
- Restrict in which part of the abstracts to search in "Where to search"
- Search for authors and in the respective field.
- For planning your conference attendance you may want to use the conference app, which will be issued some weeks before the conference
- If you are a session chair, best look up your chairing duties in the conference system (Conftool) or the app.