The ELT Action Research project

ELT action research project

The ELT Action Research project 

February - April 2021

We are inviting members to participate in our Action Research project, investigating ELT teaching and academic management. 

Over the course of two months, through a series of meetings and webinars, we will support participants to conduct their own Action Research on a topic of their choice.

We will introduce best practice methods for framing and developing Action Research, connect peer groups with common interests, and discuss ideas on how to share and build on research findings.

What is Action Research?

Action Research gives teachers or ELT managers the opportunity to investigate teaching and learning in their own classrooms, or their working practices within their own institution. The starting point in Action Research is a local issue – a challenge, problem, area of potential improvement, or puzzle – that the practitioner wants to examine systematically.

Typically, an Action Research project will have a number of different stages: devising strategies that address the identified issue; collecting data on what occurs when these strategies are applied; analysing this data; and reflecting on what has been learnt. Research done in this way gives practitioners a deeper insight into their own practice, broadens their professional development and has additional practical benefits for language learners, other teachers or managers and the institution where they work.

Project timeline: meetings and webinars

These project sessions are free and open to anyone who works for an English UK member centre and is interested in researching methods in ELT teaching or academic management.

Participants can choose to join all or some of these sessions, depending on their existing knowledge of Action Research methods. 

Project launch

Tuesday 23 February | 14:00 - 15:00

In this project launch session on Zoom, Will Nash and Chris Farrell will explain what Action Research is and introduce our project timeline.

There will be a chance to discuss research project ideas and connect with possible collaborators. 

Will Nash is Academic Director at the University of Sheffield ELT centre. Chris Farrell is Head of Training and Development at Centre of English Studies.

Data collection for Action Research

Wednesday 24 February | 15.10 - 16:00

In this webinar Dr. Sian Etherington, Educational Developer at the University of Salford, will explain how to collect, clean and use data for your Action Research project.

Action Research for the ELT classroom 

Tuesday 2 March, 14:00 - 15:00 | Chris Farrell and guests

In this session Chris Farrell will outline best practice and considerations for anyone considering an action research project based in the classroom (real, virtual and hybrid), and take questions from participants, and Chris will be joined by guests for a panel asking your questions.

Action Research for ELT managers

Wednesday 3 March | 14:00 - 15:00

In this session George Pickering will go over best practice for Action Research from the position of an ELT academic manager.

George Pickering is the academic director of the English UK Diploma in ELT Management.

Action research project check in

Tuesday 30 March | 14:00 - 15:00

An informal open space session for participants to share updates, questions and sticking points, and meet peers to hear how others are getting on. 

Action Research - where to go next

Tuesday 27 April | 14:00 - 15:00

In this wrap up session, we'll share some results (if attendees are happy to) and with Fiona Dunlop will look at what to do with your research - how to build on it, and ideas for sharing and getting it out into the world.

Fiona Dunlop is Principal at Wimbledon School of English