Unpacking variety in practitioner inquiry on teaching and teacher education

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Different communities of research practice (action research, teacher research, lesson study, self-study, participatory action research, and the scholarship of teaching) claim to hold an idiosyncratic status and identity in relation to questions of purpose, methods of inquiry, modes of representation, conceptualization of the process and outcomes, and ways of assessing the quality of the work. Taken together, they illustrate 'different local forms' grounded in ontological, epistemological, and methodological orientations to ways of knowing in practitioner inquiry. This paper elaborates on two emergent themes that unpack synergies, boundaries and tensions across inquiries: practitioner inquiry as a paradigm for change, and practitioner inquiry as a practice of variety. Drawing on Giroux's notions from critical pedagogy, I propose a framework of critical questions to re-examine forms of practitioner inquiry through questions that consider moral, political and ideological implications and commitments. These questions invite future dialogue between the 'varieties' of practitioner research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-119
Number of pages9
JournalEducational Action Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2009


  • Critical pedagogy
  • Practice-based evidence
  • Practitioner inquiry

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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