What Is Action Research?

“Action research is any systematic inquiry conducted by teacher researchers, principals, school counselors, or other stakeholders in the teaching/learning environment to gather information about how their particular schools operate, how they teach, and how well their students learn. This information is gathered with the goals of gaining insight, developing reflective practice, effecting positive changes in the school environment (and on educational practice in general), and improving student outcomes and the lives of those involved.”

Geoffrey Mills, Action Research: A Guide for the Teacher Researcher (2nd Edition)

The IBSC promotes the collaboration of educators in member schools worldwide to design, implement, evaluate, and report on in-depth Action Research projects they have undertaken to improve their effectiveness in the classroom and beyond. Working remotely with a team of educators with similar interests, these researchers engage in discussion, offer informed reflection, and generate and evaluate innovative ideas about best practices in the education of boys.

Since the IBSC introduced its Action Research program in 2005, more than 220 teachers and administrators from all regions of the IBSC membership have contributed to these projects, which are conducted over a two-year period with the assistance of an IBSC Action Research coordinator. In many cases, their reports offer detailed information on how to replicate both research and results in your school environment.

More than 200 Action Research projects have been undertaken since the program was introduced by the IBSC in 2005. Results are shared at IBSC conferences and workshops, and they are made available online through the Member Center. Links to full reports are available to IBSC members only (members must login to access).

IBSC Action Research cohorts have investigated various thought-provoking topics including:

  • 2017-18: Adaptability in a Changing World
  • 2016-17: Collaboration and the Power of Learning Groups
  • 2015-16: Boys as Global Citizens
  • 2014-15: Boys as Makers
  • 2013-14: Character Education
  • 2012-13: Creativity Through Digital Technologies
  • 2011-12: Mining Key Pedagogical Approaches
  • 2010-11: Languages, Leadership, and Libraries
  • 2009-10: Boys and Writing
  • 2008-09: Boys and Masculinity
  • 2007-08: Positive Relationships / Positive Learning
  • 2006-07: Boys and Digital Literacy
  • 2005-06: Boys and Reading