An ongoing discussion about validity and quality in action research

Mohd Syafiq Aiman Mat Noor (1), Yoon Sook Jhee (2), Muhammad Zulfadhli Kamarudin (3)
(1) School of Education, University of Leeds, West Yorkshire, United Kingdom,
(2) Faculty of Education, Languages, Psychology & Music, SEGi University, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia,
(3) Sekolah Kebangsaan Taman Merdeka, Melaka, Malaysia

Abstract


This article unfolds a discourse on action research, illustrating its multifaceted perspectives, and engaging with the persistent debate about its validity and quality. Drawing on insights from a keynote presentation given by Kathryn Herr and Gary Anderson, renowned scholars in the field, at ICAR 2022, the article describes six possible positions within action research, from full insider to complete outsider, illuminating the potential for collaboration and transformation at each level of insider-outsider involvement. The article underscores the importance of establishing credibility, trustworthiness, and validity within action research, despite the scepticism it is often met with. It acknowledges the marginalisation of action research in academia and other organisational contexts and calls for its recognition as a rigorous methodology capable of generating context-specific knowledge and fostering change. This article serves as a critical examination of the unique dynamics of action research, its potential for impact, and the ongoing discourse surrounding its validity and quality.


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References

Dadds, M. (2008). Empathetic validity in practitioner research. Educational Action Research, 16(2), 279-290. https://doi.org/10.1080/0965079080201197

Dosemagen, D. M., & Schwalbach, E. M. (2019). Legitimacy of and Value in Action Research. In C. A. Mertler (Ed.), The Wiley Handbook of Action Research in Education (pp. 161–183). John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. https://doi.org/10.1002/9781119399490.ch8

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Herr, K., & Anderson, G. L. (2015). The Action Research Dissertation: A Guide for Students and Faculty (2nd Ed.). Sage.

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Authors

Mohd Syafiq Aiman Mat Noor
s.matnoor@leeds.ac.uk (Primary Contact)
Yoon Sook Jhee
Muhammad Zulfadhli Kamarudin
Mat Noor, M. S. A., Jhee, Y. S., & Kamarudin, M. Z. (2023). An ongoing discussion about validity and quality in action research. Malaysian Journal of Action Research, 1(1), 23–34. https://doi.org/10.61388/mjar.v1i1.4

Article Details

Action research through the lens of the ‘rendang’ analogy

Mohd Syafiq Aiman Mat Noor, Satirah Ahmad, Zailah Zainudin
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