Action Research Template

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The following template may be used for your action research:

Context of the Problem

The teaching strategies that I use in ESL learners in “Colegio Independencia” Junior High School in Aguascalientes, Mexico do not make students to participate during the speaking activities in the classes. The problem could be because of the students' discouragement or the no-correct material which could motivate students to speak in the class. Otherwise, they do not have doubts about the language; they understand very well the instructions and the explanations It means that they do not have many problems in the listening skill. But I can figure out that they have no self-confidence with their partners or teacher, this can a factor which decreases the students’ learning. When I apply some strategies or techniques they do not speak at all. I have not given the correct strategies or authentic material during speaking activities. How can I use adequate authentic material to make students to participate in speaking activities during the class? To answer this question teachers have to analyze and get what the students' needs are, in order to apply the correct authentic material. Moreover the teacher's proficiency must be taken into consideration to succeed in this action research.

Most of the students are unmotivated to speak in English during the classes, and I could realize it while asking them to debate about three different topics, they disagreed about the topics and they did not want to speak. Furthermore they felt very uncomfortable about the activity. I could notice that the students felt bad, because of their level, well it is supposed they are in intermediate level, but they do not feel like that. They need more confidence, and to learn more vocabulary. I guess in this way, they could feel better in order to speak. For that reason the material is the most important part while promoting speaking. The material is the best attraction that the teachers can make for their students, in this way students can be interested in the topic, and one of the best ways to get students’ attention is to give a very attractive and meaningful material, according to the students’ level, interests, and needs.

The purpose of this action research is to encourage the students to speak in English by using some "real life" material which will be attractive and meaningful for them. To get this objective the students will do two different activities in which one activity will have a different objective. For this purpose I have to teach more vocabulary before applying the activities, and I have to create a good environment using production speaking material (role-cards, flash cards, picture cards, etc.) I guess they will feel comfortable and self-confidence and I hope to achieve my objective. Then the students have to answer some questioners which help the researcher to get the correct information in order to succeed in the objective.

Wang, Q. (2000). "The most important and most difficult part of the making of a good language teacher is the development of professional competence, which is the state or quality of being adequately qualified for the profession, and armed with a specific range of skills, strategies, knowledge, and ability." According to Wang, the development of professional competence of the teachers is the most important part of being an excellent teacher, and being a good teacher means to apply the different strategies to make students speak. I want to make students speak by using authentic material (role cards and flash cards). My students are really shy in the class, they do not want to speak in English, and I want to know why and how I can change that part in my classes. Savignon (2002) “Communicative Language Teaching theory involves both the process and goals for successful classroom learning by implementing speaking activities”. I just want to implement good authentic material which helps my students to speak in English correctly and make them to improve their vocabulary. I want to apply the correct authentic material to avoid this hard part that they present while being in English class, and make interesting the speaking activities for them.

Method and Materials

This action research is quantitative, due to I want to know how students react by using authentic material in speaking activities, and if they have a little improvement in their vocabulary. This action research in order to get the objective previously mentioned focuses on “Colegio Independencia” Junior High School Students (1st grade), in Aguascalientes, Mexico. Basically the group consists in 23 students, between 12 and 13 years old. The students are very creative and very enthusiastic; it will help me a lot in my research, because I will not have problems with students’ participation. They have taken English since they are in the elementary school; it is supposed they are intermediate level, but they consider that they are not in that level, they think they are in basic level.

At the beginning of my research, I applied two observations instruments, to see how the students reacted while doing the speaking activities. They were working well at the beginning of the class, but they had some problems when they tried to speak in English, I could figure out, it was because of the lack of the vocabulary. Furthermore they could not make complete sentences, I bet it was because they were very nervous and they did not know anything f the topic, for that reason they did not want to continue participating in the activity and they told me. They said “ No teacher, yo no le entiendo nada”, “No se que es lo que quiere que hagamos”, “No yo no quiero hacerlo no se nada del tema”, etc. They were rejecting about the topic and the activities. That made me feel very frustrated I could not do and finish the activity that I planned. The class was a debate, I showed them two different pictures about the famous people, but they did not know too much about those people’ lives. It was good, for my research, due to it made me see what the students really need and want to participate in the speaking activities. What I should do before applying the speaking activities, without affecting their self-confidence with the language.

My first implementation was divided into two classes first I presented them a different famous people, their pictures and a list what they like to do and they do not like to do, where they live, what they do, what the most famous projects they have been, and something that they have done in their lives. The students enjoyed the class, because they were interested on those famous people, and their lives. I presented them by using cue cards and Flash cards, but in this part they did not speak at all. In the second part of the class, they speak too much, I asked them to say a “Famous people in Story-telling”. I stack seven pictures of famous people, seven different places (forest, city, house, building, supermarket, Movie Theater and school) and nine different things and cartoons, (shelves, Mickey Mouse, etc) on the board. Now they knew many aspects of those people, characters and places, and more vocabulary that they could use in the story-telling. At the beginning they felt nervous, but through the class they were enjoying the activity, I saw it because on their faces they were smiling and they were laughing about the story, at the end many of them wanted to participate and say more details for the story.

My second implementation was about role cards, I did the same as the last class for my research, I divide the class into two parts. First I taught them the meaning of some words that I considered they did not know, by making different activities, like matching the words with the meanings and other by completing a crossword. The students were passive and they were doing the activities as I expected. For that reason the next class was easier for me to apply it, they were more interested in the class, due to I took some costumes to make the role plays more interesting, according to the role cards. First I gave them some papers which they have some different situations, the role cards say what the students do, what the problem is, and what they have to ask to the other no directly, the questions were inferred by the students, according to the role cards. At the beginning they felt a little bit confused because of the costumes, but they enjoyed a lot that part. The purpose of this class was to lose the nervousness and to speak in English it does not matter what the students can think, or care about the performances. They did the activities I expected and I realized many aspects of my students.

Results and Data Analysis

Present the findings of the investigation using graphs, tables, etc.


Discuss your results in terms of how they answer your research question(s) or hypothesis. Did your intervention work? What recommendations can you offer? How might others extend this research? Are there any limitations?


Adhere to APA.


Schedule when you will apply your treatment.
In Junior High School 
Monday 12: 50 to 1:40 
Tuesday 12:00 to 12:50 
Wednesday  12:00 to 12:50


  • Complete your method section and add your references. --Bnleez 13:04, 9 November 2011 (UTC)

Note: For those taking Applied Linguistics for credit, please do the following:

  • Copy and paste the template above as a subpage to your user page.
  • Adhere to the following approximate word count per section...
    • Context of the problem should be 800 words
    • Method and Materials should be 500 words
    • Results and Data Analysis should be 500 words
    • Discussion should be 1,000 words that includes a 250-word conclusion.

Determine the problem: I don not know what material could help me to encourage my students to speak in English

  1. Research Question: How can I imply material to encourage my teen students (12-13) to speak in English?
  2. Find three primary research:
  3. Determine what type of research design is most appropriate: My action research is Qualitative.
  4. Determine how data will be collected: Observations, questionnaires and videos.
  5. Schedule when you will apply your treatment.
    1. In Junior High School
    2. Monday 12: 50 to 1:40
    3. Tuesday 12:00 to 12:50
    4. Wednesday 12:00 to 12:50


  • This is just a reminder to refer to this video before emailing me your final draft. If you have any questions about APA, come by my office.--Bnleez 22:02, 8 December 2011 (UTC)
  • Avoid subheadings in your Context of the Problem section but do include subheadings in your Method section. Also, begin adding more information to your Method section. Also, remove your instruments and instead describe your instruments in your method section. --Bnleez 15:01, 2 October 2011 (UTC)
  • Be more specific in your schedule. When will you implement your plan? When will you collect and analysis your data? When will you write your paper? Please provide this information above. --Bnleez 17:46, 4 September 2011 (UTC)
  • Provide the references you plan to use for your action research paper and list them according to APA. --Bnleez 17:48, 4 September 2011 (UTC)