User:Undurthy/My Sandbox for Patricia/template:Teacher Preparation/Locating Classroom Problem
Locating of Classroom Problem
Any educational research starts with identification of a problem. Selection of suitable problem for investigation is a very important task in educational research. In this process of identification of research problem, a researcher should first choose a broad area within which he/she proposes to undertake research.
Sources for Research Problem:
The broad area that has been selected for a study should be narrowed down to a specific research problem. In order to specify the research problem, there are several sources, wherein, a researcher can select his/her research problem. They are experience, theory and literature.
Experience: The professional experience of the researcher is a very important source of research problem. As a result of his/her own classroom interactions, a researcher would get some new insights into the different ways of effective performance of a given task. As a result of this, he/she would take some decisions about his/her transaction modes. The effectiveness of these transactional modes can be scientifically investigated. For example, a teacher may want to evaluate the efficacy of problem solving method over conventional method in improving learner’s achievement in mathematics.
Theory: Educational and behavioral theories are other excellent source of research problems. There are many theories, whose applicability may be investigated in educational and classroom contexts.
Literature: Related literature is another important source of research problem. Research reports, research articles, periodicals etc. suggest areas that need research. After reviewing selected researches and literature, a researcher would be able to smell certain gaps and undertake a research study to answer certain research questions.
Feasibility/Criteria for a Research Problem:
A research problem has to be evaluated after selection. In order to evaluate the problem, a researcher should see how far the following characteristics are applicable to it.
1. Contribution to the body of knowledge in education: The problem should be able to fill in gaps in present knowledge or resolve inconsistencies in previous research.
2. Scope for further research: A research problem, besides, answering several questions, should generate number of other questions that need further research.
3. Researchability: A problem can be researchable only when it is concerned with the relationship between two or more variables that can be defined and measured.
4. Novelty: A researcher should select a problem which has not been, so far, investigated.
5. Suitability to researcher’s abilities/competencies: A problem, however good, should be suitable to the abilities of a researcher.
Identification of Classroom Problems:
Classroom teaching is not monotonous but a creative activity to initiate desired educational outcomes. Creative and enthusiastic teachers apply their minds, judgments and imagination to make classroom process more meaningful and palatable to the learners. Classroom problems emerge from the process of reflection by the teacher, wherein, he/she is supposed to take some decisions to resolve them. If teachers identify a gap between their intentions, aspirations, teaching aim and the knowledge or skills or attitudes actually demonstrated by the pupils, then that creates the classroom problem. Some of the problems are quite readily dealt with. Most of the teachers may, out of their experience, know how to tackle the problem. They might know about several intervention strategies that are successful in the past. At this juncture, teachers have to select a strategy and procedure that is most appropriate in the situation out of which the problem arises. This is where the action research process starts, with the decision that something new and better must be worked out and tried in a classroom situation. Problems that teachers generally encounter in their teaching can be as fall under four areas.
Teaching Aim: The basic question that could arise in deciding the aims of teaching are – what kind of changes am I trying to bring about in my students? In what way should ny students be different after my teaching? And finally, what should be my teaching aim? In the process of answering these questions teachers would be able to identify some specific problems pertaining to specific classroom context and decide the cause of action in their teaching.
Motivating Learners: Another important question that a teacher should try to answer and decide what to do is ‘what can I do to make my students attentive in my class? What incentives can I use to accelerate learning? How to create interest among my students in the subject I teach? While answering these questions, teachers would solve many motivational issues and make classroom teaching more effective.
Learning Activities: Learning activity is anything that a teacher asks their students to do in order to make their learning more effective. In this third area, teachers would try to find out answers to questions, such as, ‘what can I ask my students to do that will enable best learning?’
Evaluation of Learning Outcomes: The effectiveness of any classroom teaching would best be understood only through evaluation of progress made by learners. Most of the teachers face problems in deciding the evaluation procedures. So every teacher tries to seek answer to question, ‘what techniques and procedures can I use to find out the learning outcomes?’