Identifying a topic for action research is one of the most important steps in the process.
Action research topics should address realistic classroom problems or issues.
Possible action research topics include new teaching methods, identifying a problem, examining an area of interest, classroom environment, instructional materials, classroom management, instructional methods, human growth matters, grading and evaluation, conferencing, and more.
Research topics should also be weighed against several practical considerations, including your personal interest in the topic, its potential importance, the amount of time it will require, the anticipated difficulty, potential costs, and any ethical issues.
Narrowing a topic can be accomplished by addressing practical considerations and also through self-reflective, descriptive, and explanatory activities.
Preliminary information related to the topic should be gathered and reviewed.
A literature review is described as a systematic examination of research and other information related to your research topic. Literature reviews help establish a connection between your given project and what has been done before.
Literature reviews can provide guidance in helping to identify and narrow a topic, formulate research questions and hypotheses, select appropriate data collection methods, and identify appropriate techniques for data analysis.
When reviewing related literature, it is important to consider its quality, objectivity, and timeliness.
This information can be gathered by talking with other educators, reviewing curricular materials, or examining professional publications.
Information can also be gathered through reconnaissance, with involved self-reflection, description, and explanation.
When trying to locate related literature, it is best to begin with secondary sources and then move to primary sources. Furthermore, it is best to focus your review on primary sources.
Possible sources for relevant literature include ERIC, or the Educational Resources Information Center, Google Scholar, ProQuest, and Internet search engines. EBSCO Information Services, JSTOR, Psychological Abstracts, SAGE Journals, and Sociological Abstracts can also be utilized, but these may require institutional membership.
If it becomes necessary to write a formal review of related literature, bear in mind its purpose: to convey to all individuals interested in the topic the historical context of the topic, the trends experienced by the topic, how theory has informed practice, and vice versa.
A literature review should not consist of an annotated list of summaries of research, but rather it should flow smoothly for the reader as a cohesive essay.