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Action Research, Exhibition, Validation and Synthesis (60 credits at level HE7)

You will implement your action inquiry plans and engage in multiple cycles of action inquiry. You will maintain your learning journal to keep a diary of issues that arise, progress made and effectiveness in improving work practice. You will collect data, present this data, analyse it and discuss findings in the light of the literature relevant to your research focus.

60 credits at level HE7


Finally you will make recommendations on the basis of a final report and share these with others in the online community and join in discussion about your own work and that of others. You will plan and implement full-scale exhibition of the findings based on your action research. The purpose of your exhibition is to validate your findings and refine your conclusions based on critical feedback from an identified audience. It is important that you choose an audience which is both knowledgeable about your work context and is prepared to offer informed comment. This module will provide the opportunity to present key action research findings and to assess the potential for organisational improvement. A synthesis based on action research findings and critical feedback from the work context is created to make final conclusions and recommendations for future action.


Content will be largely determined by the student researcher when relating their focus for inquiry in the work-context to the intended learning outcomes for the module. It is expected that this content will be inter-disciplinary in nature and draw on academic and professional sources including work-colleagues and online community experience and know-how. In addition, specific topics common to the professional theme of the course and other topics relating to the knowledge about action inquiry will be identified and supported by experts participating in hot-seat discussions, where student researchers ask questions and experts respond.

All resources required for the delivery of the module will be available online. In addition, learners will identify resources in the workplace, in libraries, and online that is relevant to their own inquiry.

Topics that may be encountered include:
• Action Research in practice
• Data analysis
• Creating findings, conclusions and recommendations
• Organisational improvement
• Communication Strategies
• Presentation in exhibition
• Capturing feedback and evaluation


Learning will be supported through an online community of inquiry where student researchers, course staff and invited ‘experts’ will engage in discussions, debates and group activities to explore key concepts, ideas, relevant topics and offer moral support.

Student researchers are expected to develop study habits which enable learning and contribute to assessment through:
• personal reflection in a learning log;
• regular participation in the online community and 
• creative reporting to form a 'patchwork' for assessment.

Student researchers will:
• identify a focus for their inquiry around issues or opportunities to take action for improvement that they have identified in their work practice;
• plan an inquiry with learning activities that address each of the intended learning outcomes of the module;
• undertake their inquiry and share selected parts with student researchers for critical feedback;
• for each learning activity, create a product for assessment in the student researcher' choice of genre and media;
• evaluate the inquiry.

Learning facilitators will:
• promote community discussion on potential focii for inquiry;
• privately agree student researcher commitment to inquiry proposals;
• draw out issues arising in inquiries for community discussion;
• model critical feedback in the online community;
• make summative assessment of student researchers' work, noting strong points and points to consider with targets for improvement.

Assessment will be through an e-portfolio of work which will address each of the learning outcomes. It will include a summative commentary identifying the individual student researchers learning in relation to the intended learning outcomes for the module in a coherent account of their learning journey.


 Learning Outcomes
when you have successfully completed this module you will:
Assessment Criteria
to demonstrate that you have achieved the learning outcome you will:
1. Implement an effective and ethical action inquiry which addresses work context needs Construct a critically reflective report from your learning journal on issues, progress and effectiveness of your action inquiry
2. Analyse data to create findings and conclusions Create an interpretive and evidence-based report of the outcomes of your action inquiry
3. Critically evaluate your action research with recommendations for future action Create an executive summary by stitching patches made so far to account for what you have learned, share in the online community and lead discussion around your report
4. Plan a communication strategy for a proposed organisational improvement based on your action research Critically evaluate your plan and justify choice of audience in terms of validating your proposal
5. Communicate effectively through exhibition the proposed improvement based on outcomes of your action research Critically evaluate the effectiveness of the exhibition in the work context
6. Synthesise action research outcomes with feedback from exhibition Evaluate and revise conclusions and recommendations for future action based on feedback analysis




Your achievement of the learning outcomes for this module will be tested as follows:

Patchwork media: an assessment e-portfolio of learning activities with a summative commentary identifying learning achieved related to intended learning outcomes. 


  • McNiff J, Lomax P, Whitehead J (1996) You and Your Action research Project, London: Routledge
  • Coghlan D, Brannick T, (2001) Doing Action Research In Your own Organisation, London: Sage Publications Ltd
  • Swetnam D, (2004) Writing Your Dissertation, Oxford: How To Books Ltd
  • Rogers E, M, (2003) Diffusion of Innovations, Simon and Schuster
  • Schuller T, Hammond C, Bassett-Grundy A, Preston J, Bynner J, The Benefits of Learning: The Impact of Education on Health, Family Life and Social Capital, Routledge Falmer
  • Denscombe M, (1998) The Good Research Guide, Buckingham: Open University Press
  • Denscombe M, (2002) Ground Rules for Good Research: A 10 Point Guide for Social Researchers , Buckingham: Open University Press
  • Senge, P., (2006) The Fifth Discipline, Random House Business Books
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