Asking the big questions: Elementary educators developing their professional practice through inquiry

Author: 
Date created: 
2019-01-31
Identifier: 
etd20085
Keywords: 
Professional development
Educator inquiry
Elementary teaching
Adult education
Inquiry-based learning
Participatory action research
Abstract: 

Using a variety of qualitative methods, this participatory action research study investigated how a group of elementary school educators experienced and perceived an independent, inquiry-based approach to professional development. It includes a discussion of how the participants described the similarities and differences between and inquiry-based professional development process and the more traditional in-service workshop model of professional development. The teachers reported feeling motivated to engage in this form of inquiry-based learning. Each of the educator participants in this study felt the self-directed and problem-based nature of their learning, which is in line with the tenets of adult learning, or androgogy (Kidd, 1959; Knowles, 1980) were important factors in this engagement. The participants reported that despite the challenges that they identified, such as time pressure, accountability, and administrative support, inquiry-based professional development led to positive changes in their teaching. Recommendations for implementation of inquiry-based professional development are also discussed.

Document type: 
Thesis
Rights: 
This thesis may be printed or downloaded for non-commercial research and scholarly purposes. Copyright remains with the author.
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Dr. Paul Neufeld
Dr. Lucy Lemare
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.
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