Areol, action research and evaluation
on line, as a web-based program
Up until the end of 2023 there was a 15-week email-based version of areol, offered twice each year. It has now been discontinued. It may be reinstated if there is sufficient demand. If you have a group of participants, contact Bob Dick to discuss possibilities.
Areol, action research and evaluation on line, is potentially available in two formats, both free. The 15-week public email course can be offered twice a year as a public service by ALARA, the Action Learning Action Research Association Inc. As an alternative, many of the materials from that course are still available on the web, though in older versions -- the links below will take you to them.
The web version below is less often revised, and lacks some of the resource materials of the email version. Also, it doesn't offer the email interaction you can have with other participants in the email version. In other respects it's a similar program, and you can work through it in your own time.
Individual sessions are briefly described below. (For a more detailed description see the fourth orientation file: click here)
There are four orientation sessions. The first will give you some idea of the commitment in time that it may take to engage properly in the program. The second overviews the program. The third discusses the setting up of learning groups as an associated activity. The fourth lists the sessions and identifies the relevant resource files for eachIntroduction 1: required commitment
Introduction 2: orientation
Introduction 3: forming learning groups
Introduction 4: program overview
Sessions 1 and 2 provide some context. Session 1 gives an overview of action research, and describes some processes which illustrate some of the features of action research and similar activities. Session 2 describes the overall change processSession 1: Examples of action-research-like processes
Session 2: The change process and action research
Some action research is done more for the action than the research. Sessions 3 to 5 cover issues especially relevant here. They address the important issues to do with entry and contracting, and participation and involvementSession 3: Entry and contracting
Session 4: Participation and involvement
Session 5: Achieving participation
Session 6 addresses the issue which is relevant to the research aspects of action research, especially those issues that are most important in research-oriented action researchSession 6: Achieving rigour
Sessions 7 to 9 introduce the topic of process design. They illustrate it through a variety of processes which can be used for collecting and analysing dataSession 7: Collecting and analysing data
Session 8: Convergent interviewing
Session 9: Focus groups
Sessions 10 to 12 deal specifically with an action research style of evaluation, using the Snyder evaluation process as a vehicleSession 10: Evaluation as action research
Session 11: The Snyder evaluation process
Session 12: The Snyder process (2)
Session 13 examines a different action research methodology, one which makes the systems-thinking aspects of action research more explicitSession 13: Soft systems methodology
In conclusion, Session 14 suggests some further reading and activities suitable for follow upSession 14: Where now?
Maintained by Bob Dick; this version 12.05w; last revised 20231007
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