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Approaches to #research

January 25, 2015



4 days at uni last week translates into this schemata for a research proposal:


I am drafting:

The aim of this study is to generate theory about the perspectives of staff on what they consider to be coaching in secondary public schools in Perth, Western Australia.

My working title is

Conflicting Storylines in Teacher Leadership

The Urge to Capitalise is Strong, but I’m also Playing in the Draft Document:

Transforming praxis: A narrative study of the construction and reconstruction of teachers’ personal practical knowledge


Constructing professional knowledge in teaching: A narrative of change and development


The reflective practitioner: Case studies in coaching


Learning culture and tolerating ambiguities: Narrative inquiry through stories of coaching

There’s a sense of enjoyment attached to this stage of planning the assignment for EDUC5631: During my final week of summer holidays

  •  I am not distracted by other pressures;
  • qualitative research affords so much luxury of choice;
  • what I am thinking about the qualitative/ quantitative divide is still settling.

Possibilities remain open, as shown by this stroll through Northbridge on the way to Tuck Shop Cafe for Friday’s lunch date.



Directions remain hazy; sketched details are captured on screen and augmented on paper. My reference list and PDF collection, meanwhile, grow. Reading makes me feel a little wired…



Family members tell me I am talking too much...and too fast.

Saturated. As scribbles and highlights capture connections, there’s a sense of something else emerging:


I am getting glimpses. Insights, perhaps.

Illumination of where this might be leading…



At this stage, I have two guiding questions:

  1. What activities do coaches perform in the enactment of their role?
  2. What stories do actors construct to describe these actions?


Narrative inquiry is my goal with a collection of vignettes as evidence.

I am also considering patterns and textures of the study. Who will I conduct pilot interviews with? Our sage lecturer suggested spouses, colleagues… Given the family’s feedback, I have Facebooked an alert for collegiate assistance.

The goal of the research then became the description and analysis of contexts, interactions and processes (Marshall & Rossman, 1999, p.46).

Selected reference

Marshall, C. & Rossman, G.B. (1999). Designing qualitative research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.


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