Exploring an extended role for legitimizing self-study action research projects: From examiners’ perspectives

TitleExploring an extended role for legitimizing self-study action research projects: From examiners’ perspectives
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsMokhele, PR
Refereed DesignationRefereed
JournalEducational Journal of Living Theories
Start Page1
Date Published06/2014
Type of Articleself-study action research

This paper aims to elucidate the standards of good practice that external examiners developed when considering written reports of self-study action research projects. It also seeks to reveal the methodological and epistemological assumptions in the examiners’ thinking regarding the academic legitimacy of self-study action research projects. The context is the work of four examiners appointed by Walter Sisulu University (WSU) between the years 2011 and 2012 to review and write narrative reports on one doctoral thesis and one masters mini-dissertation project. The perspectives of the four examiners regarding the depth to which self-study action research candidates should go in the process of validating their research projects are analyzed using autobiography and documentation. The data sources comprise the examiners’ evaluations, the author's evaluations and the University research policy documents. Analysis reveals that the process of gaining academic legitimation for a self-study action research project can be enhanced by developing principles and standards as criteria for self-study action research assessment. The paper concludes by making a claim that external examiners’ understanding and criticism of self-study action research projects deepen and extend ways of validating self-studies as scholarly research work. A set of criteria are provided for consideration by university higher degree committees (HDC) and other practitioners in their quest for quality in self-studies.

Short TitleLegitimizing self-studies
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