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Action Research Implementation Reflection

University of Saint Mary

Analisa Shinn

For the purpose of my action research project, I have chosen to pose the question: If I

implement strategies to stimulate intrinsic motivation in students, such as encouraging students

to actively design class curriculum, will it improve students attitudes and participation towards

my class, as measured by qualitative data collected through surveys given periodically

throughout the course of the year? I selected this topic of study because I have witnessed a

dramatic decrease in student motivation over my six years of teaching, have come to understand

that methods of extrinsic motivation are only successful for short periods, and have therefore

been inspired to study ways in which I can increase students motivation in my classroom.

Tanaka, M., Mizuno, K., Fukuda, S., Tajima, S., and Watanabe, Y. (2009) state that Motivation

is one of the most important psychological concepts in education and is related to academic

outcomes in [] students.

I see myself as a facilitator of learning; I introduce new concepts, then encourage

students to use critical thinking in order to apply such ideas to their own art. I strive to

differentiate instruction so that all students can achieve success, give thorough feedback in a

timely manner, and encourage students to think creatively and pursue topics or methods of

creating art that appeal to them as individuals. As an educator, I am greatly interested in ways to

increase intrinsic student motivation in my classroom because I believe that by promoting

intrinsic motivation, my students will be more invested in my class, and will therefore produce

stronger artwork. Kusurkar, Croiset, & Ten Cate (2011) state, Intrinsic motivation is observed

when one engages in an activity out of genuine interest and is truly self-determined. Through

the Professional Collaboration & Peer Coaching course, I was able to better understand my role

as leader to my peers, which has helped me to understand that the best way I could possibly use

my leadership map is to introduce my team members first to the concept of writing in their

classrooms, then later encourage them to incorporate methods of my action research plan within

their own classrooms so that they might also benefit from an increased motivation in their


During the past school year, I struggled most with lack of student motivation in my

Photography classes; therefore, I decided to structure my action research project around those

students. At the start of this school year, I began implementing my plan for action research in

my three photography classes. While I am using those classes as a starting point, my hope is that

I will be able to develop my plan further through the course of the year, then implement it in all

of my classes at the start of the 2017-18 school year. According to Kusurkar, Croiset, & Ten

Cate (2011), Active participation of students in learning sessions transfers some of the

responsibility for learning from the teacher to the students, making the learning more

autonomous. It is my belief that by identifying what students are looking to achieve from the

class, encouraging them to accept more responsibility for their learning by having them help

design class curriculum, providing structured guidance and constructive feedback through all

levels of learning, and giving students choices on projects to encourage learning autonomy, my

students will find a greater success through improved intrinsic motivation. By incorporating the

methods in my leadership map, I have already seen some success in my plan. Since the focus of

my leadership map revolves around the idea of incorporating writing in classrooms across all

disciplines, I have been using this change initiative as a way to focus my students ideas into

simple digital journals, but also have future plans of incorporating other forms of writing to

continue strengthening their writing skills.

My implementation plan and leadership map closely follow the USM Knowledge in

Action Conceptual Framework by remaining an example of cyclical research. I have clarified


and improved upon my Area of Focus Statement, will begin to collect and triangulate my

artifacts and data, and will be reflecting upon my findings so that I may improve upon and

redefine my plan as necessary, before again implementing it into my other classes. I fully intend

to continue said process long past my time in the Master of Arts in Education program, because I

believe that generations of students are ever changing; therefore, what works for my classes this

year most likely will not have the same results after a decade. I believe that my plans also show

a commitment to the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Five Core

Propositions by: showing a commitment to students and their learning; knowing my subjects and

how to teach them to my students; properly managing and monitoring student learning; learning

from my teaching experience; and being an active member of the learning community by

furthering my own education in my subjects (1989).

Additionally, through my Area of Focus Statement and leadership map, I directly

addressed the following USM Graduate Program Outcomes: drawing from my knowledge and

research of education theory; demonstrating understanding of diverse learners and creating

educational opportunities to meet the needs of all students; critically reflecting on ethical and

moral implications; applying my knowledge of curriculum content to support construction of

knowledge; implementing appropriate strategies to enhance student learning; utilizing evaluation

accurately to monitor learning; applying principles of leadership to improve the learning

community; and demonstrating the ability to identify a problem, examine research, advocate a

plan, and evaluate outcomes (2013).



Kusurkar, R. A., Croiset, G., & Ten Cate, T. J. (2011). Twelve tips to stimulate intrinsic
motivation in students through autonomy-supportive classroom teaching derived from
Self-Determination Theory. Medical Teacher, 33(12), 978-982.

National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (1989). Five core propositions. What
Teachers Should Know and Be Able to Do, 3-4.

Tanaka, M., Mizuno, K., Fukuda, S., Tajima, S., & Watanabe, Y. (2009). Personality traits
associated with intrinsic academic motivation in medical students. Medical
Education, 43(4), 384-387. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2923.2008.03279.x

University of Saint Mary Conceptual Model (2011). Knowledge in action: defining problem-
based inquiry.

University of Saint Mary Graduate Program Outcomes (2013). Retrieved from: Action
Research in Effective Classroom Environments Syllabus.