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6.3 TEACHER’S ROLE AS RESEARCHER

Generally people think that educational research is the job of specialists only. It is just an attitude of mind which is to be developed by all and not merely by the specialists. Such an attitude which may rightly be called a scientific is needed not only by specialists but also by teachers.Research can be easily taken up by a school teacher. The idea of research’ is to enable the teacher to tackle everyday problems that he faces in the classroom. It aims at developing in the teacher an attitude of inquiry rather than making him a research scientist. There is no theorizing here as in fundamental research. During the course of classroom teaching the teacher starts with certain expectations or aspirations. In actual practice when he finds that those are not fulfilled, he feels dissatisfied. This dissatisfaction leads him to take up research. The teacher then tries to focus his attention on the problem and clearly apprehends it. Suppose, he finds that the children in his class do not have a good handwriting and he is to improve the handwriting of the children. This may be designated as diagnosing the problem. Then teacher carefully analyses the causes and tries to pick up those which he can remove. For example, he finds out that the following are the cause of bad handwriting:

(i) The children do not have enough good specimens of handwriting to copy.

(ii) The children do not have comfortable seats; and

(iii) They do not have proper pens to write.

He may now starts his experiment. He evaluates the handwriting of some children before the start of the experiment. Then he provides good specimens of hand writing and good writing material to a group of children during their writing periods and again evaluates their handwriting after say three months. Then he makes a comparison of the results achieved in the improvement of the handwriting of the children experimented upon with those not subjected to the experiment. From this he draws his conclusion. This is an example of simple research.

Experiments of this type can be tried out by all teachers. The main point in Research’ is that the approach of the teacher is more careful, disciplined and objective rather than haphazard and slipshod.

This type of research is necessary for all types of teachers. This will help them in achieving objectivity in their life and also enable them to grow professionally. The school will benefit from such programmes of Research; because they will go a long way in improving the existing school practices.

The purpose of research is not only to improve school practices but also at the same time to improve those who are to improve the practices.

It is unrealistic to assume that every teacher can carry on a continuous programme of research. Not every one who is a good teacher wants to carry on a continuous research programme. What is important is that every teacher is sympathetic to the spirit of research.

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