Evolving Methods or Emergent Design

I completed one interview and one observation two weeks ago with the teacher and his class. It was very interesting to watch his class and how he taught after interviewing him. I believe at times he was trying to backup his beliefs and other times he was caught in doing what he dreaded. It was also interesting to watch the students. I wasn’t sure if some of their actions were based on what instruction was happening at the time or just random observations at a moment. Based on the observation I could argue both; however, there were definitely more of actions like looking at a cell phone during certain parts of the lesson.

I plan to complete my intereview/observation process today. I am going to watch the class with a specific lens however. I’m going to pay attention to how students behave when the instructor uses specific methods while at the same time monitoring more closely the time it is taking place. After the class, I plan to complete a focus group with the class. I will ask certain questions about how learning takes place for them in the course while trying to draw information from curriculum, assessment, and instruction.

Thus far, this process has really made me think about my role in a qualitative study. Observing the class and interviewing the teacher/students without being a part of the class is very different than actually being a participant observer. I can see how they both have their strengths and weaknesses.


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