A written analysis of the nature of Practitioner Research Osy Izuora 19th July 2012 Introduction Practitioner research is research which is carried out by practitioners in order to support and advance their practice (McLeod, 1999, 25). Various terms have been used interchangeably with practitioner research, including the term action research…
Practitioner research has been employed as a means of bridging the gap between practice and theory. Teachers have been urged to use practitioner research, specifically action research in order to improve education and reconstruct knowledge (Berker, 1992). Other areas of practice, including health, agriculture, and the social sciences have also not been left behind in their use of practitioner research, as they are seeking to improve their knowledge base, and eventually bridging the gap between theory and practice (Fox, et.al., 2007). Various discussions on practitioner research have been forwarded, including its nature, values, and underlying activities. This paper seeks to explore the nature of practitioner research. It shall explore various issues pertaining to ethics, especially in relation to practitioner research. Firstly, it shall discuss the youth mentoring and how practitioner research applies to this field. Secondly, the importance of ethical applications in practitioner research will also be established. Lastly, an analysis of practitioner and action research will be carried out. Youth mentoring is a process that entails a linking of mentors with the youth, especially those that require the care of responsible adults (Rhodes and Liang, 2009). More often than not, the responsible adults (mentors) are not relatives of the mentored youths. At most, these mentors serve as volunteers under a community-based program catering to the needs of the youth population. Most definitions of the mentoring processes have revolved around the idea that an older and more experienced person would assist a much younger and less experienced individual to go through developmental stages and transition towards bigger responsibilities (Rhodes and Liang, 2009). The motive for the establishment of mentoring programs is primarily on assisting youths in their transition into adulthood. In other cases, mentoring programs have also been established in order to curb and control delinquent behaviours. In the past decades, various mentoring programs have emerged in different parts of the world (Spencer, 2007). Moreover, the number of youths under the mentoring programs has also increased drastically (Spencer, 2007). Mentors have often entered into the mentoring programs with much enthusiasm. However, concerns on the efficacy of the mentoring programs have emerged in recent years. In particular, questions have been seen on whether or not the current state of the mentoring programs is effective and ethical (Rhodes and Liang, 2009). These questions relate to the fact that the mentor has a far greater power over the student. The power differential, in other words can be abused by the mentor. On the other, as the mentor and the student develop a closer relationship, the lines between mentor and student may be blurred (Goudreau, 2010). The National Youth Mentoring Program framework is a booklet that stipulates all that should done to ensure that all the mentoring programs attain the desirable goals. In relation to practitioner research, this discussion on the youth mentoring program shall now consider the foundations of the program, as well as the benefits it can bring in improving youth mentoring and in improving the healthy development of the youth. Background of youth mentoring p ...
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