Practitioner Enquiry was highlighted in Teaching Scotland’s Future Donaldson  (2011), GTCS (gtcs, 2016) and PRD requirements to support pupils learning and engage teachers with research to support their own practice.

Benefits of teachers engaging in Practitioner Enquiry.

The GTCS diagram on how teachers engage in Practitioner Enquiry

The main benefit to Practitioner Enquiry is professional development where you are able to improve your practice and knowledge by sharing ideas with fellow educators and giving and receiving feedback.

It important that the research is completed ethically and professionally to continue adding to be of benefit to inform students in a given context and improve teaching standards. By retaining based on research and experiences in your daily teaching teachers can find out new teaching strategies and initiatives and share them with fellow educators and know how to deliver them in practice. This works the other way round too. Practitioner enquiry is most beneficial as teachers are actually educating the children and understand the issues before them. Here is Practitioner Enquiry in action.

A challenge is, depending on how seriously you engage in Practitioner Enquiry, it does take a lot of valuable time to research everything and feedback to fellow educators when you could be doing other important things such as preparing for classes. I feel pressure to teach my science classes in the day, teach dance in the evenings and work for the SQA and as a Network coordinator for North Ayrshire Council. I realise other teachers are not interested in becoming a practitioner who enquires  and feel that enquiry is only successful if supported by peers, the head of department o head teacher. Otherwise it is more of a solo mission which is dismissed where it should inform.

Continually, I need to look become a practitioner who enquires into her practice to positively evolve my knowledge, teaching styles and practice. Without it I might fail to spot problems with students learning from my teaching skills, stop working well in a team situation and ultimately my own teaching. With the advent of new technology, CfE, student needs and subject flexibility, I must to question your own practice throughout my teaching career and positively expand my learning.

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