EDET 636 Week 12

What are the characteristics of an engaging Action Research Report?

There are many characteristics that make action research reports interesting. I read two reports called, “The Joy of Writing: Creating a Class Culture of Writing,” by Derek O’Halloran, and “Assessment: A New Science Teacher’s Attempt to Use Assessment as a Form of Conversation,” by Christopher O. Tracy. There were a few things that really stood out to me that made their reports interesting.

O’Halloran started his report by using quotes about writing. I thought that was a interesting way to get the readers’ attention. Another thing I liked about his report was his use of catchy section titles. For instance, “What on Earth Was I Thinking?” was the title for his introduction part of the report. These creative elements the researcher included made it more engaging for me, as a reader.

Good visualizations, including charts, graphs, and pictures, can make your report more interesting and engaging (Rogers, 2014). O’Tracy included his student surveys at the end of his report. Some researches will reference their visualizations as they are talking about them. I think either way works fine.

Another thing that makes a report engaging is the narrative (Sterne, 2014), or the background. The narrative, or background section, is telling the readers how you came about the research. “What’s the story?” behind this research. It’s always interesting to read, or see how the research questions were raised.

There are many things that make action research reports engaging, these three things are what interested me. In the report, “The Joy of Writing…” what really stuck with me however, was the catchy sectional titles. When I come to writing my report, I would like to change mine to make them more appealing.



My data analysis is starting off slow. I feel like I’m procrastinating and I need motivation. I think having a peer or someone working with me on this report would make the analysis part more “fun.” I guess this is just part of the resource process. I’m getting there though!



10 Ways to Make Reports Not Suck. (n.d.). Retrieved November 19, 2015, from http://www.clickz.com/clickz/column/2360241/10-ways-to-make-reports-not-suck#


Making Reports Interesting and Engaging – SoJo | Ideas into Action. (n.d.). Retrieved November 19, 2015, from http://www.thesojo.net/making-reports-interesting-and-engaging/


O’Halloran, D. (2000). The Joy of Writing: Creating a Class Culture for Writing.


O’Tracy, C. (2002). Assessment: A New Teacher’s Attempt to use Assessment as Form of Conversation.

Week 13: Producing engaging and accessible evaluation reports. (n.d.). Retrieved November 19, 2015, from http://betterevaluation.org/blog/producing_engaging_accessible_evaluation_reports






5 thoughts on “EDET 636 Week 12

  1. Tristan

    I thought the titles were catchy as well, not as boring as just intro, methods, etc. It makes me think maybe I should make mine more exciting because right now I just have the normal words and they could be much more catchy to catch the eye of someone.


  2. Genevieve,

    I actually hadn’t thought about using anything other than the generic titles for each section of my report. That could definitely be a way to make my paper more engaging.

    I like that you mentioned using visuals to make a paper more engaging. I’ve really just started my data analysis this week, but I will try to come up with some relevant charts or tables to display data in my paper, which will hopefully make it more engaging.


  3. Genevieve- I too likes the quotes and thought about maybe using them. I thought about making some charts for some of my results because I think charts are more visually attraction than just writing the results. That is also another good idea the background. I will think about these as I start my report.


  4. I also really enjoyed reading O’Halloran’s report. He gave me a lot to think about in regards to how I want to set up my paper. I don’t know about using different titles because I’m not sure if that is really me. However, I see the benefit of adding humor and with first graders (and both kindergarteners and first graders for you) there is always something humorous happening. I’m also still sifting through my data. I feel like I should be farther along. It’s just so much to get through. My goal is to start to organize all the coded data tomorrow night.


  5. While Tracy did use humor and has an attractive writing style, I was not engaged because he took so long to get to the point. In addition, I did not see any literature support or strong evidence from data to back up most of his statements. For those reasons, I did not find his report engaging. I do agree that humor and personalized writing can improve engagement, but I think the first priority should be directness, clarity, validity, and reliability. Only after these are accomplished, should “frills” be added.


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