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Story Telling and Educational Understanding

Previously published in Occasional Papers #12, Evaluation Centre, University of Western Michigan, 1978.

Case Study Evaluation: Past, Present and Future Challenges

ISBN: 978-1-78441-064-3, eISBN: 978-1-78441-063-6

ISSN: 1474-7863

Publication date: 3 January 2015

Abstract

The full ‘storytelling’ paper was written in 1978 and was influential in its time. It is reprinted here, introduced by an Author's reflection on it in 2014. The chapter describes the author’s early disenchantment with traditional approaches to educational research.

He regards educational research as, at best, a misnomer, since little of it is preceded by a search. Entitled educational researchers often fancy themselves as scientists at work. But those whom they attempt to describe are often artists at work. Statistical methodologies enable educational researchers to measure something, but their measurements can neither capture nor explain splendid teaching.

Since such a tiny fraction of what is published in educational research journals influences school practitioners, professional researchers should risk trying alternative approaches to uncovering what is going on in schools.

Story telling is posited as a possible key to producing insights that inform and ultimately improve educational practice. It advocates openness to broad inquiry into the culture of the educational setting.

Keywords

Citation

Denny, T. (2015), "Story Telling and Educational Understanding

Previously published in Occasional Papers #12, Evaluation Centre, University of Western Michigan, 1978.

", Case Study Evaluation: Past, Present and Future Challenges (Advances in Program Evaluation, Vol. 15), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 41-61. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1474-786320140000015002

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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