“Running with the Question” - Action Research and Evaluative Practice in developing an Adolescent Reading Program


  • Wilma Kurvink
  • Marie Turnbull




This paper describes how Action Research methodology developed the wider reading programs for children from 9-13 years at Wesley College over a 5-year period. The central question revolved around how the library team could engage every child in years 5 to 7 in wider reading. Strategies used in the program were: Engaging interactive online components, Highly responsive collection development approaches, Hard data collection on usage, and Qualitative measures undertaken by the team in adopting evaluative practice. Interesting and unexpected results began to inform decision making for the team highlighting gender issues in adolescent reading, and a need to re-examine some basic assumptions about the ways students select books for personal reading. The paper chronicles how the team learned from experience to bring about new defined cycles of development and improvement to the program, which has evolved and expanded far beyond the initial concepts.