Professor Jean McNiff
of Educational Research
Jean came to York St John in November 2008 as Professor of
Educational Research in the Faculty of Education and Theology, on a
part-time basis. Brought up in England, of Scottish/Irish heritage,
she now lives in Dorset as her base for travel to different
countries. She works with practitioners internationally in a range
of educational settings, including higher education, supporting
their workplace and higher degree programmes that are grounded in
the descriptions and explanations they offer for their practices in
the form of their living educational theories. She took (very)
early retirement from her position as Deputy Head Teacher in a
large secondary school, and began to develop her independent
consultancy business and her writing. She has written a range of
articles and textbooks on different aspects of practice-based
action research, independently and collaboratively.
Jean's web address is http://www.jeanmcniff.com/index.html
Her publishing firm is http://www.september-books.com/
Jean’s abiding research commitments are about
how she can contribute to the fields of enquiry into generative
transformational processes across the disciplines, with a special
focus on transformational forms of epistemology for a new
scholarship of educational enquiry for the development of
sustainable social orders. A recent extended research interest is
in the development of new epistemologies for an educational
discipline of academic literacies.
Action Research for Professional
Development: Concise advice for new (and experienced) action
researchers (2010), Poole, September Books – see
All You Need to Know about Action
Research (second edition 2010) (with Jack Whitehead), London,
Sage – see http://www.sagepub.com/books/Book235686
You and Your Action Research Project
(third edition 2010) (with Jack Whitehead), London, Routledge
– see http://www.routledge.com/books/details/9780415487092/
Doing and Writing Action Research
(2009) (with Jack Whitehead), London, Sage – see
Action Research: Living Theory
(2006), with Jack Whitehead, London, Sage – see http://www.sagepub.com/books/Book227549
Action Research: Principles and
Practice (second edition) (2002), London, Routledge – see
Recent book chapters
McNiff, J. (2008) Working with HIV and AIDS
through action research: I know how to set the caged bird
free. Chapter in L. Wood (ed.) Dealing with HIV and AIDS in the
classroom. Cape Town, Juta Academic.
McNiff, J. (2007) My story is my living
educational theory. Chapter in D. J. Clandinin (ed.) Handbook
of Narrative Inquiry: Mapping a Methodology. Thousand Oaks,
Sage. Pp 308–329.
McNiff, J. and Whitehead, J. (2008)
Demonstrating Quality in Action Research for Social Accountability.
Chapter in S. Noffke and B. Somekh (eds) The SAGE Handbook of
Educational Action Research. London, Sage, pages 313–323.
McNiff, J. (in press) 'It takes a township'
South African Journal of Higher Education, 25 (7):
1253-1273. Published as an 'initiating debate' article.
McNiff, J. (forthcoming) 'Travels around identity' - in
production for Educational Action Research Special Issue
on Narrative Inquiry and Action Research.
McNiff, J. (2011) New Cultures of Critical
Reflection in Qatar. Educational Action Research, 19 (3):
279-296: Special Issue on Reflective Practice and Action
McNiff, J. (2010) Supporting Teachers
Personally and Professionally in Challenging Environments.
Invitational lead article for Turkish Online Journal of
Qualitative Inquiry, Vol. 1 No. 1 Retrieved 6 March 2011 from
McNiff, J. (2008) ‘The significance of ‘I’ in
educational research and the responsibility of intellectuals.’
Invited paper for the South African Journal of Education.
(Exact reference to be supplied)
McNiff, J. (2008) ‘Accounting to myself: How
do I speak for myself, to myself, as I encourage others to do the
same?’ Invited article for South African Journal of Higher
Education, Vol. 22, No. 6: 1131–1153.
McNiff, J. and Naidoo, A. (2007) How do we
develop inclusional epistemologies for a new scholarship of
democratic educational enquiry? South African Journal
of Education, 41: 42–59.
McNiff, J. (2010) Pedagogical action research
in Higher Education: How do we improve our practices? Paper
presented at the Collaborative Action Research Association, Annual
Conference, Cambridge, November.
McNiff, J. (2010) Pedagogical research, living
theory, and the virtuous university. Paper presented at the British
Educational Research Association Annual conference, University of
McNiff, J. (2010) How do I do and support
pedagogical action research in higher education? Paper presented at
the British Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, as
part of the York St John symposium ‘Pedagogical Research for
Improving Teaching and Learning in Higher Education’. University of
McNiff, J. (2009) What kind of epistemologies
can help us to live together successfully? How do we develop them?
Paper presented at the International Conference on Peace and
Reconciliation, UCLA, July.
McNiff, J. (2009) How do I justify my
contributions to new institutional epistemologies for a new
scholarship of educational knowledge? Paper presented at the
symposium ‘Institutional research: How do we influence processes of
epistemological transformation through the creation of academic
practitioners’ living educational theories of practice?’ British
Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, University of
McNiff, J. (2009) How do I contribute to a
reconceptualisation of educational theory for moral
accountability in the creation of sustainable social orders? Paper
Presented at the Practitioner Research Special Interest Group
Symposium ‘Academic practitioner-researchers: shifting the
epistemological centre in higher education’. University of
McNiff, J. (2009) Learning for action in
action. Paper presented at the Keynote Symposium of the British
Educational Research Association ‘Explicating a New Epistemology
for Educational Knowledge with Educational Responsibility.’
Manchester, University of Manchester, September.
McNiff, J. (2009) How do I contribute to a
reconceptualisation of educational theory for moral accountability
in the creation of sustainable social orders? Paper presented at
the Practitioner Research Special Interest Group Symposium,'
Academic practitioner-researchers: shifting the epistemological
centre in higher education'. University of Manchester, September.
Retrieved 6 March 2011 from
McNiff, J. (2009) How do I~we contribute to
the development of new institutional epistemologies of Educational
knowledge? Paper presented at the British Educational Research
Association annual conference, University of Manchester, September.
Retrieved 6 March 2011 from
Plenary and keynote lectures
McNiff, J. (2011) Exploring Practice Based
Research. Keynote paper presented at the British Early Childhood
Education Research Association conference ‘The Art of Practice
Based Inquiry: Early Childhood Professionals & Research’.
McNiff, J. (2011) The transformative
potentials of action research: How do I understand ‘I’ in relation
to ‘You’ so that we can work as a ‘We’? Keynote presentation at the
Workshop on Alternative Research Paradigms and Indigenous Knowledge
Production. Covenant University, Nigeria. February.
McNiff, J. (2010) Using our educational
responsibilities to transform our violent histories into
life-affirming futures. Keynote address to the University of the
Free State staff colloquium, February.
McNiff, J. (2010) A Most Beautiful Game:
Football and the spirit of action research. Keynote presentation at
the conference ‘Action Research: Exploring its Transformative
Potential.’ Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, August.
McNiff, J. (2009) The Power of One to the
Power of a Million. Keynote presentation to the University of Qatar
Action Research Conference. Doha, Qatar, June.
McNiff, J. (2009) The ABC of action research:
supporting teachers personally and professionally. Keynote paper
presented at the conference Supporting Teachers in a Challenging
Environment, Kilkenny Education Centre, October
McNiff, J. (2008) Action Research,
Transformational Influences: Past, present and future. Keynote
address to the Staff Colloquium ‘PE Pays’, University of Limerick.
McNiff, J. (2008) Living Portfolios: Offering
explanatory accounts for the lives we live. Keynote presentation at
the Conference ‘Portfolios of and for Professional Development.’
International Association of Teachers as a Foreign Language,
Exeter, April. Retrieved 6 March 2011 from http://www.jeanmcniff.com/items.asp?id=12.
Membership of editorial boards
Educational Action Research
Educational Research for Social
Turkish Online Journal of Qualitative
Action Researcher in Education