American Educational Research Association Special Interest Group:


The name of this Special Interest Group (“SIG”) is Action Research (hereafter referred to as the “SIG”).

The SIG is a Special Interest Group of the American Educational Research Association (hereafter referred to as “AERA” or “Association”) established to facilitate the formation of research specialties of an intra- or cross-divisional nature and to increase the exchange of knowledge within research arenas of special interest, and for other reasons in keeping with achieving the purposes of the Association.

The SIG shall be governed by the Association’s Bylaws and policies. The Bylaws, decisions and actions of the SIG shall not conflict with the Association’s Bylaws and policies, including the SIG Handbook and all guidelines, procedures, and policies associated with the Association’s Annual Meeting and its program.

The purposes of the SIG are to encourage and actively assist educational practitioners to generate educational knowledge and to develop their skills in applied research and professional inquiry to improve educational decision-making at all levels. In doing this, the SIG intends to:
•    Promote educational reform from within by assisting practitioners in all educational areas to focus their attention on improving their own practice by means of self-examination and focused inquiry;
•    Promote the worth and relevance of inquiry-based findings for decision-making by practitioners at all levels of teaching and administration in school-based, community-oriented, and higher education contexts;
•    Encourage practitioners from school, community, and higher education settings to collaborate in inquiry-oriented activities that improve the quality of education in their professional contexts;
•    Promotes the use of qualitative and quantitative methods of data collection and analysis (and all appropriate combinations of these methods) by educational practitioners to improve the state of educational practice in which they work; and
•    Promote the use of practitioners-initiated and inquiry-based findings in policy-making directed toward major social issues at local, regional, and national levels.
In support of the above listed SIG purposes and intents, the Action Research SIG explicitly adopts a broad, inclusive definition of “action research” and does not limit its interests or the content of its annual programs to selected groups of educators. SIG members use various research methodologies in their efforts to promote educational reform and to improve the quality of their actions and decisions at all levels of education.

Pursuant to these purposes, the SIG may elect to publish its own journal or hold occasional conferences supplementing AERA meetings.

Section 1. Eligibility. Voting membership in the SIG shall be open to any AERA member who supports the purposes of the SIG and who pays the specified SIG dues and all additional fees required of SIG members by the Association.

Section 2. Joining the SIG. AERA members shall join the SIG by paying SIG dues and Association fees through the AERA Central Office using the appropriate AERA print or electronic form.

Section 3. Members in Good Standing. SIG members are considered “in good standing” immediately upon the recording of their dues and applicable fees paid in full by the AERA Central Office.

Section 4. Duration of Membership in the SIG. AERA members may join the SIG at any time, but SIG membership expires coterminously with AERA membership.

Section 5. Voting Rights. All SIG members in good standing, fully paid in Sig dues, shall be entitled to vote for SIG officers and SIG-related matters where a vote is taken or required.

Section 1. Required Officers. The SIG shall have a Chair, Secretary, and Program Chair as officers of the SIG. The SIG shall have any other officers that its members choose to designate. In addition, the Chair of the SIG may appoint persons to assist these officers or to carry out other work of the SIG.

Section 2. Other Officers. The other officers of this SIG shall be nominated and elected by the SIG membership on an as-needed basis. These officers may include Newsletter Editor, Web Designer, Listserv Coordinator, Awards Coordinator, or other officers as deemed necessary by the SIG Executive Committee.

Section 3. Eligibility. All members in good standing of both AERA and the SIG and who are not restricted from holding a particular office due to requirements in the Association’s or the SIG’s Bylaws shall be eligible to run as candidates for election as officers and for any office within the SIG.

Section 4. Term of Office. The term of each office shall be for one years. The term of each office shall begin the day following the close of the AERA Annual Meeting. No person may serve in any single office for more than three years.

Section 5. Officers as Members of AERA. All individuals serving as officers of the SIG shall be members of AERA during their term of office.

Section 1. Chair. The Chair shall be responsible for the general administration of the SIG and act as liaison between the SIG and AERA. The Chair shall preside at all meetings of the Executive Committee and at the Annual Business Meeting. The Chair shall appoint ad hoc committees as needed.

Section 2. Secretary. The Secretary shall be responsible for the preparation of minutes, shall certify results of elections, and shall carry out such other duties as may be assigned by the Chair and the Executive Committee. The Secretary also serves as Treasurer for the SIG and , in conjunction with the Chair and Executive Committee, arranges for payment of expenses incurred by the SIG. The Secretary shall make arrangements for and coordinate with the appropriate entities for any equipment or refreshments required for the Annual Business Meeting.

Section 3. Program Chair. The Program Chair shall be responsible for the acceptance of proposals for consideration for presentation at the Annual Meeting. The Program Chair shall send out the proposals for review to selected SIG members and make the decisions about acceptance/rejection of proposals. He/she shall notify all authors who submitted proposals of the decision to accept or reject the proposal. The Program Chair shall establish the schedule for accepted papers in available sessions in conjunction with appropriate personnel of other SIGs and AERA.

Individuals may from time to time be appointed or elected to Non-Officer positions to carry out leadership or task assignments of the SIG for the benefit of the SIG.

Section 1. Membership. There shall be an Executive Committee consisting of the SIG Chair, Secretary, Program Chair, and Past Chair.

Section 2. Duties. The Executive Committee shall have power to provide leadership and direct and review the general affairs of the SIG within the limits set forth in these Bylaws.

Section 3. Meetings. The Executive Committee shall hold at least one meeting each in person and shall communicate as needed throughout the year. This meeting may be during the Annual Meeting. The Chair shall be responsible for setting and distributing the agenda for this meeting.

Section 4. Quorum and Decision-making. A majority of the members of the Executive Committee shall constitute a quorum, and decisions of the Executive Committee shall be by a majority of those present.

Section 1. Date for Completion of Election Tabulation. All election processes for Officers for the following year shall be completed by the last day of the AERA Annual Meeting with a list of Officers turned in to the AERA Central Office by the end of the last day of said Annual Meeting.

Section 2. Nominations and Nomination Process. The SIG Chair, in conjunction with the SIG Executive Committee, shall serve as the Nomination Committee and shall present the slate of candidates to the SIG membership for voting. Voting may be held at the Annual Business Meeting, in which case, members in attendance shall take part in the election process in person, or voting may occur by e-mail or postal mail prior to the Annual Business Meeting. Election to office requires a majority of votes cast; a tie vote shall be broken by a coin flip at the AERA Annual Meeting by the Chair or his/her designee.

Section 3. Self Nominations. The SIG welcomes members to self nominate as candidates for officer positions in the SIG. Members who wish to self nominate should notify the Chair or other Executive Committee member in writing at least one week prior to the election.

Section 4. Write-in Nominations. The SIG welcomes write-in nominations of candidates who wish to have their names placed on the slate of potential candidates for election. Write-in nominations should be sent in writing to the Chair or other Executive Committee member at least one week prior to the election.

Section 5. Conduct of Elections. The election of officers may be held at the Annual Business Meeting or may be held by e-mail through the listserv of the SIG. Only members in good standing are eligible to participate in elections. In the case of holding the Members will be notified of the slate of candidates and will be advised of the due date election during the Annual Business Meeting, votes will be tabulated by the Secretary. In the case of e-mail election via the listserv, the Executive Committee will send out the slate of candidates and inform members of the date by which votes must be rendered. New officers shall be installed at the Annual Business Meeting.

Section 6. Voting. Members shall vote by a show of hands or ballot at the Annual Business Meeting or by e-mail or other means as determined by the majority of SIG officers or as otherwise specified in these Bylaws. In the case of postal or electronic mail, the vote counts shall be based on and determined by the votes submitted by the deadline. The Executive Committee shall be responsible for overseeing the process.

Section 7. Tabulation of Ballots and Notification of Results. The Secretary, overseen by the Executive Committee, shall be responsible for tabulation of ballots. The SIG Chair shall report the results to the AERA Central Office and to the membership within one week of the close of the voting.

Section 1. SIG Annual Business Meeting. The SIG shall hold its Annual Business Meeting in conjunction with the AERA Annual Meeting. The agenda of this meeting is the responsibility of the Chair.

Section 2. Officer and Committee Meetings. The Officers and Committees of the SIG shall meet when, where, and as needed to conduct the business of the SIG or carry out the charges of the committee within the parameters and requirements of these Bylaws. The SIG Chair, other SIG officers and committee chairs shall set the meetings and notify all officers of the date, time, place, and agenda or purposes of the meetings and send a report of the results of the meeting to all officers within 30 days of the end of the meeting.

Section 3. Notice of Meeting. Announcement of day, time, and place of any business or committee meeting of the SIG membership shall be made as far ahead as is reasonably possible. Whenever possible, notice shall be communicated electronically to members at least four weeks in advance of the Annual Meeting.

Section 4. Rules of Order. In all cases to which they apply and do not conflict with the provisions of these Bylaws and the Association Bylaws, Robert’s Rules of Order (current edition) shall govern all business meetings of the SIG.

Section 1. Dues. Dues for this SIG shall be decided by a majority vote of those members voting at the SIG Annual Business Meeting or a majority of the membership by postal, e-mail, or electronic voting. A motion to change the dues to a specific amount shall be made by the Chair or by the Executive Committee. All voting to change the dues must be complete within two weeks of the end of the AERA Annual Meeting. The Chair shall notify AERA Central Office of all changes in dues approved by the membership.

Section 2. Allocation of SIG Assets. The Chair shall have the primary responsibility to ensure that all SIG assets, including money collected via dues, are allocated and spent in ways and in a timely manner to fulfill commitments made by the SIG, to pay fees to the Association, to pay debts, and to enhance and promote the SIG and the purposes, goals, and objectives of the SIG.

Section 3. Approval of commitment to expend SIG Assets. No individual representing or serving as an Officer or in any other position may charge, contract for, purchase, put on credit, or engage in any other activity that commits SIG assets to pay for such goods and services without the prior consent in writing by the SIG Chair and Secretary or approval of the Executive Committee and included in the minutes of their meeting.

Section 1. Approval Process of the Initial Bylaws. The process for approving the initial Bylaws for this SIG shall be as follows:

Section 1a. The officers of the SIG shall decide the process and tentative timeline for the construction of a draft of the Bylaws that allows members of the SIG ample opportunity and time to make suggestions, review the draft in progress, and critique the text of the Bylaws. This process shall allow members to make suggested editorial changes in language or changes by deletion, addition, or modification in specific Articles, sections, or subsections. The officers shall be responsible for making specific revisions, additions and/or deletions in the Bylaws based upon the feedback, suggestions and vote of the members voting. If substantial changes in the draft are proposed by the members, then the officers shall resend the revised draft to the membership for their comments.

Section 1b. After the membership has had an opportunity to make suggestions for the draft of the Bylaws, the Chair shall submit a copy of the draft to AERA Central Office for review. Central Office may send it back to the SIG Chair with comments for revisions or forward the Bylaws to the SIG Executive Committee for review and recommendation to AERA Council for approval. The SIG Executive Committee may return the Bylaws to the SIG Executive Committee may return the Bylaws to the SIG Chair to address specific concerns before making a recommendation to Council.

Section 1c. Council may require changes or revisions in the language of the Bylaws or amendments thereof prior to final approval. The SIG Chair and officers shall then complete the process of getting approval of the Bylaws by vote of SIG members. The SIG Chair shall have 30 days to convey in writing to Central Office and the Chair of the SIG Executive Committee the dates and manner of voting decided upon by the SIG officers.

Section 2. Ratification. After Council approval, these Bylaws shall require a majority vote of those members voting at a duly called Annual Business Meeting or a majority of those members voting by post, e-mail, or electronic ballot. The SIG Chair shall transmit in writing the manner, dates, and results of this vote to Central Office within 10 days of the final count of the votes.

Section 3. Effective Date of Implementation.  These Bylaws shall take effect immediately upon receipt in writing to the SIG Chair by Central Office acknowledging the Chair’s written statement of the favorable vote of the SIG membership for the presented version of the Bylaws or amendment(s) thereof.

Section 4. Amendments. These Bylaws may be amended or changed by majority vote of those members voting at a duly called SIG Annual Business Meeting or a majority of the membership by postal, e-mail, or electronic voting as designated by the Officers or elsewhere within these Bylaws. Each amendment or change must be approved by the Council.

Section 5. Effective Date of Implementation. The amendment or change in the Bylaws shall take effect immediately upon receipt in writing to the SIG Chair by Central Office acknowledging the SIG Chair’s written statement of the favorable vote of the SIG membership for the Council-approved version of the amendment or change.

Within 30 days of the SIG membership approval of the Council-approved SIG Bylaws and receipt of the acknowledgement letter by Central Office of the favorable vote, the entire set of Bylaws shall be e-mailed to all SIG members as an attachment and posted on the AERA website for the SIG.

Section 1. Membership Division to Dissolve the SIG. The SIG may dissolve itself by a majority of members who vote by postal, e-mail, or electronic vote or attend the SIG Annual Business Meeting. Approval of a majority of the members voting shall be sufficient. Within two weeks of such vote, the decision of the vote shall be sent in writing by the SIG Chair to AERA Central Office and the Chair of the SIG Executive Committee.

Section 2. Other Circumstances that May Result in the Discontinuation of the SIG. The SIG may automatically be dissolved should its membership fall below the minimum number established by Council for active SIGs; should its members approve the merging of the SIG with one or more other SIGs, or for other reasons that may arise that prevent the continuation of the SIG as presently constituted under the Bylaws of the Association, the SIG Handbook, or actions by the SIG Officers or members. In addition, the SIG may be dissolved by the AERA Council for good and sufficient reasons.

Section 3. Distribution of SIG Assets. Should the SIG discontinue for any reason, its assets shall be used to pay all outstanding debts and obligations. Any remaining funds shall be returned to the AERA to be used at the discretion of the Council.