The Action Research Community

STAR Action Research Community (ARC) is led by eight professors of action research from two nations. These professors, who teach action research courses, have met between ARNA conferences over the last few years to think about strategies, issues, and resources to support the teaching action research.

Within a distributed leadership framework and Learning Circle approach, the first phase focused on the creation of the STAR ARNA ARC website (2017-18) Margaret Riel coordinates development of the website. The second phase has included the translation of the website into Spanish with the help of Clotilde Lomeli Agruel and Laura Dina, the construction of the STAR ARNA ARC Blog (April 2019) coordinated by Kathy Shafer and Jennifer Robin, and the development of the ARNA-STAR ARC Newsletter (May 2019) with Teri Marcos, Linda Purrington and Clotilde Lomeli Agruel as Editors.


Meet the Leaders of the STAR ARC:

Clotilde Lomeli Agruel


Teri Maros

  • I am leading the section of the STAR ARC related to reflection in action research.
  • I serve as professor of educational administration for National University.
  • I am currently teaching action research in the M.S. in Educational Administration as well as School Improvement Leadership.
  • I also serve as qualitative methodologist for dissertation proposals.

Prior to moving to higher education, I served for 20 years at the middle school level in Chino Valley Unified as a teacher, principal, and GATE Coordinator.

I am Nana to four grandbabies and a serious baker of gingerbread. Nothing delights me more than to share their joy at rolling, cutting, baking, frosting, and nibbling. The sounds and smells of home are deeply ingrained from my parents' Southern, extremely hospitable DNA. This, along with a gift of gab, is my rationale for being a qualitative researcher. There just aren't enough words in the day so let's capture as many as we can and make sense of them.





Laura Irene Dino Morales

I direct the STAR ARC section related to the development of professional competencies through action research.

  • I directed the first four degrees by portfolio of evidences of the bachelor's degrees in elementary and preschool
  • Teacher-master's researcher at the CIFE University Center.
  • Virtual tutor of the SINADEP Foundation.
  • Advisor to the National School of Trade Union Training and Professionalization.
  • I retired as Assistant Administrative and Teaching Director of the Institución Benemérita y Centenaria Normal School of the State of Chihuahua Professor Luis Urías Belderráin (IByCENECH).
  • I worked as a teacher of primary, secondary and I have a diploma as an educator.
  • I have 30 years of service in public education and 9 years at the university level (private).
  • I belong to the Network of Educational Researchers of Chihuahua, A.C. (REDIECH) in which I participate as Liaison Coordinator and Action Research Network of the Americas (ARNA) in which I participate as a member of STAR ARC and as associate editor in Spanish.


Linda Purrington

  • I am leading the section of the STAR ARC related to framing action research questions.
  • I taught action research in the educational leadership and learning technologies programs at Pepperdine University.
  • I am a recent Past Director for the Educational Leadership Administration and Policy (ELAP) Ed.D. Program and the Educational Leadership Academy (ELA) M.S. Program at Pepperdine University.
  • I am also a recent Past Co-President for the California Association of Professors of Education Administration (CAPEA).
  • After 19 years of full-time service as a professor at Pepperdine University, I transitioned to an adjunct role and currently chair Ed.D. Leadership Program dissertation committees.

Prior to Pepperdine, I served as an adjunct professor at CSU Long Beach, CSU Fullerton, Chapman, and Concordia Universities. I made a career transition to higher education after serving 21 years in K-12 education as a bilingual teacher, principal, and district office coordinator.


Margaret Riel

I have retired from Pepperdine where I directed the Learning Technologies M. A. program and taught in the action research strand. However, I continue to work with educators in the International And Resource Network (iEARN) to support global teachers in their action research. To help in this effort, I created the online action research tutorials which are freely available to support the teaching and learning of action research.

I am enjoying being a member of this ARNA Action Research Community (ARC) and hope you will want to join with us as we explore issues in the teaching of action research.



Jennifer Robins

  • I am leading the section of the STAR ARC related to ethical challenges.
  • I am a retired professor of Library and Information Science (University of Central Missouri).

I was fortunate to teach teachers to be school librarians. Also, Missouri required all their school librarians to study action research. While normally I taught a one-semester course of action research to my master's students, I had the opportunity to lead two cohorts of practicing school librarians. These were teachers who worked in the school library but needed school library certification from Missouri. With practicing school librarians, I was able to have them not only learn about action research but also to practice action research in their schools for one school year.

I live in Denver full time now. I have two daughters: one single and living in NYC and one who is married and lives near me in Denver. I have a four-year-old granddaughter here in Denver.

Since retiring last year the only action research I am involved with is working with GESTEM (Girls Exploring STEM). This day-long event brought 1,300 seventh-grade girls to the Auraria campus in downtown Denver for a day of workshops. My daughter has chaired the event for a few years and has recruited me to help.


Kathy Shafer


  • I am leading the section of the STAR ARC related to data collection and analysis.
  • I am a mathematics teacher educator at Ball State University (Muncie, IN).
  • A main area of teaching and research includes the integration of technology in the K-16 mathematics classroom.
  • I direct cohorts of graduate students through the development, implementation, analysis and reporting of an action research study (MATH 694 & MATH 696).





Our History:

This ARC began with a Learning Circle Approach. A learning circle is a highly interactive, participatory structure for organizing group work. The goal is to build, share, and express knowledge through a process of open dialogue and deep reflection around issues or problems with a focus on a shared outcome. Online learning circles take advantage of social networking tools to manage collaborative work over distances following a timeline from the open to the close of the circle. Circles have a final project which collects the shared knowledge generated during the interactions. Learning circles are a great way to organize learning in global projects.

Learning Circle interaction is a process of distributed leadership. Each of us led the circle around a project idea and developed the site resources around that topic. We met monthly and worked on the different projects. This website is the outcome of the learning circle interactions. We continue to meet monthly in our learning circle. Now the projects have evolved and include a translation of the materials into Spanish, and the development of a blog and a bi-lingual newsletter.

You can read our monthly meeting notes which we collectively keep on our etherpad.

We meet on the first Wednesday of the Month at 9:00 am PT in Google Hangout.

After we have developed the first draft of the website, we are now in phase 2 where with a goal of moderating a larger level of participation around the topics as well as to continue our evolution. We are working on holding live STAR Conversations. We are all members of the action research tutorials facebook discussion.