Cutting Edge Research Tools for Language Teachers: An Introduction to Repertory Grids

JALT 25th Annual International Conference

Saturday, October 9, 1999


Gregory Hadley

Nagaoka National College of Technology



I.               Introduction

A.    Most common tool for action research is the questionnaire.

B.    Potential weakness of this approach is an over-reliance on the teacher's frame of reference.

C.    Sometimes a research tool is needed that can:

1.     Avoid research bias,

2.     Allow subjects to communicate their viewpoint on a subject in their own words, without interference from the researcher,

3.     Be analyzed in a variety of ways that are understandable to outside observers.


II.              Background of Repertory Grids

A.    Developed by George Kelly

B.    Personal Construct Psychology

1.     Constructs (bipolar)

2.     Elements

C.    Repertory Grid used to study a person's worldview in the form of bipolar constructs.

1.     Market Research

2.     Problem-solving/decision-making

3.     Educational Research

4.     Artificial Intelligence


III.            The Repertory Grid Procedure (See Instructions)

A.    Important:  This is a demonstration of only one of the many variations of this technique.


IV.            Examples of Repertory Grid-based Research in Japan

A.    Cooperative Development (Statistical Analysis)

B.    Action Research with 165 Japanese College Students (Interpretive Analysis)


V.             Conclusion




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