Employing Participatory Learning through the Use of Photovoice in Iranian EFL Learning Settings: The Case of Reflective Narratives

Document Type: Research Paper

Authors

English Department, Islamic Azad University, Isfahan (Khorasgan) Branch

Abstract

Photovoice is a participatory action research method which aims to enable students to create compelling visual representations and identify the local social issues.  This paper attempted to investigate the impact of photovoice as an innovative method on the levels of reflection manifested in EFL learners' narratives. To this end, a convenience sample of 48 Iranian intermediate EFL learners including 17 males and 31 females, learning English in two institutes located in Isfahan, Iran, were chosen. Before research implementation, the participants were provided with comprehensive photovoice guidance and workshop. The learners had to present their photos and narratives during a semester which took about two months. The collected data include 237 photographs and 48 essays which were learners' critical reflection on the photos. Then, the levels of reflection in their narratives were measured by Kember (2008) and Ryan and Ryan's (2012) frameworks. According to the results, poverty and air pollution were the most prominent social concerns captured by the participants. Furthermore, photovoice incredibly fostered Iranian EFL learners' reflection, and they all had positive attitudes toward participatory learning. This study could have pedagogical implications for the learners and practitioners in the field of SLA. They can employ innovative methods such as photovoice as a participatory learning tool to improve critical reflection.

Keywords


Anderson, L. & Boud, D. (1996). Extending the role of peer learning in university courses, Research & Development in Higher Education, 19, 15-19.

Boud, D. (2001). Using journal writing to enhance reflective practice. New Directions for Adults and Continuing Education. 90, 9-17.

Atkins, S., & Murphey, K. (1995). Reflective practice. Nursing Standards, 9(45), 31-37.

Bean, T. W., & Steven, L. P. (2002). Scaffolding reflection for preservice and in-service teachers. Reflective Practice, 3(2), 205-218.

Blackman, A. & Fairey, T. (2007). The Photovoice Manual: A guide to designing and running participatory photography projects. London: Photovoice Publications.

 Bowers, H. P. (2017). A case study of photovoice as a critical reflection strategy in a field seminar. Practice Digest, 7(2), 1-10.

Carlson, E. D., Engebreston, J., & Chamberlain, R. M. (2006). Photovoice as a social process of critical consciousness. Qualitative Health Research, 16(6), 836-852.

Catalani, C., & Minkler, M. (2010). Photovoice. A review of literature in health and public health. Health Education and Behavior, 37(3), 424-451.

Chio, V. C. M., & Fandt, P. M. (2007). Photovoice in the diversity classroom: Engagement, voice, and the "eye/I" of the camera. Journal of Management Education, 31(4), 484-504.

Creswell, J. W. (2014). Research design: Qualitative, quantitative, and mixed method approaches (4th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc.

Dinkelman, T. (2003). Self-study in teacher education: A means and ends tool for promoting reflective teaching. Journal of Teacher Education, 54(1), 6-19.

Freire, P. (1970). Pedagogy of the oppressed. Harmondsworth: Penguin.

Gibbs, G. R., Friese, S., & Mangaberia, W. C. (2002). The use of new technology in qualitative research. Qualitative Social Research, 3(2). Retrieved from http://www.qualitative-research.net/fqs-texte/2-02/2-02hrsg-e.htm

Grady, J. (Brynat, C.).  (2007). Visual sociology. In 21st century sociology: A reference handbook. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Harper, D. (2002). Talking about pictures: a case for photo elicitation. Visual Studies, 17(1), 13-26.

 Hatton, N., & Smith, D. (2006). Reflection in teacher education. Teaching and Teacher Education, 11, 33-49.

Hillocks, G. (2001). Teaching argumentative writings, grades 6-12L Supporting claims with relevant evidence and clear reasoning. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann.

Horwitz, J. (2012). Photovoice as a critical reflection methodology. In R. Flessner, G. R. Miller, K. M. Patrizio, & J. R. Horwitz (Eds.), Agency through teacher education: Reflection, community, and learning (pp. 15-24). Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield Publisher.

Jay, J. K., & Johnson, K. L. (2002). Capturing complexity: A typology of reflective practice for teacher education. Teachers and Teacher Education, 19, 73-85.

Joy, C. (2005). Exploring a model to evaluate levels of reflection baccalaureate nursing students' journals. The Journal of Nursing Education, 44(3), 139-142.

Kember, D., McKay, J., Sinclair, K., & Wong, K. F. (2000). Development of a questionnaire to measure the level of reflective thinking. Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education, 25(4), 381-395.

Kember, D., McKay, J., Sinclair, K., & Wong, K. F. (2008). A four-category scheme for coding and assessing the level of reflection in written work. Assessment Evaluation in Higher Education, 33(4), 369-379.

Killion, C. (2001). Understanding cultural aspects of health through photography. Nursing Outlook, 94 (1), 50-55.

King, P. M., & Kitchener, K. S. (2004). Reflective judgment: Theory and research on the development of epistemic assumptions through adulthood. Educational Psychologist, 39(1), 5-18.

Larrivee, B. (2008). Development of a tool to assess teachers' level of reflective practice. Reflective Practice, 9(3), 341-360.

Mason, B. (2014). Journalism practice and critical reflexivity: A death in custody interview. Pacific Media Review, 20(1), 158-179.

Moon, J. (2004). A Handbook of Reflective and Experiential Learning: Theory and Practice. London: Routledge Flamer.

Novak, D. R. (2010). Democratizing qualitative research: Photovoice and the study of human communication, communication methods and measures, 4(4), 291-310.

Okihiro, G. Y. (2014). Margins and mainstreams: Asian in American history in culture. Seattle. Washington:  Washington Press.

Ryan, M., & Ryan, M. (2012). Improving reflective writing in higher education: A social semiotic perspective. Teaching in Higher Education, 16(1), 99-111.

Scott, T. (2005). Creating the subject portfolios: Reflective writing and the conveyance of institutional prerogatives. Writing Communication, 22(1), 3-35.

Sharma, M. (2010). Photovoice in alcohol and drug education. Journal of Alcohol and Drug Education, 54(1), 3-6.

Skovdal, M., & Cornish, F. (2015). Qualitative research for development: A guide for practitioners. Rugby: Practical Action Publishing.

Strack, R. W., Lovelace, K.S., Jordan, T. D., & Holmes, A. P. (2010). Framing photovoice using a social-ecological logic model as a guide. Health Promotion Practice, 11, 629-636. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1524839909355519

Stepleton, P. (2002). Critiquing voice as a viable pedagogical tool in L2 writing: Returning the spotlights to ideas. Journal of Second Language Writing, 11, 177-190.

Taylor, B. (2007). Learning for tomorrow. Boston Spa: Oasis Press.

Thomas, H., & Irwin, J. D. (2013). Using photovoice with at-risk youth. Canadian Journal of Dietetic Practice and Research, 74(1), 14-20.

Tsang, W. K. (2003). Journaling from internship to practice teaching. Reflective Practice, 4(2), 221-240.

Wang, C., & Burris, M. A. (1997). Photovoice: concept, methodology, & use for participatory need assessment. Health Education & Behavior, 24(3), 369-387.

Ward, J. R., & McCotter, S. S. (2004). Reflection as a visible outcome for preservice teachers. Teaching and Teacher Education, 20, 243-257.

Yin, R. K. (2009). Case study research: Design and methods (4th Ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc.

Zenvok, K., & Harmon, J. (2009). Picturing in the writing process: Photovoice and teaching writing to urban youth.  Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 52(7), 575-584.