Steps for Applying the Complex Dynamical Systems Approach in Educational Research: A Guide for the Perplexed Scholar

Avi Kaplan, Joanna K. Garner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

In this commentary, we propose a framework for applying the Complex Dynamical Systems (CDS) approach in educational research. Drawing on the conceptual articles in the special issue for ontological, theoretical, and methodological principles, and on the empirical articles for examples of these principles’ application, we suggest six interdependent steps for researchers who seek to pursue educational research from the CDS approach: (1) Conceptualizing the phenomenon as a CDS; (2) Defining a theory of the relevant CDS level; (3) Generating a CDS research goal and question; (4) Selecting a CDS corresponding methodology for data collection and analysis; (5) Interpreting the findings as a CDS; and (6) Disseminating the knowledge to relevant audiences and participating in a CDS scholarly community. We end the commentary with several of the promises and challenges of applying the CDS approach in educational research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)486-502
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Experimental Education
Volume88
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 May 2020
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Complex dynamic systems
  • complexity
  • education research
  • ontology
  • research methods

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Steps for Applying the Complex Dynamical Systems Approach in Educational Research: A Guide for the Perplexed Scholar'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this