Observation tools

During this period of the project some strategies may be dropped - this is not a failure. Rather it is important is to understand why they were dropped. When a team reflects on why something changed, the District Health Management Team are in fact learning to develop appropriate strategies to improve workforce performance within their own unique district. Alternatively, new strategies may be added if, for example, a District Health Management Team identifies part of the overall problem that has not yet been addressed.

There are a range of documentation process that can be used but it is important to use a method that works most effectively given available resources (time, money, planning expertise, and willingness). This could be a learning history, or a diary or another format. Learning histories and diaries can be rich documents for research but if District Health Management Teams have no time or willingness to use them, they are useless. Second, when recording activities and reflection spirals, aim for a mix of quantitative and qualitative data because such a mix will help the action research team to comprehensively assess the change that took place.

This Power Point presentation provides more information on capturing process and learning and the use of reflective diaries.

One way of observing the process of change in the project is to use a reflective diary. Guidance on how to use the diaries is provided in the Planning tools section of this toolkit. This is an example of a completed diary reflection.