Using Grounded Action Methodology for Student Intervention—Driven Succeeding: A Grounded Action Study in Adult Education

  • Mitchell M. Olson Judson College
Keywords: grounded action, grounded theory, grounded learning, adult education, transformative learning


A grounded action (GA) study was conducted investigating the area of adults attempting to achieve high school-level competencies. Using GLASERian grounded theory (GT) methodology, over 50 Adult Basic Education (ABE) and General Equivalency Diploma (GED) adult students were interviewed and observed within the classroom. Serving as the explanatory theory, a GT of driven succeeding emerged as the "core variable," which included the following five stages: embarking, visioning, investing, clicking, and ripening. An overview of the explanatory theory is presented along with examples of how the grounded action operational theory and intervention strategies (SIMMONS & GREGORY, 2003) were implemented in OLSON's educational practice. GA is found to be a useful tool for predicting student behavior, providing sustainable and meaningful intervention, and in providing a systemic impact on curriculum design and the facilitation and administration of adult learning. URN: urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs080193


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Author Biography

Mitchell M. Olson, Judson College
Mitchell M. OLSON, Ed.D. Fielding Graduate University, from the school of Educational Leadership and Change (ELC), 2006; M.Ad.Ed., National-Louis University, 1993; BA Wheaton College, 1982 (Music and Educational ministries double major). He is a consultant, curriculum developer and adjunct faculty member at Judson College. His doctoral dissertation research was a Grounded Action (GA) study on ABE/GED adult students achieving literacy. Along with Michael RAFFANTI Ed.D., OLSON is the co-founder of Grounded Learning, an application of GLASERian grounded theory methodology in educational practice, and they have presented papers and co-authored several articles together.