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Knowledge for Action Virtual Research Lab

The OPWL Action Research Lab is committed to research for change. While research methods often stress knowledge generation for its own sake, this lab harnesses evidence-based research practices that pave the way for better learning, performance, increasing opportunity, and improving the conditions in which we work and learn. It was created expressly to support students and others who want to build research experience and expertise in a supportive community. While they may explore a wide variety of topics, the projects in this lab are grounded in Human Performance Improvement.

Vicki Stieha

The lab is led by Dr. Vicki Stieha, an experienced educator/trainer, researcher, and academic leader with over 20 years of experience in higher education. Dr. Stieha has developed and led innovative and award-winning educational programs, provided leadership on organizational boards, and consulted for a variety of educational organizations. Her current research and collaborations include designing and evaluating innovations with a focus on diversity in STEM and transitions from college to professions. Dr. Stieha holds an M. Ed. from Xavier University in English Education and a Ph.D. from the University of Cincinnati in Educational Studies. She teaches in the Boise State Organizational Performance and Workplace Learning (OPWL) Program and is an affiliated faculty member in the Engineering Plus Program.

Our Mission

The mission of the Knowledge for Action lab is to create and foster a community to support students, faculty, and others applying research to solve organizational and learning challenges.

What do we mean by “action oriented” research?

It is research conducted for the expressed purpose of improving performance and outcomes in organizations.  The research methods may include qualitative, quantitative, and action research.

Action research focuses on solving real problems. The organization or individuals within it are at the center of the research and may be active participants in multiple stages of the research process. It is an evidence-based research methodology which utilizes qualitative and/or quantitative methods. The results of the research form the basis for action to solve or address a problem.