Action research – despite its short history – is deeply embedded in the human sciences. The present study highlights the special social role of action research, and examines which elements of it can be regarded as research and development program, and those particular cases when it can be defined as epistemology. The exploration of the literature of action research and the presentation of its theoretical and historical roots and significance underpin that action research is a new opportunity for the research of pedagogical practice. The judgement of action research cannot be separated from the theories concerning the genesis, possession and sharing of knowledge or from the paradigmatic change in scientific research. Despite its significance the spread of action research is slight in the Hungarian context. This study overviews the Hungarian action researches and their milestones.
Keywords: action research, history of science, pedagogical practice research and development, Hungarian action research