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Full-Text Articles in Education

The Effects Of Teacher Coaching In The Lincing Routine On The Vocabulary Knowledge Of Secondary Students With Disabilities, Dana W. Cho Jul 2018

The Effects Of Teacher Coaching In The Lincing Routine On The Vocabulary Knowledge Of Secondary Students With Disabilities, Dana W. Cho

Communication Disorders & Special Education Theses & Dissertations

A pretest-posttest time series design controlling for teacher coaching was used to evaluate the effects of the LINCing Routine to support secondary students with disabilities while increasing students’ vocabulary knowledge. Two special education teachers and 26 secondary students with disabilities participated in this study. Student performance was investigated in terms of increased accurate use of the LINCing Routine and overall improvement of vocabulary knowledge while controlling for teacher coaching. The dependent variable increased and remained stable throughout intervention. Pretest and posttest results were also favorable. Students reported average social validity while teachers reported high social validity for the intervention. The ...


A Multi Case Study Of Community College Discipline Faculty’S Participation In A Disciplinary Literacy Professional Learning Community, Kristen Howell Gregory Jul 2018

A Multi Case Study Of Community College Discipline Faculty’S Participation In A Disciplinary Literacy Professional Learning Community, Kristen Howell Gregory

Teaching & Learning Theses & Dissertations

Many students enter college with inadequate reading, writing, and critical thinking skills to successfully navigate discipline-specific college-level coursework (Duff, 2010; Hyland, 2006; Lea & Street, 1998; Tsui, 2002). As such, college faculty, and specifically community college faculty, are challenged to meet the multiple literacy needs of their students while still maintaining high expectations within their discipline-specific courses. One option is for discipline faculty (e.g., history) to integrate disciplinary literacy instruction within their courses. As discipline faculty are deemed experts in their content area and often not trained in literacy, professional development focused on disciplinary literacy could provide the knowledge and experience for ...


A Pilot Study On The Correlation Of Reading Improvement Using Colored Overlay Paper In Elementary Age Students With Reading Challenges, Tim Salyers Apr 2018

A Pilot Study On The Correlation Of Reading Improvement Using Colored Overlay Paper In Elementary Age Students With Reading Challenges, Tim Salyers

OTS Master's Level Projects & Papers

This study examined the use of colored overlay on reading abilities of students with reading deficits in the 5th grade at Lebanon Elementary School during the 2013-2014 school year. This study was guided by the previous research of which has shown that the use of colored overlay increases the reading abilities of students challenged by their reading deficits. The study was a quasi-experimental quantitative pilot research that compared the reading level before and after colored overlay paper was placed over reading passages in a sample size of six 5th grade students. These students were between nine and eleven years of ...


Multimodal Literacy: Journey Through The Collaborative Transmediation Of Wordless Picturebooks, Catherine Todd Thomson Jul 2017

Multimodal Literacy: Journey Through The Collaborative Transmediation Of Wordless Picturebooks, Catherine Todd Thomson

Teaching & Learning Theses & Dissertations

With a shift towards 21st century literacy practices and a greater variety of literature, the mere definitions of literacy and text are shifting. The focus on traditional text that heavily relies on words and supporting pictures to convey meaning has changed to text of multiple modes. Teachers are now charged with fostering new skills in students in order to help them engage with these texts effectively and to allow them to make meaning of the multimodal texts that surround them (Siegel, 2006).

In this qualitative case study, the primary investigator assumed a dual role as the classroom teacher and researcher ...


The Impact Of The C. L. E. A. R. (Challenge Leading To Engagement, Achievement, And Results) Curriculum Model On Reading Achievement At The Third Grade Level, Robin Gale Puryear Jul 2015

The Impact Of The C. L. E. A. R. (Challenge Leading To Engagement, Achievement, And Results) Curriculum Model On Reading Achievement At The Third Grade Level, Robin Gale Puryear

Teaching & Learning Theses & Dissertations

The purpose of this mixed-methods study, employing a quantitative component, utilizing a quasi-experimental design, and a qualitative component, utilizing a post-positivist research paradigm and phenomenology research tradition, was to determine the potential impact of the C. L. E. A. R. (Challenge Leading to Engagement, Achievement, and Results) Curriculum Model on reading achievement at the third grade level. Additionally, the purpose of this study was to better understand both students and teachers perceptions of the C. L. E. A. R. Curriculum Model. Results indicated that there were no statistically significant findings between treatment group students and control group students, following an ...


The Effects Of Incorporating Interactive Questioning During Shared Electronic Book Reading On Preschoolers' Comprehension, Lynda Gail Salmon Apr 2015

The Effects Of Incorporating Interactive Questioning During Shared Electronic Book Reading On Preschoolers' Comprehension, Lynda Gail Salmon

Theses and Dissertations in Early Childhood Education

The purpose of this study was to examine the potential effects of parental interactive questioning during shared electronic book reading on preschoolers' comprehension outcomes and secondly to assess the effects of parent training on post-intervention parental interactive behaviors during shared electronic book reading. Four parent-child dyads participated in this seven week multiple baseline study. Participants were recruited from a suburban preschool in southeastern Virginia and child participants' ages ranged from 48 to 68 months ( M = 55.75). Pre-intervention and post-intervention assessments evaluated the child participants' comprehension skills and the parent-child dyad's interactive behaviors during shared electronic book reading. Child ...


"The Poor Kid Finds The Pirate Treasure": Depictions Of Social Class In Newbery Medal And Honor Books 2004-2013, Danielle Eileen Forest Apr 2014

"The Poor Kid Finds The Pirate Treasure": Depictions Of Social Class In Newbery Medal And Honor Books 2004-2013, Danielle Eileen Forest

Teaching & Learning Theses & Dissertations

Background: Given events of recent years like the economic recession, issues related to social class are more important than ever before. Although educational scholars have devoted increasing attention to social class, it has not been widely studied in curricular materials like children's literature. Because books can influence children's views of the world, understanding what values and ideologies are communicated about class in literature is important.

Focus of Study: Grounded in the theoretical perspectives of critical literacy and the sociology of school knowledge, the purpose of this study was to deconstruct portrayals of social class in books earning the ...


"That Doesn't Sound Like Me:" Student Perceptions Of Semiotic Resources In Written-Aural Remediation Practices, Jennifer Johnson Buckner Apr 2014

"That Doesn't Sound Like Me:" Student Perceptions Of Semiotic Resources In Written-Aural Remediation Practices, Jennifer Johnson Buckner

English Theses & Dissertations

This dissertation examines students' composing practices when working with unfamiliar modalities, attending to students' messy material and cognitive negotiations prior to their production of a polished multimodal project. Working from a conceptual vocabulary from composition studies and semiotics, I frame composing as an act of semiotic remediation, attending to students' repurposing and understanding of written and aural materials in composition and their impact on their learning. Specifically, this research uses a grounded theory methodology to examine the attitudes, experiences, and composing practices of first-year writing students enrolled in a composition II course at a private, liberal arts institution in the ...


Using Interactive Reading Techniques With Word World To Enhance Emergent Literacy, James B. Godfrey Jan 2014

Using Interactive Reading Techniques With Word World To Enhance Emergent Literacy, James B. Godfrey

Theses and Dissertations in Early Childhood Education

Facets of emergent literacy such as phonological awareness (PA) and alphabet knowledge (AK) are precursors to later conventional literacy (Dockrell, Stuart & King, 2010; Neuman & Dwyer, 2009; NELP, 2008). Interactive reading techniques such as dialogic reading (Whitehurst et al., 1988) and explicit print referencing (Piasta et al., 2012; Justice et al., 2010) have been used effectively with printed text to enhance emergent literacy. This quasi-experimental study was designed to determine the extent to which interactive reading techniques combined with the viewing of educational television may enhance facets of emergent literacy such as PA and AK. A convenience sample of 19 preschool children between the ages ...


Improving Metacomprehension And Calibration Accuracy Through Embedded Cognitive And Metacognitive Strategy Prompts, Alan J. Reid Oct 2013

Improving Metacomprehension And Calibration Accuracy Through Embedded Cognitive And Metacognitive Strategy Prompts, Alan J. Reid

STEMPS Theses & Dissertations

A societal shift from print-based to digital texts has afforded the ability to embed reader support within an instructional text. Numerous factors make eBooks an attractive option for colleges and universities, though undergraduates consistently reaffirm a preference for print-based materials. Given that many undergraduates arrive to college with a deficiency in reading comprehension skills and metacognitive awareness, digital text is able to offer an additional layer of support. A sample population of college undergraduates (N = 80) read an expository text on the basics of photography in the form of a fill-in field PDF. The most robust treatment (mixed) read the ...


The Effect Of Public Pre-Kindergarten Attendance On First Grade Reading And Social Achievement: A District Level Analysis, Michael James Haslip Jul 2013

The Effect Of Public Pre-Kindergarten Attendance On First Grade Reading And Social Achievement: A District Level Analysis, Michael James Haslip

Theses and Dissertations in Early Childhood Education

The purpose of this study was to test the relationship between attending a school district Pre-K program and children's later literacy and behavior outcomes in the beginning and middle of first grade. Children's text level, letter-sound identification, sight words, spelling and citizenship skills were measured. The study included 880 children who attended the division Pre-K program and 176 children who attended no formal or institutional preschool of any kind. Selection bias was addressed through propensity score matching, completed using optimal matching. Independent-samples t tests were run on literacy and behavior measures. Subgroup analysis was performed to test the ...


The Effects Of Digital Technology On Basic Writing, Leslie Denise Norris Apr 2012

The Effects Of Digital Technology On Basic Writing, Leslie Denise Norris

English Theses & Dissertations

At this study's research site—a small, Virginia community college—faculty, staff and students use digital technology to share information daily, which could cause a problem for some students: students may need digital literacy instruction before the college requires those courses. Another potential problem is that scholars (Stephens, Houser, and Cowan) indicate that some instructors across the academy treat students negatively if students do not demonstrate digital, rhetorical dexterity when communicating—particular digital skills that some students lack.

For this study, I surveyed basic writing (BW) instructors and students at the research site to learn more about their digital ...


A Mixed Methods Study Of Special Education Teachers' Knowledge Of Reading Instruction And Perceptions Concerning Their Preparation To Teach Reading, Cynthia Darden Blakeslee Jan 2012

A Mixed Methods Study Of Special Education Teachers' Knowledge Of Reading Instruction And Perceptions Concerning Their Preparation To Teach Reading, Cynthia Darden Blakeslee

Teaching & Learning Theses & Dissertations

Significant changes in requirements for reading instruction and special education teacher preparation have occurred in recent years due to provisions found in the No Child Left Behind legislation of 2001 and the 2004 Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act. This study examined the preparation for reading instruction that prospective special education teachers received during their teacher preparation and their beliefs concerning their preparation. Reading instruction preparation was examined in the context of the knowledge and skills associated with reading instruction acquired in two required university reading courses. Using a mixed methods sequential explanatory design-participant-selection model (Creswell & Plano Clark, 2010) , the ...


Understanding Fourth Graders' Decline In Reading Motivation From Students' And Teachers' Perspectives, Christine A. Hebert Jul 2011

Understanding Fourth Graders' Decline In Reading Motivation From Students' And Teachers' Perspectives, Christine A. Hebert

Teaching & Learning Theses & Dissertations

Previous research by Chall and Jacobs (2003) documented the phenomena of the fourth grade slump, a period in which students switch from learning to read to reading to learn and the subsequent loss of motivation to read. The purpose of this research is to present a phenomenological qualitative study of whether a sample of fourth grade students, low-achieving readers and average achieving readers, exhibited a loss in their motivation to read. Students' responses to a standardized conversational survey and questionnaire, the Motivation to Read Profile (Gambrell, Palmer, Codling & Mazzoni, 2007) and teachers' responses to a researcher-developed questionnaire were examined and ...


Writing Program Design For Esl Writers, Kacie M. Kiser Apr 2011

Writing Program Design For Esl Writers, Kacie M. Kiser

English Theses & Dissertations

Research and scholarship in the field of second-language writing have suggested that English as second language students (ESLs) require different modes of instruction than their native English speaking peers within the composition classroom (Matsuda, 1996; Silva, 1994). Yet ESL students are commonly marginalized in institutions' writing programs due to several commonplace beliefs shared by administrators that ESL students can be taught according to the same standards as mainstream students. Therefore, writing program administrators and instructors often do not have specific knowledge of ESL writing issues and, thus, do not know how to pedagogically accommodate these students or design a program ...


The Impact Of Computer-Assisted Sight Word Instruction On The Reading Skills Of Students With Significant Intellectual Disabilities, Colleen Frances Wood-Fields Jan 2011

The Impact Of Computer-Assisted Sight Word Instruction On The Reading Skills Of Students With Significant Intellectual Disabilities, Colleen Frances Wood-Fields

Communication Disorders & Special Education Theses & Dissertations

There is a paucity of research identifying instructional methods that promote the reading development of students with significant intellectual disabilities (ID). This research study employed a single subject, multiple baseline design to evaluate the effects of computer-assisted sight word instruction employing constant time delay (CTD) procedures with incidental phonics and comprehension stimuli on the reading skill development of six elementary students with moderate ID and expressive language impairments. Study results suggest that the seven week PowerPoint slide show sight word intervention had very small to moderate intervention effects on receptive sight word identification. However, students learned some incidental letter-sound correspondences ...


How “Struggling” Readers Engage In Literacy Events In Middle School Science: An Analysis Of Interactions In Literacy Events, Kristin Cartwright Palmer Jan 2011

How “Struggling” Readers Engage In Literacy Events In Middle School Science: An Analysis Of Interactions In Literacy Events, Kristin Cartwright Palmer

Teaching & Learning Theses & Dissertations

This study examined opportunities for participation and learning for "struggling" readers in a sixth grade science classroom. Literacy practices, language differences, activity structures, and the social and cultural identities and associated practices and everyday funds of knowledge of both "struggling" and nonstruggling readers in one sixth grade science classroom were documented and analyzed using a qualitative research design. Over sixteen hours of audio and video recordings as well as numerous student work samples were transcribed and analyzed. Analyses of the classroom interactions and artifacts documented in this study revealed several important affordances available in the context of this classroom related ...


Elementary Principals' Literacy Practices And Their Relationship To Student Achievement In Reading, Sandra Carper Cox Apr 2010

Elementary Principals' Literacy Practices And Their Relationship To Student Achievement In Reading, Sandra Carper Cox

Teaching & Learning Theses & Dissertations

Principal behavior is under intense scrutiny, particularly in light of increased demands for higher and higher levels of student achievement. Reading achievement is the measure by which schools as well as principal leadership are judged. This study examined principals' literacy practices and their relationship to student achievement in reading. Measures used for analyses included a researcher-developed survey instrument, the Principal Quality Literacy Practices Survey, and results from the grade five Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL) English: Reading test.

Survey data from 109 principals and 160 reading specialists from Southeastern Virginia were utilized. Principals and reading specialists reported that overall principals ...


Secondary English Teachers' Attitudes Toward Disciplinary And Literacy Learning Implications For Pedagogical Praxis And Reform, Stephanie Kay Sugioka Jan 2010

Secondary English Teachers' Attitudes Toward Disciplinary And Literacy Learning Implications For Pedagogical Praxis And Reform, Stephanie Kay Sugioka

Teaching & Learning Theses & Dissertations

The purpose of this study was threefold: (1) to examine the epistemological stances of the two teacher participants, that is, to determine their attitudes toward student literacy and their beliefs about the purposes of English as a discipline; (2) to describe the interplay between their epistemological stances and their pedagogical practices, in particular with respect to their use of research-based literacy strategies; and (3) to arrive at a means of supporting them in their use of more effective pedagogical strategies, in this case including more in-depth discussion in their classes for the purpose of furthering their students' critical literacy. The ...


An Examination Of The Reading First Program At A Southeastern Virginia Elementary School And The Impact On K–2 Student Reading Achievement, Leslie Ford Lippard Jan 2010

An Examination Of The Reading First Program At A Southeastern Virginia Elementary School And The Impact On K–2 Student Reading Achievement, Leslie Ford Lippard

Teaching & Learning Theses & Dissertations

Reading First was a federal initiative aimed at improving reading instruction and implementing programs and strategies grounded in scientifically-based reading research. The legislation was predicated on research findings that high-quality reading instruction and intervention in the primary grades significantly reduces the numbers of students who experience difficulties in later grades. This study examined the Reading First program at an elementary school in southeastern Virginia from 2006-2008. Specifically, the researcher investigated the impact of the independent variable, the tier three model of intervention on K-2 student reading achievement. Quantitative data was garnered from 792 K-2 student participants attending the research site ...


Questions Of Transfer: Writers' Perspective On Familiar/Unfamiliar Writing Tasks In A Capstone Writing Course, Heather G. Lettner-Rust Jan 2010

Questions Of Transfer: Writers' Perspective On Familiar/Unfamiliar Writing Tasks In A Capstone Writing Course, Heather G. Lettner-Rust

English Theses & Dissertations

Understanding what students bring from one writing context to another may the central concern for teachers of writing from elementary school to adult learning. Research from the field of composition studies offers knowledge about writing as process(es) (Emig, 1971; Shaughnessy, 1979; Russell, 1999), as socially constructed performances (Flower & Hayes, 1980; Bartholomae, 1985; Bloom, 1985), and as part of a larger activity system (Russell, 1997). This dissertation ties together theories of writing as an activity in a broader system of tools and outcomes and current research on transfer in writing in order to illustrate writers' perspectives on particular writing tasks. Essential to ...


The Impact Of The “Universal Voyager Literacy” Reading Program On Reading Achievement And Instructional Practices In An Urban School District, Shanika L. Hope Jan 2008

The Impact Of The “Universal Voyager Literacy” Reading Program On Reading Achievement And Instructional Practices In An Urban School District, Shanika L. Hope

Theses and Dissertations in Urban Studies

Founded in 1994, Voyager Expanded Learning is a provider of K-3 in-school reading programs, as well as K-8 reading intervention programs for school districts throughout the United States. Voyager Universal Literacy's systematic, precise framework fully addresses the five elements of reading instruction, through an explicit succession of ability growth. Voyager Universal Literacy was developed to be a comprehensive program encompassing the subsequent requisites: in-school broad reading program, progress monitoring methods, extensive-day and summer activities, home learning syllabus, implementation monitoring, and on-going professional development. Voyager Universal Literacy Program activities are organized to provide a thorough range and progression for reading ...


Balanced Literacy Versus Basal Reading Instruction For Urban African-American, Title I Third-Grade Students, Julie Ann Perkins Apr 2006

Balanced Literacy Versus Basal Reading Instruction For Urban African-American, Title I Third-Grade Students, Julie Ann Perkins

Theses and Dissertations in Urban Services - Urban Education

This study compared third-grade reading achievement of urban African-American, Title I students using a basal reading series with those using a balanced literacy program to determine whether the highly structured skills-based methods advocated by The No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act actually foster or impede reading achievement in an urban school setting.

Two hundred forty-five third-grade African-American, Title I students from an urban elementary school in southeastern Virginia served as subjects for the study. Subjects were studied as intact groups to avoid disruption in the educational setting. Participants in the control group were third-grade classes of urban African-American, Title I ...


The Effects Of Breakthrough To Literacy On The Phonological Awareness Skills Of Students In Early Elementary School, Amy W. Woodward Apr 2005

The Effects Of Breakthrough To Literacy On The Phonological Awareness Skills Of Students In Early Elementary School, Amy W. Woodward

Theses and Dissertations in Urban Services - Urban Education

This study researched the effects of Breakthrough to Literacy (1998), a phonological awareness computer-based program, on elementary school students in grades kindergarten through three. The treatment group received the Breakthrough to Literacy program in kindergarten. The control group received the traditional curriculum without this program. The students were assessed on phonological awareness skills at the end of kindergarten, the fall and spring of grade one and grade two. Their reading comprehension skills were also assessed at the end of grade 3. Results indicate that Breakthrough to Literacy improved the phonological awareness skills of students who received the program in grades ...


A Comparison Of Anonymous E-Peer Review Versus Identifiable E-Peer Review On College Student Writing Performance And Learning Satisfaction, Ruiling Lu Apr 2005

A Comparison Of Anonymous E-Peer Review Versus Identifiable E-Peer Review On College Student Writing Performance And Learning Satisfaction, Ruiling Lu

Theses and Dissertations in Urban Services - Urban Education

The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of anonymous e-peer review with identifiable e-peer review on student writing performance and learning satisfaction. It also investigated whether anonymous e-peer review facilitated a greater amount of critical peer feedback.

Quasi-experimental design was used to test group differences on the dependent variables. Participants were 48 freshmen enrolled in two English Composition classes at Old Dominion University in the fall semester of 2003. The two intact classes taught by the same instructor were randomly assigned to the anonymous e-peer review group and the identifiable e-peer review group.

The results showed that ...


An Examination Of Relationships Of Reading And Writing Self-Efficacy Beliefs, Standardized Placement Test Scores, And Diverse Community College Students' Perceptions Of Those Relationships, Ann Woolford-Singh Apr 2004

An Examination Of Relationships Of Reading And Writing Self-Efficacy Beliefs, Standardized Placement Test Scores, And Diverse Community College Students' Perceptions Of Those Relationships, Ann Woolford-Singh

Theses and Dissertations in Urban Services - Urban Education

Social cognitive theory explains the role that one's level of confidence plays in the accomplishment of a specific task. According to Bandura (1982, 1995), self-efficacy beliefs should align with performance. The purpose of this study was to explore the relationships among reading/writing self-efficacy beliefs and reading/writing standardized placement test scores of diverse community college freshmen. Additionally, this study sought to understand the sources of these students' reading/writing self-efficacy beliefs through the descriptions of experiences they feel have influenced those beliefs.

There were three major research questions: (1) What is the strength of the relationships among reading ...


An Examination Of The Effects Of The America Reads Tutoring Program And Tutor Training On The Attitude And Academic Achievement Of Urban At-Risk Minority Students, Tami C. Al-Hazza Jul 2002

An Examination Of The Effects Of The America Reads Tutoring Program And Tutor Training On The Attitude And Academic Achievement Of Urban At-Risk Minority Students, Tami C. Al-Hazza

Theses and Dissertations in Urban Services - Urban Education

The American educational system is struggling to identify methods of preventing early reading failure. Many schools are implementing tutoring intervention programs to supplement classroom instruction and to help meet the needs of struggling at-risk readers. Although there is substantial research on tutoring programs that employ professional teachers, there is a dearth of research on the effectiveness of non-professional volunteer tutoring programs.

The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of the America Reads tutoring program and tutor training on the reading achievement and reading attitude of urban, at-risk, K–3 minority students. The population sample was drawn from ...


The Effects Of The Help One Student To Succeed (Hosts) Program On The Reading Achievement Of At-Risk 4th And 5th Grade Elementary Students, Kelvin L. Bradley Apr 2001

The Effects Of The Help One Student To Succeed (Hosts) Program On The Reading Achievement Of At-Risk 4th And 5th Grade Elementary Students, Kelvin L. Bradley

Theses and Dissertations in Urban Services - Urban Education

This study investigated the effects of the Help One Student to Succeed (HOSTS) tutoring program on the reading achievement of at-risk 4th and 5th grade elementary students, as measured by the Texas Assessment of Academic Skill (TAAS). Seventy-eight 4th and 5th grade at-risk students from four Title I elementary schools in the Plano Independent School District participated in the study. Thirty-nine of these students were enrolled in the HOSTS program and were matched to a comparison group of students according to ethnicity, age, gender, grade, free or reduced lunch, bilingual and English as a Second language ...


Comparative Effects Of Three Methods Of Staff Development In Content Area Reading Instruction On Urban High School Teachers, Mark Alan Forget Apr 1999

Comparative Effects Of Three Methods Of Staff Development In Content Area Reading Instruction On Urban High School Teachers, Mark Alan Forget

Theses and Dissertations in Urban Services - Urban Education

In researching the role of group interaction and constructivism in three different types of staff development in content area reading instruction with urban high school teachers, a self-report survey instrument was used to ascertain differences between four groups of respondents with regard to respondents' reported levels on four dependent variables. Univariate analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to determine the degree of statistical significance between mean scores that resulted. Results showed statistically significant differences with probabilities less than .05 for group differences based on the independent variables type of staff development received by respondents, reported support of school administrators for ...


An Evaluation Of The Accelerated Reader Program In Grades 3–5 On Reading Vocabulary, Comprehension, And Attitude In An Urban Southeastern School District In Virginia, Carol Ann Howard Jan 1999

An Evaluation Of The Accelerated Reader Program In Grades 3–5 On Reading Vocabulary, Comprehension, And Attitude In An Urban Southeastern School District In Virginia, Carol Ann Howard

Theses and Dissertations in Urban Services - Urban Education

The purpose of this study was to study recreational reading in third, fourth, and fifth grade urban students in a school district in Southeastern Virginia. The widely-used Accelerated Reader (AR) was the tool examined in the promotion of recreational reading. Recreational reading studies have been done on a broad economic spectrum (Advantage Learning Systems, 1997; Paul, 1996; Paul, VanderZee, Rue & Swanson, 1996). A gap in knowledge exists as to whether recreational reading programs, using AR, are effective with the urban elementary students. The major research questions determined if recreational reading, using Accelerated Reader, influenced reading vocabulary, comprehension, and attitude when socioeconomic status was low.

Using the pre-experimental design, seven Title I schools in urban Southeastern Virginia participated in pre-testing in September/October 1998 and post-testing in May/June 1999. Two independent variables, each with three levels, were manipulated: Type of AR Usage i. e. low (0–20 points), average (21–74 points), high (75 and above points) and Grade Level i.e. three, four, and five. Dependent variables reading vocabulary and comprehension were measured using the Gates-MacGinitie Tests of Reading, Form L (Gates-MacGinitie, 1989) on 755 students. The dependent variable attitude was measured on 515 students who completed The Elementary Reading Attitude Scale (ERAS) (McKenna & Kear, 1990).

Positive findings are as follows: (1) At pretesting 75% or greater of all students tested below grade level in both reading vocabulary and comprehension. At post-testing, after the AR treatment had been administered for the duration of the school year, the percentage of students testing below grade level for reading vocabulary and comprehension significantly decreased. (2) Results of the Multivariate Analysis of Variance (MANOVA) were significant for Type of AR Usage and Grade Level effect. When descriptive statistics, Type of Reader, were examined, significant differences between pre-test and post-test assessment of vocabulary and comprehension were noted. (3) review of the data for the mean difference in vocabulary and comprehension by Grade Level and Type of AR Usage indicated that as participation in the AR program increased, the mean score differences also increased. (4) An Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) format was used to analyze attitude data revealed that only the “Type of AR Usage” effect was significant.

Negative findings are as follows: (1) Frequency data indicated that 51.8% of the sample earned low AR usage status, whereas 11.8 % of the students obtained high AR usage during the school year. “Below grade level readers” composed 33% of the “low AR usage” group and only 2% of the “high AR usage” group. (2) The computation of the mean difference on the ERAS scores may have been affected by statistical regression. Caution in interpretation of results is recommended.

In summary, results of the current study concluded that recreational reading, using AR, increases reading vocabulary, comprehension, and attitude, providing it is utilized as intended. Recommendations to school administrators and researchers are as follows: (1) Increase Student Participation in recreational reading ensuring proper use of the AR program with a focus on understanding the characteristics and needs of the “below grade level” reader; (2) Study factors affecting reading performance.