Meaningful reading gains by adult literacy learners

Meaningful reading gains by adult literacy learners To obtain a fuller picture of the efficacy of reading instruction programs for adult literacy learners, gains by individual students were examined in a sample (n = 148) in which weak to moderate gains at the group level had been obtained in response to tutoring interventions that focused on strengthening basic decoding and fluency skills of low literate adults (Sabatini, Shore, Holtzman, & Scarborough, 2011). Learners were randomly assigned to receive one of three tutoring programs for an average of 44 h of instruction. We used within-individual gains replicated over tests (WIGROT) as the method for identifying gainers, who were defined as students whose reading levels increased from pretest to posttest by a half year or more on at least two of four measured aspects of reading proficiency. The 46 % of the sample who met the criterion had higher pretest scores than non-gainers on measures of reading (d = .42, p < .01) and phonological awareness (d = .47, p < .01), and included fewer adults with a history of special education (43 vs. 61 %, phi = .19, p < .05), regardless of which instructional condition had been received. The findings suggest that basic skills instruction can lead to a meaningful degree of benefit for many adult learners who persist in reading programs for several months. Supplementing group level results with analyses of individual growth, such as WIGROT, appears to be useful in evaluating the efficacy of literacy interventions. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Reading and Writing Springer Journals

Meaningful reading gains by adult literacy learners

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 2012 by Springer Science+Business Media B.V.
Subject
Linguistics; Languages and Literature; Psycholinguistics; Education (general); Neurology; Interdisciplinary Studies
ISSN
0922-4777
eISSN
1573-0905
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11145-012-9385-4
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

To obtain a fuller picture of the efficacy of reading instruction programs for adult literacy learners, gains by individual students were examined in a sample (n = 148) in which weak to moderate gains at the group level had been obtained in response to tutoring interventions that focused on strengthening basic decoding and fluency skills of low literate adults (Sabatini, Shore, Holtzman, & Scarborough, 2011). Learners were randomly assigned to receive one of three tutoring programs for an average of 44 h of instruction. We used within-individual gains replicated over tests (WIGROT) as the method for identifying gainers, who were defined as students whose reading levels increased from pretest to posttest by a half year or more on at least two of four measured aspects of reading proficiency. The 46 % of the sample who met the criterion had higher pretest scores than non-gainers on measures of reading (d = .42, p < .01) and phonological awareness (d = .47, p < .01), and included fewer adults with a history of special education (43 vs. 61 %, phi = .19, p < .05), regardless of which instructional condition had been received. The findings suggest that basic skills instruction can lead to a meaningful degree of benefit for many adult learners who persist in reading programs for several months. Supplementing group level results with analyses of individual growth, such as WIGROT, appears to be useful in evaluating the efficacy of literacy interventions.

Journal

Reading and WritingSpringer Journals

Published: May 31, 2012

References

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