Understanding that academic motivation and engagement are critical for youths' literacy learning and achievement in schools, this mixed methods, critical ethnographic study explored how social and discursive constructions of reading and literacy in a high school English classroom (for example, what was valued as reading in the classroom context) contributed to youths' self-perceptions as readers. Supported by a theoretical framework including sociocognitive, sociocultural, and critical perspectives, I considered how classroom curricula, pedagogical practices, and everyday classroom interactions influenced students' reader identities and reading self-efficacy. A combination of qualitative and quantitative data sources - including participant observations, classroom artifacts, audio-video recordings of classroom activities, semi-structured interviews, and student surveys - provided rich accounts of the classroom cultural context; the social and discursive construction of classroom expectations and practices related to reading and literacy; and the influence of these classroom discourses on students' identities and self-efficacy. Methods of analysis included constant comparative analyses, critical discourse analyses, and descriptive statistical analyses. Findings indicated that while students' self-efficacy beliefs were influenced by local classroom practices, definitions, and values for reading (especially as classroom discourses encouraged reading with multimodal texts), their reader identities depended largely on well-established, fixed ideologies of reading. These findings suggest that while teachers might marshal features of curriculum and pedagogy to support positive developments in students' reading self-efficacy, it might be more challenging to encourage similar changes in students' overall identities as readers.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. disssertation. May 2014. Major: Education, Curriculum and Instruction. Advisor: David O'Brien. 1 computer file (PDF); vi, 172 pages, appendices A-D.
Kolb, Christopher L..
Relationships between discourse, reader identity, and reading self-efficacy in a high school English classroom: a mixed methods, critical ethnographic study.
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