The purpose of the study was to synthesize research studies that examined reading instruction for English language learners (ELL) in preschool through sixth grades. Specific goals were to determine the availability of reading instruction for ELLs, the effects of that instruction, and which instructional programs can be considered evidence-based. An extensive search of the research studies identified 29 studies employing group design published in peer-reviewed journals since 1967, which yielded 44 samples with a total of 225 effect sizes. Findings revealed that at both tier 1 and 2, there are more than 10 instructional programs that address phonemic awareness and phonics instruction at preschool to 2nd grade levels, but there were no phonemic awareness and phonics instruction for third to sixth graders. The overall effect of reading instruction was moderate, with a mean ES of 0.50. HLM revealed that factors strengthen the effect were: English as a language of intervention; a session lasted 45 min or less; upper grade level; single grade; average or higher SES; and lower study quality. Three evidence-based or promising practices from 13 programs were identified; Keyword method, Proactive Reading and Peer-Assisted Learning Strategies. The research community should continue to reinforce efforts to improve the quality of research while seeking strong support for rigorous research from policy makers to empower ELL students who are otherwise likely to be at-risk readers by providing them with evidence-based reading instruction.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. August 2009. Major: Educational Psychology. Advisor: Dr. Kristen L. McMaster. 1 computer file (PDF); vii, 133 pages, appendices A-D.
Evidence-based reading instruction for English language learners in preschool through sixth grades: a meta-analysis of group design studies..
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