A Multiple Probe Study of a Word Level Intervention for Adolescents with Limited Reading Proficiency

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Virginia Tech

Organized as a set of three manuscripts, this research draws attention to the academic learning experiences for adolescents with particular attention to adolescents with limited reading proficiency and the use of single case design research as a viable option for discovering solutions to a persisting research-to-practice gap in education. Data analyses included a systematic literature review with findings synthesized into themes using qualitative methods, a multiple probe single case design, a non-parametric statistical analysis, and effect size calculations.

The first article is a systematic literature review on the relationship between oral reading fluency and reading comprehension for adolescent with limited reading proficiency (ALRP) in grades 6-12. The results of 22 studies were synthesized into five themes and results suggest that knowledge of an adolescent's ORF provides helpful information about his or her reading profile, but is not sufficient to evaluate instructional needs nor measure progress. The article concludes with a discussion on the envelopment of ORF within the Simple View of Reading specifically for adolescent readers as well as implications for practitioners, researchers, policymakers, and assessment developers.

The second article presents the findings from a study on the influence of a word level intervention on multiple reading component skills. Six students in two different intervention classes in Virginia participated. The primary analysis was based on a single case design, specifically a multiple probe across participants and settings design. Visual analyses of baseline and intervention phase data indicated a functional relationship between the word level intervention and multiple reading component skills. Statistical analysis (Tau-U) supported this finding with aggregated small effect sizes (0.14 to 0.54) for word identification, accuracy, and automaticity, and one moderate effect size (.70) for prosody. Secondary analysis showed a significant effect for improved strategy knowledge and skill with a 0.90 effect size, but no statistically significant group effects for silent reading fluency and sentence comprehension.

The third manuscript is a broad overview of adolescent literacy instructional recommendations and presents a vision for how all teachers contribute to the development of strategic learners when they support content learning through literacy-rich classroom environments.

adolescent literacy, reading comprehension, intervention, strategies, skills, oral reading fluency, prosody