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Literacy for learning and life: an evaluation of the potential of the reading management programme accelerated reader to improve the literacy standards of Irish post primary students

Talbot, Tara (2022) Literacy for learning and life: an evaluation of the potential of the reading management programme accelerated reader to improve the literacy standards of Irish post primary students. PhD thesis, Dublin City University.

Improving the literacy standards of Irish post-primary students has been at the forefront of educational discourse in Ireland over the past decade. This research argues that educators must evaluate and assess the programmes and methods that they use to improve literacy standards. Educators must also evaluate and assess learner experience. Student voice is at the centre of this research, it is the voice of students that informs this research. This research provides an evaluation of the reading management programme Accelerated Reader (AR). AR claims to improve students’ reading ages and motivate students to read. A Mixed Methods design was employed to answer the research question, Is AR an effective means of improving the literacy standards of Irish post-primary students? This research was populated by two co- educational post-primary schools. One school, (Experiment Group) engaged fully with the AR program. The second school, (Control Group) did not engage with AR. Both groups took part in a 35 mins supervised reading class each week. This resulted in AR being the variable in the research. Pre and post surveys determined the students’ attitude towards reading and their reading habits. Pre and post reading-age tests determined if there was any fluctuation in students’ reading ages. Some students from the research population were also interviewed to analyse whether AR motivated students to read. In conclusion, this research makes a clear distinction between reading ages and literacy standards. This research acknowledges AR’s ability to increase a student’s reading age and function as a reading management tool. However, the research concludes that reading ages alone are not the summation of a student’s literacy standards and that a teacher is the best equipped to engage students in meaningful literacy instruction that motivates and encourages reading for pleasure with the intention of encouraging lifelong readers. The conclusion of this thesis draws together the themes of this research namely, readings gains, assessment, lifelong reading, motivation and gender to provide insight into pragmatic approaches that can be implemented by Irish post-primary schools to support literacy instruction.
Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Date of Award:February 2022
Supervisor(s):McDonald, Elaine and Fitzsimons, Sabrina
Uncontrolled Keywords:Literacy; Post Primary; Technology; Accelerated Reader
Subjects:Social Sciences > Education
Social Sciences > Educational technology
DCU Faculties and Centres:DCU Faculties and Schools > Institute of Education > School of Policy & Practice
Use License:This item is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License. View License
ID Code:26560
Deposited On:16 Feb 2022 14:57 by Elaine Mcdonald . Last Modified 16 Feb 2022 14:57

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