Uniform TitleGoing straight to the source: students with reading difficulties talk about reading, self-efficacy and reading instruction
NameGroff, Carolyn A. (author), Kuhn, Melanie (chair), Morrow, Lesley (internal member), Smith, Michael (internal member), Labbo, Linda (outside member), Rutgers University, Graduate School - New Brunswick,
Reading (Middle school),
DescriptionThe consequences of lack of reading and poor reading skills are disastrous for all students, regardless of background; however, because of the poverty and lack of economic opportunities in urban areas, readers of low-ability from marginalized ethnic and economic backgrounds may face more barriers than their economically advantaged peers. As these readers progress through school, their reading problems become more challenging for teachers to alleviate, and they fall further behind their peers, often losing motivation to engage with text (Alvermann, 2005). Research suggests that the instructional environment plays a critical role in students' views on reading, reading abilities and reading instruction. Currently, only a small body of research has addressed the problems of urban middle grade readers with reading difficulties from the students' perspectives. The purpose of this study is to contribute to the small volume of existing literature that highlights the voices of these readers by using their perspectives to examine three fundamental aspects of reading: the act of reading, reading self-efficacy and reading instruction.
This study used qualitative and quantitative data in the forms of interviews, surveys and observations to investigate the three areas. The major finding of this study resonates with previous research on the importance of contexts (Smith & Wilhelm, 2002). Contextual features played a crucial role in the students' feelings of competence in reading. Most students in the study viewed themselves as good readers; however, students of lower reading ability had lower self-efficacy in reading than students of higher reading ability. In addition, almost all of the students viewed the reading process and good reading similarly, regardless of grade or ability level. Students viewed teacher and tool assistance as critical to effective reading instruction. They also emphasized the importance of a variety of reading materials that are interesting and powerful. These findings have the potential to provide teachers with better insight about the needs of readers experiencing reading difficulties and inform instructional strategies and materials.
NoteIncludes bibliographical references (p. 151-157).
CollectionGraduate School - New Brunswick Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Organization NameRutgers, The State University of New Jersey
RightsThe author owns the copyright to this work.