Geoffrey Borman and his team administered a randomized controlled trial to examine the effectiveness of Descubriendo la Lectura (DLL), the Spanish version of Reading Recovery. DLL is a literacy intervention for Spanish-speaking students. 187 low-performing first-graders were recruited from two school districts in the United States to participate in the study. Students in both control and intervention groups received classroom-level transitional bilingual programs, and students in the intervention group received 12 to 20 weeks of additional one-to-one Spanish-language literacy tutoring from trained DLL teachers. To become a trained DLL teacher, teachers needed to receive a 2-year training program, and ongoing professional development and support.
Students’ literacy skills were assessed before and after the intervention on Logramos, the Spanish-language version of the Iowa Test of Basic Skills. Students who received DLL demonstrated significantly greater performance on vocabulary, comprehension, and word analysis after the intervention. The study also used another assessment tool called IdO, the Spanish-language version of the Observation Survey of Early Literacy Achievement. However, given that this measure was developed by the creators of Reading Recovery and DLL, and is highly aligned with the contents and procedures of the intervention, these outcomes may not represent the true impact of DLL. The findings provide the first experimental evidence for the effectiveness of the Spanish version of a well-known literacy intervention program. Although the study has limitations of small sample size and high attrition rates, it can serve as a meaningful groundwork for the replication and longitudinal investigation of the program.
Source: Borman, G. D., Borman, T. H., Park, S. J., & Houghton, S. (2020). A Multisite Randomized Controlled Trial of the Effectiveness of Descubriendo la Lectura. American Educational Research Journal, 57(5), 1995-2020.