卓越實證概述 Best Evidence in Brief

Language Development

Effectiveness of secondary reading programs

Secondary reading performance has drawn increasing attention in recent years. In a study published in Reading Research Quarterly, Baye and colleagues conducted a quantitative synthesis on the effectiveness of reading programs for secondary students. Sixty-nine studies that met high evidence standards were identified, including 62 randomized and 7 quasi-experimental designs. All studies included took place in the US and the UK. Fifty-one programs were evaluated across all studies. The examined programs were divided into 10 categories. Among them, 7 categories showed positive overall weighted outcomes, including tutoring interventions (ES=+0.24), cooperative learning (ES=+0.10), whole-school approaches (ES=+0.06), writing-focused approaches (ES=+0.13), content-focused approaches (ES=+0.08), strategy-focused instruction (ES=+0.09), and group/personalization rotation (ES=+0.09), whereas vocabulary-focused approaches, personalization approaches, and intensive group approaches demonstrated no statistically significant positive outcomes. Two cross-cutting factors, additional reading periods and technology applications, were also explored using random-effects models. The findings were as follows: No significant differences were found between studies providing extra reading...

18 06 2021
What works for struggling readers in elementary school?

Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Research and Reform in Education has conducted a meta-analysis on effective programs for struggling readers in elementary school, which recently appeared in Reading Research Quarterly. A total of 65 studies of 51 different programs were included in the review: 83% were randomized experiments and 17% quasi-experiments. The qualified studies were organized into five categories based on the RTI (Response to Intervention) framework, a categorization widely used in the U.S. RTI provides a means of categorizing reading interventions as prevention within the general education class (Tier 1), moderately intensive intervention (Tier 2), or intensive intervention (Tier 3). Results showed that: There were significant positive outcomes for tutoring programs (ES = +0.26) with larger effects for one-to-one tutoring (Tier 3, ES = +0.41) compared to one-to-small group tutoring (Tier 2, ES = +0.24). Multitiered whole-school approaches incorporating tutoring and whole-class approaches (Tier 1) had similar effects as tutoring programs, with...

03 06 2021
How effective is the Success for All program?

It is rare that one program deserves its own systematic review or has the breadth and depth of research to warrant it, but Success for All (SFA) is not a typical program. With over 30 years of operations and services provided in around 1,000 schools, SfA has earned the attention of researchers evaluating the program’s impact. A recent study by Cheung and colleagues gathered 17 studies from the United States (narrowed down from over 60 based on the studies’ inclusion criteria) to examine the overall and differential effects of SfA on student reading achievement, as well as the study features that moderate the effects of SfA on reading achievement. The Success for All program is a whole-school approach focused on early grades with continued support intended to last into later elementary grades. The program includes a phonemic awareness and phonics-centered curriculum and provides professional development for teachers led by SfA coaches, literacy...

03 06 2021
Effectiveness of educational apps

A recent meta-analysis by Kim and colleagues sought to evaluate the effectiveness of educational apps on learning for children in preschool through third grade. In this analysis, educational apps were defined as content delivered through personal electronic devices designed to improve literacy and mathematics. The meta-analysis demonstrated that: There were positive effects on student achievement in both literacy (ES = +0.35) and math (ES = +0.29) when compared with standard school instruction. The educational apps demonstrated stronger effects in preschool (ES = +0.35) than in school-age children (ES = +0.17) and were more associated with improvement in constrained skills, which are simple drill-and-practice facts like recognizing numbers and letters (ES = +0.31), than unconstrained skills, which are more complex tasks like solving math problems (ES = +0.14).  The authors also addressed several limitations in the interpretation of the findings. Perhaps most importantly, many of the apps included in the analysis were interactive, based on...

03 06 2021
What matters to English learners’ acquisition of academic vocabulary

Vocabulary knowledge is integral to reading comprehension. A recent study published in the Reading Research Quarterly evaluated the effectiveness of a vocabulary intervention on English learners’ acquisition of academic vocabulary. The intervention, called the Acquisition of Vocabulary in English, was conducted with 424 Spanish-English speaking students in second grade who were identified as English learners. In this stratified cluster randomized control trial, 22 classrooms were randomly assigned either to the intervention group (n=12) or the control group (n=10). Students in the intervention group received four 50-minute lessons weekly for 18 weeks. Teachers in the intervention group used selected books with target vocabulary and applied activities to reinforce vocabulary learning, while teachers in the control group solely read the same books with target vocabulary. The results suggest that The intervention was effective on English learners’ acquisition of challenging, high-utility English vocabulary. Specifically, the effect size (Cohen’s d) was +1.88 for content words (i.e., meaning-carrying words),...

03 06 2021
Effectiveness of shared book reading on supporting preschool bilingual children’s second-language learning

Young dual language learners are considered at higher risk than their monolingual peers in terms of language skills and school readiness. A recent cluster-randomized controlled study published in Child Development  investigated the effectiveness of a book-based language intervention – the Extend program – on bilingual children’s second-language skills in Norway. The Extend program is a loosely scripted intervention intended to support children’s language skills including vocabulary, grammar, narrative skills, and perspective-taking. 464 children from 60 preschools, who spoke a variety of first languages, participated in the study. Teachers used 15 books in the classroom for this shared-reading intervention, and 4 were sent home so that parents could share them with their children in their preferred language. The results indicated that the intervention had positive impacts on children’s second-language learning in general. In particular, the intervention had significant effects on second-language vocabulary (four indicators, ES= +0.24 to +0.87) and grammar skills (ES=+0.34). The findings also...

04 05 2021
Should teachers and parents teach together?

Teaching Together is an initiative that combines tiered school instruction with home curricular supplements to enhance language skills among pre-k children at risk for later reading difficulties. Researchers from the University of Texas Health Science Center and Florida Center for Reading Research examined the effects of Teaching Together, in a study published in Early Childhood Research Quarterly. This study included a sample of Head Start children demonstrating risk for later reading difficulties and eligible for Tier-2 services (targeted instruction for children with weak skills). By adopting an RCT-design, researchers randomized one control and three treatment groups: Control or business-as-usual (BAU) family engagement experiences (n=72), Tier 1 Family workshops and universal text messages (n=241), Tier 2 Basic Family, which added learning materials and targeted text messages to the workshops (n=29), Tier 2 Enhanced Family, which added parent coaching/individualized communication to the above supports (n=31). Among all three treatments, findings were as follows: The Tier...

04 05 2021
Does attending kindergartens matter when other factors are considered? Findings from ethnic minority children in China

The benefits of attending kindergartens have been shown in different longitudinal studies. However, a recent study published in Children and Youth Services Review pointed out, studies about the effects among ethnic minorities are rare, as the different language used in the education system might undermine the effect of attending kindergarten. In this regard, Ling Li and colleagues conducted a study among Zhuang students in China for the relationship between attending kindergarten and reading literacy. The data of this study was obtained from a larger study for junior high school students conducted in a rural area of southwestern China. It only included Zhuang students in the analysis. In total, there were 457 Zhuang students from 106 schools who were randomly sampled in this study. The participating students completed a questionnaire including questions about individual particulars, family factors, early education experience, after school time, parental expectations, and self-expectations. Their Chinese reading literacy...

21 04 2021
An evaluation of Descubriendo la Lectura tutoring

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,...

24 03 2021