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Differences between a Direct Instruction reading approach and a balanced reading approach among elementary school students

McGahey, J.
This study compared the effect of a Direct Instruction (DI) reading program and a Balanced Reading (BR) approach on the reading comprehension of 88 second, third, and fourth grade students, at two different schools. The Iowa Tests of Basic Skills (ITBS) was administered to both groups over three years, beginning when the students entered the second grade. Results indicated students in the DI school demonstrated significant gains in reading comprehension skills in comparison to students in the BR group. Students in the DI group recorded positive gains in NCE mean reading comprehension scores following the first year of implementation, while students in the BR group were unable to demonstrate positive gains on NCE mean reading comprehension scores until the third year of implementation. Following the third year of implementation, both groups demonstrated similar decreases in mean scores. Results for Caucasian and African American students indicated no significant differences on reading comprehension scores within each form of instruction over the three year period. (Copyright © 2011, National Institute for Direct Instruction (NIFDI). All rights reserved).
Research areas:
Main publication type:
Program Effectiveness
Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Auburn University, Dissertation Abstracts International, 63 (06A), 2147
Design type:
Posttest Only Control Group Design
Fidelity monitored:
Students included:
Elementary students, at-risk students, disadvantaged students, African American students, Caucasian students, low-SES students
Other tags:
Reading comprehension, Iowa Tests of Basic Skills (ITBS), vocabulary, Balanced Reading
Georgia, rural area, elementary school
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