The effect of computer-assisted instruction on the reading skills of emergent readers
Louise B. Barnett, Florida Atlantic University, United States
Florida Atlantic University . Awarded
The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of computer-assisted instruction (CAI) on the reading skills of emergent readers in kindergarten classes at select Reading First schools in the School District of Palm Beach County, Florida. The reading software analyzed was Destination Reading (Riverdeep, 2001), used during the 2004-2005 school year.
Comparisons were made between users of the program and nonusers. Comparisons were also made between English language learners who used or did not use the program, as well as Exceptional Education students who used or did not use it. Another factor analyzed was how teacher attitude toward the computer affected student reading achievement. This was established by survey responses.
The measures used to compare treatment and non-treatment schools were the Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS), which tested letter naming ability, initial sound identification, phoneme segmentation ability, and nonsense word decoding. The Word Recognition and Reading Running Record assessments from the School District of Palm Beach County Reading and Writing Assessment System Grades K-1 protocol booklet tested identification of 25 sight words and ability to read continuous text.
Students using Destination Reading (Riverdeep, 2001) did not benefit significantly from use of the program compared to nonusers. Only on the letter-naming measure was there a significant advantage for all students in the sample and the English language learner group. The CAI group scored significantly lower on the initial sound fluency measure. Word Recognition and Reading Running Record assessments showed no significant results. ESE students showed no significant advantage in having had supplemental computer-assisted instruction on any measures.
Factorial ANOVAs were used to compare DIBELS scores for effectiveness of the treatment, pre- and posttest comparisons, and interaction of treatment with test scores for the CAI compared with the nonuser group. T distributions were used to analyze data from the Reading Running Record and Word Recognition assessments. There were no significant differences between the CAI and comparison schools on these two measures.
Teacher attitude toward computers did not affect students' acquisition of reading skills, as survey responses were in the positive range for all participants.
Barnett, L.B. The effect of computer-assisted instruction on the reading skills of emergent readers. Ph.D. thesis, Florida Atlantic University.
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