WWC review of this study

Effectiveness of a Spanish intervention and an English intervention for English language learners at risk for reading problems.

Vaughn, S., Cirino, P. T., Linan-Thompson, S., Mathes, P. G., Carlson, C. D., Cardenas-Hagan, E., et al. (2006). American Educational Research Journal, 43 (3), 449–487. Retrieved from: https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ746822

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
     examining 
    91
     Students
    , grade
    1
Meets WWC standards without reservations

Reviewed: April 2014

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.


  • 100% English language learners

  • Female: 46%
    Male: 54%
  • Ethnicity
    Hispanic
    100%
    Not Hispanic
    0%
No statistically significant positive
findings
Meets WWC standards without reservations

Reviewed: September 2006

English language development outcomes—Indeterminate effects found
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
index

English Language Composite

Enhanced Proactive Reading vs. Business as Usual

Posttest

Grade 1;
88 students

55.66

58.66

No

--
Reading achievement outcomes—Substantively important positive effects found
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
index

Woodcock-Johnson (WJ): Word Attack subtest

Enhanced Proactive Reading vs. Business as Usual

Posttest

Grade 1;
78 students

99.92

94.4

No

 
 
16
More Outcomes

Word reading efficiency

Enhanced Proactive Reading vs. Business as Usual

Posttest

Grade 1;
89 students

16.93

12.83

No

 
 
16

Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS)

Enhanced Proactive Reading vs. Business as Usual

Posttest

Grade 1;
88 students

17.07

12.28

No

 
 
13

Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS)

Enhanced Proactive Reading vs. Business as Usual

Posttest

Grade 1;
88 students

14.66

11.26

No

 
 
11

Letter sound identification

Enhanced Proactive Reading vs. Business as Usual

Posttest

Grade 1;
90 students

23.02

21.45

No

 
 
10

Woodcock-Johnson (WJ): Letter-Word Identification subtest

Enhanced Proactive Reading vs. Business as Usual

Posttest

Grade 1;
91 students

89.88

87.42

No

--

Passage Comprehension

Enhanced Proactive Reading vs. Business as Usual

Posttest

Grade 1;
90 students

86.93

86.13

No

--

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.


  • 100% English language learners

  • Female: 46%
    Male: 54%
  • Ethnicity
    Hispanic
    100%
    Not Hispanic
    0%

  • Urban
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    Texas

Setting

Four Texas schools, considered effective for bilingual students and where the population was at least 60% Hispanic, were chosen as sites for this study. Schools were located in urban or urban boundary areas. Each school’s first-grade classrooms provided core English reading instruction to English language learners using well known reading programs.

Study sample

Ninety-one Hispanic, first-grade English language learners (46% female) from 20 classrooms participating in this study were randomly assigned to the intervention or comparison group. All participants were prescreened to assess their English language ability and met two inclusion criteria: scoring below the 25th percentile for first grade on the Letter Word Identification subtest of the Woodcock Language Proficiency Battery; reading between zero and one word from a list of five two- to four-letter words in English and Spanish.

Intervention Group

The intervention group received Enhanced Proactive Reading from October to May. The curriculum was implemented as a supplemental reading program for low-performing students. Instruction was carried out over 120 lessons, in 50-minute sessions, to groups of three to five students (with homogeneous reading achievement). Classroom teachers taught both intervention and comparison students. The intervention was delivered by bilingual (Spanish/English) teachers in a pull-out setting. Checklists and observations were conducted and found that the intervention was delivered with acceptable fidelity.

Comparison Group

The comparison group English language learning students did not participate in the supplemental reading program but received the same core reading instruction as the intervention group. Seventy percent of comparison group students received, on average, 63.6 hours of supplemental reading instruction.

Outcome descriptions

The reading measures included various subtests from the Woodcock-Johnson battery of assessments, the Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills, and a measure of students’ ability to identify letters in the English alphabet and to provide at least one corresponding sound for each letter. The Woodcock Language Proficiency Battery-Revised (composite scores and some related subtests) served as the English language development measure. Although random assignment was done at the student level and the unit of assignment matched the unit of analysis, the study authors investigated classroom-level clustering, and clustering that might have impacted findings because the intervention was delivered in small groups. In both cases, clustering did not have an impact on findings. (See Appendices A2.1 and A2.2 for more detailed descriptions of outcome measures.)

Support for implementation

Intervention teachers received 12 hours of professional development prior to implementation and six hours of professional development after the intervention had been implemented for six weeks. Teachers also participated in frequent staff development sessions and on-site coaching. Note that some teachers had previously taught the curriculum as part of the other study reviewed in this report.

 

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