WWC review of this study

An evaluation of a computer-based phonological awareness training program: Effects on phonological awareness, reading and spelling.

Valliath, S. C. (2002). Dissertation Abstracts International, 63(04A), 152-1291.

  • Quasi-Experimental Design
     examining 
    30
     Students
    , grade
    1

Reviewed: June 2012

Study sample characteristics were not reported.
At least one statistically significant positive finding
Meets WWC standards with reservations

Reviewed: January 2009

Alphabetics outcomes—Statistically significant positive effects found
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
index

Comprehensive Test of Phonological Processing (CTOPP): Sound Matching subtest

Earobics® vs. Knowledge Adventure's Jump Start Math for First Graders

Posttest

Grade 1;
30 students

103.63

95

Yes

 
 
37
More Outcomes

Woodcock Reading Mastery Test (WRMT): Word Identification subtest

Earobics® vs. Knowledge Adventure's Jump Start Math for First Graders

Posttest

Grade 1;
30 students

104.07

100.87

No

 
 
25

Comprehensive Test of Phonological Processing (CTOPP): Phoneme Elision subtest

Earobics® vs. Knowledge Adventure's Jump Start Math for First Graders

Posttest

Grade 1;
30 students

104

97.67

No

 
 
24

Comprehensive Test of Phonological Processing (CTOPP): Blending Nonwords subtest

Earobics® vs. Knowledge Adventure's Jump Start Math for First Graders

Posttest

Grade 1;
30 students

111

105.33

No

 
 
22

Woodcock Reading Mastery Test (WRMT): Word Attack subtest

Earobics® vs. Knowledge Adventure's Jump Start Math for First Graders

Posttest

Grade 1;
30 students

103.33

101.33

No

 
 
12

Comprehensive Test of Phonological Processing (CTOPP): Blending Words subtest

Earobics® vs. Knowledge Adventure's Jump Start Math for First Graders

Posttest

Grade 1;
30 students

105.66

103.33

No

 
 
11

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.


  • 0% English language learners

  • Female: 47%
    Male: 53%

  • Suburban
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    Illinois

Setting

The study took place in three public elementary schools from a high-achieving school district of a northwest suburb of Chicago, Illinois.

Study sample

Ten teachers identified three children with the lowest reading ability within their first-grade classrooms. Before pretesting, all 30 students received a score of at least 80 on the Test of Nonverbal Intelligence -3. Then the study author administered a pretest (the Woodcock Reading Mastery Test: Word Identification subtest) to students to divide them into two similar groups. All children came from English-speaking monolingual homes; none received any special education or speech and language services. The sample consisted of 16 boys and 14 girls, ages 6.5 to 7.5. In the analysis sample, 15 students were in the intervention group and 15 students were in the comparison group.

Intervention Group

Students in the intervention group spent 20 minutes each day playing one of the six Earobics® games. Earobics® delivered phonological awareness training in the auditory mode and provided minimal sound-to-print training. The children played individually and were provided headsets. They started at the lowest skill level for each game and progressed at their own pace. The games were rotated systematically on a daily basis during the 10-week training program. The average number of days attended by the students in the intervention group was 46.47 of a possible 50 days.

Comparison Group

Students in the comparison group received comparable amounts of daily exposure (approximately 20 minutes) to math training software, Knowledge Adventure’s Jump Start Math for First Graders. The software has no linguistic training component and consists of eight math games appropriate for children in the first grade. The average number of days attended by the students in the comparison group was 45.8 of a possible 50 days.

Outcome descriptions

For both pre- and posttests, the authors administered four subtests of the Comprehensive Test of Phonological Processing (CTOPP): Blending Words, Blending Non-Words, Elision, and Sound Matching subtests and the Woodcock Reading Mastery Test (WRMT): Word Identification and Word Attack subtests. The CTOPP Memory for Digits subtest and the Spelling subtest of the Wide Range Achievement test were also used in the study, but they have not been included in this review because they are outside the scope of the Beginning Reading review. For a more detailed description of these outcome measures, see Appendices A2.1 and A2.2.

Support for implementation

The experimenter trained the computer lab technicians in each of the three schools on how to use the software. Detailed instructions, attendance sheets, and appropriate rotations of the Earobics® games were discussed. No other information on teacher training is provided.

 

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