WWC review of this study

A final report for the evaluation of Renaissance Learning’s Accelerated Reader Program.

Shannon, L. C., Styers, M. K., & Siceloff, E. R. (2010). Charlottesville, VA: Magnolia Consulting.

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
     examining 
    233
     Students
    , grades
    1-4
At least one statistically significant positive finding
Meets WWC standards without reservations

Reviewed: June 2016

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

STAR Reading Test

Accelerated Reader vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Grades 1–3;
233 students

426.13

396.3

Yes

 
 
7
More Outcomes
Show Supplemental Findings

STAR Reading Test

Accelerated Reader vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Grade 3;
82 students

526.82

475.65

No

 
 
13

STAR Reading Test

Accelerated Reader vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Grade 2;
69 students

409.83

398.3

No

--

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.


  • 3% Free or reduced price lunch

  • Female: 52%
    Male: 48%
  • Race
    Asian
    13%
    White
    66%
  • Ethnicity
    Hispanic
    11%
    Not Hispanic
    89%

  • Urban
    • B
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    Midwest

Setting

This study took place in three Catholic private schools in a large city in the North Central region of the United States.

Study sample

The full study sample, which included 344 first, second, third, and fourth-grade students in 19 classrooms, was approximately evenly split between female and male students (52% vs. 48%, respectively). The majority of study participants (66%) were White, 13% were Asian/Pacific Islander, and 11% were Hispanic. None of the students were classified as English learners, less than 2% were receiving special education, and less than 3% were eligible for free or reduced-price lunch.

Intervention Group

Students in the intervention group used Accelerated Reader™ over the course of 1 school year. Teachers reported using the intervention daily (on average, 4.9 out of 5 days a week) in their classrooms, allowing for 30–45 minutes of independent reading practice per day. During this time, students read books within their reading and interest levels and took Accelerated Reader™ quizzes that tested their understanding of the book. The intervention was used to supplement the standard reading curriculum (Scott Foresman).

Comparison Group

Students in the comparison group were taught using a similar set of reading curricula as the intervention group, but without the addition of Accelerated Reader™. Both groups supplemented their core curricula—Scott Foresman—with other materials.

Support for implementation

Renaissance Learning, the program developer, provided a training seminar to intervention teachers at the beginning of the school year and conducted training visits to each school throughout the study period.

In the case of multiple manuscripts that report on one study, the WWC selects one manuscript as the primary citation and lists other manuscripts that describe the study as additional sources.

  • Shannon, L. C., Styers, M. K., Wilkerson, S. B., & Peery, E. (2014). Computer-assisted learning in elementary reading: A randomized control trial. Charlottesville, VA: Magnolia Consulting.

  • Shannon, L. C., Styers, M. K., Wilkerson, S. B., & Peery, E. (2015). Computer-assisted learning in elementary reading: A randomized control trial. Computers in the Schools, 32(1), 20–34.

 

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This download will include data files for study and findings review data and a data dictionary.

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