WWC review of this study

The impact of the Reading Apprenticeship Improving Secondary Education (RAISE) Project on academic literacy in high school: A report of a randomized experiment in Pennsylvania and California schools.

Fancsali, C., Abe, Y., Pyatigorsky, M., Ortiz, L., Chan, V., Saltares, E., ... Jaciw, A. (2015). Washington, DC: IMPAQ International. Retrieved from: https://eric.ed.gov/?id=ED571000

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
    , grades

Reviewed: January 2017

No statistically significant positive
Meets WWC standards with reservations
English language arts achievement outcomes—Indeterminate effects found
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
Significant? Improvement

Literacy Achievement Assessment

Reading Apprenticeship® vs. Business as usual

2 Years

Full sample;
10,173 students





Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.

  • 14% English language learners

  • 61% Minority

  • 39% Non-minority

  • Female: 49%
    Male: 51%
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    California, Pennsylvania


The study took place in 42 high schools in the states of California and Pennsylvania.  152 teachers of students in 9th-12 grade English Language Arts, Science, and History participated. 

Study sample

Among the 252 teachers, 57.8% were female and 33.9% taught English Literature, 33.5% taught US History, and 32.6% taught Science. On average, the teachers had been teaching for 9.94 years and a majority had Master's degrees (55.8%). Among the 14,747 students, 48.7% identified as female and 11.3% were placed into special education courses and 13.8% were English Language Learners. 60.8% identified as nonwhite.

Intervention Group

The Reading Apprenticeship instructional framework was developed to help teachers provide literacy support to students. The program focuses on four interacting dimensions of classroom learning culture: Social, Personal, Cognitive, and Knowledge-Building. These found dimensions are woven into subject-area teaching through metacognitive conversations. The Reading Apprenticeship program is designed to help teachers create classroom cultures in which students feel safe to share reading processes, problems, problems, and solutions. Students in the program are compared to students who did not receive the program.

Comparison Group

Comparison teachers and students continued to receive business-as-usual.

Support for implementation

The authors provided extensive support for implementation to the teachers. The authors first provided teachers with the professional development course and reported that 85% of the courses included intended measures of instruction. The authors also measured teachers attendance in the professional development courses and attendance at monthly meetings. To assess how the programs were being implemented, the authors asked teachers to complete program fidelity checklists. The authors reported that fidelity was consistently reported for a majority of the teachers and schools.


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