by Amy Correa, Chicago Public Schools
with Nell Duke, University of Michigan
June 7, 2013
As a classroom teacher (or geek) who finds learning about reading research not only interesting but also imperative in making me a better teacher, I really enjoyed the IRA Outstanding Dissertation Research Poster Sessions. Each year IRA selects ten finalists and one winner of this prestigious award. These finalists are among the next generation of researchers who will influence our profession, and many of their studies have direct implications for classroom practice.
As a case in point, one of this year’s finalists was
Reading Across Multimodal Texts in History by Michael Manderino, Ph.D.
This was a timely study. As the Common Core State Standards emphasize the use of literacy in history and other subjects, language arts and content teachers will need to think carefully about how to scaffold students from general sense making to discipline-specific reading. This study involved examining how high-school students read multiple texts of different modes (audio, video, graphic, written cartoons) as they worked to answer an historical question.
The researcher studied two students—one a more proficient reader and one a less proficient reader—especially closely. He found that neither student attended much to who produced the sources they were reading, something that is very important to historical reading. This made me think about my own teaching of historical reading. Perhaps I can do more to encourage my younger students to start paying more attention to the production of the sources they read. Another finding was that, as they engaged with more sources, in particular sources beyond written text alone, the gaps between these two students’ learning and performance narrowed. This reminded me of this importance of encouraging students to use a wide range of texts, including video, audio, and graphics, to develop their knowledge related to topics I assign.
This is only one of many interesting and consequential studies among the finalists for IRA’s Outstanding Dissertation Award. For a complete list of this year’s finalists, as well as the Award winner, please see below.
IRA Outstanding Dissertation Award Winner 2013
Byeong-Young Chou, dissertation from the University of Maryland; chaired by Peter P. Afflerbach; dissertation title: Adolescents’ Constructively Responsive Reading Use in a Critical Internet Reading Task
Abstract: The Internet is central to understanding literacies in the 21st century, and explication of reading strategies situated in Internet settings contributes to both our understanding of reading and our support of students in the Internet age. This study investigated the complexity of Internet reading strategies used by seven accomplished high-school readers. Individual participants read with the Internet, with a goal to develop critical questions about a contemporary, controversial topic. Internet reading strategies were analyzed using participants’ verbal reports, triangulated with complementary data (e.g., computer screen-recordings). Results describe the nature and sequences of readers’ strategies (categorized into realizing and constructing potential texts to read, identifying and learning text content, monitoring, and evaluating), the roles these strategies play in Internet reading, and also the interactive patterns of strategy use among individual readers. Implications of Internet reading strategy use for theory and practice are discussed.
Byeong-Young Cho's dissertation
IRA Outstanding Dissertation Award Finalists 2013
Vicki S. Collet, dissertation from the University at Buffalo, State University of New York; chaired by Mary McVee; dissertation title: The Gradual Increase of Responsibility: Scaffolds for Change
Vicki S. Collet's dissertation
Rebecca S. Donaldson, dissertation from the Utah State University; chaired by D. Ray Reutzel; dissertation title: What Classroom Observations Reveal About Primary Grade Reading Comprehension Instruction Within High Poverty Schools Participating in the Federal Reading First Initiative
Rebecca S. Donaldson's dissertation
Darcy Anne Fiano, dissertation from the University of Connecticut; chaired by Mary Anne Doyle; dissertation title: Primary Discourse and Expressive Oral Language in a Kindergarten Student
Darcy Anne Fiano's dissertation
Lindsay P. Grow, dissertation from the University of Kentucky; chaired by Janice F. Almasi; dissertation title: The Identity Development of Preservice Teachers of Literacy in Field Experiences Considering Their Prior Knowledge
Lindsay P. Grow's dissertation
Andrew P. Huddleston, dissertation from the University of Georgia; chaired by Donna Alvermann; dissertation title: Making the Difficult Choice: Understanding Georgia's Test-Based Grade Retention Policy in Reading
Andrew P. Huddleston's dissertation
Charlene Martin, dissertation from the University of Oklahoma; chaired by Priscilla Griffith; dissertation title: A Study of Factors that Contribute to Pre-Service Teachers' Sense of Efficacy for Literacy Instruction
Charlene Martin's dissertation
Elizabeth L. Jaeger, dissertation from University of California, Berkeley; chaired by P. David Pearson; dissertation title: Understanding and Supporting Vulnerable Readers: An Ecological Systems Perspective
Elizabeth Jaeger's dissertation is not available on a website, but a summary of it can be obtained by e-mailing Elizabeth at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Michael L. Manderino, dissertation from the University of Illinois at Chicago; chaired by Cynthia Shanahan; dissertation title: Reading Across Multiple Multimodal Texts in History
Michael Manderino's dissertation
Darcie D. Smith, dissertation from the University of Nevada, Reno; chaired by Shane Templeton; dissertation title: How Do 4th, 5th, and 6th Grade Students’ Categories of Cognitive Reflections in Interviews on Derivational Morphology Compare to Their Upper Level Spelling Inventory Orthographic Knowledge?
Darcie D. Smith's dissertation
Reader response is welcomed. Email your comments to LRP@reading.org