Collateral effects of computer-assisted reading instruction on the classroom behaviors of learners with emotional and/or behavioral disorders
Louann Ingle Gum, Tennessee Technological University, United States
Tennessee Technological University . Awarded
This dissertation describes a study to determine the collateral effects of a computer-assisted reading instruction program (CARI) on the task engagement behaviors of students with emotional and/or behavioral disorders (EBD). The study took place in a rural school district in Tennessee with middle school students (n = 8, grades 6,7 or 8). Students were included in the study by virtue of their inclusion in a special education program and because they were at-risk for academic failure and/or more restrictive placement because of behavioral problems.
The study specifically sought to address the effects of the CARI on the amount of task engagement in the classroom and the reading achievement of the students. A multiple baseline (across participants) research design was used to document observed behavioral changes. Pre- and post-treatment assessments were made of reading skills for each participant. Measures of social validity were made through pre-treatment and post-treatment interviews and rating scales from parents and relevant teachers. Interrater reliability measures were taken on 25% of all classroom observations.
While the study found improved task engagement commensurate with the application of the CARI, little if any improvements were noted in reading achievement of the participants. Teachers in special education saw greater improvement than did teachers in the mainstream placements. Conclusions drawn from the data tend to indicate that improvements in behavior were more likely the result of more systematic instruction and attention to the individual needs of these students than the result of the computer-assisted reading intervention.
Gum, L.I. Collateral effects of computer-assisted reading instruction on the classroom behaviors of learners with emotional and/or behavioral disorders. Ph.D. thesis, Tennessee Technological University.
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