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Coi Comprehension.


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Coi Comprehension.

  1. 1. Welcome to a Webinar on: Improving Expository Text Comprehension in Students with Learning Disabilities Asha Jitendra, PhD hosted by The Center on Instruction June 30, 2008 Funded by U.S. Department of Education
  2. 2. Funded by U.S. Department of Education The Center on Instruction is operated by RMC Research Corporation in partnership with the Florida Center for Reading Research at Florida State University; Horizon Research, RG Research Group; the Texas Institute for Measurement, Evaluation, and Statistics at the University of Houston; and the Vaughn Gross Center for Reading and Language Arts at the University of Texas at Austin. The contents of this PowerPoint were developed under cooperative agreement S283B050034 with the U.S. Department of Education. However, these contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government. 2008 The Center on Instruction requests that no changes be made to the content or appearance of this product. To download a copy of this document, visit
  3. 3. Today’s Agenda <ul><li>Welcome and Logistics </li></ul><ul><li>Introductions </li></ul><ul><li>Presentation </li></ul><ul><li>Q&A </li></ul><ul><li>Poll </li></ul>
  4. 5. Improving Comprehension of Expository Text in Students With LD: A Research Synthesis Asha Jitendra Rodney Wallace Professor for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning University of Minnesota
  5. 6. Co-Authors <ul><li>Meenakshi Gajria, St. Thomas Aquinas College </li></ul><ul><li>Sheetal Sood, Lehigh University </li></ul><ul><li>Gabriell Sacks, Lehigh University </li></ul>
  6. 7. Why Text Comprehension? <ul><li>Text comprehension is critical for academic success and independent learning </li></ul>Lenz & Deshler, 2004
  7. 8. Density of Information in Textbooks <ul><li>Text comprehension problems often compounded by inconsiderate features in textbooks such as … </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Technical vocabulary </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Complex and varied syntactical structures </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Abstract concepts </li></ul></ul>Ambruster, 1984
  8. 9. Text Comprehension and Students with LD <ul><li>Characterized as passive readers (Torgesen, 1982), students with LD evidence … </li></ul><ul><li>Poor recall of textual ideas (Spring & Prager, 1992; Warren & Fitzgerald, 1997) </li></ul><ul><li>Problems identifying main ideas and supporting details (Baumann, 1984) </li></ul><ul><li>Problems ignoring extraneous information (Williams, 1993) </li></ul><ul><li>Problems drawing inferences (Holmes, 1985) </li></ul>
  9. 10. Text Comprehension and Students with LD (cont’d.) <ul><li>Difficulty in relating new information to prior knowledge (Johnson, Graham, & Harris, 1997) </li></ul><ul><li>Difficulty in actively monitoring their comprehension (Wong, 1994) </li></ul><ul><li>Difficulty in understanding expository text patterns and using text structure knowledge to foster encoding and retrieval of content area information (Englert & Thomas, 1987) </li></ul>
  10. 11. Study Background <ul><li>Previous meta-analysis of reading research for students with LD have not separated the effects of comprehension of narrative and expository passages </li></ul><ul><li>Mastropieri, Scruggs, Bakken, & Whedon, 1996; Swanson, 1999; Talbott, Lloyd, & Tankersley, 1994. </li></ul><ul><li>Two reviews of narrative and expository text comprehension research are descriptive in nature </li></ul><ul><li>Gersten, Fuchs, Williams, & Baker, 2001; Mastropieri & Scruggs, 1997 </li></ul><ul><li>Other descriptive reviews have focused on one content area (e.g., history), a specific intervention (technology-based practices), or one type of text enhancement (i.e., graphic organizers) </li></ul><ul><li>De La Paz & MacArthur, 2003; Kim, Vaughn, Wanzek, and Wei, 2004; Maccini, Gagnon, & Hughes, 2002 </li></ul>
  11. 12. Purpose of Study <ul><li>This review summarized findings of content area reading intervention research for students with learning disabilities in order to document effective approaches to expository text comprehension </li></ul>
  12. 13. Research Questions <ul><li>How effective are the various instructional approaches in enhancing comprehension of expository text for students with LD? </li></ul><ul><li>Is intervention effectiveness related to important student characteristics (i.e., grade, IQ level)? </li></ul><ul><li>Are treatment outcomes related to instructional features (e.g., instructional materials, length of treatment, instructional arrangement, setting, implementation of instruction)? </li></ul><ul><li>Do methodological features (e.g., group assignment, treatment fidelity) influence treatment outcomes? </li></ul><ul><li>What is the effectiveness of text comprehension instruction on skill maintenance and generalization? Are skill maintenance and generalization a function of instructional features (e.g., treatment length)? </li></ul>
  13. 14. Inclusion Criteria <ul><li>Studies included a content area intervention or provided opportunities to practice or apply strategies to comprehend expository textual material </li></ul><ul><li>Recipients of the intervention were identified as school-aged children or adolescents with learning disabilities </li></ul><ul><li>Experimental or quasi-experimental group design intervention studies with a control group </li></ul>
  14. 15. Inclusion Criteria <ul><li>Studies included at least one measure of expository text comprehension </li></ul><ul><li>Studies provided sufficient quantitative information (e.g., means, standard deviations, t or F values) regarding outcomes so that effect sizes could be calculated </li></ul><ul><li>Studies were published in English </li></ul>
  15. 16. Coding Study Features <ul><li>Study features coded included: </li></ul><ul><li>participant characteristics (e.g., grade level, and IQ) </li></ul><ul><li>reading comprehension instructional features (i.e., type of intervention, length and duration of intervention, instructional setting, instructional arrangement, person delivering the instruction) </li></ul><ul><li>group assignment to conditions </li></ul><ul><li>procedural fidelity </li></ul>
  16. 17. Coding Study Features <ul><li>Interventions were categorized as: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>content enhancement (e.g., advance or graphic organizer, visual display, mnemonic techniques, computer-assisted instruction) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>cognitive strategy instruction (i.e., text structure, main idea identification, summarization, questioning, cognitive mapping, reciprocal teaching). </li></ul></ul>
  17. 18. Coding Study Features <ul><li>Maintenance effects - the elapsed time between termination of the treatment and the time when maintenance data were collected </li></ul><ul><li>Transfer effects - used a different measure at posttest that was not aligned with the training </li></ul>
  18. 19. Interrater agreement for coding and calculation of ES <ul><li>Interrater agreement on coding of pertinent sample and study characteristics was 93% ( range = 74% to 100%) </li></ul><ul><li>Effect sizes ( ES ) calculated as the difference between the mean posttest scores of the intervention and control groups divided by the pooled standard deviation </li></ul>
  19. 20. Study Characteristics <ul><li>Publication dates: A total of 29 studies - 12 studies (41%) published bet. 1982 and 1989; 12 (41%) published bet. 1990 and 1998; and five (17%) published bet. 2000 and 2004 </li></ul><ul><li>Assignment to conditions: In 22 studies (76%), participants were randomly assigned </li></ul><ul><li>Total number of students with LD: 1450 </li></ul><ul><li>Grade Level: Elementary (21%), middle (52%), and high school (24%). One study included participants in Grades 1 through 9 </li></ul><ul><li>Age: 19 (66%) studies only reported ages of participants, with ages ranging from 11.1 to 16.9 years </li></ul>
  20. 21. Study Characteristics <ul><li>IQ: 22 (76%) studies reported IQ scores, with the mean IQ ranging from 76 to 115 </li></ul><ul><li>Instructional duration: Instruction occurred in sessions (i.e., a single session to as many as daily sessions for 4 months) that ranged from 30 min to 60 min, with the majority being 45 to 50 min in length </li></ul><ul><li>Instructional setting : For the 27 studies that reported instructional setting, instruction occurred in resource or special education classrooms (45%), general education classrooms (21%), and other settings (a quiet room in the school, summer or laboratory school) (28%) </li></ul>
  21. 22. Study Characteristics <ul><li>Delivery of instruction : Researchers (59%), teachers (28%), and computer/multimedia tools (3%) </li></ul><ul><li>Instructional arrangement : Group instruction (72%) and individual and/or paired learning (28%) </li></ul><ul><li>Treatment fidelity data collected in 12 studies (41%) </li></ul><ul><li>Maintenance and transfer data collected in nine (31%) and five studies (17%), respectively </li></ul>
  22. 23. Findings by Type of Interventions: Content Enhancements <ul><li>Content enhancements are instructional tools (e.g., graphic organizers) that make the text more meaningful and accessible to students by facilitating the organization and presentation of difficult to understand material </li></ul><ul><li>Content enhancements include advance organizers to preview critical information in the lesson, visual displays or graphic organizers to organize the text content, mnemonic illustrations to help remember the content, and computer assisted instruction to provide opportunities for independent practice and review </li></ul>
  23. 24. Findings by Type of Interventions: Content Enhancements <ul><li>The average effect size ( ES) for content enhancements was large ( ES = 1.06; SD = 0.63) </li></ul><ul><li>Maintenance effects were addressed in only three studies, and the average effect was large ( ES = 1.08; SD = 0.65) </li></ul><ul><li>Only two studies addressed transfer effects and the outcomes were mixed ( ES = 0.67 for Darch and Carnine, 1986; ES = -0.67 for Darch and Eaves, 1986) </li></ul>
  24. 25. Table 1. Effect sizes for content enhancement interventions
  25. 26. Findings by Type of Interventions: Content Enhancement-specific interventions <ul><li>The most frequently used and effective approach was visual representation of key text ideas and their interrelationships using advance or graphic organizers or matrix of semantic features (mean ES = 1.12, SD = 0.66, n = 7) </li></ul><ul><li>Treatment effects were also large for mnemonic illustrations (mean ES = 1.19, SD = 0.53, n = 3) </li></ul><ul><li>The treatment effect for computer assisted instruction/multimedia based on a single study was small ( ES = 0. 21) </li></ul>
  26. 27. <ul><li>Cognitive strategies are cognitive processes that the learner intentionally performs to influence learning and cognition (Mayer, 2001) </li></ul><ul><li>The goal of cognitive strategy instruction in reading (e.g., identifying main ideas, summarizing, creating questions to answer as text is read, drawing cognitive maps, or recognizing different types of text structures) is to improve how students approach and interact with expository text so that they can become more active, deliberate, and self regulated learners </li></ul>Findings by Type of Interventions: Cognitive Strategies
  27. 28. <ul><li>The average effect for interventions involving instruction in a single cognitive strategy was large ( ES = 1.83, SD = 1.05) </li></ul><ul><li>The most common approach of identifying main ideas or generating main idea sentences by paraphrasing or summarizing the reading passages (n = 6) yielded a large effect size of 2.56 ( SD = 1.09) </li></ul><ul><li>Treatment effects were also positive and large for the other strategies examined, such as text structure training ( ES = 2.33, SD = 0.07, n = 2), cognitive mapping ( E S = 0.96, SD = 0.07, n = 2), and questioning ( ES = 0.81, SD = 0.62, n = 3) </li></ul>Findings by Type of Interventions: Single Cognitive Strategies
  28. 29. Table 2. Effect sizes for single cognitive strategy instruction interventions
  29. 30. Findings by Type of Interventions: Multiple Cognitive Strategies <ul><li>In the eight studies on multiple cognitive strategies, results suggest that content area comprehension can be enhanced by the integrated use of different reading strategies as indicated by a large ES of 2.11 ( SD = 1.74) </li></ul>
  30. 31. Table 2. Effect sizes for multiple cognitive strategy instruction interventions
  31. 32. Findings by Type of Interventions: Cognitive Strategies <ul><li>Maintenance effects addressed in five studies involving nine investigations showed a large ES of 2.69 ( SD = 1.09) </li></ul><ul><li>Transfer effects documented in three studies involving five interventions were also large ( ES = 1.75, SD = 0.54) </li></ul>
  32. 33. Findings by Type of Interventions: Summary <ul><li>Expository text comprehension instruction for students with LD produced positive effects ( ES = 1.64, SD = 1.19, n = 34), with both cognitive strategy instruction and content enhancements yielding large effects of 2.07 and 1.06, respectively </li></ul><ul><li>Explicit instruction inherent in the varied instructional approaches seemed to support the learning of complex information for students with LD (Gersten et al., 2001) and were generally more effective than traditional methods (e.g., text based, lecture only) </li></ul>
  33. 34. Other findings by . . . <ul><li>Student Characteristics </li></ul><ul><li>Grade level : Effects were large for all three grades levels, with average effects of 1.04 ( SD = 0.64, n = 6) for upper elementary, 1.70 ( SD = 1.37, n = 15) for middle school, and 1.48 ( SD = 0.61, n = 7) for high school students. </li></ul><ul><li>IQ: Studies yielded a slightly lower effect size for students with IQ < 92 ( ES = 1.62; SD = 1.11, n = 9) compared to students with IQ > 92 ( ES = 1.73; SD = 1.14, n = 13) </li></ul>
  34. 35. Other findings by . . . <ul><li>Instructional Characteristics </li></ul><ul><li>Instructional materials . Effect size was substantially larger when instructional materials were specifically designed or adapted for the study (mean ES = 1.87; SD = 1.20, n = 17) than when derived from the general curriculum (mean ES = 0.97; SD = 0.61, n = 12) </li></ul><ul><li>Length of intervention . Effects were large whether studies included less than four hours of intervention (mean ES = 1.61; SD = 0.91, n = 9), between four to eight hours (mean ES = 1.34; SD = 0.58, n = 5), or more than eight hours (mean ES = 1.41; SD = 1.64, n = 8) </li></ul>
  35. 36. Other findings by . . . <ul><li>Instructional Characteristics (cont’d.) </li></ul><ul><li>Instructional group size . The majority of instruction occurred in groups and effect sizes for both group instruction (mean ES = 1.52; SD = 1.18, n = 21) and individual instruction/paired learning (mean ES = 1.67; SD = 0.90, n = 8) were large </li></ul><ul><li>Instructional setting . Outcomes were the largest for special education classrooms (mean ES = 1.89; SD = 1.20, n =13) followed by instruction delivered in other settings (mean ES = 1.47; SD = 1.11, n = 8) and general education classrooms (mean ES = 0.78; SD = 0.30, n = 6) </li></ul><ul><li>Instructional delivery : The average effects were large whether researchers ( ES = 1.45; SD = 1.14, n = 17) or teachers ( ES = 1.21; SD = 0.71, n = 8) delivered instruction; however, the effect size was small ( ES = 0.21) when instruction delivery involved a computer or multimedia tool (Okolo & Ferretti, 1996) </li></ul>
  36. 37. Other findings by . . . <ul><li>Research Design Characteristics </li></ul><ul><li>Assignment to conditions . Treatment effects were large for studies that either randomly assigned students to treatment conditions ( ES = 1.59; SD = 1.16, n = 22) or did not include random assignment ( ES = 1.17; SD = 0.73, n = 7). </li></ul><ul><li>Treatment fidelity . Large effect sizes were seen both when treatment fidelity was checked ( ES = 1.62; SD = 1.26, n = 12) or was not checked ( ES = 1.41; SD = 0.96, n = 17) </li></ul>
  37. 38. Table 3. Average effect sizes by student, instructional, and research design characteristics.
  38. 39. Other Findings <ul><li>Maintenance and Transfer Characteristics </li></ul><ul><li>The average ES for follow-up tests ( ES = 2.08; SD = 1.36, n = 12) and transfer tests ( ES = 1.25; SD = 1.03, n = 7) were large. </li></ul>
  39. 40. Implications for Practice <ul><li>Selecting an effective and efficient research-based method depends on the instructional goal </li></ul><ul><ul><li>If the purpose of instruction is for teachers to help facilitate active processing of difficult content for students with LD, then content enhancements are appropriate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>If an instructional goal includes engaging with the content such as generating main ideas, summarizing information, predicting, questioning, or clarifying text, a cognitive strategy instructional approach is appropriate </li></ul></ul>
  40. 41. Implications for Practice <ul><li>Implementing content enhancements requires two considerations: (a) the costly or time intensive resources needed to prepare text enhancements (e.g., mnemonics) and (b) the possibility that students with LD may become dependent on teachers use of content enhancements to acquire content area information </li></ul><ul><li>Although few studies measured transfer-of-learning effects, it may be that cognitive strategy instruction would be more likely to transfer to new learning situations than content enhancement </li></ul>
  41. 42. Implications for Practice <ul><li>Cognitive strategy instruction may be more time consuming than content enhancements (e.g., graphic organizer), which can be reused with new groups of students once they are developed </li></ul><ul><li>Districts and schools should carefully consider the type of interventions to recommend or require of content-area teachers. Perhaps, … </li></ul><ul><ul><li>provide strategy instruction in materials that are at students ’ readability level and gradually embed instruction within the content-area classroom </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>present content enhancement within content-area instruction </li></ul></ul>
  42. 43. Summary <ul><li>Use of evidence-based interventions such as content enhancements and cognitive strategies is most likely to lead to positive outcomes for students with LD </li></ul><ul><li>Given the constraint of finding time for these interventions in schools, it is encouraging that even brief interventions can lead to gains for students with LD </li></ul><ul><li>Continually monitor student comprehension of expository text to determine not only the effectiveness of the intervention for improving comprehension, but also to examine transfer effects and outcomes over time </li></ul>
  43. 44. Thank You! Asha K. Jitendra (
  44. 45. Questions?