Date of Award

8-2014

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Department

Educational Leadership, Research and Technology

First Advisor

Dr. Jianping Shen

Second Advisor

Dr. Louann Bierlein-Palmer

Third Advisor

Dr. Susan Piazza

Abstract

READ 180 is a popular reading program among high schools seeking to improve their reading scores. To date, few studies have examined modified versions of the program, with none focusing on the fidelity of implementation. This study examines a modified READ 180 program where scheduling only allowed for a 50-minute per day block of time, in contrast to the 90-minutes utilized in the original design. Research questions focus on urban high school teachers’ usage of READ 180 components and strategies, consistency with the program’s original design, the level of importance teachers attached to each of the components and strategies, and any connections between their reported levels of importance and their reported levels of usage.

Data is obtained from multiple sources, including: (a) survey, (b) interview, (c) observation, and (d) card sorts. Participants include two current and 10 former READ 180 teachers from an urban high school. Overall, findings show that the teachers in this study did not implement the program as prescribed. On average, they used 11 out of 22 strategies the number of times recommended by Scholastic (2005), or more. While the teachers did not implement the strategies the number of times recommended, they did, on average, utilize the entire repertoire of strategies offered through the READ 180 program. The research also reveals a statistically significant relationship between (a) perceptions of (b) importance and reported implementation for some of the study’s variables; namely, vocabulary 1-2-3-4, re-reading, guided questions, blending/structural analysis, exiting, follow-up, and whole group instruction. This finding suggests teachers’ mental models have a relationship with their behavior. In the dissertation, implications of the study’s findings are discussed, along with the study’s limitations and recommendations for future research.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access