Date of Award


Degree Name

Specialist in Education



First Advisor

Dr. Howard E. Farris

Second Advisor

Dr. R. W. Malott

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


This study examined the effects of cross-level peer facilitated learning on the total amount of time needed for special education students who attended a southwestern Michigan inner-city elementary school, to complete to 100% mastery the teacher-directed portion of the reading lesson. Cross-level peer tutoring was defined as a process in which a more proficient student worked with a less proficient student on a one-to-one basis in the academic area of reading. The tutoring took place prior to the teacher instruction with 20 students from three special education reading groups. The tutoring sessions took place for a duration of 5-9 weeks.

The findings of the present study indicate that: (a) pre-exposure to the reading material with cross-level peers, reduced the instructional time needed to complete to 100% mastery the teacher directed lesson; and (b) individuals maintained, if not improved, their accuracy on reading checkouts when cross-level tutoring was implemented.

The study shows that this method is an effective, efficient way to lead to more lessons being completed during the school year, which can help close the existing performance gap between special education students and general education peers.