Slavin, R.E., Lake, C., Chambers, B., Cheung, A., & Davis, S. (2009). Effective reading programs for the elementary grades: A best-evidence synthesis. Review of Educational Research, 79 (4), 1391-1466.
The Center for Research and Reform in Education has completed reviews of educational technology and reading achievement, focusing on the effects of technology use on reading achievement in K-12 classrooms, and also on reading outcomes for struggling readers. The reviews can be accessed from the following links:
Effects of Technology Applications on Reading Achievement in K-12 Classrooms
Cheung, A., & Slavin, R.E. (2012). How features of educational technology programs affect student reading outcomes: A meta-analysis. Educational Research Review, 7 (3), 198-215. Doi:10.1016/j.edurev.2012.05.002
Effects of Technology Applications on Reading Outcomes for Struggling Readers
This article reviews research on the outcomes of diverse reading programs on the achievement of struggling readers in elementary schools. Sixty-five studies of 51 different programs met rigorous standards. Eighty-three percent were randomized experiments and 17% quasi-experiments. Outcomes were positive for one-to-one tutoring and were positive but not as large for one-to-small group tutoring. There were no differences in outcomes between teachers and teaching assistants as tutors. Whole-class approaches (mostly cooperative learning) and whole-class/whole-school approaches incorporating tutoring for struggling readers obtained outcomes for struggling readers as large as those found for all forms of tutoring, on average, and benefitted many more students. Technology-supported adaptive instruction did not have significant positive outcomes for struggling readers, however. In agreement with previous reviews, this synthesis found that substantial impacts can be obtained for struggling readers with interventions aligned within a response to intervention network.
Recent initiatives in the U.S. and U.K. have added greatly to the amount and quality of research on the effectiveness of secondary reading programs, especially programs for struggling readers. This review of the experimental research on secondary reading programs focuses on 69 studies that used random assignment (n=62) or high-quality quasi-experiments (n=7) to evaluate outcomes of 51 programs on widely accepted measures of reading. Categories of programs using one-to-one and small-group tutoring, cooperative learning, whole-school approaches including organizational reforms such as teacher teams, and writing-focused approaches showed positive outcomes. Individual approaches in a few other categories also showed positive impacts. These include programs emphasizing social studies/science, structured strategies, and personalized and group/personalization rotation approaches for struggling readers. Programs that provide a daily extra period of reading and those utilizing technology were no more effective, on average, than programs that did not provide these resources. The findings suggest that secondary readers benefit more from socially and cognitively engaging instruction than from additional reading periods or technology.
This report systematically reviews research on the achievement outcomes of four types of approaches to improving the reading success of children in the elementary grades:
Instructional Process Programs
Combinations of Curricula and Instructional Process
The report combines the research from two separate Best Evidence Encyclopedia reviews: Effective Beginning Reading Programs: A Best-Evidence Synthesis and Beyond the Basics: Effective Reading Programs for the Upper Elementary Grades. For further information and specific program ratings, visit the Beginning Reading and Upper Elementary Reading sections of the Best Evidence Encyclopedia.
Full Report Slavin, R.E., Lake, C., Chambers, B., Cheung, A., & Davis, S. (2010, January). Effective reading programs for the elementary grades: A best-evidence synthesis. Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University, Center for Data-Driven Reform in Education.
Additional source: Slavin, R.E., Lake, C., Chambers, B., Cheung, A., & Davis, S. (2009). Effective reading programs for the elementary grades: A best-evidence synthesis. Review of Educational Research, 79 (4), 1391-1466.