Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The Impact of the Master Reading Teacher Program on Bridging the Gap from Research to Practice with Implications for Students with Dyslexia in Central Texas
by Juusola, Alexis Elizabeth, Ed.D., Concordia University Texas, 2019, 265; 27671733
Abstract (Summary)

Preparing students to master literacy skills is vital to their educational and life-long success; however, the nationwide trend of students failing to meet basic reading levels has remained steady over the past ten years. Researchers found that educators often lack knowledge of evidence-based reading instruction and a clear understanding about dyslexia, and are often unaware of the effective instructional strategies that can help close the reading achievement gap for emergent readers and students with dyslexia in their classroom. Despite such concerns, few studies sought to examine educators’ understandings of basic language concepts in conjunction with developmental dyslexia through self-reported measures, direct observations, and structured interviews. The primary purpose of this explanatory mixed-methods study was to examine Master Reading Teachers’ (1) knowledge and beliefs of basic language constructs and developmental dyslexia, (2) their applications of evidence-based instruction with students, and (3) uncover possible implications for their students with reading difficulties such as dyslexia. Secondly, this study sought to reveal participants’ perceptions of the MRT certification program and impacts to their professional growth as reading teachers. The findings from the present study suggest that Master Reading Teachers, on average, demonstrate explicit knowledge and skills of emergent literacy skills (82%); however, recognizing morphological structure proved to be difficult for the participants. Additionally, the Master Reading Teachers, on average, displayed accurate knowledge and beliefs of developmental dyslexia (84%); nevertheless, few misconceptions persisted after the professional development. Findings suggest that participants were able to move away from whole-language methodologies (i.e., three-cueing system) to teaching reading through direct and systematic instructional strategies. The findings highlighted the components of professional development likely to contribute to long-lasting change in educators’ instructional practices and self-efficacy for teaching reading. Obstacles to bridging evidence-based reading instruction to classrooms are discussed. A statewide study could provide researcher with a more representative sample.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Ragaisis, DeeAnn
Commitee: Watwood, Rosie, Albright, Brenda
School: Concordia University Texas
Department: College of Education
School Location: United States -- Texas, US
Source: DAI-A 81/9(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Reading instruction, Teacher education
Keywords: Basic language constructs, Developmental dyslexia, Literacy, Professional development, Teacher beliefs, Teacher knowledge
Publication Number: 27671733
ISBN: 9781658478144
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