Developing higher-order reading skills in mainstream primary schools, a metacognitive approach

Rights statement
Awarding institution
  • University of Strathclyde
Date of award
  • 2017
Thesis identifier
  • T14786
Person Identifier (Local)
  • 201557414
Qualification Level
Qualification Name
Department, School or Faculty
  • Research indicates that multiple strategy comprehension instruction (MSCI) programmes in general yield greater effect sizes than single strategy approaches. Potential candidate MSCI interventions were evaluated on the basis of effect size of outcome, feasibility and acceptability, and universality. This identified the Strathclyde Higher-Order Reading Skills (SHORS) Programme as a promising intervention yet to be evaluated in the UK in a controlled study. Following a pilot study, a mixed-model quasi-experimental study was carried out with condition (intervention versus control group) and reading comprehension ability (higher versus average versus lower tertiles) as between-group independent variables and time-point (pre- versus post-intervention) as a within-subject independent variable. The WIAT-IIUK reading comprehension subtest was the primary outcome measure. Seventy-four pupils in five Primary 5 classes (aged 9-10) in four primary schools were recruited as participants from within a Scottish local authority. Training and implementation of the SHORS intervention followed the procedure of McCartney, Boyle & Ellis (2015) study, with delivery of 4 sessions of 45 minutes per week for 8 weeks. Comparison of pre and post reading comprehension scores showed a statistically significant intervention effect (Cohen's d = 0.81), which exceeded the minimally significant difference of d = 0.67 taking precision of measurement and measurement error into account (Weir, 2005). Participants in the higher, average and lower tertiles of pre-intervention reading comprehension scores all benefited equally, indicating that the SHORS may be regarded as a 'universal' intervention. Secondary quantitative and qualitative data confirm that the intervention is easy to implement, feasible within a Scottish setting and acceptable to school staff.The study extends the reading intervention literature regarding learner, teacher and learning environment, implementation, metacognitive knowledge and reading habits. Implications for policy and practice are discussed.
Resource Type
Date Created
  • 2017
Former identifier
  • 9912580591402996