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Effects of a phonics intervention in a randomized controlled study in Swedish second-grade students at risk of reading difficulties
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Education, Teaching and Learning. Linköping University, Faculty of Educational Sciences.
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Education, Teaching and Learning. Linköping University, Faculty of Educational Sciences.
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Education, Teaching and Learning. Linköping University, Faculty of Educational Sciences.
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Disability Research Division. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences. Linköping University, The Swedish Institute for Disability Research.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-0446-0827
2023 (English)In: Dyslexia, ISSN 1076-9242, E-ISSN 1099-0909, Vol. 29, no 4, p. 290-311Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Teaching phoneme awareness to children at risk for early reading difficulties has been recognized as successful in several studies. In this randomized controlled trial (RCT)-study, we add to this research by optimizing core procedural as well as teaching components in a phonics-directed intervention and extend the RCT reading intervention research into a semi-transparent language context. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the effects of a novel Swedish intensive phonics program. This randomized controlled pre-test and post-test intervention study targeted second-grade students with early reading difficulties. Students were identified by a repeated screening procedure and allocated to intervention (n = 34) and control (n = 34) conditions. A 9-week intensive phonics-based program was administrated one-to-one, by special education teachers in Swedish mainstream elementary schools. Results show an improvement in the intervention group, compared with the controls on all outcome measures. Findings indicate that the supplementary phonics program, delivered with high intensity, can significantly increase word reading skills and reading comprehension in second-grade students with early reading difficulties.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
John Wiley & Sons, 2023. Vol. 29, no 4, p. 290-311
Keywords [en]
decoding, dyslexia, instruction, intervention, phonology, reading
National Category
Learning
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-198196DOI: 10.1002/dys.1751ISI: 001066030200001PubMedID: 37699729Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85170692021OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-198196DiVA, id: diva2:1801099
Funder
Swedish Research Council, 2019-03873
Note

Funding: Vetenskapsradet [2019-03873]

Available from: 2023-09-29 Created: 2023-09-29 Last updated: 2024-03-11Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Early Elementary School Interventions in Reading and Mathematics
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Early Elementary School Interventions in Reading and Mathematics
2024 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Alternative title[sv]
Tidiga interventioner i läsning och matematik
Abstract [en]

Supplemental special education support in reading and mathematics is essential for some children who struggle to learn basic reading or mathematics skills in their first years of schooling. Previous research shows that supplemental phonics and early numeracy and arithmetic instruction help students at risk for reading or mathematics difficulties. Few intervention studies have been conducted in the Swedish elementary school context evaluating the effectiveness of early reading and mathematics instruction, limiting evidence-based practices guiding special education in Sweden. This thesis aimed to develop and test the impact of two intensive instructional programs on word reading and reading comprehension skills and number knowledge, arithmetic and problem solving. Transfer-effects of training across the reading and mathematics domains and the long-term impact of the programs were also investigated. The study enrolled 753 first grade students who were screened for low performance (≤25th percentile) in decoding, spelling, number knowledge and arithmetic. To evaluate how the impact of the interventions differ from regular school instruction, students were randomized to intervention and control groups and pre-tested with extended assessment of reading and mathematics skills (n=32 vs. 30 in mathematics, n=34 vs. 34 in reading). Both interventions were implemented at the start of second grade. The intervention programs spanned 36 lessons of supplemental explicit, one-to-one instruction with a special education teacher. Control group students received support planned by their schools. The results were evaluated at post-test and followed-up after 1 year. Both programs indicated significant intervention effects at post-test compared with controls with the reading intervention showing medium impact on decoding and reading comprehension and a strong effect on word recognition. The mathematics intervention program displayed significant moderate impact on number knowledge, arithmetic and basic problem solving. For both interventions, these effects declined at follow-up one year later. In addition, no transfer across reading and mathematics interventions were found. A main conclusion drawn from these randomized controlled studies is that students’ performance in basic reading and mathematics can be substantially accelerated by a time-limited and intense effort, adding to the evidence-base of explicit phonics and early numeracy and arithmetic intervention as recommended practices also in a Swedish school context. As many previous studies have shown, intervention gains tend to fade over time. The longevity of intensive intervention impacts should be considered in post-intervention efforts to support learning. Alignment between supplemental programs and general classroom instruction is suggested.

Abstract [sv]

Att lära sig läsa och räkna hör till grundläggande färdigheter i början av lågstadiet. För en del elever som kämpar med att tillägna sig dessa färdigheter behövs specialpedagogiskt stöd i form av extra läs- eller matematikundervisning. Studier har visat att undervisning med ljud-bokstavsmetoden, phonics, och undervisning i taluppfattning och grundläggande aritmetik hjälper elever som riskerar läs- eller matematiksvårigheter. I en svensk skolkontext finns få läs- och matematikinterventioner som utvärderat effekter på elevers läs- och matematikfärdigheter med en randomiserad kontrollerad studiedesign. Syftet med denna avhandling var att utveckla, implementera och utvärdera effekterna av två intensiva undervisningsprogram i läsning respektive matematik. Fokus för läsprogrammet var att utveckla ordläsning och läsflyt och i matematikprogrammet fokuserades taluppfattning och grundläggande aritmetik. Ett ytterligare syfte var att undersöka eventuella överföringseffekter mellan läsning och matematik för de elevgrupper som deltog i projektets interventionsgrupper. Dessutom studerades långtidseffekter av interventionerna. Totalt deltog 753 elever i åk 1 i urvalet till interventions- och kontrollgrupper. Elevernas läs- och matematikfärdigheter (ordavkodning, stavning, taluppfattning och aritmetiskt flyt) screenades vid två tillfällen på våren i åk 1 och elever med låga resultat (≤ percentil 25) randomiserades individuellt till interventions- och kontrollgrupper för läsprogrammet eller matematikprogrammet (n=32 vs. 30 i matematik, n=34 vs. 34 i läsning) för att undersöka effekten av dessa undervisningsprogram på elevernas läs- och matematikprestationer jämfört med skolans ordinarie undervisning. I början av åk 2 genomförde eleverna en för-testning och deltog därefter utöver den ordinarie undervisningen i en explicit, intensiv, individuell träning med en speciallärare om 36 lektioner i läs- eller matematikprogrammet, medan eleverna i respektive kontrollgrupp fick undervisning planerad av skolan. Efter interventionsperioden genomföres ett efter-test som upprepades ett år senare. Läs- och matematikinterventionen resulterade i signifikanta effekter jämfört med kontrollgrupperna direkt efter träningen. I läsprogrammet var effekten medelstor för ordavkodning och läsförståelse och träningen visade stor effekt på ordigenkänning. Resultaten för matematikprogrammet visade medelstor effekt på taluppfattning, aritmetik och grundläggande problemlösning. Dessa effekter hade reducerats vid långtidsuppföljningen. Inga överföringseffekter mellan läs- och matematikinterventionerna uppmättes. Slutsatser från dessa studier är att elevers läs- och matematikfärdigheter kan öka avsevärt med hjälp av ett tidsmässigt begränsat, intensivt phonics-program respektive taluppfattnings- och aritmetikprogram även i en svensk skolkontext. Resultaten kan på så vis bidra till evidensbaserade undervisningsmetoder. I likhet med ett flertal tidigare undersökningar visade uppföljningsstudien att effekterna av interventionerna avtog över tid. Det tyder på vikten av att överväga stöd även efter en intensiv läs- och matematikintervention. Vidare föreslås att skapa överensstämmelse mellan klassrumsundervisningen och interventionsprogram som ges utöver ordinarie undervisning.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2024. p. 122
Series
Linköping Studies in Behavioural Science, ISSN 1654-2029 ; 257
Keywords
Intervention, Special education, Instruction, Reading, Mathematics, Randomized controlled study, Follow-up, Elementary school, Intervention, Specialpedagogik, Undervisning, Läsning, Matematik, Randomiserad kontrollerad studie, Uppföljning, Grundskola
National Category
Pedagogy
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-199529 (URN)10.3384/9789180754750 (DOI)9789180754743 (ISBN)9789180754750 (ISBN)
Public defence
2024-01-19, TEMCAS, Building T, Campus Valla, Linköping, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2023-12-11 Created: 2023-12-11 Last updated: 2023-12-15Bibliographically approved

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Lindström-Sandahl, HannaElwér, ÅsaSamuelsson, StefanDanielsson, Henrik

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