Intervention: Accelerated Reader™
Accelerated Reader™ is a guided reading intervention used to supplement
regular reading instruction in K–12 classrooms. Its aim is to improve students’
reading skills through reading practice and quizzes on the books students read.
The Accelerated Reader™ program calls for students to select and read a book
and then take a computerized quiz based on the book’s content and vocabulary.
The computer software then provides teachers with information on the students’
performance on the quiz, which allows teachers to monitor student progress and
identify students who may need more reading assistance.
One study of Accelerated Reader™ that falls within the scope of the
Adolescent Literacy review protocol meets What Works Clearinghouse
(WWC) evidence standards, and one study meets WWC evidence
standards with reservations. The two studies included 2,877 students
from grade 4 to grade 8 who attended elementary and middle schools
in Oregon and Texas.
Based on these two studies, the WWC considers the extent of evidence
for Accelerated Reader™ on adolescent learners to be small for reading
fluency and medium to large for comprehension. No studies that meet
WWC evidence standards with or without reservations examined the
effectiveness of Accelerated Reader™ on adolescent learners in the
alphabetics or general literacy achievement domains.
Accelerated Reader™ was found to have no discernible effects on
reading fluency or comprehension for adolescent learners.
1 The descriptive information for this program was obtained from a publicly
available source: the program’s website (http://www.renlearn.com/ar/,
downloaded August 2009). The WWC requests developers to review
the program description sections for accuracy from their perspective.
Further verification of the accuracy of the descriptive information for
this program is beyond the scope of this review. The literature search
reflects documents publicly available by July 2009.
2 The studies in this report were reviewed using WWC Evidence
Standards, Version 2.0 (see the WWC Procedures and Standards
Handbook, Chapter III), as described in protocol Version 2.0.
3 The evidence presented in this report is based on available research.
Findings and conclusions may change as new research becomes available.
4 These numbers show the average and range of student-level improvement
indices for all findings across the studies.
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