Early Language Arts

Topics: Qualitative research, Educational years, Quantitative research Pages: 99 (23868 words) Published: February 27, 2013
common core state stanDarDs For

english Language arts
Literacy in
History/social studies,
science, and technical subjects
appendix a:
research supporting
Key elements of the standards
Glossary of Key terms

Common Core State StandardS for engliSh language artS & literaCy in hiStory/SoCial StudieS, SCienCe, and teChniCal SubjeCtS

One of the key requirements of the Common Core State Standards for Reading is that all students must be able to comprehend texts of steadily increasing complexity as they progress through school. By the time they complete the core, students must be able to read and comprehend independently and proficiently the kinds of complex texts commonly found in college and careers. The first part of this section makes a research-based case for why the complexity of what students read matters. In brief, while reading demands in college, workforce training programs, and life in general have held steady or increased over the last half century, K–12 texts have actually declined in sophistication, and relatively little attention has been paid to students’ ability to read complex texts independently. These conditions have left a serious gap between many high school seniors’ reading ability and the reading requirements they will face after graduation. The second part of this section addresses how text complexity can be measured and made a regular part of instruction. It introduces a three-part model that blends qualitative and quantitative measures of text complexity with reader and task considerations. The section concludes with three annotated examples showing how the model can be used to assess the complexity of various kinds of texts appropriate for different grade levels.

Why text complexity matters
In 2006, ACT, Inc., released a report called Reading Between the Lines that showed which skills differentiated those students who equaled or exceeded the benchmark score (21 out of 36) in the reading section of the ACT college admissions test from those who did not. Prior ACT research had shown that students achieving the benchmark score or better in reading—which only about half (51 percent) of the roughly half million test takers in the 2004–2005 academic year had done—had a high probability (75 percent chance) of earning a C or better in an introductory, credit-bearing course in U.S. history or psychology (two common reading-intensive courses taken by first-year college students) and a 50 percent chance of earning a B or better in such a course.1 Surprisingly, what chiefly distinguished the performance of those students who had earned the benchmark score or better from those who had not was not their relative ability in making inferences while reading or answering questions related to particular cognitive processes, such as determining main ideas or determining the meaning of words and phrases in context. Instead, the clearest differentiator was students’ ability to answer questions associated with complex texts. Students scoring below benchmark performed no better than chance (25 percent correct) on four-option multiple-choice questions pertaining to passages rated as “complex” on a three-point qualitative rubric described in the report. These findings held for male and female students, students from all racial/ethnic groups, and students from families with widely varying incomes. The most important implication of this study was that a pedagogy focused only on “higher-order” or “critical” thinking was insufficient to ensure that students were ready for college and careers: what students could read, in terms of its complexity, was at least as important as what they could do with what they read.

The ACT report is one part of an extensive body of research attesting to the importance of text complexity in reading achievement. The clear, alarming picture that emerges from the evidence, briefly summarized below2, is that while the reading demands of college, workforce training programs,...

Bibliography: ACT, Inc. (2009). The condition of college readiness 2009. Iowa City, IA: Author.
Adams, M. J. (2009). The challenge of advanced texts: The interdependence of reading and learning. In E. H. Hiebert
(Ed.), Reading more, reading better: Are American students reading enough of the right stuff? (pp
Afflerbach, P., Pearson, P. D., & Paris, S. G. (2008). Clarifying differences between reading skills and reading strategies.
Bettinger, E., & Long, B. T. (2009). Addressing the needs of underprepared students in higher education: Does college
remediation work? Journal of Human Resources, 44, 736–771.
Bowen, G. M., & Roth, W.-M. (1999, March). “Do-able” questions, covariation, and graphical representation: Do we
adequately prepare perservice science teachers to teach inqury? Paper presented at the annual conference of the
Bowen, G. M., Roth, W.-M., & McGinn, M. K. (2002). Why students may not learn to interpret scientific inscriptions.
Chall, J. S., Conard, S., & Harris, S. (1977). An analysis of textbooks in relation to declining SAT scores. Princeton, NJ:
College Entrance Examination Board.
Erickson, B. L., & Strommer, D. W. (1991). Teaching college freshmen. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
Hayes, D. P., & Ward, M. (1992, December). Learning from texts: Effects of similar and dissimilar features of analogies in
study guides
Hayes, D. P., Wolfer, L. T., & Wolfe, M. F. (1996). Sourcebook simplification and its relation to the decline in SAT-Verbal
Heller, R., & Greenleaf, C. (2007). Literacy instruction in the content areas: Getting to the core of middle and high
school improvement
Hoffman, J., Sabo, D., Bliss, J., & Hoy, W. (1994). Building a culture of trust. Journal of School Leadership, 4, 484–501.
Kintsch, W. (1998). Comprehension: A paradigm for cognition. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.
Kintsch, W. (2009). Learning and constructivism. In S. Tobias & M. Duffy (Eds.), Constructivist instruction: Success or
failure? (pp
Kutner, M., Greenberg, E., Jin, Y., Boyle, B., Hsu, Y., & Dunleavy, E. (2007). Literacy in everyday life: Results from
the 2003 National Assessment of Adult Literacy (NCES 2007–480)
Mesmer, H. A. E. (2008). Tools for matching readers to texts: Research-based practices. New York, NY: Guilford.
Milewski, G. B., Johnson, D., Glazer, N., & Kubota, M. (2005). A survey to evaluate the alignment of the new SAT Writing
and Critical Reading sections to curricula and instructional practices (College Board Research Report No
Moss, B., & Newton, E. (2002). An examination of the informational text genre in basal readers. Reading Psychology,
23(1), 1–13.
National Endowment for the Arts. (2004). Reading at risk: A survey of literary reading in America. Washington, DC:
Perfetti, C. A., Landi, N., & Oakhill, J. (2005). The acquisition of reading comprehension skill. In M. J. Snowling & C.
Pritchard, M. E., Wilson, G. S., & Yamnitz, B. (2007). What predicts adjustment among college students? A longitudinal
panel study
Shanahan, T., & Shanahan, C. (2008). Teaching disciplinary literacy to adolescents: Rethinking content-area literacy.
van den Broek, P., Lorch, Jr., R. F., Linderholm, T., & Gustafson, M. (2001). The effects of readers’ goals on inference
generation and memory for texts
van den Broek, P., Risden, K., & Husebye-Hartmann, E. (1995). The role of readers’ standards for coherence in the
generation of inferences during reading
Williamson, G. L. (2006). Aligning the journey with a destination: A model for K–16 reading standards. Durham, NC:
MetaMetrics, Inc.
Bryson, B. (1990). The mother tongue: English and how it got that way. New York, NY: Avon Books.
Ganske, K. (2000). Word journeys. New York, NY: Guilford.
Hanna, P. R., Hanna, S., Hodges, R. E., & Rudorf, E. H. (1966). Phoneme-grapheme correspondences as cues to spelling
Henry, M. (2003). Unlocking literacy: Effective decoding and spelling instruction. Baltimore, MD: Brookes.
Moats, L. C. (2000). Speech to print: Language essentials for teachers. Baltimore, MD: Brookes.
Moats, L. C. (2008). Spellography for teachers: How English spelling works. (LETRS Module 3). Longmont, CO: Sopris
Venezky, R. (2001). The American way of spelling. New York, NY: Guilford.
ACT, Inc. (2009). ACT National Curriculum Survey 2009. Iowa City, IA: Author.
Fulkerson, R. (1996). Teaching the argument in writing. Urbana, IL: National Council of Teachers of English.
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Language Learning in Early Childhood Essay
  • Essay about ART `
  • Language Arts Development Essay
  • Expressionism in Early 20th Century Art Essay
  • Art assignment Essay
  • Essay on Fashion: Art and Early Age
  • benefit of learning a language early Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free