Research

This page contains scholarly articles and research which promotes a greater undertanding of dyslexia and the need for Structured Literacy (direct, systematic, explicit and multisensory instruction).

 Dyslexia and Literacy

National Reading Panel Report - The National Reading Panel was established in 1997 to review research and recommend best practices for teaching children to read.  Their report was submitted in 2000, and among the recommendations were explicit instruction in phonemic awareness and systematic phonics instruction.

"Learning Disabilities, Dyslexia and Vision" - An article from the American Academy of Pediatrics containing many facts about dyslexia with research citations, including that dyslexia accounts for 80% of all learning disabilities and affects from 5-20% of the population.  It also addresses that dyslexia is not a vision problem and can't be remediated with colored overlays.

NICHD Research Program in Reading Development - A paper by G. Reid Lyon, former Chief of the Child Development and Behavior Branch at the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, which summarizes the results of 20+ years of NICHD research on reading. The NICHD Research Program in Reading Development presentation slides also show this information.

Important findings:  Phonemic awareness is extremely important, children at risk for reading failure can be identified in kindergarten, children who are poor readers in 3rd grade are highly likely to remain so in 9th grade, and special education does not close the reading gap. Recommendation:  No child should be placed in special education without first receiving scientifically based instruction.

"Dyslexic Entrepreneurs: The Incidence, Their Coping Strategies and Their Business Skills" - A study which found a greater occurrence of dyslexia among entrepreneurs than in the general population.

Summary of Audio Book Research - An extensive list of studies that have found audio books have a positive effect on children's literacy.


Reading Intruction

"Whole Language High Jinks" - An article by literacy expert Louisa Moats.  She explains that despite the National Reading Panel's recommendation for direct, explicit phonics instruction, whole language remains the dominant practice in schools.  She explains the problem with Reading Recovery and guided reading programs like Leveled Literacy.

"Teaching Decoding" - An article by Louisa Moats explaining the need to teach students how to decode by providing systematic and explicit instruction about the structure of language.

"Evidence-Based Research On Reading Recovery" - A statement from 30+ international literacy researchers stating concerns about Reading Recovery's effectiveness and misleading research practices.

"Modifying the Brain Activation of Poor Readers During Sentence Comprehension with Extended Remedial Instruction: A Longitudinal Study of Neuroplasticity" - A study which found the Wilson Reading Program produced significant changes in brain function, with corresponding gains in reading performance.


Iowa specific

Report of the 2016 Intensive  Summer Reading Program Study - The Iowa Reading Research Center's investigation of how intensive summer reading programs affect the reading skills of 3rd graders. Three conditions (reading programs) were used.  The study found that each of the three were equally effective at preventing a decline in reading skills, but none of the groups experienced statistically significant gains.

"Report on the State of PK-3 Literacy Instruction in Iowa" - The Iowa Reading Research Center's 2013 study showing a lack of consistency in reading instruction in Iowa.  Data is broken down by AEA.