Reading Psychology (2011)

This journal publishes original manuscripts in the fields of literacy, reading, and related psychology disciplines. Articles appear in the form of completed research; practitioner-based "experiential" methods or philosophical statements; teacher and counselor preparation services for guiding all levels of reading skill development, attitudes, and interests; programs or materials; and literary or humorous contributions. All research articles in this journal have undergone rigorous peer review, based on initial editor screening and anonymous refereeing by two anonymous referees. 

Efficacy of computer-assisted instruction for the development of early literacy skills in young children

Macaruso, P., Rodman, A.


This study examined the efficacy of using computer-assisted instruction (CAI) to supplement a phonics-based reading curriculum for kindergartners in an urban public school system. The CAI programs provided exercises in phonological awareness and basic phonics skills. We compared treatment classes using CAI with control classes receiving the same classroom instruction without CAI. For kindergartners, treatment students with low pretest scores made significantly greater gains than controls, particularly in word reading. Overall, low-performing kindergartners benefited from intensive practice provided by CAI programs.

Key Findings 

  • Focusing on low performers, students using Lexia Reading made significantly greater gains than a control group on the Group Reading Assessment and Diagnostic Evaluation (GRADE™), Level K. The test measures phonological awareness, early literacy skills, letter-sound correspondence, listening comprehension, and word reading. Group differences were notable for the word reading subtest. [Macaruso, P., & Rodman, A. (2011). Efficacy of computer-assisted instruction for the development of early literacy skills in young children. Reading Psychology, 32, 172–196.]

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