Capstone/Dissertation Title

How can critical literacy theory impact the engagement of struggling secondary readers?

Term

Spring 4-27-2016

Capstone

Thesis

Degree Name

MALED

Primary Advisor/Dissertation Chair

Stephanie Reid

Secondary Advisor/Reader One

Terry Christensen

Peer-Reviewer/Reader Two

Margaret St. Sauver

Abstract

The goal of this capstone was to answer my research question: How can critical literacy theory impact the engagement of struggling secondary readers? I conducted research in the areas of adolescent struggling readers, engagement, and critical literacy theory. The research yielded an understanding of why adolescents struggle to read in high school, the role of engagement in the classroom and strategies to improve it, and defined and explained how critical literacy theory can both increase engagement and foster the necessary reading skills needed to be academically successful. To answer my question, I created lessons that work to increase the level of engagement in reading and class discussions and use best practices for struggling readers . While no action research was conducted, the lessons are designed using Young Adult Literature, explicit teacher modeling, and literary theory. These lessons are based on critical literacy theory, which has been proven to help students read texts through multiple lenses in order to create relevant connections between students and their lives while improving engagement and comprehension.

Research Methodology

Curriculum Development

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