Spring 2018



Degree Name


Primary Advisor/Dissertation Chair

Vivian Johnson

Secondary Advisor/Reader One

Becky Rice

Peer-Reviewer/Reader Two

Randy Smith


This capstone uses a qualitative research approach to address how a group of ninth grade students who struggle with reading describe their reactions to two reading strategies, summarization and annotation. In order for students to meet the rigors of the Common Core Standards, students must be able to read and comprehend complex texts independently. This capstone seeks to understand how students felt about the strategies and how well they felt they used them. In the literature review the topics explored include the new reading expectations of high school graduates, students not meeting those standards, and the theory and application behind annotation and summarization. An action research plan was used to explore how eleven ninth grade students in a remedial reading class in the rural southeastern United States reacted to being taught or retaught two reading strategies. Each strategy was introduced using a familiar piece of text and demonstrated by the instructor. After the introduction, the students were guided through the strategy, and then gradually released to do the strategy on their own. The data was collected using Likert scale surveys. A pre-survey was used to measure familiarity with the strategies. Students rated their use of the strategies using post-survey administered after independent practice . Contrary to the research described in the review of the research literature many of the students rated themselves higher performance-wise than the instructor evaluation of their work. In the future, it would be interesting to pursue an investigation of these strategies across curriculum having all instructors using the same terminology and criteria evaluation. The transfer of notes into a paragraph with the information proved the most difficult for students. The discovery of the need for more scaffolding in synthesizing the information into a paragraph was one of the most profound calls for change in the method of teaching these strategies in the capstone. The limitations of the study included the small non-random study sample, the short time frame for the conducting of the research and being a beginning researcher with a full teaching class-load.

Research Methodology

Action Research



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