Effects of Academic Vocabulary Instruction for Linguistically Diverse Adolescents: Evidence From a Randomized Field Trial

Nonie K. Lesaux, Michael J. Kieffer, Joan G. Kelley, Julie Russ Harris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

We conducted a randomized field trial to test an academic vocabulary intervention designed to bolster the language and literacy skills of linguistically diverse sixth-grade students (N = 2,082; n = 1,469 from a home where English is not the primary language), many demonstrating low achievement, enrolled in 14 urban middle schools. The 20-week classroom-based intervention improved students’ vocabulary knowledge, morphological awareness skills, and comprehension of expository texts that included academic words taught, as well as their performance on a standardized measure of written language skills. The effects were generally larger for students whose primary home language is not English and for those students who began the intervention with underdeveloped vocabulary knowledge.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1159-1194
Number of pages36
JournalAmerican Educational Research Journal
Volume51
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 24 2014

Keywords

  • at-risk students
  • curriculum
  • literacy
  • middle school
  • vocabulary

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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