Spring 2018

Document Type

Master's Thesis (Open Access)

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)


Teacher Education


Research shows middle school students to be lagging in reading comprehension proficiency and the problem is worse for English Language Learners (ELLs). Weak literacy development among ELLs may lead to higher dropout rates, poor job prospects, and high poverty rates. There is a need for evidence-based reading interventions for ELLs to help close the achievement gap. Theoretically framed within the sociocultural theory of Vygotsky (SCT), the present study investigated how a SCT-based intervention might improve ELLs reading comprehension. Five, grade seven ELL students were selected to participate in a single-case A-B design. Results indicated reading comprehension improved for three of the five participants, but the intervention had little or no impact on the other two participants. The findings suggest a possible functional relationship between the SCT-based intervention and improved reading comprehension, and that this intervention might have the greatest effect on those who struggle with oral reading fluency.