Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)


Teacher Education


The purpose of this qualitative action research study was to evaluate the effects of literature circles on the development of English language learners' critical thinking skills and analyze my own teaching during language arts instruction. Students were placed in literature circles groups and the development of their critical thinking skills were evaluated, while I reflected upon my teaching and student learning during language arts instruction. The qualitative methods used for this study consisted of a teacher reflection journal, student participant observations, and student journal responses. The findings suggest that literature circles promote student choice, leadership opportunities, cooperative teaching, and higher-level questioning strategies. Additionally, the findings indicate that literature discussion groups strengthen English language learners' ability to clarify their understanding of new words, support their ideas by use of evidence in the text, and make personal connections to the text.


Thesis (M.A.) Teacher Education Department

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