The Effectiveness of Volunteer Reading Help and the Nature of the Reading Help Provided in Practice

This paper reports on an evaluation study of a non‐professional, school‐based reading help scheme called Volunteer Reading Help (VRH). The adult community volunteers were involved in working twice a week for about 30 minutes on an individual basis with junior school children. The study is in two parts. Part One is a pre‐post experimental study investigating the effectiveness of VRH in improving children's reading and Self‐concept. The children were allocated randomly to either VRH (N‐43) or control‐group (N=38). The findings show no significant VRH‐effect. Part Two is an investigation of VRH as it is provided in practice. The analysis of tape‐recorded sessions (of 15 different Volunteer Reading Helpers) shows many discrepancies between the recommended VRH approach and the actual approach taken in practice, in particular with respect to reading for meaning and talking with children. It is recommended that more professional help for the volunteers might improve their effectiveness.
Authors citation
Loenen, A.
Publication
British Educational Research Journal, 15(3), 297–316
Year of Study
1989
Subject
Literacy
Program Name
Volunteer Reading Help
Program Evaluated
non‐professional, school‐based reading help scheme
Tutor Type
Volunteer
Duration
24 weeks
Sample size
81
Grade Level(s)
6th Grade,
7th Grade,
8th Grade
Student-Tutor Ratio
1
Effect Size
-0.37
Study Design
Randomized Controlled Trial
Full citation
Loenen, A. (1989). The Effectiveness of Volunteer Reading Help and the Nature of the Reading Help Provided in Practice. British Educational Research Journal, 15(3), 297–316. https://doi.org/10.1080/0141192890150306