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Embedded learning strategy instruction: story-structure pedagogy in heterogeneous secondary literature classes.

Abstract. The effects of using the Embedded Inserted into. See embedded system.  Story-Structure (ESS (1) (Electronic Switching System) A large-scale computer from Lucent used to route telephone calls in a telephone company office. The 5ESS is a Class 5 central office switch, and the 4ESS is a Class 4 tandem office switch. ) Routine in a literature course were investigated. A heterogeneous Not the same. Contrast with homogeneous.

heterogeneous - Composed of unrelated parts, different in kind.

Often used in the context of distributed systems that may be running different operating systems or network protocols (a heterogeneous network).
 group of 79 ninth graders, including 14 students with LD, were randomly assigned as·sign  
tr.v. as·signed, as·sign·ing, as·signs
1. To set apart for a particular purpose; designate: assigned a day for the inspection.

 to one of two conditions, with instruction occurring in groups of 12 to 14 students in general education literature classes over a nine-day period. ESS instruction focused on three reading strategies: (a) student self-questioning self-ques·tion·ing
Scrutiny of one's own feelings, actions, and motivations.
, (b) story-structure analysis, and (c) summarizing. Instruction for the alternative condition, called comprehension comprehension

Act of or capacity for grasping with the intellect. The term is most often used in connection with tests of reading skills and language abilities, though other abilities (e.g., mathematical reasoning) may also be examined.
 skills instruction (CSI CSI Crime Scene Investigator
CSI CompuServe, Inc.
CSI Commodity Systems, Inc.
CSI Commodity Systems Inc. (Boca Raton, FL)
CSI Crime Scene Investigation (CBS TV show)
CSI Christian Schools International
), was comprised of a package of research-based reading interventions. Statistically significant differences were found between groups in favor of upon the side of; favorable to; for the advantage of.

See also: favor
 the ESS Routine on measures of strategy use, story-structure knowledge, and unit reading comprehension Reading comprehension can be defined as the level of understanding of a passage or text. For normal reading rates (around 200-220 words per minute) an acceptable level of comprehension is above 75%. . Moreover, results indicated equivalent gains for ESS students regardless of disability versus nondisability category.


Meeting adequate-yearly-progress (AYP AYP Adequate Yearly Progress (National Assessment of Educational Progress)
AYP Anarchist Yellow Pages
AYP American Youth Philharmonic
) goals in reading is a challenge for secondary school practitioners. Recently released National Assessment of Educational Progress The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), also known as "the Nation's Report Card," is the only nationally representative and continuing assessment of what America's students know and can do in various subject areas.  (NAEP NAEP National Assessment of Educational Progress
NAEP National Association of Environmental Professionals
NAEP National Association of Educational Progress
NAEP National Agricultural Extension Policy
NAEP Native American Employment Program
) data indicate that more than two-thirds of secondary students, including a high percentage of students with learning disabilities (LD), lack the reading skills necessary to succeed in school and the world of work (Perie, Grigg, & Donahue Donahue is a surname of Irish origin. It is a variant of O'Donoghue and therefore associated with the O'Donoghue Clan.

The name Donahue may refer to one of several people:
  • Ann Donahue, (born 1955), American television writer
, 2005).

This record of student failure leaves educators in search of evidence-based practices that can be implemented across secondary settings in an attempt to close the performance gap that emerges between students' literacy skills that have plateaued at the fourth-grade level and the increasing academic grade-level demands (Deshler Deshler is the name of some places in the United States of America:
  • Deshler, Nebraska
  • Deshler, Ohio
 & Schumaker, 2006). Moreover, because many adolescents with LD are taught in general education settings (IDEA, 2004) so they can earn credits toward graduation Graduation is the action of receiving or conferring an academic degree or the associated ceremony. The date of event is often called degree day. The event itself is also called commencement, convocation or invocation. , language arts language arts
The subjects, including reading, spelling, and composition, aimed at developing reading and writing skills, usually taught in elementary and secondary school.
 teachers are increasingly being asked to shoulder a major part of the burden for comprehension instruction, especially as it relates to narrative texts. These teachers need evidence-based methods of delivering direct and explicit comprehension instruction that provides the necessary skill development for students with LD and other low-achieving students while simultaneously challenging high-achieving students in the same classroom.

One approach to defining instructional design Instructional design is the practice of arranging media (communication technology) and content to help learners and teachers transfer knowledge most effectively. The process consists broadly of determining the current state of learner understanding, defining the end goal of  and delivery to improve reading comprehension was suggested by Kintsch (2004), who argued that the goal of literacy instruction should be to get students engaged in processes equivalent to those that expert readers employ. One such process involves categorizing information in light of certain text structures. According to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.

2. In keeping with: according to instructions.

 Kintsch, student knowledge and use of text structure favorably fa·vor·a·ble  
1. Advantageous; helpful: favorable winds.

2. Encouraging; propitious: a favorable diagnosis.

 impacts comprehension, just as knowledge of syntax syntax: see grammar.

Arrangement of words in sentences, clauses, and phrases, and the study of the formation of sentences and the relationship of their component parts.
 or vocabulary can. Text structure is believed to be most relevant to the reading process during encoding See encode.  and during the reader's organization of the text into high-order units. While syntactic Dealing with language rules (syntax). See syntax.  and semantic See semantics. See also Symantec.  instruction foster sentence-level knowledge construction, discourse-level structure construction can be improved by teaching genre-specific text structures. Thus, according to this model, instruction should explicitly introduce students to the use of narrative text structure (or story structure) to aid in the conceptual understanding of narrative texts.

Indeed, awareness of underlying story structure has been shown to improve basic academic performance and lead to higher-order thinking Higher-order thinking is a fundamental concept of Education reform based on Bloom's Taxonomy. Rather than simply teaching recall of facts, students will be taught reasoning and processes, and be better lifelong learners. , including causal causal /cau·sal/ (kaw´z'l) pertaining to, involving, or indicating a cause.


relating to or emanating from cause.
 reasoning (Gersten, Fuchs Fuchs   , Klaus Emil Julius 1911-1988.

German-born physicist who worked on the development of the atomic bomb in Britain and the United States and was imprisoned (1950-1959) for passing scientific secrets to the Soviet Union.

Noun 1.
, Williams, & Baker, 2001). Narrative text structure has been investigated within three successive phases of research (Olson Olson may refer to:
  • Olson (constructor), a former racing car constructor
  • Olson Software
  • Olson database, also known as zoneinfo database
  • Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute
  • Olson (surname), people with the given name Olson
 & Gee, 1988). Early research centered on developing empirical evidence to support a taxonomy taxonomy: see classification.

In biology, the classification of organisms into a hierarchy of groupings, from the general to the particular, that reflect evolutionary and usually morphological relationships: kingdom, phylum, class, order,
 of narrative elements that can be used to develop a basic understanding of story construction during encoding (e.g., Mandler & Johnson, 1977; Rumelhart, 1975; Stein Stein , William Howard 1911-1980.

American biochemist. He shared a 1972 Nobel Prize for pioneering studies of ribonuclease.
 & Glenn, 1978; Thorndyke, 1977). Overall, this research supported the existence of various theoretical models of story structure, surfacing universal components of a canonical The standard or authoritative method. The term comes from "canon," which is the law or rules of the church. See canonical name and canonical synthesis.

canonical - (Historically, "according to religious law")

1. A standard way of writing a formula.
 structure for encoding (e.g., character, setting, conflict, resolution, and theme). Moreover, studies in this phase of research suggested that variations in reader knowledge of story structure are related to reader recall, which led to the second phase of story-structure research.

The second phase of research centered on developmental differences between types of readers with regard to the flexible use and complexity of story structure (e.g., Mandler &Johnson, 1977; Ouellette Ouellette is a name of French origin.

People named Ouellette include:
  • Caroline Ouellette, Canadian ice hockey player
  • Jerry Ouellette, Ontario politician
  • Todd Ouellette, American activist
  • Carl Ouellet, Canadian professional wrestler
, Dagostino, & Carifio, 1998; Stein & Glenn, 1978; Whaley, 1981). A limited number of these studies explored developmental differences for individuals with LD (e.g., Montague The name Montague can refer to the following: People
  • Andrew Jackson Montague
  • Bruce Montague
  • Charles Edward Montague, British author
  • Ed Montague (baseball player)
  • Ed Montague (umpire), son of the baseball player
, Maddux Mad·dux   , Gregory Alan Known as "Greg." Born 1966.

American baseball player. A right-handed pitcher with the Chicago Cubs (1986-1992) and the Atlanta Braves (since 1993), he was the first to win four consecutive Cy Young Awards (1992-1995).
, & Dereshiwsky, 1990; Weaver
For other meanings, see Weaver (disambiguation).

The Weavers are small passerine birds related to the finches.

These are seed-eating birds with rounded conical bills, most of which breed in sub-Saharan Africa, with fewer species in tropical
 & Dickinson Dickinson, city (1990 pop. 16,097), seat of Stark co., SW N.Dak., on the Heart River; inc. 1919. It is a processing and shipping center for a livestock, dairy, and wheat region, as well as a service center for the Williston Basin oil industry. Dickinson State Univ. , 1982). Results from this line of inquiry indicated that there were developmental differences related to story-structure knowledge, with story-structure knowledge appearing initially at the first-grade level and becoming well developed at the sixth-grade level for typical readers. In one study focusing on students with LD (Montague et al., 1990), no main effect was found for grade between 4th- through 11th-grade students with LD, indicating a story-structure plateau plateau, elevated, level or nearly level portion of the earth's surface, larger in summit area than a mountain and bounded on at least one side by steep slopes, occurring on land or in oceans.  similar to the general reading achievement plateau reported by Warner, Schumaker, Alley alley

an area in a cow barn identified by its particular purpose such as a loafing alley, a walking alley or feeding alley.
, and Deshler (1980).

Due to the findings of developmental differences across groups of school-age readers, a third phase of research has focused on the instruction of the previously validated val·i·date  
tr.v. val·i·dat·ed, val·i·dat·ing, val·i·dates
1. To declare or make legally valid.

2. To mark with an indication of official sanction.

 components of story structure to improve reading comprehension. While some studies have included elementary school elementary school: see school.  students (e.g., Carnine & Kinder, 1985; Fitzgerald & Spiegel Noun 1. spiegel - pig iron containing manganese; used as a deoxidizing agent and to raise the manganese content in making steel
spiegel iron, spiegeleisen

pig iron - crude iron tapped from a blast furnace
, 1983; Griffey, Zigmond, & Leinhardt, 1988; Idol idol, an object, frequently an image, which is worshiped as a deity. Idols are usually found in human or animal form and may be treated as though alive; they are fed, bathed, anointed, crowned, and sometimes even provided with a consort.  & Croll Croll is the surname of:
  • David Croll
  • Doña Croll
  • James Croll
  • Jennifer Croll
  • John Croll, CEO of Media Monitors Australia
  • William M. Croll
See also
  • Kroll
  • Croll Building in Alameda, California

, 1987; Short & Ryan Ryan may refer to: Places
  • Division of Ryan, an electoral district in the Australian House of Representatives, in Queensland
  • Ryan, Iowa
  • Ryan, Oklahoma
  • Ryan Township, Pennsylvania
  • Ryan, New South Wales
Film and television
, 1984), four relevant studies were conducted at the secondary level, including students in grades 6 through 11 in instruction of story-structure components.

In the first study, Singer and Donlan (1982) used a control-group design with 27 eleventh-grade students (no students with disabilities) randomly assigned to instructional groups of 15 over a six-day period. Story-grammar instruction was provided to the experimental group. Results on the lone measurement instrument, a 10-question multiple-choice mul·ti·ple-choice
1. Offering several answers from which the correct one is to be chosen: a multiple-choice question.

 quiz A quiz is a form of game or mind sport in which the players (as individuals or in teams) attempt to answer questions correctly. Quizzes are also brief assessments used in education and similar fields to measure growth in knowledge, abilities, and/or skills.  following each of six stories, showed that the only difference between groups was in favor of the experimental group on the quiz taken after the fifth story.

Gurney gurney /gur·ney/ (gur´ne) a wheeled cot used in hospitals.

n. pl. gur·neys
A metal stretcher with wheeled legs, used for transporting patients.
, Gersten, Dimino, and Carnine (1990) used a multiple-baseline design with seven high school students with LD in instructional groups of two or three in pullout pull·out  
1. A withdrawal, especially of troops.

2. Change from a dive to level flight. Used of an aircraft.

3. An object designed to be pulled out.

Noun 1.
 classes over a nine-week period. The authors concluded that, on 7- to 10-question story-grammar and basal-type quizzes given every other day, students showed improvement on questions related to story grammar and no improvement on basal basal /ba·sal/ (ba´s'l) pertaining to or situated near a base; in physiology, pertaining to the lowest possible level.

 questions (no mean scores were provided on either question type). However, no individual student graphs were shown nor were group means reported, making it difficult to interpret the results.

In the third study, Dimino, Gersten, Carnine, and Blake (1990) conducted an experimental follow-up follow-up,
n the process of monitoring the progress of a patient after a period of active treatment.



follow-up plan
 to Gurney et al.'s study (1990) with 32 low-performing ninth-grade students, including a subset A group of commands or functions that do not include all the capabilities of the original specification. Software or hardware components designed for the subset will also work with the original.  of six students with LD and two students in Title I programs, over 19 days. Students were randomly assigned to the groups after being matched for reading achievement. Results on story-grammar and basal-type quizzes indicated statistically significant differences in favor of the story-grammar instruction group related to scores on story-grammar questions, basal questions, theme questions (a subset of story-grammar questions), and a summarizing task on the posttest post·test  
A test given after a lesson or a period of instruction to determine what the students have learned.
 and on the maintenance measure (mean raw score differences across all measures ranged from .3 [1.5% of total] to 2.5 [12.5% of total]). Results for the students with LD were not reported separately from group means.

Drawing from the work of Dimino et al. (1990) and Idol and Croll (1987), Gardill and Jitendra (1999) conducted a multiple-baseline study with six middle school students with LD in instructional groups of two in pullout classes. Results showed that (a) all students' scores on story grammar and basal comprehension tests improved concomitant concomitant /con·com·i·tant/ (kon-kom´i-tant) accompanying; accessory; joined with another.
concomitant adjective Accompanying, accessory, joined with another
 with the onset of instruction, (b) all students' scores increased on generalization gen·er·al·i·za·tion
1. The act or an instance of generalizing.

2. A principle, a statement, or an idea having general application.
 and maintenance story-grammar tests from baseline The horizontal line to which the bottoms of lowercase characters (without descenders) are aligned. See typeface.

baseline - released version
 and for four students on basal tests, and (c) five of the six students demonstrated an increase in the number of story elements when they orally retold re·told  
Past tense and past participle of retell.
 stories over baseline.

In summary, when instruction in story structure was implemented, results across the studies cited above indicated (a) differences within or between groups on criterion-referenced story-grammar measures (i.e., answering story-grammar-related questions about a given passage) when instruction was multi-phased and at least five hours in length; (b) inconsistent results on students' ability to answer basal (factual) questions; and (c) uncertain benefits for students with LD when taught in a heterogeneous group.

While Gersten and colleagues (2001) are accurate in their conclusion that instructing the awareness of underlying story structures has improved students' basic academic skills in some studies, the research is not complete. Several limitations are associated with the total body of research in this area, including both elementary and secondary studies.

First, there is a paucity pau·ci·ty  
1. Smallness of number; fewness.

2. Scarcity; dearth: a paucity of natural resources.
 of research on heterogeneous groups (or classes) of students that include students with LD, especially at the secondary level. Second, only a few studies focus on even moderate teacher-to-student ratios, and these studies typically fail to disaggregate See disaggregated.  data for students with LD. Hence, little is known about the application of this type of instruction in larger classroom settings and outcomes for students with LD. Third, control-group design studies have involved only limited components of research-based reading comprehension instruction for the control group. Thus, the value added Value Added

The enhancement a company gives its product or service before offering the product to customers.

This can either increase the products price or value.
 by story-structure training cannot be determined in comparison. Fourth, no secondary study has considered the merits of packaging (or combining) elements of story structure to intensify in·ten·si·fy  
v. in·ten·si·fied, in·ten·si·fy·ing, in·ten·si·fies
1. To make intense or more intense:
 instruction. Fifth, because the measures in previous studies have been criterion-based related to isolated passages, limited information has emerged regarding such variables as related knowledge (including knowledge of strategy components and literary terms The following is a list of literary terms; that is, those words used in discussion, classification, criticism, and analysis of literature.

See also: Glossary of poetry terms, Literary criticism, Literary theory

), strategy use, written summaries of narrative passages, and student satisfaction with instruction.

Given the status of the research on story structure outlined above and the pressing need for secondary literacy instruction to bolster This article is about the pillow called a bolster. For other meanings of the word "bolster", see bolster (disambiguation).

A bolster (etymology: Middle English, derived from Old English, and before that the Germanic word bulgstraz
 students' reading comprehension, an instructional routine, the Embedded Story Structure (ESS) Routine, was designed for use in general education classrooms serving heterogeneous populations of students. The routine is based on the findings of Swanson's (1999) meta-analysis meta-analysis /meta-anal·y·sis/ (met?ah-ah-nal´i-sis) a systematic method that takes data from a number of independent studies and integrates them using statistical analysis.  on effective components of explicit cognitive learning strategy instruction (i.e., advance organizer, skill review, demonstration, modeling, guided practice, independent practice, and corrective cor·rec·tive
Counteracting or modifying what is malfunctioning, undesirable, or injurious.

An agent that corrects.

 feedback), as well as the validated components of story structure (e.g., Mandler & Johnson, 1977). This study investigated the effects of using the ESS Routine in an inclusive ninth-grade literature class relative to improving student use of reading comprehension strategies, knowledge of strategy components and literary terms, comprehension of stories, and satisfaction with the routine.



Participants were 79 incoming ninth-grade students attending a summer school program for at-risk students The term at-risk students is used to describe students who are "at risk" of failing academically, for one or more of any several reasons. The term can be used to describe a wide variety of students, including,
  1. ethnic minorities
  2. academically disadvantaged
 at a private urban high school in a southeastern state. At-risk at-risk
Being endangered, as from exposure to disease or from a lack of parental or familial guidance and proper health care: efforts to make the vaccine available to at-risk groups of children. 
 status was determined by school personnel in reading or mathematics based on test scores from EXPLORE (EXPLORE Test, 2005) taken during the spring of students' eighth-grade year. The student population reflected heterogeneous characteristics, as some students exhibited limited reading comprehension ability while others only exhibited limited abilities in mathematics (i.e., the latter group contained stronger readers).

The researcher met with all parents and students prior to the experiment to solicit written permission for participation. Students with permission were subsequently matched according to four variables. (1) Members of each matched pair were randomly assigned to one of two groups: (a) the embedded-story structure (ESS) group or (b) the comprehension skills instruction (CSI) group. Students in each group were also assigned randomly to one of three classes, for a total of six classes (three in each condition). Matching variables were (a) disability diagnosis versus no diagnosis; (b) EXPLORE reading comprehension national percentile percentile,
n the number in a frequency distribution below which a certain percentage of fees will fall. E.g., the ninetieth percentile is the number that divides the distribution of fees into the lower 90% and the upper 10%, or that fee level
 score (within six percentile points) (EXPLORE Test, 2005); (c) gender; and (d) age in months (within six months). (See Table 1 for demographic data for the ESS and CSI groups.) Independent samples t-tests were employed to determine whether the groups were statistically different with regard to age and EXPLORE reading comprehension national percentile. Results showed that they were not, t(77) = .516, p = .608; t(77) = .609, p = .544, respectively.

An LD diagnosis was present for 14 subjects, based on the school's existing psychological profiles. (Table 2 provides demographic data related to these students in both groups.) Full-scale full-scale
1. Of actual or full size; not reduced: a full-scale model.

2. Employing all resources; not limited or partial:
 IQ scores were available for 13 of the 14 students on the Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children Wechsler intelligence scale for children
A standardized intelligence test that is used for assessing children from 5 to 15 years old.
 (Wechsler Wechsler is a German word meaning "exchanger" (from '', "(ex)change").

Wechsler (or Wexler) may refer to:
  • Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale
  • Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children
  • Wexler (crater), a lunar impact crater
, 1991, 2003). The seven students in the ESS group earned a mean full-scale IQ score of 103.7 (SD = 7.2), whereas the six CSI students earned a mean IQ score of 104.0 (SD = 2.5). Independent samples t-tests were employed to determine whether the groups were statistically different with regard to age, IQ score, and EXPLORE reading comprehension national percentile scores. Results showed that they were not, t(12) = -.050, p = .961; t(11) = .093, p = .928; t(12) = .315, p =. 758, respectively.


Instruction was provided in a typical classroom. The total school population was 1,480, drawing students from across the city. Classroom desks were arranged in four rows. An overhead projector was positioned on a table at the front of the room, along with a large presentation screen and two side-by-side whiteboards.

Instructional Materials

Eight short stories and a folktale folktale, general term for any of numerous varieties of traditional narrative. The telling of stories appears to be a cultural universal, common to primitive and complex societies alike.  were selected as passages to be used during instruction and student practice and as the basis for comprehension assessment for all students. The materials included renowned classics (e.g., Poe's The Tell-Tale Sailing crafts
In a nautical or sailing context a tell-tale is a piece of cloth or fabric that is tied or attached to a stay, one of several wires, that holds a mast in place on a sailboat. Usually there will be one tell-tale on the port stay and one on a starboard stay.
 Heart) as well as more contemporary stories that present accounts of dilemmas encountered by adolescents (e.g., Myers' The Treasure of Lemon Brown). Stories were 9-18 pages long, with lexile scores ranging from 600 (The Tell Tale Heart) to 1220 (The Monkey's Paw; Metametrics, 2000).

The Instructional Programs

Embedded story-structure routine. The Embedded Story-Structure (ESS) Routine targeted three strategies: (a) self-questioning (used during pre-reading), (b) story-structure analysis (used during reading), and (c) summary writing (used after reading). A graphic device, the ESS Organizer, was designed to facilitate the interactive construction of knowledge between students and teacher and the integration of the three strategies (see Figure 1).


The self-questioning strategy involves students asking and answering a series of seven questions initially introduced by the teacher that relate to eight critical components of story structure (e.g., main character, initiating event, time, place, central conflict, climax/turning point, resolution, and theme) (e.g., Dimino et al., 1990; Gardill & Jitendra, 1999). When implementing this strategy, students use seven individual question words (e.g., "who," "what," "when," "where," "which," "how," and "why") as a mnemonic Pronounced "ni-mon-ic." A memory aid. In programming, it is a name assigned to a machine function. For example, COM1 is the mnemonic assigned to serial port #1 on a PC. Programming languages are almost entirely mnemonics.  device to help them remember the eight components and the related seven questions. (See Table 3 for the story components and questions.) Students record their answers to each self-question on the ESS Organizer.

The second strategy, story-structure analysis, involves filling in a Story-Structure Diagram diagram /di·a·gram/ (di´ah-gram) a graphic representation, in simplest form, of an object or concept, made up of lines and lacking pictorial elements.  on the back of the ESS Organizer by labeling specific events from a short story. To help them remember this strategy, students are provided with a second mnemonic device that connects each critical element of the Story Structure Diagram (programming, data) structure diagram - A pictorial representation of the composition, grouping and relationship of data items.  to a unique picture cue cue,
n a stimulus that determines or may prompt the nature of a person's response.

cue Psychology Any sensory stimulus that evokes a learned patterned response. See Conditioning.
. Students draw these cues when labeling the Story-Structure Diagram.

Students use the third strategy, a summary writing strategy, to generate a written summary of the short story on the back of the ESS Organizer based on their answers to the self-questions using a four-sentence formula that includes each critical element of story structure.

Comprehension skill instruction. Comprehension Skill Instruction (CSI) was designed to parallel the ESS instruction by targeting three research-based strategies for instruction: (a) the LINCS Vocabulary Strategy (Ellis ELLIS - EuLisp LInda System. An object-oriented Linda system written for EuLisp. "Using Object-Oriented Mechanisms to Describe Linda", P. Broadbery <> et al, in Linda-Like Systems and Their Implementation, G. Wilson ed, U Edinburgh TR 91-13, 1991. , 2000; used during prereading); (b) Question-Answer Relationships (QAR QAR

In currencies, this is the abbreviation for the Qatari Riyal.

The currency market, also known as the Foreign Exchange market, is the largest financial market in the world, with a daily average volume of over US $1 trillion.
) (Raphael Raphael (răf`ēəl, rā`–), archangel. He is prominent in the book of Tobit, as the companion of Tobias, as the healer of Tobit, and as the rescuer of Sara from Asmodeus. Milton made him a featured character of Paradise Lost. , 1982, 1986; used during reading); and (c) semantic summary mapping (Englert, Mariage, Garmon, & Tarrant, 1998; used after reading). The CSI strategies were chosen because they have previously been studied (separately) as mechanisms that might improve student reading comprehension. To parallel the ESS instruction, comparison students received a graphic device, called the CSI Organizer, to facilitate the interactive construction of knowledge between students and teacher. (2)

The LINCS Vocabulary Strategy involves the use of a set of mnemonic strategies, including a key word strategy, a visual imagery strategy, and a story strategy to link known information to new vocabulary words and their definitions (Ellis, 2000). Students record LINCS information related to a teacher-chosen vocabulary word on the first page of the CSI Organizer.

For the QAR strategy, students ask themselves and answer text-based and knowledge-based questions to develop story understanding. Text-based questions include (a) "Right There" questions, which require students to find answers explicitly stated right there in the text (e.g., "What is Johnny's father's job?"); and (b) "Think and Search" questions, which require locating answers stated explicitly in the text but require examination of more than a single location in the text (e.g., "What are some of the challenges facing the kidnappers?").

Students record QAR questions and answers on the first page of the CSI Organizer. Students use the third strategy, semantic summary mapping, to visually summarize sum·ma·rize  
intr. & tr.v. sum·ma·rized, sum·ma·riz·ing, sum·ma·riz·es
To make a summary or make a summary of.

 stories by mapping self-identified critical components of the story. The strategy involves identifying and listing critical components of the story before organizing them into a connective connective - An operator used in logic to combine two logical formulas. See first order logic.  semantic/concept map of related ideas on the back of the CSI Organizer.

Measurement Instruments

Strategy-use test. The Strategy-Use Test was administered to all students in both groups at pretest pre·test  
a. A preliminary test administered to determine a student's baseline knowledge or preparedness for an educational experience or course of study.

b. A test taken for practice.

 (Day 1), progress test (Day 5), posttest (Day 9), and maintenance (8 weeks after the posttest). The purpose of this measure was to provide evidence that the ESS students learned the ESS strategies that they were taught (and that the CSI students did not learn the ESS strategies) so that their learning could later be related to student performance on reading comprehension measures. Each of four forms of the test included three sections, each section corresponding to use of one of the three ESS strategies. The first provided seven lines on which students could write prereading questions related to novel passages. For the second section, students were asked to read a 260- to 300-word narrative passage (7.68.2 GE) from the Analytic an·a·lyt·ic or an·a·lyt·i·cal
1. Of or relating to analysis or analytics.

2. Expert in or using analysis, especially one who thinks in a logical manner.

3. Psychoanalytic.
 Reading Inventory (ARI ARI Acute respiratory infection, see there ) (Woods & Moe, 2003) and correctly label a Story-Structure Diagram. (Each form of the test contained a different passage.) The third section on the test required students to write a summary of the passage that was approximately 60 words in length.

In order to control for passage difficulty, a counter-balanced design was used. That is, Form A was administered to half the class in the pretest and the other half of the class in the posttest, and vice versa VICE VERSA. On the contrary; on opposite sides.  for Form B. During the progress and maintenance tests, Form C was administered to half the class in the progress test and the other half of the class in the maintenance test, and vice versa for Form D. All sections of the test were scored using an answer key. The total number of points available was 24, with eight points each available for prereading questions, for correct diagram labels, and for a written summary.

Knowledge test. The Knowledge Test, administered to both groups, measured student knowledge of ESS strategy components and literary terms associated with the ESS strategies to provide evidence that students in the ESS group learned knowledge about the ESS strategies but students in the CSI group did not, so that this learning could later be related to students' performance on reading comprehension measures.

The knowledge test was divided into three sections. The first provided a blank Story-Structure Diagram and asked students to demonstrate knowledge of the location of story-structure elements by labeling each component (e.g., initiating event, climax Climax

Following a protracted period of selling or buying, a point wherein market trends are retarded or discontinued.

At a selling climax, the market is characterized by a trend reversal whereby the market begins to buy stocks and prices rise.
, resolution) on the diagram. The second section asked students to demonstrate knowledge of the picture cues and their connections to the story-structure components by listing the appropriate elements of story structure along with the corresponding picture cue (e.g., initiating event--[??], time--[??]). Finally, the third section required students to answer four open-ended questions A closed-ended question is a form of question, which normally can be answered with a simple "yes/no" dichotomous question, a specific simple piece of information, or a selection from multiple choices (multiple-choice question), if one excludes such non-answer responses as dodging a  related to basic language arts knowledge (e.g., "What are the types of conflict?" and "What are the components of characterization A rather long and fancy word for analyzing a system or process and measuring its "characteristics." For example, a Web characterization would yield the number of current sites on the Web, types of sites, annual growth, etc. ?"). The total score for the Knowledge Test was 30 points, with 8 points each for the appropriate labels and correct picture cue answers and 14 points for the language arts knowledge questions. An answer key was used to score the test which was administered at pretest and posttest.

Unit comprehension test. The Unit Reading Comprehension Test measured student retention of information related to the eight stories read by both groups during instruction. The hypothesis was that students in the ESS group would retain more information than students in the CSI group. The test included 40 short-answer and fill-in-the-blank questions. One point was awarded for each correct answer for a total of 40 points.

To create two forms of the test, a test bank of 80 questions was created with eight sets of 10 questions per story. Each set contained six questions related to the story-structure elements of the story and four higher-order questions (two induction induction, in electricity and magnetism
induction, in electricity and magnetism, common name for three distinct phenomena.

Electromagnetic induction
 and two deduction deduction, in logic, form of inference such that the conclusion must be true if the premises are true. For example, if we know that all men have two legs and that John is a man, it is then logical to deduce that John has two legs.  questions). Question sets were paired for each story according to the difficulty level of story-structure element, and one question from each pair was randomly assigned to each form of the test. To ensure measurement reliability, a counterbalanced coun·ter·bal·ance  
1. A force or influence equally counteracting another.

2. A weight that acts to balance another; a counterpoise or counterweight.

 design was used during the pretest and posttest, with Form A administered to half the class in the pretest and the other half of the class in the posttest, and vice versa for Form B. Two certified See certification.  secondary English teachers English Teachers (airing internationally as Taipei Diaries) is a Canadian documentary television series. The series, which airs on Canada's Life Network and internationally, profiles several young Canadians teaching English as a Second Language in Taipei, Taiwan.  juried the measure and agreed that all questions were appropriate to the corresponding passage, all answers could be found in the passage, the answers in the answer key were correct, and that Forms A and B of the test were equivalent in difficulty (100% agreement in all areas).

Satisfaction surveys. To evaluate student satisfaction with the interventions, two social validity measures were also administered. The Reading Satisfaction Survey measured students' satisfaction with their own reading. Questions related to students' satisfaction with reading and remembering short stories or novels, writing summaries, and test performance on reading comprehension tests. The Satisfaction with Instruction Survey measured student satisfaction with the ESS Routine (or the CSI Routine) and its components. Questions here related to student satisfaction with how helpful instruction was with regard to improving story understanding, how easy it was to identify the specific elements of story structure, whether or not students could use what they had learned independently, and overall satisfaction with the routine. On both surveys, items were formatted on a 7-point Likert-type scale ranging from "Completely Dissatisfied dis·sat·is·fied  
Feeling or exhibiting a lack of contentment or satisfaction.

" to "Completely Satisfied." The average rating was calculated for each item for each group.

Fidelity of treatment checklists. A fidelity checklist was used to assess the quality of teacher performance in implementing the specified instruction in each lesson. Each checklist was comprised of a list of 29-46 items, cataloging all the instructional practices associated with both routines and intervention-specific components for each routine appropriate to the given lesson, including (a) review of the previous lesson, (b) use of advance and post-organizers, (c) encouraging independent strategy use, (d) administering a quiz, (e) giving notes and defining terms related to ESS or CSI instruction, (f) reading the same stories, (g) periodically engaging students in dialogue, (h) demonstration and modeling of the ESS- or CSI-related strategies, and (i) teacher-led practice with ESS- or CSI-related strategies. An independent scorer and the researcher listened to randomly selected audio recordings of 22% of the instructional lessons for each group and completed the checklist. The fidelity score was calculated by totaling the number of observed instructional behaviors for the intervention A procedure used in a lawsuit by which the court allows a third person who was not originally a party to the suit to become a party, by joining with either the plaintiff or the defendant. , the number of unobserved instructional behaviors for the alternative intervention, and the number of observed instructional behaviors common to both interventions.

The total score was then divided by the total number of points possible, ranging from 29 to 46. Interscorer reliability. Interscorer reliability was determined by having two scorers independently score a random sample (20%) of each of the instruments at each point in the data-gathering plan for each group. An item-by-item analysis was used to compare observer recordings. For the Strategy-Use Test, scorers agreed on 1,443 out of 1,536 opportunities to agree (range from 83.3% to 100%) for 94% agreement. For the Knowledge Test, scorers agreed on 914 out of 960 opportunities to agree (range from 83.3% to 100%) for 95.2% agreement. For the Unit Reading Comprehension Test, scorers agreed on 1,233 out of 1,280 opportunities to agree (range from 83% to 100%) for 96% agreement. For fidelity of treatment, scorers agreed on 272 out of 282 opportunities to agree (range from 90% to 100%) for 96.5% agreement.


Pretest and progress measure procedures. Pretesting occurred in two sessions. The first battery of measures was administered during a 90-minute block, and included the Strategy-Use Test (20 minutes), Knowledge Test (15 minutes), and the Unit Reading Comprehension Test (25 minutes). The Reading Satisfaction Survey was administered during the first 20 minutes of the first lesson. Additionally, the Strategy-Use Test was repeated during the last 20 minutes of the fifth lesson as a progress measure.

Instructional procedures. Teacher-to-student instructional ratios were 1:12, 1:13, or 1:14, depending on the class enrollment. The same teacher (and first author), a special education doctoral student with certification in secondary-level English, provided all instruction to both groups. Instruction for each class took place over a nine-day summer school session with 90 minutes of instruction on Days 1 and 9 and 120 minutes of instruction on Days 2 through 8, for a total of 17 hours of instruction. Instruction took place in four phases: (a) teacher demonstration and modeling of the targeted strategies, including think-aloud problem solving problem solving

Process involved in finding a solution to a problem. Many animals routinely solve problems of locomotion, food finding, and shelter through trial and error.
; (b) student-teacher collaboration Working together on a project. See collaborative software.  and co-construction of knowledge and strategy use; (c) student peer collaboration (cooperative learning cooperative learning Education theory A student-centered teaching strategy in which heterogeneous groups of students work to achieve a common academic goal–eg, completing a case study or a evaluating a QC problem. See Problem-based learning, Socratic method. ) and teacher-guided practice; and (d) independent student practice. The teacher used the cooperative learning and independent practice sessions as opportunities to circulate cir·cu·late  
v. cir·cu·lat·ed, cir·cu·lat·ing, cir·cu·lates

1. To move in or flow through a circle or circuit: blood circulating through the body.

 through the classroom to provide personal corrective feedback to individual students. The teacher also provided individual instruction at the teacher's desk when needed by a student. All lessons began with a review of the previous day's lesson and an advance organizer of the current day's instruction. All lessons ended with a brief review of the day's lesson.

Instruction was delivered with consideration given to two guiding principles: (a) the content of instruction (i.e., components of the three targeted strategies for each instructional condition); and (b) the four-phase pedagogy of instruction described above. (See Table 4 for a summary of instructional procedures.) The instructional sequence for the ESS and CSI groups was the same; only the content (the three strategies specified for each group) differed.

Day 1 instruction involved teacher introduction, demonstration, and modeling of all strategy components while using the appropriate organizer to provide students with an overall "big picture" example of how the three targeted strategies were to be used in combination in relation to the first story. At the end of Day 1 instruction, the teacher prompted the students to participate in using the strategies in relation to the end of the story in a whole-group teacher-guided practice activity.

The first half of Day 2 instruction focused on teacher demonstration and modeling of selected parts of two of the strategies in relation to Story #2. During the second half of the period, the students were prompted to use the strategies in a whole-group teacher-guided practice activity, also for Story #2.

On Day 3, students engaged in cooperative peer practice of the strategy components covered on Day 2 for the initial sections of Story #3 and independent practice for the remaining sections of the story.

Day 4 instruction mirrored Day 2 instruction using Story #4, but focused on the remaining strategy components that were not covered not covered Health care adjective Referring to a procedure, test or other health service to which a policy holder or insurance beneficiary is not entitled under the terms of the policy or payment system–eg, Medicare. Cf Covered.  on Days 2 and 3.

On Day 5, students engaged in cooperative peer practice of all three targeted strategies for some sections of Story #5 and independent practice of all three strategies on other sections.

Days 6 through 8 again allowed for periods of peer collaboration and periods of independent practice of the combined strategies with sections of a new story each day and with students slowly transitioning to longer periods of independent work.

The final session (Day 9) concluded with a class-wide review of the complete unit of eight short stories covered. The teacher followed a written protocol for each lesson and concluded each class with a class-wide discussion of the day's short story. Students handed in their completed graphic organizers Graphic organizers are visual representations of knowledge, concepts or ideas. They are known to help
  • relieve learner boredom
  • enhance recall
  • provide motivation
  • create interest
  • clarify information
  • assist in organizing thoughts
 periodically to the teacher for corrective feedback. (For more details about the instructional procedures for each group, see Faggella-Luby, 2006.)

Posttest and maintenance procedures. Posttesting occurred in identical fashion to the pretesting with two group-administered sittings. During the first sitting, students completed the satisfaction surveys. In the second sitting, 90-minutes was provided for the battery of measures to be administered. For the maintenance probe, the Strategy-Use Test was administered eight weeks after the final lesson.

Design and Data Analyses

The study employed a control-group design with random assignment of members of matched pairs of students to two groups (ESS and CSI) to determine the effects of the ESS Routine. The same teacher conducted all instruction to control for teacher effects. Instructional time, stories, and the general instructional methodology were identical across the groups.

For the Strategy-Use measure, which was administered four times, a one-way analysis of variance The discrepancy between what a party to a lawsuit alleges will be proved in pleadings and what the party actually proves at trial.

In Zoning law, an official permit to use property in a manner that departs from the way in which other property in the same locality
 (ANOVA anova

see analysis of variance.

ANOVA Analysis of variance, see there
) with one within-subjects factor and two between-subjects factors was conducted. Time with four levels (pretest, progress, posttest, and maintenance) was the within-subjects factor (independent variable). Instructional condition (ESS and CSI) and whether or not students had a diagnosed disability (students with disabilities and other peers) were the between-subjects factors.

For the Unit Reading Comprehension Tests and Knowledge Tests, which were each administered twice, a one-way ANOVA with one within-subjects factor and two between-subjects factors was conducted. Time with two levels (pretest and posttest) was the within-subjects factor (independent variable). Instructional condition (ESS and CSI) and whether or not students had a diagnosed disability (students with disabilities and other peers) were the between-subjects factors.

To determine between-group differences on the Unit Reading Comprehension Tests and Knowledge Tests, independent-samples t-tests were completed separately for each administration of a measure. A Bonferroni Correction In statistics, the Bonferroni correction states that if an experimenter is testing n independent hypotheses on a set of data, then the statistical significance level that should be used for each hypothesis separately is 1/n  was used to control for Type 1 error ([alpha] = .05/2 = .025). For the Strategy-Use Test, to determine within-group differences, paired-samples t-tests were completed separately for the ESS and CSI groups to compare the pretest to posttest scores, the pretest to maintenance scores, and the posttest to maintenance scores. Again, a Bonferroni Correction was used to control for Type I error for all pairwise comparisons ([alpha] = .05/(2x3) = .0083).


Strategy Use Test

Means and standard deviations In statistics, the average amount a number varies from the average number in a series of numbers.

(statistics) standard deviation - (SD) A measure of the range of values in a set of numbers.
 for Strategy-Use Test scores are presented in Table 5 for students with disabilities and the remaining students in the ESS and CSI groups. The ANOVA results indicated no statistically significant time by condition by disability diagnosis interaction, Wilks' [LAMBDA The Greek letter "L," which is used as a symbol for "wavelength." A lambda is a particular frequency of light, and the term is widely used in optical networking. Sending "multiple lambdas" down a fiber is the same as sending "multiple frequencies" or "multiple colors. ] = .972, F(3,73) = .700, p = .555, multivariate The use of multiple variables in a forecasting model.  [[eta].sup.2] = .028. However, a statistically significant time-by-condition interaction was found, Wilks' [LAMBDA] = .330, F(3,73) = 49.5, p <. 001, multivariate [[eta].sup.2] = .670, indicating a large effect size. Thus, regardless of whether or not students had a disability diagnosis, ESS subjects exhibited equivalent gains on this test.

Results of an independent samples t-test t-test,
n an inferential statistic used to test for differences between two means (groups) only. This statistic is used for small samples (e.g.,
N < 30). Also called
t-ratio, stu-dent's t.
 indicated no statistically significant difference between the ESS and CSI students' performance on the strategy-use pretest: t(77) =-.293, p = .770, d = .015. However, there were statistically significant differences between the groups, in favor of the ESS group, on all three remaining tests: the progress test, t(56.4) = -14.6, p < .001, d = .738; the posttest, t(60.5) = -15.9, p = <.001, d = .807, and the maintenance test, t(59.2) = -10.7, p = <.001, d = .542, indicating large and moderate effect sizes, respectively.

Results of the three paired-samples t-tests revealed significant differences on two comparisons for the ESS group: pretest to posttest, t(38) = -18.3, p < .001, [DELTA] = 4.27; and pretest to maintenance, t(38) = -10.84, p < .001, [DELTA] = 3.70, indicating large effect sizes. There was no significant difference between the posttest and the maintenance test, t(38) = 2.06, p = .046, [DELTA] = .41. No significant differences were found for all three pairwise comparisons for the CSI group: t(39) = -1.28, p = .210, [DELTA] = .21; t(39) = .110, p = .913, [DELTA] = .02; and t(39) = 1.38, p = .179, [DELTA] = .30, respectively.

Knowledge Test

Means and standard deviations for the Knowledge Test scores are presented in Table 6. The ANOVA results again indicated no statistically significant time by condition by disability diagnosis interaction, Wilks' [LAMBDA] = .99, F(1,75) = .138, p = .711, multivariate [[eta].sup.2] = .002. However, there was a statistically significant time-by-condition interaction, Wilks' [LAMBDA] = .376, F(1,75) = 124.4, p < .001, multivariate [[eta].sup.2] = .624, indicating a large effect size.

Results of an independent samples t-test indicated no statistically significant difference between the ESS and CSI groups on the pretest: t(77) = -.890, p = .376, d = .045. However, there was a statistically significant difference between the groups on the posttest: t(77) = -4.11, p < .001, d = .208, indicating a small effect size in favor of the ESS group.

Unit Reading Comprehension Test

Means and standard deviations for the Unit Reading Comprehension Test scores are presented in Table 7. ANOVA results indicated no statistically significant time by condition by disability diagnosis interaction, Wilks' [LAMBDA] = .992, F(1,75) = .621, p = .433, multivariate [[eta].sup.2] = .008. However, again there was a statistically significant time-by-condition interaction, Wilks' [LAMBDA] = .908, F(1,75) = 7.61, p = .007, multivariate [[eta].sup.2] = .092, representing a medium effect size. Thus, regardless of whether or not students had a disability diagnosis, the ESS subjects exhibited equivalent gains on the Unit Reading Comprehension Test.

Results of an independent-sample t-test comparing the pretest scores of the two groups indicated no difference between the groups: t(77) = -.104, p = .917, d = .005. However, there was a statistically significant difference between the groups on the posttest: t(54.4) = -15.3, p < .001, d = .776, in favor of the ESS group. This represents a large effect size.


Reading satisfaction survey. Means and standard deviations for the Reading Satisfaction survey scores are presented in Table 8. Results from an independent samples t-test indicate no statistically significant differences between the groups on either the pretest or the posttest grand mean ratings: t(77) = -.516, p = .607, d = .03; and t(77) = .114, p = .909, d = .006, respectively. Two follow-up paired samples t-tests were conducted to examine within group differences from pretest to posttest. A Bonferroni Correction was used to control for Type I error for both pairwise comparisons ([alpha] = .025). Results indicated statistically significant differences and large effect sizes for both the ESS, t(38) = -8.62, p < .001, [DELTA] = 1.23, and the CSI, t(39) = -9.62, p < .001, [DELTA] = 1.23, groups between pretest and posttest ratings, with higher mean scores on the posttest indicating higher levels of reading satisfaction than at pretest.

Satisfaction with instruction survey. Means and standard deviations for ratings on the Satisfaction with Instruction Survey are presented in Table 9. A grand mean rating of 6.27 (SD = .54) was calculated for the ESS students, and a grand mean rating of 6.26 (SD = .54) was calculated for the CSI students. An independent samples t-test revealed no statistically significant difference between groups' satisfaction ratings, t(77) = -.053, p = .958, d = .003.

Fidelity of Treatment

The teacher completed a mean of 97% of the instructional steps across the analyzed an·a·lyze  
tr.v. an·a·lyzed, an·a·lyz·ing, an·a·lyz·es
1. To examine methodically by separating into parts and studying their interrelations.

2. Chemistry To make a chemical analysis of.

 lessons for the ESS Routine with a range from 90% to 100% for individual ESS lessons. A mean of 98% of the instructional steps across the analyzed lessons was completed for the CSI Intervention with a range from 94% to 100% for individual CSI lessons. No content components of the CSI intervention were taught during the ESS intervention. Likewise, no components of the ESS intervention were taught during the CSI intervention.


The methodological and theoretical presuppositions inherent in this study's design are directly related to the earliest work surrounding sur·round  
tr.v. sur·round·ed, sur·round·ing, sur·rounds
1. To extend on all sides of simultaneously; encircle.

2. To enclose or confine on all sides so as to bar escape or outside communication.

 story-structure instruction. The study was designed to answer the question: Can story-structure components be taught to heterogeneous groups of learners, in general education settings, to improve reading comprehension without sacrificing the learning of the higher achieving peers?

The results are similar to those of previous studies regarding (a) positive effects of multi-phase instruction with moderate-sized groups including a variety of learner types and using authentic literature with secondary students (e.g., Dimino et al., 1990; Gardill & Jitendra, 1999; Idol, 1987); and (b) improved performance on criterion-referenced story grammar measures (e.g., Dimino et al., 1990; Gardill & Jitendra, 1999; Idol, 1987).

In addition, this study extends previous research and contributes to the field in several important ways. First, it supports Kintsch's (2004) suggestion to instruct in·struct  
v. in·struct·ed, in·struct·ing, in·structs
1. To provide with knowledge, especially in a methodical way. See Synonyms at teach.

2. To give orders to; direct.

 components of narrative text structure to improve reading comprehension. Second, it furthers investigations of outcomes for heterogeneous groups of learners (including individuals with disabilities). Moreover, while relatively modest in scope, the study is the largest of its kind to date, involving 79 students, including 14 students with disabilities, in a control-group design. Third, the study extends the research into secondary or adolescent literacy Adolescence, the period between age 10 and 19, is a time of rapid psychological and neurological development, during which children develop morally (truly understanding the consequences of their actions), cognitively (problem-solving, reasoning, remembering), and socially (responding to , a growing but minimally explored area of study. Fourth, the study demonstrates that, unlike previous studies of story-structure instruction in which the inclusion of individuals with disabilities required instructional ratios of 3:1 (e.g., Gardill & Jitendra, 1999; Gurney et al., 1990) to produce gains, students can be taught successfully in instructional groupings of 14:1. Fifth, this is the first study related to teaching story structure that used research-based reading comprehension instruction in the comparison condition, providing substantial support to claims that differences were related to the benefits of the ESS Routine over another strong instructional model. Sixth, this study provides preliminary evidence about the effects of packaging elements of story structure to intensify instruction by combining student self-questioning, story mapping, and summarizing. Finally, the study adds three new assessment tools to the research on story structure, which enable measurement of intervention efficacy: (a) a strategy-use test, (b) a knowledge test, and (c) a unit test over all of the short stories covered during the unit. The strategy measures demonstrate whether or not students have learned and can use the strategies that have been taught. Such a demonstration helps to eliminate the alternative explanation that reading practice alone produced the differences in reading comprehension.

Implications for Practice

Study results support the use of the ESS Routine as an instructional intervention for improving reading comprehension of at-risk learners in heterogeneous inclusive secondary classrooms. Thus, the Strategy-Use Test and Knowledge Test results indicated that students receiving the ESS Routine instruction not only outperformed CSI students, but gains were equivalent regardless of the disability/no disability category. Moreover, participation in the routine led to significant improvements in strategy use from pretest to posttest, and from pretest to maintenance. No such trend existed for CSI students, whose Strategy-Use Test scores remained linear and low.

Results from the Unit Reading Comprehension Test indicated, once again, that students, including those with disabilities, benefited equally from use of the ESS Routine. Significant differences between students in the ESS group and the CSI group on the reading comprehension measure and the Knowledge Test are particularly significant, given their similar nature to criterion-referenced assessments common in language arts classrooms. These findings support the belief that instruction in the ESS Routine may bolster educational outcomes for individuals with disabilities in such classrooms.

The socially significant findings across all survey measures are positive indicators of the palatability palatability (pal´t  of the ESS Routine. More specifically, differences within both groups from pretest to posttest scores for the Reading Satisfaction Survey indicate that, regardless of instruction type, students were more satisfied with their reading abilities after instruction. Further, student survey scores on the Satisfaction with Instruction Survey in both groups indicated not only overall satisfaction with the instruction, but also a feeling that this instruction: (a) helped them understand short stories, (b) was fun and interesting, and (c) would lead to likely independent use of the strategies. Again, these results are positive indicators to support the likelihood of instructional palatability.

Finally, an important aspect of this study design is that ESS condition scores on strategy-use and knowledge test measures when evaluated in light of scores on the unit reading comprehension test provide strong evidence to suggest that a relationship exists between student use and knowledge of ESS strategies and growth in reading comprehension.


Several limitations apply to this study. First, the teacher for the study was also the researcher. While this arrangement controlled for teacher effects, the effects that may be produced by other teachers are unknown, as are other teachers' satisfaction with the routine and their ability to implement it.

Second, ESS Routine efficacy was measured in relation to heterogeneous groups of students, in part because federal law continues to advocate the need to educate individuals with disabilities in the least restrictive environment As part of the U.S. Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, the least restrictive environment is identified as one of the six principles that govern the education of students with disabilities. . The effects of the ESS Routine when implemented in supportive learning environments and under the optimal conditions of effective learning strategy instruction described by Swanson (2001) are unknown.

Third, the sample population included only 14 students with disabilities. While this percentage of the study population (18%) is larger than the reported prevalence rate of 6% of students with LD in reading found nationally in schools (National Research Center on Learning Disabilities, 2002), this small number of students with LD limits the generalizability of the results with regard to this type of student. Moreover, the subjects were all students referred to a summer school program.

Fourth, as a group, although the ESS student performance on the Unit Reading Comprehension Test was significantly higher than the performance of the CSI group, the level of their performance on the posttest may not be considered educationally significant (M = 24.0 or 60%, SD = 4.99). This is partially the result of rigorous application of a scoring rubric RUBRIC, civil law. The title or inscription of any law or statute, because the copyists formerly drew and painted the title of laws and statutes rubro colore, in red letters. Ayl. Pand. B. 1, t. 8; Diet. do Juris. h.t.  and the initial design of a difficult test to ensure against a ceiling effect. A second consideration is that the question type was short-answer, proving more challenging than the multiple-choice or fill-in-the-blank format commonly used in schools. Though the total number of hours of instruction (17) was typical for demonstrating effective learning strategy instruction (e.g., Deshler et al., 2001), the relatively short number of instructional days (9) may have produced an additional cognitive challenge for the specific student population. That is, complex packages of strategies (e.g., self-questioning, story mapping, summary writing) require sufficient time to master. Perhaps additional practice sessions would have yielded improved results.

Finally, a significant challenge to all the research to date on story-structure instruction is the lack of standardized standardized

pertaining to data that have been submitted to standardization procedures.

standardized morbidity rate
see morbidity rate.

standardized mortality rate
see mortality rate.
 reading comprehension measures. This study is no exception. In part, no such measure was used because of the relatively short amount of instructional time and the prediction that scores on a standardized reading test would not have a chance of changing after only nine sessions of instruction.

Future Research

Future research should include studies that involve implementing the ESS Routine by a teaching cadre (company) CADRE - The US software engineering vendor which merged with Bachman Information Systems to form Cayenne Software in July 1996.  other than the researcher across multiple classes and over a longer period of time. A second future direction is to implement the ESS Routine in a supportive learning environment for students with LD using the eight stages of instruction from the Strategic Instruction Model's Learning Strategies Curriculum (see Deshler & Schumaker, 2006) to allow maximum intervention effectiveness to be measured. Another study might focus on a component analysis of the routine.

All of these studies might involve standardized reading comprehension measures. Such research will be important to the field of special education and students with disabilities because it will lead to the development of successful pedagogy that is appropriate for all levels of learners in inclusive classrooms.


Carnine, D., & Kinder, D. (1985). Teaching low-performing students to apply generative gen·er·a·tive
1. Having the ability to originate, produce, or procreate.

2. Of or relating to the production of offspring.


pertaining to reproduction.
 and schema strategies to narrative and expository ex·po·si·tion  
1. A setting forth of meaning or intent.

a. A statement or rhetorical discourse intended to give information about or an explanation of difficult material.

 material. RASE rase 1  
tr.v. rased, ras·ing, ras·es
To erase.

[Middle English rasen, to scrape off, erase; see raze.
, 6(1), 20-30.

Deshler, D. D., Schumaker, J., Bulgren, J., Lenz, K., Jantzen, J. E., Adams, G., Carnine, D., Grossen, B., Davis, B., & Marquis, J. (2001). Making learning easier: Connecting new knowledge to things students already know. Teaching Exceptional Children, 33(4), 82-85.

Deshler, D. D., & Schumaker, J. (Eds.). (2006). Teaching adolescents with disabilities: Accessing the general education curriculum. Thousand Oaks Thousand Oaks, residential city (1990 pop. 104,352), Ventura co., S Calif., in a farm area; inc. 1964. Avocados, citrus, vegetables, strawberries, and nursery products are grown. , CA: Corwin Press.

Dimino, J., Gersten, R., Carnine, D., & Blake, G. (1990). Story grammar: An approach for promoting at-risk secondary students' comprehension of literature. The Elementary School Journal Published by the University of Chicago Press, The Elementary School Journal is an academic journal which has served researchers, teacher educators, and practitioners in elementary and middle school education for over one hundred years. , 91(1), 19-32.

Ellis, E. S. (2000). The LINCS vocabulary strategy (2nd ed.). Lawrence, KS: Edge Enterprises.

Englert, C. S., Mariage, T. V., Garmon, M. A., & Tarrant, K. L. (1998). Accelerating reading progress in early literacy project classrooms: Three exploratory studies. Remedial REMEDIAL. That which affords a remedy; as, a remedial statute, or one which is made to supply some defects or abridge some superfluities of the common law. 1 131. Com. 86. The term remedial statute is also applied to those acts which give a new remedy. Esp. Pen. Act. 1.  and Special Education, 19(3), 142-159.

EXPLORE Test. (2005). Iowa City Iowa City, city (1990 pop. 59,738), seat of Johnson co., E Iowa, on both sides of the Iowa River; founded 1839 as the capital of Iowa Territory, inc. 1853. Among its manufactures are foam rubber, animal feed, paper, and food products. The city is the seat of the Univ. , IA: ACT, Inc.

Faggella-Luby, M. (2006). Embedded learning strategy instruction: Story-structure pedagogy in secondary classes for diverse learners. Unpublished doctoral dissertation dis·ser·ta·tion  
A lengthy, formal treatise, especially one written by a candidate for the doctoral degree at a university; a thesis.


, University of Kansas The University of Kansas (often referred to as KU or just Kansas) is an institution of higher learning in Lawrence, Kansas. The main campus resides atop Mount Oread. .

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Griffey, Q. L., Jr., Zigmond, N., & Leinhardt, G. (1988). The effects of self-questioning and story structure training on the reading comprehension of poor readers. Learning Disabilities Research, 4(1), 45-51.

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DONALD D Donald D is a rapper originally from North Carolina. In New York, he started his career as a rapper, as part of The B-Boys, working with Afrika Islam and Grandmaster Flash. . DESHLER, Ph.D., University of Kansas, Center for Research on Learning.

Correspondence should be addressed to: Michael Faggella-Luby, University of Connecticut, 249 Glenbrook Rd., Unit 2064, Storrs, CT 06269; e-mail:


(1) Please note that there were 79 students who had permission to participate; thus, one student did not have a matched partner. After all the other matches were made, the 79th student was assigned to the CSI condition by a coin flip.

(2) Comprehension Skills Organizer available upon request.
Table 1
Demographic Data on All Subjects

                                         ESS             CSI

Category                              N       %       N       %

Total number of subjects                39              40

  Male                                  22   56.4       21   52.5
  Female                                17   43.6       19   47.5

Age (months)                        171.44          172.08

Standard deviation                    4.63            6.25

  Caucasian                             30   77.0       29   72.5
  African American                       6   15.4        5   12.5
  Hispanic                               1    2.6        3    7.5
  Other                                  2    5.1        3    7.5

Avg. EXPLORE Percentile (reading)    47.97           50.70

Frequency EXPLORE Scores
  80th-89th Percentile                   1               1
  70th-79th Percentile                   6               6
  60th-69th Percentile                   7               8
  50th-59th Percentile                   7               8
  40th-49th Percentile                   9              12
  30th-39th Percentile                   0               0
  20th-29th Percentile                   4               2
  10th-19th Percentile                   2               0
     0-9th Percentile                    3               3

Table 2
Demographic Data on Students with Learning Disabilities

          Age                                            EXPLORE
       (months)     Gender    Ethnicity       IQ         Nat Per

S1        175         M           C           114          17
S2        174         M           O           101          29
S3        166         M           C           93           29
S4        165         F           C           101          51
S5        166         F           C           112          42
S6        177         M           C           102          42
S7        168         M           C           103          66
       M = 170.1                           M = 103.7    M = 39.4
       SD = 5.0                            SD = 7.2     SD = 16.2

S1        162         M           C           108          51
S2        167         M           O        mid range       42
S3        175         M          AA           105           7
S4        177         F       unmarked        104          51
S5        168         M           C           102          42
S6        166         M           C           101          51
S7        175         M       unmarked        104          51
       M = 170.1                           M = 104.0    M = 42.1
       SD = 5.0                            SD = 2.5     SD = 16.1

                       Disability *

          ADD         D           R           ULD

S1        **          **
S2        **          **         **
S3        **                     **
S4        **                     **
S5        **
S6                    **
S7                                            **

S1        **          **         **
S2        **
S3        **
S4        **
S5        **
S6                    **
S7                                            **

Note. Ethnicity: C=Caucasian; AA=African American; O=other.

* Disability: ADD=Attention Deficit Disorder; D=Dyslexia;
R=Reading Deficit; ULD=Unspecified Learning Disability.
IQ=Full Scale IQ score on the WISC-IV or WISC-III.

Table 3
Component, Question, and Picture Cue for ESS Instruction

Story-Structure Component   Story-Structure Question       Picture Cue

Main Character              Who is the main character?       [??]
(protagonist and

Central Conflict/           What is the central conflict     [??]
Initiating Event            and how does it begin?

Time                        When does the story take         [??]

Place                       Where does the story take        [??]

Climax                      Which decision or event is       [??]
                            the turning point?

Resolution                  How does the central             [??]
                            conflict end/resolve?

Theme                       Why did the author tell us       [??]
                            the story in this way?

Table 4
Summary of Instructional Procedures

                                   Your-Phase Pedagogy of

Content                        Demonstration   Teacher-Guided
of Instruction        Day(s)    & Modeling        Practice

* Whole strategy        1           **               **

1st half                2           **               **
of each substrategy     3

2nd half                4           **               **
of each substrategy
components              5

* Whole strategy       6-8

                                 Your-Phase Pedagogy of Instruction

Content                         Cooperative     Independent
of Instruction        Day(s)   Peer Practice      Practice      Review

* Whole strategy        1

1st half                2
of each substrategy     3           **               **

2nd half                4
of each substrategy
components              5           **               **

* Whole strategy       6-8          **               **
                        9                            **           **

* All components of specific instructional condition strategies
(i.e., self-questioning, story-structure analysis, and summarizing
for ESS; and QAR, LINCS, and semantic summary mapping for CSI).

Table 5
Strategy-Use Test Results

                      Pretest            Progress

            N      Mean       SD      Mean       SD

  SWD *      7      6.86     0.69     18.14     3.13
  Other     32      6.09     2.49     16.25     4.08

  SWD *      7      6.43     2.15      7.00     2.08
  Other     33      6.00     2.51      6.06     2.01

                      Posttest         Maintenance

            N      Mean       SD      Mean       SD

  SWD *      7     15.93     2.83     17.00     3.37
  Other     32     16.02     3.32     14.19     4.51

  SWD *      7      5.71     1.60      5.43     2.44
  Other     33      6.76     1.87      6.15     2.49

* SWD=Students with disabilities.

Table 6
Knowledge Test Results

                      Pretest           Posttest

            N      Mean      SD      Mean       SD

  SWD *      7     6.57     2.57     23.71     5.96
  Other     32     4.19     2.79     22.47     6.20

  SWD *      7     3.86     2.41      5.43     2.37
  Other     33     4.70     2.77      6.33     3.04

* SWD=Students with disabilities.

Table 7
Unit Reading Comprehension Test Results

                      Pretest           Posttest

            N      Mean      SD      Mean       SD

  SWD *      7     2.00     2.83     21.86     3.67
  Other     32     2.09     2.18     24.44     5.17

  SWD *      7     1.14     2.61     17.14     6.15
  Other     33     1.72     2.20     19.67     5.06

* SWD=Students with disabilities.

Table 8
Reading Satisfaction Survey Results

                     ESS                             CSI

           Pretest         Posttest        Pretest         Posttest

          M       SD      M       SD      M       SD      M       SD

Q1       4.64    1.56    5.90    0.99    4.65    1.27    6.15    0.83
Q2       4.59    1.50    6.15    0.90    4.28    1.40    6.12    0.94
Q3       4.05    1.64    6.13    1.11    4.18    1.80    5.79    1.20
Q4       4.72    1.40    6.15    1.11    5.15    1.23    6.08    0.96
Q5       5.58    1.27    6.18    0.97    5.68    1.19    6.30    0.79
Q6       5.79    1.26    5.77    1.14    5.25    1.41    5.77    0.99
Q7       5.17    1.21    5.85    0.90    4.75    1.52    6.03    0.92
Q8       4.68    1.34    6.05    0.94    4.30    1.22    6.07    0.86

Mean     4.89    0.92    6.02    0.73    4.78    0.99    6.04    0.65

Note. Item score can range from 1 to 7.

Table 9
Posttest Satisfaction with Instruction Survey Results

                   ESS                      CSI

           M        SD      N       M        SD      N

Q1        6.46     0.76     39     6.58     0.64     40
Q2        6.28     0.79     39     6.50     0.93     40
Q3        5.97     1.04     39     5.67     1.02     40
Q4        6.24     1.05     38     6.02     1.07     40
Q5        6.46     0.76     39     6.33     0.89     40
Q6        5.79     1.07     38     5.80     1.07     40
Q7        5.78     0.95     39     6.13     1.01     39
Q8        5.90     0.94     39     6.07     1.07     40
Q9        6.13     0.92     39     6.18     0.98     40
Q10       3.01     0.95     39     6.05     1.18     40
Q11       6.36     0.90     39     6.13     1.02     40
Q12       6.54     0.79     39     6.37     0.74     40
Q13       6.61     0.64     38     6.50     0.72     40
Q14       6.72     0.76     39     6.83     0.50     40
Q15       6.59     0.68     39     6.53     0.64     40
Q16       6.53     0.60     38     6.55     0.68     40

Mean      6.27     0.54     39     6.26     0.54     40

Note. Item scores can range from 1 to 7.
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Publication:Learning Disability Quarterly
Date:Mar 22, 2007
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