This meta-analytic review investigated non-repetitive reading fluency interventions for K-12 students with reading difficulties. Results indicated that non-repetitive reading fluency instruction may be a feasible approach for students with reading difficulties.
Authors: Leah M. Zimmermann, Deborah K. Reed, & Ariel M. Aloe
Source: Zimmermann, L.M., Reed, D.K., & Aloe, A.M. (2019). A meta-analysis of non-repetitive reading fluency interventions for students with reading difficulties. Remedial and Special Education, 1–16. DOI: 10.1177/0741932519855058
This meta-analytic review investigated non-repetitive reading fluency interventions for K-12 students with reading difficulties. Eight studies met the inclusion criteria. The overall multivariate weighted average standardised mean difference with robust variance yielded an improvement of less than 0.2 SD (d = 0.176) for non-repetitive reading fluency interventions. However, results were positive and statistically significant. The moderator analysis revealed that the effect on comprehension outcomes (d = 0.239) was slightly larger than fluency outcomes (d = 0.105). Studies comparing repeated reading and non-repetitive reading fluency interventions produced reading outcomes similar in magnitude. Results indicated that non-repetitive reading fluency instruction may be a feasible approach for student with reading difficulties.
This study sought to address the existing gap in the literature by contributing information on the effectiveness of non-repetitive reading fluency interventions.
Conclusions and implications
Seven of the eight studies in the corpus implemented a form of wide reading, and four of these had students read continuously for a set amount of time, while three had students read assigned texts to completion. Most of the interventions held 15 min sessions and 3 sessions per week. The intervention length varied from 6 to 20 weeks, and it may be that interventions of longer durations might be necessary to evaluate treatment effectiveness more effectively. Students who received the unstructured sustained silent reading intervention were outperformed by their peers who did not participate in the fluency intervention. This was one of the few effect sizes that was found with a CI not crossing a 0 value. Thus, simply providing more time to read may not be a reliable way to improve students’ fluency. Non-repetitive reading has a small effect on student outcomes. Based on the results of this review, non-repetitive fluency interventions seem to be an equally plausible means of intervening with students experiencing reading difficulties.