Academic journal article New Zealand Journal of Psychology

Video Self-Modeling as an Intervention for Oral Reading Fluency

Academic journal article New Zealand Journal of Psychology

Video Self-Modeling as an Intervention for Oral Reading Fluency

Article excerpt

Learning to read fluently is a vital part of the reading process. Research shows a link between simple fluency measures and comprehension (e.g., Barth, Tolar, Fletcher, & Francis, 2014; Bolanos et al., 2013; Fuchs, Fuchs, Hosp, & Jenkins, 2001: Kim, Petscher, Schatschneider, & Foorman, 2010), with comprehension being the ultimate goal of any reading instruction. Reading fluency involves efficient effective decoding skills which allow a reader to comprehend text (Pikulski, 2006). There are a number of interventions that have been shown to improve reading fluency to increase accurate and automatic word recognition, assist with comprehension, and promote the use of prosodic features such as stress, pitch, and suitable phrasing. A key aspect of these approaches is that they provide learners with opportunities to read connected text with support through either adult feedback or modeling (Neddenriep, 2014). Therefore, if modeling is a successful component of fluency instruction, would it be more effective if the individual him/herself was the model?

Video-self modeling (VSM) is a cognitive-behavioural technique that enables participants to see themselves performing a target behaviour (in this case reading fluently) that is outside their usual repertoire. Hitchcock, Prater, and Dowrick (2004) used VSM in combination with tutoring to improve the reading fluency rates and comprehension of three students with special needs. Their results indicated that viewing the self-modeling video was associated with reduced variability in the data and maintenance of increased performance. Dowrick, Kim-Rupnow, and Power (2006) used a combination of VSM and tutoring in an attempt to improve reading fluency for 10 students with special needs. Their results indicated significant improvements in reading fluency for all students and in 9 out of 10 cases the rate of improvement was greatest when VSM was used.

The purpose of this study was to examine whether VSM by itself can improve reading fluency in children who are not classified as special needs, but are simply behind their peers in reading. This group of "delayed readers" (Catts & Kamhi, 2005), tend to eventually gain accurate and fluent word recognition skills, but at a considerably slower pace than their peers. By using VSM with delayed readers the intent of the current study was to improve reading fluency by providing them with the opportunity to view themselves reading fluently, thereby increasing their sense of reading self-efficacy.

Reading Fluency

The concept of reading fluency has gained momentum in recent years and has been recognized as a critical component of reading (Samuels, 2006). It is now widely accepted that oral reading fluency in a child's first years of school is a strong predictor of reading comprehension in later years (Barth et al., 2014; Bolanos et al., 2013; Kim et al., 2010; Reschley, Busch, Betts, Deno, & Long, 2009.). There seems to be consensus in the research that there are three main components to reading fluency: accuracy in decoding, automaticity, and prosody (Kuhn & Stahl, 2003; Rayner, Pollatsek, Ashby, & Clifton, 2012; Schaffner, & Schiefele, 2013; Therrien, Kirk, & Woods-Groves, 2012). Accurate decoding means the ability to generate a phonological representation of each printed word on the page (Samuels). There is overwhelming evidence to show that struggling readers make progress if they are given systematic decoding instruction (e.g., Center, Freeman, & Robertson, 2001; Foorman, Francis, Fletcher, Schatschneider, & Mehta, 1998; Hattie, 2009; Greaney, Tunmer, & Chapman, 1997; Ryder, Tunmer, & Greaney, 2008).

The oldest and most commonly used method for facilitating fluency is the repeated reading technique, based on Samuels (1979) automaticity theory. Readers read a passage of connected text at a level appropriate to their reading level several times until a particular reading rate is attained. …

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