Literacy Intervention for Struggling Readers: Knowledge Mobilization in our Communities
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This study explored the efficacy of a literacy program as it was offered in partnership between Brock University and the Learning Disabilities Association of Niagara Region. Specifically, this study examined sixteen 5 to 12-year-old children with reading disabilities who participated in a 5-week Spring Reading Program that was associated with an upper year undergraduate course in Child and Youth Studies. In this course, university students worked with children from the local community. The study collected quantitative and qualitative data from children, parents and Brock students. The study also examined the concept of knowledge mobilization by exploring the relationship between a course at Brock and the Learning Disabilities Association of Niagara. This partnership was considered a strong example of knowledge mobilization as defined by Brock’s strategic mandate. A mixed methodological approach was utilized in this thesis that included quantitative academic achievement measures and qualitative interviews with student tutors, children and caregivers whose children participated in the program. The focus of the qualitative interviews was to determine the overall experience of the Spring Reading Program and how it encompassed the principles of effective knowledge mobilization. Results of the study indicated that the Spring Reading Program was successful in improving literacy scores in participating children but also successful in improving motivation and self-efficacy in children. In addition to this, the partnership was seen as a successful example of effective knowledge mobilization. Such findings hold important implications for policy and practice surrounding models of schooling and programming that support children’s learning.