ERIC Number: ED392999
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996-Feb
Reference Count: N/A
Issues in Reading Instruction: U.S. State Legislators' Perceptions and Knowledge. Research to Practice.
Reutzel, D. R.; And Others
A stratified random sample of 1,500 state legislators from 12 states was surveyed regarding their perceptions and knowledge of issues in reading instruction. The states were selected to provide a balanced mix of state sizes, state budget sizes, and geographic regions. Within states, legislators were selected to balance districts. Both mail surveys and follow-up telephone interviews were conducted. Most legislators believed the following four adult literacy instruction-related issues to be unresolved: assessment; "whole language" versus "basal" approaches; use of authentic materials versus workbooks; and whether instructional time for at-risk readers should focus on actually reading or practicing isolated reading skills. Approximately two-thirds of the legislators reported that their states were implementing new assessment programs but did not know whether the new assessment programs matched existing curricula. The legislators also pleaded ignorance about issues related to curriculum and instruction, indicating their belief that research on those issues is still in the "discovery" stage. More than 70% of those surveyed relied on the following sources of information about reading-related issues: newspaper articles, magazine articles, radio and television broadcasts, and personal contacts with specialists in the field. The main implication of this study is that local adult literacy program planners must begin/improve campaigns to inform state legislators about literacy issues. (MN)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. for Literacy, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Kent State Univ., OH. Ohio Literacy Resource Center.
Identifiers: Legislator Attitudes