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A Historical View of Student Learning and Teacher Development in Reading Clinics

Advanced Literacy Practices

ISBN: 978-1-78190-503-6, eISBN: 978-1-78190-504-3

Publication date: 4 January 2013


Purpose – This historical perspective highlights the evolution of reading clinics (also called literacy labs, centers, etc.) from medical-type clinics to instructional powerhouses for struggling readers. Of particular interest, also, is the development of teacher expertise while participating in reading clinics, particularly in the areas of reflection, a critical view of assessments, and using assessment to inform instruction. Furthermore, this chapter traces the history of research that has come out of reading clinics.

Design/Methodology/Approach – A brief history of reading clinics since the 1920s is followed by a deep examination of some of the themes that have shaped more recent reading clinics and research that has emerged from the clinics: assessment, mandates, teacher reflection, and twenty-first Century Literacies.

Practical implications – This chapter offers key information for stakeholders who are designing, establishing, or refining a reading clinic, either university-based or K-12 school-based.

Social implications – Struggling readers and writers deserve and need experiences that help them acquire literacy skills, including reading and writing for twenty-first century purposes. Teachers need support as they navigate mandates from educational policy-makers, enhance their skills as literacy leaders and literacy coaches, and reflect on best practices.



Laster, B.P. (2013), "A Historical View of Student Learning and Teacher Development in Reading Clinics", Ortlieb, E. and Cheek, E.H. (Ed.) Advanced Literacy Practices (Literacy Research, Practice and Evaluation, Vol. 2), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 3-20.



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