“Nobody Really Does the Reading”: Rethinking Reading Accountability Using Technology Tools

“Nobody Really Does the Reading”: Rethinking Reading Accountability Using Technology Tools

Chelsey M. Bahlmann Bollinger (James Madison University, USA), Sarah M. Lupo (James Madison University, USA) and Brian A. Sullivan (James Madison University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-0246-4.ch019


Although quizzes and written summaries are more traditional ways to hold students accountable for reading, more than two thirds of college students report not completing assigned readings, references show. In this mixed-methods study, the researchers explored whether various technology strategies motivated undergraduate literacy education students to not only read, but also learn from these assigned texts. Collecting survey data from our literacy preparation courses, the authors examined how the students perceived these strategies.
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Instructors assign college students reading because “one of the most efficient ways of learning essential content in the curriculum is through reading” (Swanson & Wexler, 2017, p. 161). However, a mere 20- 30% of undergraduate students complete required readings (Berry, Cook, Hill & Stevens, 2011 & Hobson, 2004). This is an alarming statistic under any circumstances, but in a technology-infused era, where students spend up to six hours a day engaged in online activities, it is crucial that college students are thoughtful and evaluative consumers of texts (Galanek, Gierdowski, & Brooks, 2018).

Further, although failure to read required course materials is problematic across a variety of subjects, the importance of learning from course readings is crucial for future elementary educators because they will be charged with teaching students to read and learn from texts. The problem here is two-fold. If teachers are not completing assigned readings in literacy preparation courses designed to teach students how to read, future teachers may not gain the necessary skill set they are entrusted to teach their students: how to comprehend and learn from texts. Additionally, future teachers may miss out on necessary content about teaching students to read because they themselves are unable or unmotivated to learn from texts.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Meme: A humorous picture, video, or other piece of text that is copied with slight variations and shared by internet users.

Conversational Framework: Represents the different roles played by teachers and learners. This framework asserts that teaching is a dialogue, and shows what it takes to learn, using the ideas of instructionism, social learning, constructionism, and collaborative learning.

Motivation: One’s direction towards a specific behavior.

Reading Response: Examining, explaining, and defending your personal reaction to a text.

Technology Tool: An electronic, digital, or physical tool that can expand the ability to perform specific tasks or to create products.

Hashtag: A word or phrase proceeded after the hash sigh (#) used on social media to identify messages on specific topics.

Constructivism: A learning theory that suggests humans construct knowledge and meaning through interaction with each other.

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