Identifying Research-Based Teaching Strategies in Reading to Close the Achievement Gap for Low Socio-Economic Children in Texas

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D)


Educational Administration

Date of Award

Summer 2013


This study examined the effects of scientifically research based (SRB) teaching strategies on the learning of students living in poverty in a Educational Service Center (ESC) Region VI of East Texas. By interviewing teachers within academically successful campuses with high economically disadvantaged student populations, an accurate assessment was made of the specific SRB teaching strategies being successfully implemented. To qualify for participation in this study, an elementary school must have has a minimum of 60% of it students on free or reduced lunch, 60% of its students representing a minority subpopulation, and the school must have met the state requirements to be classified as an academically recognized or exemplary campus from 2009 2011 based on the Texas Assessments of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS). The teachers within the sample population repeatedly cited the necessity of addressing the personal needs of economically disadvantaged students before successful academic intervention could take place. Students living in poverty primarily function on the first level of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs pyramid. Once a relationship is established between the student and teacher and basic survival needs are addressed, teachers then offered many viable SRB teaching strategies in reading. While somewhat varied in their approaches, each teacher interviewed maintained the importance of addressing five core areas when teaching reading: phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary, fluency, and comprehension.


Chuck Holt

Subject Categories

Education | Educational Administration and Supervision