Structured Supplemental Spelling Instruction

Study: Graham, Harris, & Chorzempa (2002)

Graham, S., Harris, K. R., & Chorzempa, B. F. (2002). Contribution of spelling instruction to the spelling, writing, and reading of poor spellers. Journal of Educational Psychology, 94, 669-686.
Descriptive Information Usage Acquisition and Cost Program Specifications and Requirements Training

Structured Supplemental Spelling Instruction is a structured program delivered by trained individuals. The program is composed of 8 units (6 lessons per unit) and is delivered to pairs of students who have been identified as struggling spellers. The students are taught three times per week (each session lasts 20 min). Instructors focus on two to five spelling rules during each unit.

Instructors use the same predictable set of activities across each of the eight units. The activities involve teacher modeling and feedback, student practice, goal setting, self-monitoring, and reinforcement (e.g., sticker book). The following seven activities are used throughout the lessons: (a) word sort; (b) word hunt; (c) word hunt check; (d) phonics warm-ups; (e) introduction of high frequency words; (f) practice/games related to memorizing eight high-frequency spelling words (word study); and (g) word building.

Structured Supplemental Spelling Instruction is intended for use in second grade. It is designed for use with any student at risk of academic failure. The academic area of focus is spelling, in reading and writing.

The treatment was delivered in four schools, in one urban school district outside of Washington, DC.

Where to obtain:
Steve Graham
Phone: 615-221-9760
Email: steve.graham@vanderbilt.edu

Cost:

Initial cost per student for implementing program: $11.95 for obtaining article and associated fees for making detailed instructors’ manuals and learning materials

Replacement cost per student for subsequent use: This will vary and depends on individual schools

This is not a published program. The contents of the program are described in the following article: Graham, S., Harris, K. R., Chorzempa, B. F. (2002). Contribution of spelling instruction to the spelling, writing, and reading of poor spellers. Journal of Educational Psychology, 94, 669-686. School officials can create the materials and reuse as they like. There is also a manual available from Steve Graham at Vanderbilt University.

Structured Supplemental Spelling Instruction is designed for use with small groups of two students.

Structured Supplemental Spelling Instruction takes 20 minutes per session with a recommended three sessions per week for 16 weeks.

The program includes a highly specified teacher’s manual. No special technology is required.

No training or special expertise is required for the instructor.

Training materials and manuals are available.

Practitioners may obtain ongoing professional or technical support by contacting Steve Graham at Vanderbilt University.

 

Participants: Convincing Evidence

Sample size: 54 students in second grade across four schools. (25 students in the treatment group and 29 students in the control group.)

Risk Status: First, students standard scores on the WIAT spelling subtest fell two thirds of a SD below the mean of the normative sample. Second, teachers confirmed spelling difficulties. Third, parents consented.

Demographics:

 

Program

Control

p of chi square

Number

Percentage

Number

Percentage

Grade level

  Kindergarten

 

 

 

 

 

  Grade 1

 

 

 

 

 

  Grade 2

25

46.3%

29

53.7%

>0.05

  Grade 3

 

 

 

 

 

  Grade 4

 

 

 

 

 

  Grade 5

 

 

 

 

 

  Grade 6

 

 

 

 

 

  Grade 7

 

 

 

 

 

  Grade 8

 

 

 

 

 

  Grade 9

 

 

 

 

 

  Grade 10

 

 

 

 

 

  Grade 11

 

 

 

 

 

  Grade 12

 

 

 

 

 

Race-ethnicity

  African-American

15

60.0%

20

69.0%

>0.05

  American Indian

 

 

 

 

 

  Asian/Pacific Islander

 

 

 

 

 

  Hispanic

2

8.0%

1

3.5%

>0.05

  White

8

32.0%

6

20.7%

>0.05

  Other (MIXED)

0

0.0%

2

6.9%

>0.05

Socioeconomic status

  Subsidized lunch

15

60.0%

20

69.0%

>0.05

  No subsidized lunch

10

40.0%

9

31.0%

>0.05

Disability status

  Speech-language impairments

 

 

 

 

 

  Learning disabilities

 

 

 

 

 

  Behavior disorders

 

 

 

 

 

  Intellectual disabilities

 

 

 

 

 

  Other (GROUPED TOGETHER)

11

44.0%

12

41.4%

>0.05

  Not identified with a disability

14

56.0%

17

58.6%

>0.05

ELL status

  English language learner

 

 

 

 

 

  Not English language learner

25

100%

29

100%

>0.05

Gender

Female

8

32.0%

9

31.0%

>0.05

Male

17

68.0%

20

69.0%

>0.05

Training of Instructors: The instructors were six graduate students majoring in education. The instructors were trained how to implement the supplemental spelling and math instruction. The instructors completed checklists during each lesson to indicate that each activity had been completed.

Design: Partially Convincing Evidence

Did the study use random assignment?: Yes.

If not, was it a tenable quasi-experiment?: Not applicable.

If the study used random assignment, at pretreatment, were the program and control groups not statistically significantly different and had a mean standardized difference that fell within 0.25 SD on measures used as covariates or on pretest measures also used as outcomes?: Yes.

If not, at pretreatment, were the program and control groups not statistically significantly different and had a mean standardized difference that fell within 0.25 SD on measures central to the study (i.e., pretest measures also used as outcomes), and outcomes were analyzed to adjust for pretreatment differences? Not applicable.

Were the program and control groups demographically comparable at pretreatment?: Yes.

Was there attrition bias1? Yes, 5 of 6 students who exited were from one condition. The authors state that students who left were similar, but no data were provided to support this.

Did the unit of analysis match the unit for random assignment (for randomized studies) or the assignment strategy (for quasi-experiments)?: No, students were individually randomly assigned to treatment conditions, however unit of analysis was student pairs (average scores).

1 NCII follows guidance from the What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) in determining attrition bias. The WWC model for determining bias based on a combination of differential and overall attrition rates can be found on pages 13-14 of this document: http://ies.ed.gov/ncee/wwc/pdf/reference_resources/wwc_procedures_v2_1_standards_handbook.pdf

 

Fidelity of Implementation: Convincing Evidence

Describe when and how fidelity of treatment information was obtained: First, instructors trained to criterion during training. Second, instructors met weekly with Steve Graham to discuss lesson implementation. Third, instructors were given a checklist for each lesson and were asked to complete the checklists while teaching. Examination of checklists indicated that instructors had completed 99.1% of the steps during spelling instruction. Additionally, 25% of sessions were audio taped and checked for treatment fidelity.

Provide documentation (i.e., in terms of numbers) of fidelity of treatment implementation: Examination of these tapes indicated that instructors had completed 98.0% of steps during the spelling instruction.

Measures Targeted: Convincing Evidence

Measures Broader: Convincing Evidence

Targeted Measure Score type & range of measure Reliability statistics Relevance to program instructional content

Sound-letter

Raw scores; (0 to 30)

Interrater reliability: 1.00

Taught in treatment group

Spelling: WIAT

Standard scores
(mean of 100 and SD of 15)

Internal consistency and test-retest reliability 0.89 or above (in manual)
Interrater reliability = 0.98-0.99

Assessed impact of treatment beyond the specific words/skills taught in treatment

Predictable words: TWS-3

Standard scores
(see above)

Internal consistency = >0.90 in most studies
Interrater reliability: 0.98-0.99

Assessed impact of treatment beyond the specific words/skills taught in treatment

Unpredictable words: TWS-3

Standard scores
(see above)

See above

Assessed impact of treatment beyond the specific words/skills taught in treatment

 

Broader Measure Score type & range of measure Reliability statistics Relevance to program instructional content

Writing fluency: WJ-R

Standard scores
(see above)

Test-retest = 0.87
Interrater reliability = 0.99

Assessed impact of treatment beyond the specific words/skills taught in treatment

Story length

Raw scores
(0 to +100)

Interrater reliability = 1.00

Assessed impact on a generalized skill

Compositional quality

Raw scores
(0 to 8)

Interrater reliability = 0.89

Assessed impact on a generalized skill

Word attack: WRMT-R

Standard scores
(mean of 100 and SD of 15)

Internal consistency  = > 0.90
Interrater reliability = 0.99

Assessed impact of treatment beyond the specific words/skills taught in treatment

Word id: WRMT-R

Standard scores
(see above)

(see above)

Assessed impact of treatment beyond the specific words/skills taught in treatment

 

Number of Outcome Measures: 1 Prereading, 2 Reading, 6 Writing

Mean ES - Targeted: Data Unavailable*u

Mean ES - Broader: Data Unavailable*u

Effect Size:

Targeted Measures

Construct Measure Effect Size
Prereading Sound-Letter 0.66*, u
Writing Spelling: WIAT 0.82**, u
Writing Predictable Words (TWS-3)
Writing Unpredictable Word (TWS-3)

 Broader Measures

Construct Measure Effect Size
Writing Writing Fluency: WJ-R 0.79**, u
Writing Story Length
Writing Compositional Quality
Reading Word Attack: WRMT-R 0.77**, u
Reading Word Identification: WRMT-R 0.27 u

 

Key
*      p ≤ 0.05
**    p ≤ 0.01
***  p ≤ 0.001
–      Developer was unable to provide necessary data for NCII to calculate effect sizes
u      Effect size is based on unadjusted means
†      Effect size based on unadjusted means not reported due to lack of pretest group equivalency, and effect size based on adjusted means is not available

 

Visual Analysis (Single Subject Design): N/A

Disaggregated Data for Demographic Subgroups: No

Disaggregated Data for <20th Percentile: No

Administration Group Size: Small Group, (n=2)

Duration of Intervention: 20 minutes, 3 times a week, 16 weeks

Minimum Interventionist Requirements: Paraprofessional

Reviewed by WWC or E-ESSA: No

What Works Clearinghouse Review

This program was not reviewed by What Works Clearinghouse.

 

Evidence for ESSA

This program was not reviewed by Evidence for ESSA.

Other Research: Potentially Eligible for NCII Review: 0 studies