Date of Award

8-2009

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Major

Education

Major Professor

Robert Williams

Committee Members

David Cihak, R. Steve McCallum, Christopher Skinner

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of two spelling interventions on spelling acquisition, word reading, vocabulary development, and spelling maintenance. The first intervention, called Cover, Copy, and Compare (CCC), involved having the participant look at a word, cover it, write it, and then compare the written response to the original stimulus. The second intervention (CCC+SD) included the CCC technique, but the experimenter also used the word in a sentence and provided a brief definition just before the participant engaged in the CCC technique of each word. Instructional time was held constant across conditions. Daily spelling performance for three first-grade students was measured using an alternating treatment design. In addition, participants were tested before and after the study to determine levels of change in word reading and vocabulary. Results indicated that both interventions increased the participants’ spelling at a functionally equivalent rate, which was greater than a control condition. Because the rate of spelling words learned was equivalent across the two interventions, these interventions may be considered equally efficient methods of improving spelling accuracy. Only 1 of the 3 participants was better able to define words assigned to the CCC+SD condition, relative to words assigned to CCC and control conditions. All 3 participants showed greater gains in word reading in the two interventions than in the control condition.

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