The effects of writing process instruction on the writing and reading performance of students with learning disabilities

Deborah Harvie Weiss, Florida International University


The purpose of this study was to determine the efficacy of a writing process approach for the instruction of language arts with learning disabled elementary students. A nonequivalent control group design was used. The sample included 24 students with learning disabilities who were in second and third grade. All students were instructed in resource room settings for ninety minutes per day in language arts. The students in the treatment group received instruction using the writing process steps to create complete meaningful compositions on self-chosen topics. A literature-based reading program accompanied instruction in writing to provide examples of good writing and to provide a basis for topic selection. The students in the control group received instruction through the use of the county-adopted textbooks and accompanying worksheets. The teacher followed basic textbook and curriculum guide suggestions which consisted mainly of fill in the blank and matching type exercises. The treatment group consisted of 12 students: five second-graders and seven third-graders. The control group consisted of 12 students: four second-graders and eight third-graders. All students were pretested and posttested using the Woodcock-Johnson Tests of Achievement-Revised (WJ-R ACH) for writing samples and the Woodcock Reading Mastery Test (WRMT) for reading achievement. T-tests were also done to investigate the gain from pre to post for each reading or writing variable for each group separately. The results showed a highly significant difference from pretest to posttest for all writing and reading variables for both groups. Analysis of Covariance showed that the population mean posttest achievement scores for all variables adjusted for the pretest were higher for the treatment group than those for the control group.

Subject Area

Literacy|Reading instruction|Elementary education|Special education

Recommended Citation

Weiss, Deborah Harvie, "The effects of writing process instruction on the writing and reading performance of students with learning disabilities" (1992). ProQuest ETD Collection for FIU. AAI9231100.