Tina CashFollow

Document Type



Doctor of Education (EdD)


Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor's Name

Joyce C. Fine

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Leonard B. Bliss

Third Advisor's Name

Lynne D. Miller

Fourth Advisor's Name

Isadore Newman


Reciprocal Mapping, Social Studies Literacy, Reading, Writing, Literacy Strategy, Struggling Readers

Date of Defense



Reading deficits in students in Grades 4 to 12 are evident in American schools. Informational text is particularly difficult for students. This quasi-experimental study (N=138) investigated sixth-grade students' achievement in social studies using the Reciprocal Mapping instructional routine, compared to sixth-grade students' achievement taught with a traditional approach. The Reciprocal Mapping instructional routine incorporated explicit instruction in text structure using graphic organizers. Students created their own graphic organizers and used them to write about social studies content. The comparison group used a traditional approach, students' reading the textbook and answering questions.

Students for this study included sixth-graders in the seven sixth-grade classrooms in two public schools in a small, rural south Florida school district. A focus of this study was to determine the helpfulness of the intervention for at-risk readers. To determine students considered to be at-risk, the researcher used data from the reading portion of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT), 2011-2012, that considers Level 1 and 2 as at-risk readers. The quasi-experimental study used a pretest-posttest control group design, with students assigned to treatment groups by class. Two teachers at the two rural sites were trained on the Reciprocal Mapping instructional routine and taught students in both the experimental and control groups for an equivalent amount of time over a 5-week period.

Results of the 3 x 2 factorial ANCOVA found a significant positive difference favoring the experimental group's social studies achievement as compared to that of the comparison group as measured by the pre/post unit test from the social studies series (McGraw-Hill, 2013), when controlling for initial differences in students' reading FCAT scores. Interactions for high-risk struggling readers were investigated using the significance level p < .05. Due to no significant interaction the main effects of treatment were interpreted. The pretest was used as a covariate and the multivariate analysis was found to be significant. Therefore, analysis of covariance was run on each of the dependent variable as a follow-up. Reciprocal Mapping was found to be significant in posttest scores, independent of gender and level of risk, and while holding the pretest scores constant.

Findings showed there was a significant difference in the performance of the high-risk reading students taught with the Reciprocal Mapping intervention who scored statistically better than students in the control group. Further study findings showed that teacher fidelity of implementation of the treatment had a statistically significant relationship in predicting posttest scores when controlling for pretest scores. Study results indicated that improving students’ use of text structure through the Reciprocal Mapping instructional routine positively supported sixth-grade students’ social studies achievement.





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