Research Proposal

Erica Anklam


How does direct vocabulary instruction impact second grade students' reading skills, specifically comprehension?

What is Direct & Indirect Vocabulary Instruction?

Direct vocabulary instruction: vocabulary is learned through explicit instruction with both individual words and word-learning strategies

Indirect vocabulary instruction: vocabulary is learned by exposure, such as through conversations and within text

The Research

  • Vocabulary knowledge has a strong correlation with reading comprehension
  • For comprehension to take place, the reader should know between 90 - 95% of the words in the text
  • DIrect vocabulary instruction needs to take place in classrooms
  • Many studies have been done comparing direct vocabulary instruction to indirect vocabulary instruction
  • Majority of the studies show greater improvement of reading skills from the group who received direct vocabulary instruction

The Method

  • Quasi-experimental method
  • 48 second graders
  • 1 control group (classroom) and 1 experimental group (classroom)
  • Experimental group would receive direct vocabulary instruction, both whole group and small group
  • Control group would not experience change in their daily language arts instruction
  • GRADE: Group Reading Assessment & Diagnostic Evaluation would be used as the pre- and post- assessment


Whole Group Instruction

  • Explicit vocabulary instruction of predetermined words would take place in whole group setting
  • Predetermined words would be taken from the text, Teaching the Critical Vocabulary of the Common Core
  • Engaging and effective lessons by teacher (can be taken from text)

Small Group Instruction

  • Guided reading instruction would have heavy focus on vocabulary
  • Teacher preview texts first and identify words to be pretaught
  • Students would learn new words with conversations, graphic organizers, activities