The University of Iowa

The Effects of a Peer-Mediated Reading Intervention on Juvenile Offenders' Main Idea Statements About Informational Text


Many youth in the juvenile justice system with or at risk for emotional and behavioral disorders struggle with reading. A multiple-baseline-across-participants single-case research design was used to examine the relationship between a supplemental peer-mediated reading intervention and juvenile offenders’ generation of main idea statements about informational text, which we used as an indicator of reading comprehension. Overall, students demonstrated considerable variability across conditions, which may have been related to contextual factors in the juvenile justice facility. Visual analysis of the results suggested a moderately positive, although variable, impact on students’ generation of main ideas. Implementing rigorously designed research in juvenile justice facilities remains challenging. We discuss implications for providing supplemental reading intervention for struggling readers within these settings.


Wexler, J., Reed, D. K., Barton, E. E, Mitchell, M., & Clancy, E. (2018). The effects of a peer-mediated reading intervention on juvenile offenders' main idea statements about informational text. Behavioral Disorders, 43, 290-301. doi:10.1177/0198742917703359

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