Issues in Reading Instruction: U.S. State Legislator's Perceptions and Knowledge
Reading Research and Instruction
A stratified random sample of 1,500 United States state legislators were surveyed to determine: (a) their perceptions of current and critical issues in reading education, and (b) the information sources they use to learn about current issues in reading.
State legislators reported four major unresolved reading issues: (a) assessment of student's reading progress, (b) whole language vs. basal approaches, (c) use of tradebooks in place of basals, and (d) whether at‐risk readers should spend increased time reading or practicing isolated reading skills.
The most frequently consulted reading information sources used by United States state legislators within the past twelve months included: newspaper articles, popular national magazines, radio and TV broadcasts, and personal contacts with reading experts. While college classes were the least used information sources available. The study concludes that U.S. state legislators are aware of the important reading issues of the day, but they lack sufficiently expanded knowledge to significantly impact implementation of the current strategies in reading education.
Reutzel, D. R., Cox, S., & Hollingsworth, P. M. (1996). Issues in Reading Instruction: U.S. State Legislator's Perceptions and Knowledge. Reading Research and Instruction, 35 (4), pp. 343-364.