This work aims to improve outcomes of early readers through cross-age peer tutoring in the YMCA after-school program. Goals of this program include reducing learning gaps for students with reading difficulties, where effects of COVID-19 may have exacerbated this gap due to learning loss from schooling interruptions.
- Phase I: Preparation for the randomized controlled trial with collaboration between The University of Texas at Austin and Vanderbilt University to partner with local YMCA after-school programs in Central Texas and Middle Tennessee
- Phase 2: A randomized controlled trial to examine the efficacy of the Sound Partners (Vadasy et al., 2004) reading intervention delivered through cross-age peer tutoring of first- and second-grade students who experience reading difficulty by fourth- and fifth-grade student tutors
- Fully develop instructional cross-age peer tutoring for an after-school program model
- Encourage literacy growth for students with reading difficulties
- Reduce achievement gaps for students from low socioeconomic communities
- Build in reading support for students from low-income homes
Researchers at The University of Texas at Austin and Vanderbilt University will partner with YMCA after-school programs in Texas and Tennessee to implement and test for efficacy of a cross-age peer tutoring model using the Sound Partners reading intervention.
Year 1: Collaborate with YMCA of Central Texas and YMCA of Middle Tennessee to prepare YMCA after-school programs to effectively implement Sound Partners with cross-age peer tutors
Year 2: Conduct the randomized controlled trial for Cohort 1 in Texas and Tennessee
Year 3: Conduct the randomized controlled trial for Cohort 2 in Texas and Tennessee; collect follow-up data for students in Cohort 1
Year 4: Collect follow-up data for students in Cohort 2 and conduct data analysis for the fully powered study
Year 5: Disseminate results and program materials
Students from 60 schools that host YMCA programs (30 in Texas and 30 in Tennessee) will participate in this study. Pairings for cross-age peer tutoring will match first- and fourth-grade students and second- and fifth-grade students.