Department of Educational Administration


First Advisor

Barbara LaCost

Date of this Version


Document Type



A DISSERTATION Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Doctor of Education, Under the Supervision of Professor Barbara LaCost. Lincoln, Nebraska: March, 2012

Copyright (c) 2012 Donald J. Pechous


The purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of a Direct Instruction summer reading intervention program designed to minimize summer reading regression. The summer intervention program targeted the lowest quartile of readers in grades kindergarten through third grade from a suburban school district over a three-week period before the first official day of school. This intervention included specific and explicit teaching of skills to support reading fluency and comprehension. Data were collected and analyzed over three years from the district’s adopted curriculum-based measurement, AIMSweb Reading Curriculum-Based Measurement (R-CBM) and AIMSweb Test of Early Literacy (Phoneme Segmentation Fluency subtest). Data from the reading assessments were analyzed to determine if there was a significant difference in reading regression of students participating in this intervention compared to students who did not participate in the summer intervention over the three-year period. The cumulative data indicated less loss of learning for kindergarten through third grade students participating in the summer intervention. Thus, indicating that the intervention helped minimize the effects of the “summer slide.” Overall, positive effects were found indicating that this type of intervention merits further investigation as an effective strategy to reduce summer reading regression. Limitations of the study, implications for practice, and future research directions were discussed.

Advisor: Barbara LaCost