• Reading as Liberation—An Examination of the Research Base

    The time of a “one size fits all” approach to literacy instruction has passed. Every individual student -- especially those from historically marginalized groups, such as Black students, students learning English, or students whose families are experiencing prolonged economic hardship -- should receive the specific tools, instruction, and support they need and deserve to succeed. To address improving literacy outcomes for all students, we have compiled a new report on personalized learning and literacy that offers effective, research-based solutions. 

    Accelerate literacy in your setting with guidance specific to your program-type. Download the Implementation Guidance for Literacy Acceleration

  • Accelerating Literacy for ALL

    Download the report and join us in our goal to help every student achieve literacy success! 

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  • Explore by Section

    Executive Summary


    Working together to change approaches to literacy education.

    This report is structured to emphasize how three components -- literacy accelerators, equity, and personalization -- can interact with one another to produce powerful literacy outcomes for students. Read how our recommendations can be applied to your work.

    Personalized Learning


    Why investing in each student’s unique strengths and needs has the potential to boost literacy success.

    Our analysis of the existing research on personalized learning suggests that it can be effective if it advances the right content in the right ways, promotes equity and counteracts bias and creates opportunities for student agency and student interest in their own learning.

    Operating Principles


    How do we advance grade-level literacy most effectively? 

    Follow these researched-based operating principles when creating or adopting personalized learning approaches or practices to ensure that they promote literacy, equity and student agency.

    Literacy Accelerator #1— Foundational Skills and Personalization


    Each and every student should get the exposure needed to gain mastery and confidence in early, foundational reading.

    Foundational skills are the cluster of tightly interrelated but discrete sub skills that together enable readers to process the alphabetic code into meaningful text. 

    Literacy Accelerator #2—Knowledge and Personalization


    Knowing about things helps reading about things! 

    Reading ability and knowledge about the world are tightly connected. Learn how personalized approaches can expand students’ knowledge base, accelerate literacy and deepen student agency and engagement.

    Literacy Accelerator #3— Vocabulary and Personalization


    Vocabulary drives reading comprehension.

    Growing vocabulary for all students is critical to achieving a more equitable classroom. Learn how to cultivate vocabulary and apply personalized learning to have the greatest impact.

    Literacy Accelerator #4— Writing and Personalization


    Growing students’ writing skills increases reading comprehension.

    Writing about a text through the collection of evidence forces attention and careful reading; and close reading of a text produces better writing. This writing and reading cycle is critical for comprehension and expression. Read more about how writing can be personalized, thereby bolstering important indicators of ongoing academic success. 

    Literacy Accelerator #5— Reading Comprehension and Personalization


    Reading comprehension is not a thing?!

    Reading comprehension is not one thing, nor is it a cluster of observable skills. Comprehension exists in the reader’s mind as a mental representation of the text. Find out how to identify three levels of text representation and which approaches to comprehension are most conducive to personalization. 

  • Consideration Questions

    Will your approach to literacy instruction equitably accelerate student learning? Use these research-based questions to examine your instructional approach(es) to literacy and identify the strengths and needs of your current --or future--program.  These questions can be used to evaluate core and supplemental programs or approaches.   

  • Implementation Guidance for Literary Acceleration

    We recommend a research-based ELA program using all five literacy accelerators in an integrated application, along with a focus on personalized instruction that truly meets each individual’s needs. This quick-reference guidance document outlines instructional approaches based on what kind of ELA program is currently in place, so that each school, teacher, and student can reach literacy success. 

Companion Resources