The academic performance of students has been shown to be associated with reading ability. Inquiry learning can potentially enhance the reading abilities and interests of students. This study verified this proposition by examining the effects of an inquiry approach to group projects on the reading abilities of primary school students. Using a case study design, an inquiry project-based learning (PBL) approach, with the collaboration between three types of teachers and the school librarian was implemented to support the development of reading abilities and interests of students in a primary school in Hong Kong. The participants included Primary 4 students, teachers, and parents.
Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) tests were used to evaluate the students' reading abilities; survey questionnaire and interviews were used to examine the participants' perceptions of the inquiry PBL; and the PIRLS survey was used to measure the students' attitudes and self-perceptions. Quantitative and qualitative data analyses showed positive effects on the reading abilities and attitudes of the participating students. Students' attitudes and self-perceived abilities appeared to influence the improvements in reading abilities. Finally, improvements in the students' reading comprehension, reading speed, and vocabulary were perceived. These findings provide evidence and insights to support further implementation of inquiry PBL in primary schools.
Chu, S; Tse, S., Low, E; & Chow, K. (2011). Collaborative inquiry project-based learning: Effects on reading ability and interests. Library & Information Science Research, 33(3), 236-243
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