History of Literacy Research

  • 400


    According to Tracey and Morrow(2012), "Associationism is a theory of psychology and education that is devoted to the study of how learning occurs" (p.20).
    Three types of connections that aid memory and learning: contiguity, contrast, and similarity. Learning occurs through connections.
  • Jan 1, 1000

    Mental Discipline Theory (Aristotle (384-322 B.C.E.)and Plato (ca. 428 B.C.E.)

    -First major historical theory
    -Drill and rote memorization
    -The mind needs exercise and strengthened through disciplined efforts
    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012), " the mind is like a muscle- it's various parts, or faculties, need to be exercised regularly in order to be strong and function optimally (p. 18).
  • Period: Jan 1, 1000 to Jan 1, 1300

    Early Roots

  • Jan 1, 1400


    Alphabet book
  • Period: Jan 1, 1400 to Jan 1, 1500

    1400 - 1500

    Alphabet book
  • Jan 1, 1500

    Age of Enlightenment

    -Valentin Ickelsament "The shortest way to reading "
    -iaolated speech sounds referring to letter sounds and names
  • Period: Jan 1, 1500 to


    Age of Enlightenment
  • Period: to


  • John Locke (1632-1704)

    "Blank Tablet" Theory
    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012), " People are born without any internal, innate knowledge" (p. 22).
    -the process of reflection is based on expanded experiences
    -focused on the importance of external influences on learning,
  • Jean-Jacque Rosseau (1712-1778)

    -literacy centers
    -authentic engagement
    -social collaboration
    -physical envrionment
    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012)"learning is facilitated through a natural unfolding of the mind based on individual curiosity and interest" (p. 24).
  • Period: to


    Unfoldment Theory
    -Noah Webster Dictionary
    -American Spelling book
    -The NE Primer
  • Period: to


  • McGuffy Reader

    -1st reader
    -phonics method
    -word method
    -word and phonics combined
    -short passages
  • Structuralism

    Wilhelm Wunt (1832-1920)
    -first major school in psychology
    "explains the structure of the mind through the study of perception" (Morrow and Tracey) 2012
  • Pestalozzi (1746-1872)

    -Swiss Educational reformer
    -influenced by Rosseua's belliefs
    -child centered learning, warm and nuturing
    -corporal punishment not tolerated
    -issues resolved with dialogue and empathy
    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012), " children needed information instruction from adults to facilitate thier learning" (p.25).
  • Period: to


  • Behaviorism (Watson 1878-1958)

    Human behaviors need to be studiesd and explained through observable actions. (Tracey and Morrow. 2012)
    -father of Behaviorism
  • Classical Conditioning (Ivan Pavlov)

    According to Tracey and Morrow, "Classical conditioning occurs when two stimuli become paird, eventually both eliciting the same response" (p. 41).
    -learning through association to connect
    -conditioned stimulus/conditioned response
  • Inquiry Learning (John Dewey 1859-1952)

    -one of the 1st American constructivists
    -profound influence on American education in the
    -based on The Unfoldment Theory
    - Collaboration and Problem based learning approach
    -students learn through socialization
    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012), " Inquiry Learning was designed to produce involved citizens capable of successfully participating in and contributing to a democratic society" (p.59).
  • Connectionism (Edward Thorndike)

    -Studied behaviorism by "showing that stimuli that occurred after a behavior (also) had an influence on future behaviors" (Tracey and Morrow, 2012)
    -created the Theory Connectionism and posed four laws that proveded information on how to best promote learning:
    1. The Law of Effect
    2. The Law of Readiness
    3. The Law of Identical Elements
    4. The Law of Excercise
  • Maturation Theory (Morphett and Washburne 1931-1955)

    According to Tracey and Morrow, (2012), "Reading instruction should not be implemented until students reach the mental age of 6 1/2" (p. 94).
  • Schema Theory (Bartlett 1932)

    -Constructivist Theory
    -explains how knowledge is organized and used by learner
    -is adjusted as information is learned (individualized)
    -Application of knowledge
    -activates and builds background knowlege
    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012), "Schema Theory articulates three processes: accretation, tuning, and restructuring" (p. 63).
  • Period: to


  • Operant Conditioning Theory (B.F. Skinner)

    -Continued Pavlov and Watson's work on the importance of association in learning
    -known for schedules of reinforcement and punishment
    "Programmed Learning/Instruction"
    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012), " instruction is broken down into small, successive steps that are carefully designed to maximize the likelihood of students' success and to minimize the likelihood of students' frustration and failure" (p. 46).

    -Positive and negative consequences shape behavior
  • Period: to


  • Theory of Cognitive Development (Jean Piaget 1896-1980)

    Psychologist who described the ways in which children's thinking changes over time.
    -4 stages of cognitive development children go through from birth to adulthood. This helps teachers understand the ways in which children think to help develop appropriate lessons and activities. The stages are as following:

    -sensorimotor (birth - 2 years)
    -preoperational (2-7 years)
    -concrete operational (7-11 years)
    -formal operational (11-adult)
  • Social Contructivism (Lev Vygotsky 1896-1934)

    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012), " Children learn as a result of their social interactions with others and development is the transformation of socially shared activities into internalized proecesses" (p.127).

    -lterature circles and lit discussions
    -children's learning affected by mastery of language
    -zome of proximal development (ZPD)
  • Period: to


  • Social Learning Theory (Albert Bandura )

    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012), " vacarious learning, is the notion that people learn from observing others" (p.130).
    --also known as Social Cognitive Theory
    --emphasizes a great amount of cognition is involved in learning through observation
    - 4 stages of to observational learning:1)attentional: observer watches the model, 2) retention: observer thinks about and processes what they see, 3) reproduction:observer repeats the behavior that has been modeled, 4)reinforcement:repeat behavior
  • Transactional/Reader ResponseTheory (Louse Rosenblatt 1978)

    -application of schema theory based in literature
    -unique to each individual
    -efferent (factual) responses
    -aesthetic (personal) responses
    -unique to each individual
    According to Cambourne (2002), "Knowledge and meaning are socially constructed through the process of negotiation, evaluation, and transformation" (p.26).
  • Metacognitive Theory: Flavell (1976) and Brown (1978)

    -Constructivist perspective "because of the readers' active, internal cognitive engagement as central to the reading process" (Tracey and Morrow, 2012).
    -Thinking about one's own thinking
    -independently comprehending texts
    -understanding the reading comprehension process
    -using cognitive strategies
    -explicit instruction using gradual transfer, modeling and think alouds
    -explicit instruction: gradual transfer, modeling, think alouds
  • Socio-Cultural Theory (Bronfenbrenner)

    A child's learning is affected by soccial, cultural and historical factors
    -focuses on culture related to literature development
    -learning can not be seperated fom the home experiences
  • Psycholinguistic / Whole Language Theory (Goddman & Smith)

    relationship between linguistic behavior and psychological process
    -relies on syntactic, semantic, and graphophic cueing systems
    -a reader's thinking process
    -authentic reading materials and high quality literature
    -child centered (Guided Reading)
    Reading and Writing workshops
    -Reading Recovery
  • Period: to


  • Family Literacy Theory (Taylor)

    According to Tracey and Morrown (2012), this theory defines "the way famillies, children, and extended family memebers use literacy at home and in their community", (p.102).
    -Emphasizes the importance of home life in a child's literacy success
    - Overlaps with Emergent Literacy Theory
    -importance of parent involvement in their child's academic success vital
  • Stage Models of Reading (Ehri, Chall, Gough, Frith)

    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012), " as children's reading skills develop, they increase both the number and type of strategies that they can use during reading experiences", (p. 97).
    -Provides educators greater understanding of the reading process
    -Four stages of word identification development
    -stages of alphabetic principles and word recognition are focued
  • Emergent Literacy Theory (Marie Clay)

    In 1966, Marie Clay first brought forth the term, which later became the Developement Theory
    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012), " Emergent literacy explains early literacy development and provides instructional guidance to promote early literacy growth" (p.99).

    -refers to a reading and writing period from birth to approximately third grade
    -focuses on a functional level of performance rather than a chronological age
    -Listening, speaking, reading & writing are all related to lit development
  • Family Literacy Theory (Taylor)

    -Parents role and involvement with their child's literacy development is crucial
    -Parents and teachers need a strong relationship and abiltiy to communicate
    (Tracey & Morrow, 2012)
  • Third Space Theory (Lefebvre)

    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012) “The concept of space in this theory can be viewed not only as a physical concept but also as a metal construct. Students’ learning is enhanced when they are able to construct internal third spaces and this is most easily done when classroom lessons are built upon, or related to, the knowledge from their first and second spaces” (p. 135).
  • Dual-Route Cascaded Model (Colheart & Rastle)

    This model believes that computer architecture has two routes for processing text, one is for the words that are already known, and the other is for unknown words (Tracey & Morrow, 2012).
  • Period: to


  • Parallel Distributed Processing Model (Seidenberg & McClelland)

    Cognitive Processing Theory
    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012), "all cognitive information is stored in a series of connections between processing units and these connections become stronger and faster with repeated pairings", (p. 166-167).
  • Parallel Distributed Processing/Model Connectionism (Seidenbert& McClelland)

    All cognitive information is stored as a series of connections. Those connections get stronger when repeated.
    -successful reading depends on: letter recognition, phonemic processing, vocabulary and constructing meaning during reading
    (Tracey & Morrow, 2012)
  • Double-Deficit Hypothesis (Wolf & Bowers)

    This theory determines the cause of reading disabilities (Tracey & Morrow, 2012). “ Double-Deficit Hypothesis views naming speed as a distinct and separate entity uniquely contributing to reading failure” (Tracey & Morrow, 2012, p. 174).
  • Engagement Theory (Guthrie & Wigfield)

    Emphasizes the student's engagement during the reading process
    -correlates to motivation and increased learning
    -engaged and disengaged readers
    -social; talking about books to others
    -Metacognition; engaged and social combined
    -increased motiviation to read and what to read
  • Critical Literacy Theory (Morris and Freire)

    According to Tracey and Morrow (2012), " Work that uses a political lense to examine literacy education", (p. 133).
    -injustices examine an effort to improve the quality of education
    -can foster or inhibit the empowerment of students's reading process-
  • Third Space Theory (Soja 1996 & Lefebvre 1991)

    -Similar to Socio-cultural theory
    -Different "spaces" represent different components of an students learning life
    -built upon the home and cultural connections
  • Neuroscientific Contributions (Goswami)

    “Neuroscience is concerned with the study of neurons and cells and is founded in biology” (Tracey & Morrow, 2012, p. 175)
    - plays an important role in our classrooms in the future (Tracey & Morrow, 2012).