UKLA announces the winners of the UKLA/Wiley Research in Literacy Education Award 2018

The shortlists were chosen by panels convened by JRR editors Julia Carroll & Jessie Ricketts and Literacy editors Jill McClay and Clare Dowdall.


The Literacy winner is for the following paper:

Ellis, Sue and Smith, Vivienne. Assessment, teacher education and the emergence of professional expertise. Volume 51 Number 2

Wayne Tennent, chair, writes: This paper presents an original tool for the assessment of literacy. The development of this tool is based on the premise that current literacy assessment practices are overly-focused on the cognitive aspects of children’s literacy development, and notes the virtual absence of social, cultural and personal factors. The literature used to support this premise is relevant and presented in a clear, precise manner. The model itself outlines three domains: cognitive knowledge and skills; social and cultural capital; and persona-social identity. Data is presented to show how student teachers have used this tool to provide rounded assessments of the children they teach, whilst also providing them with opportunity to use this evidence formatively. The assessment too has the potential to have a major impact on classroom practice in terms of how assessment is approached. Thus, it makes a significant contribution to literacy assessment.

The Journal of Research in Reading (JRR) winner is:

Frauke Meyer, Kane Meissel and Stuart McNaughton: Patterns of literacy learning in German primary schools over the summer and the influence of home literacy practices

Vol 40 Number 3: 233-253

Wayne Tennent, chair, writes: This study investigates the concept of the ‘summer learning effect’ (SLE). The SLE describes a scenario where progress in reading and writing either stalls or drops during the extended summer break, particularly for those children from poorer and ‘minority’ communities. The study is set in two German primary schools where the intake is of contrasting socio-economic status. The study uses both quantitative and qualitative approaches including standardised reading and writing measures, parent’s questionnaires, literacy logbooks, and student and parent interviews. It found that, as with previous studies, there was a significant ‘Summer Learning Effect’, as reading comprehension stalled and there was a significant dip in writing. However, while they found that socio-economic status provided one factor, it was family literacy practices which were more likely to be a mediating factor in lessening these stalls and dips. While the study took place in the context of German schools it has implications for school systems generally and how summer learning might be approached.

The awards will be presented at the UKLA International Conference 2018 in Cardiff (Friday 6 to Sunday 8 July 2018).

The shortlists were chosen by panels convened by JRR editors Julia Carroll & Jessie Ricketts and Literacy editors Jill McClay and Clare Dowdall.

Panel: Wayne Tennent (Chair), Frances Bodger, Lynda Graham, Christine Hall, Clare Kelly, Jackie Marsh and Kat Vallely.

The panel would like to congratulate all of those authors who were nominated for the award, and Wiley for their continued generosity in supporting this award.

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