Technology-based reading intervention programs for elementary grades: An analytical review

Hossein Jamshidifarsani, Samir Garbaya, Theodore Lim, Pierre Blazevic, James M. Ritchie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Citations (Scopus)
1609 Downloads (Pure)


In modern societies, the role of reading is becoming increasingly crucial. Hence, any impairment to the reading ability can seriously limit a person's aspirations. The enormous importance of reading as an essential skill in modern life has encouraged many researchers to try and find more effective intervention approaches. Technology has been used extensively to assist and enhance literacy learning. This analytical review aims at presenting a comprehensive overview of the existing research on technology-based or technology-assisted reading interventions for elementary grades, between 2000 and 2017, along with analyzing various aspects of these studies. After extensive research, 42 articles have met the inclusion criteria, which have evaluated a total of 32 reading programs. The studies are classified into six categories of phonological awareness, phonics, vocabulary, comprehension, fluency, and multi-component. Each reading category begins with a brief introduction. Then, the content and instructional mechanisms of each program in the category is explained, alongside the outcome of its interventions. It is found that vocabulary interventions, as well as using mobile, tablet and other non-computer technologies are massively overlooked. Furthermore, a very limited number of programs focused on fluency, none of them addressed all its components. In addition, despite the required long-term practice for fostering fluency, the reviewed studies have an average intervention time shorter than other intervention categories. This paper provides researchers and solution developers with an extensive and informative review of the current state of the art in reading interventions. Additionally, it identifies the current knowledge gaps and defines future research directions to develop effective reading programs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)427-451
Number of pages25
JournalComputers and Education
Early online date6 Oct 2018
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2019


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