International Electronic Journal of Elementary Education (Jul 2011)

Structure strategy interventions: Increasing reading comprehension of expository text

  • Bonnie J. F. Meyer,
  • Melissa N. Ray

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 4, no. 1
pp. 127 – 152


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In this review of the literature we examine empirical studies designed to teach the structure strategy to increase reading comprehension of expository texts. First, we review the research that has served as a foundation for many of the studies examining the effects of text structure instruction. Text structures generally can be grouped into six categories: comparison, problem-and-solution, causation, sequence, collection, and description. Next, we provide a historical look at research of structure strategy interventions. Strategy interventions employ modeling, practice, and feedback to teach students how to use text structure strategically and eventually automatically. Finally, we review recent text structure interventions for elementary school students. We present similarities and differences among these studies and applications for instruction. Our review of intervention research suggests that direct instruction, modeling, scaffolding, elaborated feedback, and adaptation of instruction to student performance are keys in teaching students to strategically use knowledge about text structure.