3RationaleResearch over the past 50 or more years in educational, school, and related areas of psychology has demonstrated repeatedly that students who engage in strategic learning and test-taking perform at higher levels academically than those who do not. Academic achievement levels can be improved significantly by improving the study skills, learning, reading comprehension, test-taking, and related strategies of learners at all ages and is effective with both regular and special education students. Yet, there are few measures of such skills and strategies. The current workshop describes the development, application, and interpretation of the School Motivation and Learning Strategies Inventory (SMALSI), a scale developed and normed for use with students from 8 years of age through 18 years. Additionally, examples of techniques for remediating measured deficiencies in each area assessed by the SMALSI are presented and resources designated for locating and developing additional methods for improving student characteristics in the measured areas.
4Despite 50+ years of supportive science, we are not teaching strategies. “In reading, instruction in the 11th and 12th grades may not prepare students for college level reading assignments (especially considering the number of college freshmen who enroll in a remedial reading course). A greater emphasis in teaching reading strategies is present in remedial reading courses at the postsecondary level—the same strategies that seem no longer taught at the high school level ….” (p.39)ACT Curriculum Survey: Iowa City IA: ACT (2007).
5Teaching Learning and Study Strategies Has Many Benefits Knowing how to study and learn enhances student motivation.Teaching students how to study and learn produces “…empowered learners, and such students enjoy higher academic achievement levels and a wider array of lifetime opportunities…”Gubi, A., Platton, P., & Nelson, A. (2008) Motivating students: School psychologists as motivational change agents. Communique, 37 (4),
6ConstructsThe SMALSI targets ten primary constructs which are reflected in the subtest titles below. These constructs are well established in the educational psychology and the general education literatures. They have been demonstrated in literally hundreds of research works spanning at least three decades (for each construct) to be related to academic and educational success. The constructs-subscales of the SMALSI are: Test-Taking Strategies, Study Strategies, Writing-Research Skills, Test Anxiety, Attention and Concentration, Reading Comprehension Strategies, Note Taking and Listening Skills, Time Management, Organizational Techniques, and Academic Motivation.
7What is a Learning Strategy? It is NOT what has become known as Learning StylesLearning Strategies are defined as:“The purposeful behaviors of a learner that are intended to facilitate the acquisition and processing of information.”
9Current emphases in reading instruction do not promote comprehension “It should come as no surprise…we are frustrated with the over-attention to sound, letter, and word-level processing that characterizes instruction for struggling readers, given the evidence that progress often boils down to a little progress in learning how to sound out words and only small improvement in comprehension.” (p. 523)Pressley et al, 2009.
10Pressley et al. (2009) go on to tell us that… “When skilled readers read, they are very active before, during, and after reading in the service of getting meaning from text.” (p. 529)Passive listening to word-calling in our heads does not promote comprehension—we must manipulate information to understand it. This requires the use of a strategy.
11Theoretical Models for Learning Strategies Weinstein & Mayer (1986)RehearsalElaborationOrganizationComprehension MonitoringAffective StrategiesWeinstein (1994)Model of Strategic Learning: Skills, Will, Self-Regulation
12Theoretical Models for Self-Regulated Learning Zimmerman (1998)3 cycling phases of learningForethought, performance or volitional control, self-reflectionWinne & Hadwin (1998)4 phases of learningDefine the task; set goals and devise a strategy; use tactics and strategies, monitor, evaluate, and make changes
13What is the SMALSI? School Motivation and Learning Strategies Inventory Standardized self-report inventory for ages 8 years to 19 years in 2 formsChild form: Ages 8-12Teen form: Ages 13-19Designed to assess multiple constructs related to Learning Strategies, Academic Motivation, Test-taking Strategies, and Test Anxiety
14What is the SMALSI? School Motivation and Learning Strategies Inventory May be administered individually or in groups, large or smallCompleted in minutes by most students reading at grade level 3.5 or higher (may be read to others)Yields a profile of T-scores (M=50, SD=10) from which strengths and weaknesses in specific areas can be determined and targeted for teaching if necessaryComputer-scoring or Hand-scoring available
15Flesch-Kincaid Reading Indexes for the SMALSI Child and Teen Forms Flesch-Kincaid Reading Level 3.5Kincaid Reading Ease ScoreSMALSI TeenFlesch-Kincaid Reading Level 3.4Kincaid Reading Ease Score
16SMALSI Student Strengths Subscale Definitions Study Strategies Subscale: Selecting important information, relating new to previously learned information, and memory strategies for encoding.Note-taking/Listening Skills: Discriminating important material when taking notes, organizing notes, efficiency in note-taking.
17SMALSI Student Strengths Subscale Definitions Reading and Comprehension Strategies: Previewing, monitoring, and reviewing text, including self-testing to ensure understanding.Writing-Research Skills: Researching topics in a variety of ways, organizing writing projects as well as monitoring and self-checking for errors.
18SMALSI Student Strengths Subscale Definitions Test-taking Strategies: Increasing efficiency in test-taking, including eliminating unlikely answers and strategic guessing.Organizational Techniques: Organizing class and study materials, structuring assignments including homework and other projects.
19SMALSI Student Strengths Subscale Definitions Time Management: Effective use of time to complete assignments, understanding of time needed for academic tasks.On the child version, Time Management and Organizational Techniques are combined into a single scale.
20SMALSI Student Liabilities Subscales Low Academic Motivation: Level of intrinsic motivation to engage and succeed in academic tasks.Test Anxiety: Student’s experience of debilitating symptoms of test anxiety, lower performance on tests due to excessive worry.
21SMALSI Student Liabilities Subscales Concentration/Attention Difficulties: Attending to lectures and other academic tasks, monitoring and adjusting attention to performance, concentrating and the avoidance of distractions.
24Who Can Use the SMALSI?School and related (e.g., child-clinical, pediatric) psychologistsSchool counselors and LPCsEducational Diagnosticians**With the Assistance of the Psychologist, Counselor, or Diagnostician**Learning Disability Specialists and Special Education Teachers with assessment trainingRegular Education Teachers with a course in classroom assessment or tests and measurement
25Appropriate UsageTo use SMALSI appropriately, the user should have a background in education and learning along with training in assessment or tests and measurement.
26Applications of the SMALSI • Screening in regular education- Identifying group weaknesses in a classroom or school- Identifying individuals with a lack of or poorly developed strategies for learning• Pre-referral intervention/prevention• Assessing students with DisabilitiesLearning DisabilitiesEmotional DisturbanceADHDTBI
27How Matt Crandell, School Psychologist uses the SMALSI The SMALSI I have to say is such a great rating scale to be used with students, teachers, and parents. I have been using the SMALSI for initials, re-evals, as well as for general ed students looking to improve their study habits.I have been encouraging our guidance counselors & teachers to first try the SMALSI prior to sending a referral package to SPED. I also interview the student after scoring the SMALSI and then with the information collected I set up a plan with all parties to improve the students weak areas through AIS services.
28Matt goes on to say…Teachers find it useful because it gives them a clear picture of what students know about learning.Parents like it of because they get a better picture of how their child thinks about learning.For students it provides a real eye opener. Some of the items in regard to study skills on the SMALSI, students have never thought of, so the SMALSI also provides new strategies for the students. It makes them think about how to learn.
29Matt concludes by telling me… Another positive from the SMALSI is it provides a way to show teachers, parents, and students that SpEd is not always the right answer--many teachers, parents, and students are looking to throw a SpEd label on the problem and not consider other explanations. The SMALSI provides a gentle way to show perhaps other avenues should be explored first.I also use the SMALSI with students I work with privately and have had great results with it as well. Overall, I think the SMALSI is a valuable tool and should be part of any evaluation.
30Interpreting SMALSI Results Individual Children3 Step Procedure1 Determine the validity of the protocol.2 Profile and review the scores.3 Interpret the individual subscales and draw conclusions regarding needed educational intervention. + 1SD=intervene
31Interpreting SMALSI Results for Groups/Classrooms Use a Modified Interpretive ProcedurePlot means on profile sheet in place of individual scores.Use altered cutoff scores to denote group weaknesses (consider as WNL).Draw inferences for needed group instruction in learning strategies.
32Benefits of Using the SMALSI Students who engage in strategic learning and test-taking perform at higher academic levels than those who do not.If you improve the study skills, learning strategies, reading comprehension and test-taking behavior of students, their academic achievement will also improve.This is true at all grade levels, with both regular and special education students.The SMALSI provides a quick, cost-effective way to identify and target poor learning strategies that affect academic performance
33In RTI Models for Reading, Include Strategy Instruction In a recent meta-analysis, Scammacca et al. (2007) examined outcomes from intervention studies conducted with adolescent students with reading difficulties.The overall effect size across all 31 studies was 0.95.Instruction in reading comprehension strategies was associated with the largest effects.Scammacca, N., Roberts, G., Vaughn, S., Edmonds, M., Wexler, J., Reutebuch, C. K., et al. (2007). Reading interventions for adolescent struggling readers: A meta-analysis with implications for practice. Portsmouth, NH: RMC Research Corporation, Center on Instruction.
34The Intervention Manual Has 3 Sections Section I: An Introduction to Learning StrategiesChapter 1: An Introduction to Learning Strategies: Assessment and DevelopmentChapter 2. The Research Evidence From the Education Sciences: How Teaching Learning and Study Strategies Enhances Learning
35Section II: Strategies for Developing Learning Strengths 7 Chapters—one for each SMALSI Strength Scale
36Ex. Chapter Outline; Section II Chapter 3. Teaching Study StrategiesThe SMALSI and Study StrategiesWhat Are the Best Study Strategies?Teaching the Best Study StrategiesTeaching Students to Improve Their Concentration When StudyingTeaching Students to Improve MemorizationTeaching Students to Develop Associations With Prior LearningTeaching Students to Use Self-Talk During StudyTeaching Students to Use Concept MapsTeaching Students to Use Multiple Sources of InformationSummary
37Section III: Strategies for Overcoming Academic Liabilities 3 Chapters—one for each SMALSI Liabilities Scale
38Section III: Strategies for Overcoming Academic Liabilities, ex. Chapter 12. Enhancing Low Academic MotivationThe SMALSI and Academic MotivationWhat Are the Best Academic Motivation Strategies?Teaching the Best Academic Motivation StrategiesTeaching Students to Set Goals and Increase Self-DeterminismTeaching Students About Choice and PreferenceTeaching Students About Participation and InvolvementTeaching Students to Understand Situated Motivation and the Impact of the EnvironmentTeaching Students to Unlearn a History of Failure by Setting Up SuccessSummary
39Also 2 Helpful Appendices Appendix A: Web Sites With Supplemental Information on Improving Learning and Study StrategiesAppendix B: Reproducible FiguresReferences
40Examples of Instructional Approaches for Teaching Students to be Strategic Learners
41According to research summaries from the National Institute For Literacy (NIFL) ■ “Comprehension is the reason for reading. If readers can read the words but do not understand what they are reading, they are not really reading.”[Reading is comprehension of text, not fluency!]■ “Text Comprehension is improved by instructionthat helps readers use specific comprehension strategies.”■ Recall that strategies are conscious, purposefulplans for accomplishing a goal.
42NIFL Reviews Denote 6 Strategies for Improving Text Comprehension That Have Strong Scientific Support
43Science says the following strategies are the most effective. Teach readers to:Monitor their comprehensionUse graphic and semantic organizersGenerate questions about what they readAnswer questions about what they readRecognize the structure of the material (e. g., setting, goals of content, outcomes)Summarize
44What teaching strategies are most effective for teaching strategies? The most effective strategy for teaching strategies is clear, direct instruction that includes 4 components:Direct explanationModeling by the teacherGuided practiceApplication
45Even though these strategies for instruction are the most effective for the most learners, these may not work for everyone….alternative approaches are available.
46An Alternative Approach Describe the strategyJustify the strategyDemonstrate the strategySpecify when and where the strategy should be usedDemonstrate how to evaluate whether the use of the strategy has been successful
47Student Strategy: CAN-DO Task Area: Acquiring contentProcess: Create list of items to learnAsk self if list is completeNote details and main ideasDescribe components and their relationshipsOverlearn main items followed by learning detailsClassroom Applications: This strategy may assist with memorization of lists of items through rehearsal techniques.
48Student Strategy: FIST Task Area: Reading comprehensionProcess: First sentence is readIndicate a question based on material in first sentenceSearch for answer to questionTie question and answer together through paraphrasingClassroom Applications: This questioning strategy helps students actively pursue responses to questions related directly to material being read
49Student Strategy: PIRATES Task Area: Test takingProcess: Prepare to succeedInspect instructions carefullyRead entire question, remember memorystrategies, and reduce choicesAnswer question or leave until laterTurn back to the abandoned itemsEstimate unknown answers by avoidingabsolutes and eliminating similar choicesSurvey to ensure that all items have a responseClassroom Applications: PIRATES may help learners complete tests more carefully and successfully.
50Student Strategy: SQ3R Task Area: Reading Process: Survey Question ReciteReviewClassroom Applications: SQ3R provides a systematic approach to improve reading comprehension.
51Wlodkowski’s Model for Enhancing Motivation ANS-ACR
52Develop Strategies for Motivation that Address a Key Q in 6 Areas
53Wlodkowski’s Strategies Attitude Strategies: What can I do to establish positive student attitudes toward this learning task and establish an expectation of success?Needs Strategies: How can I best meet the needs of the students?
54Wlodkowski’s Strategies Stimulation Strategies: How can I structure this learning task to stimulate students continuously and sustain attention and engagement?Affective Strategies: How can I make the affective experience and emotional climate positive ones?
55Wlodkowski’s Strategies Competence Strategies: How will these learning tasks increase or affirm students’ feelings of competence.Reinforcement Strategies: What reinforcement will this learning activity provide for students?
56Keller’s Model for Enhancing Motivation The IREO ModelInterestRelevanceExpectancyOutcomes