Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Liberal Studies

First Advisor

Peggy L. Tarpley, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Ruth L. Meese, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Stephen C. Keith, Ed.D


An experimental study was conducted in a rural, public elementary school in order to compare the effectiveness of tutoring by adult community volunteers and ninth grade cross age peers for at-risk first and second grade students. All first and second grade students took pretests for overall phonological awareness, reading fluency, and sight word recognition. After eight weeks in an intensive, Direct Instruction, one-on-one reading program, students received posttests. Data were analyzed to determine statistically significant differences between those tutored by an adult community volunteer and those tutored by a ninth grade cross-age peer. Considerations and recommendations for further research are discussed.



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