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Improving Reading Skills by Encouraging Children to Read in School: A Randomized Evaluation of the Sa Aklat Sisikat Reading Program in the Philippines

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  • Ama Baafra Abeberese
  • Todd J. Kumler
  • Leigh L. Linden

Abstract

We show that a short-term (31 day) reading program, designed to provide age-appropriate reading material, to train teachers in their use, and to support teachers' initial efforts for about a month improves students' reading skills by 0.13 standard deviations. The effect is still present three months after the program but diminishes to 0.06 standard deviations, probably due to a reduced emphasis on reading after the program. We find that the program also encourages students to read more on their own at home. We find no evidence that improved reading ability improves test scores on other subjects.

Suggested Citation

  • Ama Baafra Abeberese & Todd J. Kumler & Leigh L. Linden, 2011. "Improving Reading Skills by Encouraging Children to Read in School: A Randomized Evaluation of the Sa Aklat Sisikat Reading Program in the Philippines," NBER Working Papers 17185, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:17185
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Roland G. Fryer, 2011. "Financial Incentives and Student Achievement: Evidence from Randomized Trials," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 126(4), pages 1755-1798.
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    8. Abhijit V. Banerjee & Shawn Cole & Esther Duflo & Leigh Linden, 2007. "Remedying Education: Evidence from Two Randomized Experiments in India," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(3), pages 1235-1264.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jan Bietenbeck & Marc Piopiunik & Simon Wiederhold, 2018. "Africa’s Skill Tragedy: Does Teachers’ Lack of Knowledge Lead to Low Student Performance?," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 53(3), pages 553-578.
    2. Goux, Dominique & Gurgand, Marc & Maurin, Eric, 2017. "Reading enjoyment and reading skills: Lessons from an experiment with first grade children," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 17-25.
    3. Alejandro J. Ganimian & Richard J. Murnane, 2014. "Improving Educational Outcomes in Developing Countries: Lessons from Rigorous Impact Evaluations," NBER Working Papers 20284, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Facundo Albornoz & María Victoria Anauati & Melina Furman & Mariana Luzuriaga & María Eugenia Podestá & Inés Taylor, 2017. "Training to teach science: experimental evidence from Argentina," Discussion Papers 2017-08, University of Nottingham, CREDIT.
    5. Asim,Salman & Chase,Robert S. & Dar,Amit & Schmillen,Achim Daniel, 2015. "Improving education outcomes in South Asia : findings from a decade of impact evaluations," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7362, The World Bank.
    6. Emiliana Vegas & Alejandro Ganimian, 2013. "Theory and Evidence on Teacher Policies in Developed and Developing Countries," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 4597, Inter-American Development Bank.
    7. Rosangela Bando & Francisco Gallego & Paul Gertler & Dario Romero, 2016. "Books or Laptops? The Cost-Effectiveness of Shifting from Printed to Digital Delivery of Educational Content," NBER Working Papers 22928, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • I28 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Government Policy
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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