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

33 Pages Posted: 5 Jul 2011

See all articles by Ama Baafra Abeberese

Ama Baafra Abeberese

Columbia University, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Economics

Todd Kumler

Columbia University

Leigh L. Linden

The University of Texas at Austin; National Bureau of Economic Research; Jameel Poverty Action Lab; Innovations for Poverty Action; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA); Bureau for Research and Economic Analysis of Development (BREAD)

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Date Written: June 2011

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

Abeberese, Ama Baafra and Kumler, Todd and Linden, Leigh L., Improving Reading Skills by Encouraging Children to Read in School: A Randomized Evaluation of the Sa Aklat Sisikat Reading Program in the Philippines (June 2011). NBER Working Paper No. w17185, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1879046

Ama Baafra Abeberese (Contact Author)

Columbia University, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Department of Economics ( email )

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Todd Kumler

Columbia University ( email )

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Leigh L. Linden

The University of Texas at Austin ( email )

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