Reading workbooks : teacher beliefs and usage
The purpose of this study was to identify Division One teacher beliefs about and usage of reading workbooks. In order to do so, a questionnaire consisting of three components was devised. The components were demographic information, two open-ended items, and 22 forced-choice statements. A four-point scale for the 22 items was developed using the following categories and numerical values: strongly agree, 4; agree, 3; disagree, 2; strongly disagree, 1. The intent was to force teachers to take definite, rather than neutral, positions in their responses. No formal statistical analysis of the data was undertaken. Instead, simple percentages were used to determine whether or not each hypothesis was accepted or rejected. Categories were identified to determine the magnitude of acceptance or rejection. The study identified the following: 1. The use of workbooks is widespread. 2. Teachers believe that workbooks are an important instructional aid in the teaching of reading. 3. Teachers believe that workbooks are the products of scientific investigations of the reading process and instructional practice. 4. Teachers believe that workbooks ensure the covering of essential reading skills. 5. Other supplementary materials are used but they play a subsidiary role to workbooks. 6. Teachers do not believe that workbooks facilitate class management in dealing with grouping procedures, or that they facilitate individualization of instruction. Suggestions for future research included an examination of the workbooks teachers in the study use, an examination of teacher approaches and practices, and an investigation of the existence of external pressures on teachers to use workbooks.