The effectiveness of a web-based reading support tool, ABRACADABRA, to improve the literacy outcomes of Indigenous and non-Indigenous students was evaluated over one semester in several Northern Territory primary schools in 2009. ABRACADABRA is intended as a support for teachers in the early years of schooling, giving them a friendly, game and evidence-based tool to reinforce their literacy instruction. The classroom implementation of ABRACADABRA by briefly trained and intensively supported teachers was evaluated using a quasi-experimental pretest, post-test control group design with 118 children in the intervention and 48 in the control. Children received either a minimum of 20 hours of technology-based intervention or regular classroom teaching. Results revealed both Indigenous and non-Indigenous students who received ABRACADABRA instruction had significantly higher phonological awareness scores than their control group peers. The effect size for this difference was large (?2=.14). This finding remained when controlling for student attendance and the quality of general non-technology-based literacy instruction. Limitations of the study and implications for effective practice in remote and regional contexts are discussed.
Wolgemuth, J., Savage, R., Helmer, J., Lea, T., Harper, H., Chalkiti, K., Bottrell, C., & Abrami, P. (2011). Using computer-based instruction to improve Indigenous early literacy in Northern Australia: A quasi-experimental study. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 27(4), 727-750. https://doi.org/10.14742/ajet.947