Motivational Interviewing and boys views and perceptions of reading at key stage 3

    Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis


    Although affective factors have been regarded as important in reading development, these aspects have attracted relatively little attention from policy makers and researchers. Furthermore, adolescent boys have tended to demonstrate lower reading motivation and engagement than other pupil groups. This thesis investigates reading engagement and motivation amongst Key Stage 3 boys, through materials based on the principles of Motivational Interviewing (MI).The thesis comprises three interlinked studies. In Study One, a whole class, five-session intervention was designed. This was introduced to Year 8 boys attending a single sex school and a quasi-experimental design was developed to measure its efficacy. However, during the piloting and delivery of the sessions, it became evident that the boys??? responses to the activities were influenced by socio-cultural factors, group dynamics and classroom practices. Following an exploration of the outcomes in relation to MI theory, an alternative model of enquiry was proposed to further investigate boys??? views and perceptions of reading.Study Two involved working with staff in the Learning Support Department. Opportunities to use the materials with individual pupils proved to be limited, restricting further investigation into their usefulness. However, staff focus groups provided information about pupil views and perceptions of reading, offering insights into the boys??? educational and socio-cultural contexts and possible explanations for their responses in Study One. The activities, therefore, became a tool for investigating boys??? reading within the school, rather than an intervention per se. Once a clearer understanding of school-based literacy practices had been established, in Study Three, findings were presented to boys who had participated in Study One. Discussion groups were held to explore the boys??? views about these ideas and discuss possible explanations for the outcomes of the quasi-experimental research. Overall research findings indicated that the factors that facilitated or inhibited boys??? reading were the result of complex interactions between socio-cultural influences, peer pressures, gender perceptions and literacy preferences. MI was seen as a useful paradigm for schools to explore both the affective literacy needs of individual pupils and how school-based literacy practices might facilitate reading development opportunities.
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • University of Manchester
    Publication statusPublished - 2005


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