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Past Projects

WGBH Walmart Foundation's Study of Adolescent Literacy Through Teachers' Domain (2010 - 2012)

WGBH (www.wgbh.org) joined the Walmart Foundation (foundation.walmart.com) and other collaborating organizations in promoting adolescent literacy nationwide by leveraging the scope, reach, and impact of Teachers’ Domain (www.teachersdomain.org).  Teachers’ Domain adolescent literacy media resources focus on the pedagogical challenges of the modern classroom.  This WGBH sponsored program works with technology-infused classrooms in ways that connect with students’ skills and interests.  Modern classrooms have to find a way to create a link between students’ skills and interests and their developing reading abilities.   Beginning in January 2009, Hezel Associates, LLC conducted research on Teachers’ Domain adolescent literacy media resources.  The research sought to develop a deeper understanding of the implementation and impact of 15 WGBH-developed, self-paced lessons targeting adolescent literacy. 


WGBH-LOGOHezel Associates was involved in the process from the beginning, working with WGBH staff to develop and validate the logic model of the intervention, essential to the evaluation. A nationwide study was conducted in the form of random-assignment classical experiment with nearly three hundred students across 24 classrooms to evaluate the impact of the Teachers’ Domain program.  The sample was chosen by teacher and included all of their students.  Pre-intervention data collection included consent forms, a teacher survey, student surveys, and student literacy assessments before they were randomly assigned to the intervention or control groups.  Surveys and literacy assessments were also administered post-intervention.  The intervention groups required all students to complete a minimum of three self-paced lessons with follow up surveys to track lesson completion.   

This was a multi-year evaluation.  The formative feedback regarding the success of lesson implementation from the first year allowed WGBH and Hezel Associates to focus on direct impact of self-paced lesson utilization on students’ literacy skill levels.  Reporting, recommendations and commendations were comprehensive to each stage of evaluation.  Hezel Associates was successful in delivering findings that contributed to the understanding of the importance of and mechanisms behind lesson implementation, and the impact that each lesson has on students’ literacy skills for WGBH and other stakeholders for Teachers’ Domain.