Enhancing Literacy Skills Using Audiobooks

(Tampere University of Applied Sciences) Audiobooks open a world of opportunity to anyone interested in reading yet might not have the time to sit down with a book for over an hour a day. Audiobooks can transform our daily car, gym, and other non-book friendly environments into places of enjoyment of fiction and nonfiction material. The majority of studies on audiobook use focus on underachieving readers or ESL students, with some success. In a similar way the researcher saw audiobooks as a possible means to encourage competent grade level readers to challenge and expand their comprehension and enjoyment of text.

The purpose of this study was to gather information onthe utility of audiobooks in the mainstream second grade classroom.

This study was completed in a second grade classroom with 22 participants. The researcher used both qualitative and quantitative data collection methods. Surveys and literacy circles along with multiple choice questions were used to record feedback on the comprehension and enjoyment of text of participants.

This study found that children in second grade can benefit from the use of audiobooks in the classroom. Comprehension levels between audio and traditional reading did not have a significant variance. However, enjoyment of text was enhanced using audiobooks.

The results of this study will be of interest to any school, organisation or family which aims to curb the loss of enthusiasm which children experience in reading as they progress through the grade levels. The findings suggest that children do not lose comprehension when using audiobooks compared to reading. At the same time children enjoy the text more when listening to it on audiobook. Further study would be needed across the grade levels to show the full impact audiobooks can have on literacy skills and enjoyment.

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Publication:      Tampere University of Applied Sciences
Author:            Canice Maher, Master’s Thesis
Publish Date:   5.2019