Date of Conferral

2017

Degree

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)

School

Education

Advisor

Billie V. Andersson

Abstract

The Common Core State Standards recommend that all educators prepare students with the literacy skills needed for college and careers. The purpose of this qualitative case study was to examine 7th and 8th grade content area teachers' perspectives towards teaching literacy. The research questions addressed teachers' capabilities in the role of literacy instructor as well as the actual application of literacy. The conceptual framework included Bruner's constructivist, Bandura's self-efficacy, and Knowles's andragogy theories. These theories informed the investigation of adult learners' perspectives regarding the way they learn and gain confidence to provide literacy instruction. Eleven English, math, science, and social studies teachers participated in this study through interviews. Data were also gathered via classroom observations and lesson plans. A qualitative data analysis software program was used to manage the qualitative data. Inductive and deductive coding were used to analyze the data and identify themes. The findings of this study indicated that teachers felt unprepared to teach reading. While teachers saw value in literacy, their perspectives were affected by their commitment to content instruction and time constraints to meet disciplinary curriculum requirements. This study affects positive social change by providing increased understanding of literacy instructions in the content classroom. These findings can facilitate communication between teachers and other stakeholders regarding school literacy initiatives. Further, the findings informed creation of a professional training program to provide teachers with on-site support for literacy integration.