Date of Award

Summer 2021

Document Type

Project (696 or 796 registration)

Degree Name

Master of Science in Educational Leadership


Graduate Studies

Committee Chair

Aaron Peterson


disciplinary literacy, content literacy, social studies


The field of education is constantly evolving. It is the role of professionals in education to provide students with the best opportunity to be successful learners. One major element of modern American Education, literacy instruction in the content areas, has become a key point in the discussion of how to best educate students. For the better part of one hundred years, the notion that every teacher is a teacher of literacy has been considered best practice. Within the last thirty years, alternative methodologies for literacy instruction within the content areas have become more prevalent as the literacy scores of American students steadily decline. Thus, begging the question, is the “every teacher” model best practice, and do other literacy methodologies provide an opportunity for student content literacy growth? The purpose of this research study is to evaluate one such alternative research methodology, disciplinary literacy in a comparative study against the “every teacher” methodology to analyze which method provides larger growth for student’s Social Studies literacy in my local school district. Content area literacy is especially important in the field of social studies because of the skills the content teaches students and how those skills will assist students in their understanding of the modern world.



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