The purpose of this study was to improve the comprehension and problem-solving skills of students with disabilities in social studies using a conceptually framed, computer-adapted history text. Participants were 11th and 12th grade students identified with learning disabilities in reading and writing from two intact, self-contained social studies classes.During the three weeks of the study, students in the experimental group received content regarding the Industrial Revolution via a conceptually framed, computer-adapted text, while students in the control group were taught the same content using the district adopted textbook. Two curriculum-based measures were used to measure comprehension, and an extended-response essay was used to measure problem-solving performance. Analyses showed no statistical difference between the groups for comprehension. However, students in the experimental group statistically outperformed students in the control group on the extended-response essay. Results are discussed in terms of effect size and group sampling size. Implications from these findings indicate that computer-adaptive technology is an effective learning supplement for students with a disability in content classrooms.
Using a computer-adapted, conceptually based history text to increase comprehension and problem-solving skills of students with disabilities
Journal of Special Education Technology, 21(2), 5-16.
IDEA Disability Category:
major-other health impairment
specific learning disability
speech or language impairment
multiple formats of text and notation
opportunities to learn concepts