In the research project On Track we seek to gain new knowledge on how to prevent reading and writing difficulties through early intervention. We also aim to develop educational resources and digital tools, to be used in Norwegian primary education.
It often takes too long to identify children who struggle with reading, and to give them the help they need. This is despite the fact that we know, from other countries, that early action gives better results than interventions carried out later. Reading difficulties are the most prominent reason for special education in school. Early intervention can contribute to reducing the amount of pupils in need of special education in later school years.
1200 pupils from 19 schools in Rogaland participate in this group-randomized, controlled study. Pupils who are considered to be at risk for developing reading and writing difficulties, participate in an intensive training program for 4 hours per week for 25 weeks. At the end of the training period, the participating pupils will be compared with pupils in a control group who have participated in ordinary reading instruction.
The main aim of On Track is to reduce the amount of pupils who develop reading and writing difficulties. This aim will be met through the following subsidiary aims:
- developing a tool for the early identification of pupils at risk for developing reading difficulties
- developing research-based and motivating instruction methods and activities
- investigating the effect of early intervention on future reading skills
- developing knowledge on early intervention for the benefit of teachers, schools and education authorities
On Track is run by researchers at the Reading Centre, in cooperation with international research environments and 19 schools.
The On Track project is funded by FINNUT, a program by the Norwegian Research Council aiming to promote research and innovation in education. The project period is from 2014 to 2018.