Kelley WeissFollow




School of Education


Doctor of Education (EdD)


Casey Reason


Disciplinary Literacy, Question Answer Relationship, Systematic Reflection, Vocabulary


Educational Methods | Elementary Education and Teaching | Science and Mathematics Education


The educational community has been increasing its focus on literacy for several years. The modern definition of literacy requires students to be an informed and integrated thinker, synthesizing new information beyond the mere ability to read and write (Guzzetti & Bang, 2011). This qualitative phenomenological study focused on how teachers of science view literacy and how that view changes when they implement the concept of disciplinary literacy into science instruction. This phenomenological study examined how teachers became more metacognitive of their instructional methods after implementation of the Question-Answer Relationship strategy (QAR) and direct vocabulary instruction into their science instruction. Teachers utilized schema theory and social cognitive theory to integrate the two strategies into their science lessons throughout the study. This phenomenological study collected data during a six-week implementation period through interviews, observations, teacher journals and collection of artifacts from 12 teachers who taught students in grades one through five and three literacy specialists in a rural central Maine school. These data sources were analyzed using Moustakas’ (1994) seven steps to discover themes that were identified from the data. Findings from this study, as viewed through the pragmatic lens, suggested that teachers benefit from systematic reflection of their teaching to develop literacy rich content area lessons that address all of the students’ learning needs.