Publication Date


Degree Granted


Institution Granting Degree

University of Miami


A content analysis of the manuals of five basal reading programs, levels primer through grade three, was conducted in order to describe and contrast the amount of reading instruction given to word level processing, discourse level processing, and the transition between the two, which was designated as sentence level processing. Sentence level activities in each manual were assigned to syntax, punctuation, or intonation categories. Two trends were observed between primer and third grade manuals: a decrease in activities in word level processing (61% to 45%) and an increase in activities in discourse level processing (30% to 40%). Activities for sentence level processing were consistently low, averaging 5% for all grades. The study concludes that sentence level instruction in basal reading programs may be inadequate and that more activities should be provided to aid the reader who is having difficulty making the transition from word level to sentence level reading.