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Phonics Evidence
 

This is not a definitive list of (synthetic) phonics research studies.

Scroll down: phonics evidence for spelling and comprehension.

http://jolly2.s3.amazonaws.com/Research/Getting%20Ready%20for%20Reading.pdf
Stuart, M. (1999). RCT. Synthetic phonics teaching improves reading and spelling in inner-city second language learners.

"Chall (1967) found that phonics teaching produced readers who had an advantage in word recognition and that by the end of second grade also had higher levels of comprehension and vocabulary"
https://link.springer.com/article/10.1023/A%3A1011114724881

http://media.education.gov.uk/assets/files/pdf/e/evidence%20paper%20-%20the%20importance%20of%20phonics.pdf
DfE Evidence paper: The Importance of Phonics: Securing Confident Reading

http://www.rrf.org.uk/pdf/Matched%20Funding%20Article-august%2011a%20_MG_.pdf
2011. Empirical study using a synthetic phonics programme 'Sound Discovery' from YR-KS2 (700 children) ''dyslexia eliminated''

Sound~Write's longitudinal study of literacy development from 2003-2009, following 1607 pupils through KS1
http://www.sounds-write.co.uk/sites/soundswrite/uploads/files/42-sounds_write_research_report_2009.pdf

https://www.academia.edu/7182043/Synthetic_phonics_and_early_reading_development
Synthetic phonics and early reading development. ''A synthetic phonics approach may be particularly suitable for children starting school with weaker than average language skills (e.g., those from economically disadvantaged backgrounds)''

www.rrf.org.uk/messageforum/viewtopic.php?t=1306
Synthetic Phonics:The Scientific Research Evidence.

http://www.speld-sa.org.au/images/Articles/speld%20sa%20longitudinal%20study%20interim%20report%20june%202012.pdf
Longitudinal Study of the Effects on Reading and Spelling of a Synthetic Phonics and Systematic Spelling and Grammar Program.

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1023/B:READ.0000032666.66359.62
'Accelerating the development of reading, spelling and phonemic awareness skills in initial readers'.
Prof. Rhona Johnston & Dr. Joyce Watson (2004)

http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2005/02/20682/52383
The Clackmannanshire study: A Seven Year Study of the Effects of Synthetic Phonics Teaching on Reading and Spelling Attainment (2005)

http://www.rrf.org.uk/pdf/rhona_ppt.pdf
Rhona Johnston's ppt. on the Clackmannanshire study

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5458780/pdf/xge_146_6_826.pdf
2017. Phonics works. New research suggests that sounding out words is the best way to teach reading:
The paper describes how people who are taught the meanings of whole words don’t have any better reading comprehension skills than those who are primarily taught using phonics. In fact, those using phonics are just as good at comprehension, and are significantly better at reading aloud.

2018. Effectiveness of Preschool-Wide Teacher-Implemented Phoneme Awareness and Letter-Sound Knowledge Instruction on Code-Based School-Entry Reading Readiness
http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1525740118789061
''Overall, preschool-wide, teacher-implemented, phoneme-focused PA and LSK instruction can support code-based reading readiness skills for children with SLD and TD''

Examining the evidence on the effectiveness of synthetic phonics teaching: the Ehri et al (2001) and C.Torgerson et al (2006) meta-analyses by Rhona Johnston, Emeritus Professor of Psychology, University of Hull
http://rrf.org.uk/2018/06/17/examining-the-evidence-on-the-effectiveness-of-synthetic-phonics-teaching-the-ehri-et-al-2001-and-c-torgerson-et-al-2006-meta-analyses-by-rhona-johnston-emeritus-professor-of-psychology-univers/

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/251371861_Long-term_effects_of_synthetic_versus_analytic_phonics_teaching_on_the_reading_and_spelling_ability_of_10_year_old_boys_and_girls
Long-term effects of synthetic versus analytic phonics teaching on the reading and spelling ability of 10 year old boys and girls.

http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0089900
Effectiveness of Treatment Approaches for Children and Adolescents with Reading Disabilities: A Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials.''The results revealed that phonics instruction is not only the most frequently investigated treatment approach, but also the only approach whose efficacy on reading and spelling performance in children and adolescents with reading disabilities is statistically confirmed''

Three large-scale classroom research studies provide evidence about exactly which elements of instruction are effective, and which of those are not, when teaching children to read.
http://rrf.org.uk/archive.php?n_ID=34&n_issueNumber=46

Spelling results achieved through using a synthetic / linguistic phonics programme:

Sound~Write's longitudinal study of literacy development from 2003-2009, following 1607 pupils through KS1
http://www.sounds-write.co.uk/sites/soundswrite/uploads/files/42-sounds_write_research_report_2009.pdf
By the end of Year Two 91% were within the expected range for their age or above, and an average spelling age just over 14 months ahead of chronological age was achieved. 139 of the 7yr.old pupils scored above the spelling  test's ceiling of 11.0 yrs.

http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2005/02/20682/52383
The Clackmannanshire longitudinal study: A Seven Year Study of the Effects of Synthetic Phonics Teaching on Reading and Spelling Attainment.
At the end of P1 ''the synthetic-phonics-taught group were spelling around 8 to 9 months ahead of the other groups (and were again performing around 7 months ahead of chronological age)''
''At the end of Primary 7 spelling was 1 year 9 months ahead''

http://www.speld-sa.org.au/images/Articles/speld%20sa%20longitudinal%20study%20interim%20report%20june%202012.pdf
Jolly Phonics longitudinal study: p5 ''On average, spelling results for this cohort were 18.1 months above chronological age''

Spelling results from two primary schools which use the same advanced linguistic phonics programme. They ignore developmental spelling theories and teach spelling and reading in tandem using phonemes and graphemes from the very start of instruction:

St George's CofE primary school: located within one of the poorest catchment areas in South London. It has a very high number of children on free school meals and many children at the school speak a language other than English at home.
Year 1. 2018: https://theliteracyblog.com/2018/08/08/a-class-act-st-georges-church-of-england-primary-school/
''28 children in Year 1 (their second year of schooling) sat the Young’s Parallel Spelling Test in June 2018. The average age of the children was 6.3 years; their average spelling age was 8.6 years; and, they were then, on average, 28 months ahead. No child scored below their chronological age. In fact, no child scored below 13 months ahead of their chronological age. At the other end, four children scored at more than 40 months ahead of chronological age''
Year 2. 2018. https://theliteracyblog.com/2018/08/12/a-class-act-scene-2-year-2/
''30 children in Year 2 (the end of their third year of schooling) did the Young’s Parallel Spelling Test in June 2018. The average age of the children was 7.3 years; their average spelling age was 9.3 years; and they were, on average, 24 months ahead. No child scored below their chronological age. In fact, no child scored below 4 months ahead of their chronological age. At the other end, four children scored at more than three years ahead of chronological age''

St Thomas Aquinas primary school.
http://www.thereadingcentre.com/2016/03/23/st-thomas-aquinass-remarkable-results/

Phonics and Comprehension:

The Clackmannanshire researchers Johnston and Watson say, ''Much is made of the fact that the synthetic phonics programme in Clackmannanshire led to much greater increases in word reading and spelling skill than in reading comprehension, implying that reading comprehension did not benefit from the intervention. However, it should be noted that at the end of the seventh year at school, reading comprehension in the study was significantly above age level, in a sample that had a below average SES (socio-economic status) profile'' (RRF newsletter 59. p3)
A follow up study by Johnston and Watson found that, ''The children in the Clackmannanshire study (taught by the synthetic phonics method) were reading words about two years ahead of what would be expected for their age. Their spelling was six months ahead of what you would expect for their age, and their reading comprehension was about right for their age. However, although the pupils in England (taught by the NLS analytic method) from similar backgrounds were reading words about right for their age, their spelling was 4.5 months below what is expected for age, and reading comprehension was about seven months behind'' (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/7147813.stm)  

When students struggle with word decoding, their comprehension suffers. ''One way we overcome this limitation of working memory while reading is by learning how to make a rapid, automatic deployment of underlying reading processes so that they become fast and unconscious, leaving the conscious mind (i.e. the working memory) free to think about what a text means. This is why fast and accurate decoding is important. Experiments show that a child who can sound out nonsense words quickly and accurately has mastered the decoding process and is on the road to freeing up her working memory to concentrate on comprehension of meaning''
https://atlantaclassical.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/Reading-Comprehension-E.D.-Hirsch-article.pdf

https://thinkingreadingwritings.wordpress.com/2017/03/15/does-phonics-help-or-hinder-comprehension/
Does phonics help or hinder comprehension?

''Growth in reading comprehension is also boosted by systematic phonics instruction for younger students and reading disabled students. These findings should dispel the any belief that teaching phonics systematically to young children interferes with their ability to read and comprehend text. Quite the opposite is the case''
https://www.nichd.nih.gov/sites/default/files/publications/pubs/nrp/Documents/report.pdf
National Reading Panel Final Report. Paragraph 2-94

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1023/A:1011114724881
2001.''This study investigated whether two groups of 6-year-old beginning readers taught to read by a phonics and by a `book experience' non-phonics approach would differ in reading comprehension as well as the processes of word recognition. The two groups were matched for word recognition but despite this, the phonics taught children had higher reading comprehension''

''In the early years of schooling, how well you can decode is by far the most important predictor of your reading comprehension, as this graph shows''
https://www.spelfabet.com.au/2016/01/teachers-feelings-are-not-more-important-than-students-rights/

http://www.spelfabet.com.au/2017/05/questions-about-the-alea-petaa-infomercial/
''There is actually a name for this type of phonics teaching, “Embedded Phonics”. Sadly the scientific research shows it’s not very effective. See, for example, this 2006 large-scale controlled study, which compared children explicitly taught about spelling using phonics and children taught about phonics in the context of literature, and found “At the end of 5th grade, spelling-context children had significantly higher comprehension than did literature-context children.”

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5458780/pdf/xge_146_6_826.pdf
2017. Phonics works. New research suggests that sounding out words is the best way to teach reading:
The paper describes how people who are taught the meanings of whole words don’t have any better reading comprehension skills than those who are primarily taught using phonics. In fact, those using phonics are just as good at comprehension, and are significantly better at reading aloud.