Page 12: References & Additional Resources

To cite this Module, please use the following: 

The IRIS Center. (2008). PALS: A reading strategy for grades 2–6. Retrieved from


Calhoon, M. B., Al Otaiba, S., Cihak, D., King, A., & Avalos, A. (2007). Effects of a peer-mediated program on reading skill acquisition for two-way bilingual first-grade classrooms. Learning Disability Quarterly, 30(3), 169–184.

Facts in Action. (2003). In the classroom: Story retelling boosts children’s reading comprehension. Retrieved on March 25, 2008, from

Fuchs, D., & Fuchs, L. (1997). Peer-assisted learning strategies: Making classrooms more responsive to diversity. American Educational Research Journal, 34(1), 174–206.

Fuchs, D., & Fuchs, L. (2005). Peer-assisted learning strategies: Promoting word recognition, fluency, and reading comprehension in young children. The Journal of Special Education, 39(1), 34–44.

Fuchs, D., Fuchs, L., Simmons, D., & Mathes, P. (2008). Peer-assisted learning strategies: Reading methods for grades 2–6. Nashville, TN: Vanderbilt University.

Fuchs, D. Fuchs, L., Thompson, A., Svenson, E., et al. (2001). Peer-assisted learning strategies in reading: Extensions for Kindergarten, first grade, and high school. Remedial and Special Education, 22(1), 15–21.

Fulk, B. M., & King, K. (2001). Classwide peer tutoring at work. Teaching Exceptional Children, 34(2), 49–53.

Mastropieri, M., Scruggs, T., Mohler, L., Beranek, M., Spencer, V., Boon, R. T., & Talbott, E. (2001). Can middle school students with serious reading difficulties help each other and learn anything? Learning Disabilities Research and Practice, 16(1), 18–27.

McMaster, K., Fuchs, D., & Fuchs, L. (2006). Research on peer-assisted learning strategies: The promise and limitations of peer-mediated instruction. Reading & Writing Quarterly, 22, 5–25.

Miller, M. A. (2005). Using peer tutoring in the classroom: Applications for students with emotional/ behavioral disorders. Beyond Behavior, 15(1), 25–30.

Saenz, L., Fuchs, L., & Fuchs, D. (2005). Peer-assisted learning strategies for English language learners with learning disabilities. Exceptional Children, 71(3), 231–247.

United States Department of Education. (2008, April 29). What is adequate yearly progress (AYP)? Answer ID 6. Retrieved on June 6, 2008, from 

Vanderbilt University Kennedy Center. (n.d.) PALS: Frequently asked questions. Retrieved on July 7, 2008, from

Additional Resources


Calhoon, M. B. (2005). Effects of a peer-mediated phonological skill and reading comprehension program on reading skill acquisition for middle school students with reading disabilities. Journal of learning disabilities, 38(5), 424–433.

In this article, the author examines a study meant to gauge the efficacy of peer-mediated reading instruction (in this case Linguistic Skills Training [LST] and Peer Assisted Learning Strategies [PALS]) among middle-school students identified as struggling readers. Having observed the outcomes of students who received peer-mediated instruction and those who were taught through a more traditional whole-class approach, the author finds that those students in the peer-mediated groups showed greater improvement across a number of relevant skills, including comprehension and letter-word identification. A discussion of the study’s practical implications is included.

Fuchs, D., Fuchs, L., Mathes, P. G., & Martinez, E. A. (2002). Preliminary evidence on the social standing of students with learning disabilities in PALS and no-PALS classrooms. Learning Disabilities Research and Practice, 17(4), 205–215.

This article details the results of a study in which the authors collected data on the effects of PALS instruction on the social skills development and social standing of students with learning disabilities. The authors’ findings suggest that participation in peer instruction is indeed a viable means through which to improve both. A discussion of the possible direction of prospective research follows.

Kroeger, S. D., Burton, C., Preston, C. (2009). Integrating evidence-based practices in middle science reading. TEACHING Exceptional Children, 41(3), 6–15.

This article looks at the difficulties faced by struggling readers in content areas such as science, where the current emphasis on testing has tended to disengage students from more worthwhile and productive forms of inquiry. As an antidote, the authors recommend the use of peer-mediated instruction, through which students can once again become active participants in the “sense-making” activities through which scientific information is best gained.

Linan-Thompson, S, & Vaughn, S. (2007). Adaptations of peer-assisted learning for English language learners: Applications to middle-school social studies classes. The Vaughn Gross Center for Reading and Language Arts, the University of Texas at Austin. Retrieved on June 6, 2008, from

In this article, the authors outline their study into the effects of effective social studies instruction among seventh-grade English language learners for the purpose not only of expanding those students’ knowledge but also of improving their vocabularies. Peer instruction is a key element of the study.

McMaster, K. L., Kung, S., Han, I., & Cao, M. (2008). Peer-assisted learning strategies: A “tier 1” approach to promoting English learners’ response to intervention. Exceptional Children, 74(2), 194–214.

This study compared the effectiveness of the PALS among groups of kindergartner English learners (ELs). The authors find that students who took part in PALS tended to outperform their peers who received alternate interventions. The implications of the study—and its limitations—are discussed in detail.

Ramsey, M. L., Jolivette, K., & Patton, B. (2007). Peer-Assisted learning Strategies for reading in the EBD classroom. Beyond Behavior, 2–6.

This article presents a hypothetical case study in which the authors argue that PALS, besides its positive effects on reading outcomes, can also ameliorate the emotional and behavioral issues of students who demonstrate difficulties with peer relationships and other social functions.

Web Resources

Institute of Education Sciences, United States Department of Education

This section of the highly informative and useful What Works Clearinghouse contains resources related to Peer-Assisted Learning Strategies (PALS), including an overview, reference links, and a report on the observed effects of PALS implementation.

Promising Practices Network

The Promising Practices Network, a project of the RAND Corporation, offers a wealth of information related to Peer-Assisted Learning Strategies (PALS). Included here is an overview, a summary of key evaluation findings, and links to available online resources.

Vanderbilt University, Peer-Assisted Learning Strategies: Strategies for Successful Learning

This Website developed and maintained by the Kennedy Center at Vanderbilt University is a hub for information and resources related to Peer-Assisted Learning Strategies (PALS). Featured are links to resources regarding professional development in math and reading, a helpful FAQ, teacher materials (including classroom videos of PALS implementation), and an annotated bibliography.

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