Reading and Writing

, Volume 21, Issue 1–2, pp 3–26 | Cite as

Student- and instruction-level predictors of narrative writing in third-grade students



This study examined the student-level and instruction-level predictors of narrative writing fluency and quality. Participants included 120 third-grade students from 13 classrooms. Student predictors included measures of reading, handwriting, spelling, IQ, grammatical understanding, and gender. Instructional predictors focused on the amount of time allocated to teaching basic writing skills and planning skills. Significant predictors of compositional fluency included gender, advanced planning ability, and handwriting fluency, while significant predictors of compositional quality included gender, compositional fluency, Full-scale IQ, word reading ability, and grammatical understanding. There were no main effects of instructional variables; however there were two student by instruction interactions. Implications of the study highlight the importance of student characteristics in writing achievement, as well as considering the need for differential instruction based on student needs.


Elementary students Instruction Multi-level analysis Predictors of achievement Writing 



This research was supported in part by Grant no. 1 RO1 HD46154-01 and Core Grant no. HD15052 from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development to Vanderbilt University. Statements do not reflect agency position or policy, and no official endorsement should be inferred. The author would like to thank Lynn S. Fuchs for her support of this study.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Teacher Education and Department of Counseling, Educational Psychology, and Special EducationMichigan State UniversityEast LansingUSA

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