Date Approved


Graduate Degree Type


Degree Name

Education-Instruction and Curriculum: Secondary Education (M.Ed.)

Degree Program

College of Education

First Advisor

Sherie Klee

Academic Year



Research has revealed that many of today’s students are not reading for pleasure. Although research shows that recreational reading is linked with academic success, educational policies have left reading for pleasure out of focus and instead emphasize a particular type of reading that is assessed on mandated tests. As a result of curriculum reforms, English Language Arts curriculum has been narrowed and left reading for pleasure out of focus. This project explores the history of curriculum reform in the United States as it relates to the teaching of English Language Arts as well as recent research surrounding how recreational reading impacts literacy outcomes for students. A well-balanced English Language Arts curriculum should aid students in discovering high-interest books that will intrinsically motivate them to read in their leisure time.