top of page
Asian Institute of Research, Journal Publication, Journal Academics, Education Journal, Asian Institute
Asian Institute of Research, Journal Publication, Journal Academics, Education Journal, Asian Institute

Education Quarterly Reviews

ISSN 2621-5799

asia institute of research, journal of education, education journal, education quarterly reviews, education publication, education call for papers
asia institute of research, journal of education, education journal, education quarterly reviews, education publication, education call for papers
asia institute of research, journal of education, education journal, education quarterly reviews, education publication, education call for papers
asia institute of research, journal of education, education journal, education quarterly reviews, education publication, education call for papers
open access

Published: 25 September 2020

Action Research in a Juvenile Detention School: New Processes, Paradigms, and Possibilities

David Coker

Fort Hays State University

asia institute of research, journal of education, education journal, education quarterly reviews, education publication, education call for papers
pdf download

Download Full-Text Pdf



Pages: 411-430

Keywords: Action Research, Juvenile Delinquency, Interventions, Instruction


The purpose of this study was to explore the roles, perspectives, and actions of teachers and students for first-time-detained juvenile delinquents by examining a reading intervention for a student. Using an action research methodology, the reading intervention was explored within the broader context of the history and operations of the juvenile detention center in the United States of America. There is a description of education in a short-term, small juvenile detention center, which has not been clearly defined in previous research. Test scores, observations, and review of a student’s assignments were analyzed to determine the effectiveness of the reading intervention. The situation was further broken down by roles assumed for each participant. The conclusion was action research improved a student’s results and aided in examining educational practices. Four recommendations were offered to improve practices: iterative processes, heuristic challenge, positionality, and pragmatic rationality. A truncated methodology gives practitioners a plan to implement action research.


  1. Adelman, C. (1993). Kurt Lewin and the origins of action research, educational action research. Educational Action Research, 1(1), 7-24.

  2. Baetz, C. L., Surko, M., Moaveni, M., McNair, F., Bart, A., Workman, S., . . . Horwitz, S. M. (2019). Impact of a trauma-informed intervention for youth and staff on rates of violence in juvenile detention settings. Journal of Interpersonal Violence.

  3. Baker, S. F., & Ireland, J. L. (2007). The link between dyslexic traits, executive functioning, impulsivity and social self-esteem among an offender and non-offender sample. International Journal of Law and Psychiatry, 30, 492–503.

  4. Baldwin, S. A., Christian, S., Berkeljon, A., & Shadish, W. R. (2012). The effects of family therapies for adolescent delinquency and substance abuse: A meta-analysis. Journal of Marital and Family Therapy, 38(1), 281–304.

  5. Barrett, D. E., & Katsiyannis, A. (2017). The Clemson Juvenile Delinquency Project: Major findings from a multi-agency study. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 26, 2050–2058.

  6. Beijaard, D. (2019). Teacher learning as identity learning: models, practices, and topics. Teachers and Teaching, (25)1, 1-6. https://10.1080/13540602.2019.1542871

  7. Bergeron, P. J., & Rivard, L. (2017). How to engage in pseudoscience with real data: A criticism of John Hattie’s arguments in visible learning from the perspective of a statistician. McGill Journal of Education/Revue des sciences de l'éducation de McGill, 52(1), 237-246.

  8. Bhai, M., & Horoi, I. (2019). Teacher characteristics and academic achievement. Applied Economics, 51(44), 4781-4799.

  9. Blanco-Perez, C., & Brodeur, A. (2020). Publication bias and editorial statement on negative findings. The Economic Journal, 130.

  10. Booher, L., Nadelson, L. S., & Nadelson, S. G. (2020). What about research and evidence? Teachers’ perceptions and uses of education research to inform STEM teaching. The Journal of Educational Research, 1-13.

  11. Brodie, K. (2019). Teacher agency in professional learning communities. Professional Development in Education, 1-14.

  12. Charmaz, K. (2006). Constructing grounded theory: A practical guide through qualitative analysis. Sage.

  13. Coker, D. C. (2020). Multiple regression analysis of noncognitive factors affecting academic achievement of juvenile delinquents [Unpublished doctoral dissertation]. American College of Education.

  14. Crain, W. (2015). Theories of development: Concepts and applications. Routledge.

  15. Crosby, S. D., Algood, C. L., Sayles, B., & Cubbage, J. (2017). An ecological examination of factors that impact well‐being among developmentally‐disabled youth in the juvenile justice system. Juvenile and Family Court Journal, 68(2), 5–18.

  16. Doğan, S., & Adams, A. (2018). Effect of professional learning communities on teachers and students: Reporting updated results and raising questions about research design. School Effectiveness and School Improvement, 29(4), 634-659. 10.1080/09243453.2018.1500921

  17. Donges, W. E. (2015). How do former juvenile delinquents describe their educational experiences: A case study. Journal of Correctional Education, 66(2), 75–90. Retrieved from

  18. Drury, A. J., DeLisi, M., & Elbert, M. J. (2020). What becomes of chronic juvenile delinquents? Multifinality at midlife. Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice, 18(2), 119-134.

  19. Dumont, R., Willis, J. O., Veizel, K., & Zibulsky, J. (2013). Test of Silent Contextual Reading Fluency (TOSCRF). In C. R. Reynolds, K. J. Vannest, & E. Fletcher-Jonzen (Eds.), Encyclopedia of special education: A reference for the education of children, adolescents, and adults with disabilities and other exceptional individuals (pp. 622–623).

  20. Ellison, J. M., Owings, W., & Kaplan, L. S. (2017). State fiscal effort and juvenile incarceration rates: Are we misdirecting our investment in human capital? Journal of Education Finance, 43(1), 45–64. Retrieved from

  21. Engstrom, R. S., & Scott, D. (2020). Juvenile institutional misconduct: Examining the role of educational attainment and academic achievement. Crime & Delinquency, 66(5), 663-686.

  22. Farrell, A. D., Henry, D. B., Schoeny, M. E., Bettencourt, A., & Tolan, P. H. (2010). Normative beliefs and self-efficacy for nonviolence as moderators of peer, school, and parental risk factors for aggression in early adolescence. Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, 39, 800–813.

  23. Flick, U. (2018). An introduction to qualitative research. Sage Publications Limited.

  24. Glaser, B. G. (1965). The constant comparative method of qualitative analysis. Social Problems, 12(4), 436-445.

  25. Gearhart, M. C., & Tucker, R. (2020). Criminogenic risk, criminogenic need, collective efficacy, and juvenile delinquency. Criminal Justice and Behavior. 10.1177%2F0093854820928568

  26. Gerlinger, J., & Hipp, J. R. (2020). Schools and neighborhood crime: The effects of dropouts and high-performing schools on juvenile crime. The Social Science Journal, 1-17.

  27. Goodman, R. (2001). Psychometric properties of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 40,1337–1345.

  28. Goodnough, K. (2010). The role of action research in transforming teacher identity: Modes of belonging and ecological perspectives. Educational Action Research, 18(2), 167-182.

  29. Gordon, T., & Burch, N. (2003). Teacher effectiveness training: The program proven to help teachers bring out the best in students of all ages. Three Rivers Press (CA).

  30. Hadar, L. L. (2011). Adopting a “satisficing” model for school performance in students' views of learning. Educational Research and Evaluation, 17(3), 193-214. 10.1080/13803611.2011.600547

  31. Houchins, D., Jolivette, K., Krezmien, M., & Baltodano, H. (2008). A multi-state study examining the impact of explicit reading instruction with incarcerated students. Journal of Correctional Education, 59(1), 65-85. Retrieved from

  32. Houchins, D. E., Shippen, M. E., Schwab, J. R., & Ansely, B. (2017). Why do juvenile justice teachers enter the profession? Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 25, 211–219.

  33. Jacobs, H. H. (2010). Curriculum 21: Essential education for a changing world.ASCD.

  34. Jäggi, L., & Kliewer, W. (2020). Reentry of incarcerated juveniles: Correctional education as a turning point across juvenile and adult facilities. Criminal Justice and Behavior.

  35. Joram, E., Gabriele, A. J., & Walton, K. (2020). What influences teachers’ “buy-in” of research? Teachers’ beliefs about the applicability of educational research to their practice. Teaching and Teacher Education, 88, 1-12. 10.1016/j.tate.2019.102980

  36. Kincaid, A. P., & Sullivan, A. L. (2019). Double jeopardy? Disproportionality in first juvenile court involvement by disability status. Exceptional Children, 85,453–470.

  37. Kraft, M. A. (2020). Interpreting effect sizes of education interventions. Educational Researcher, 49(4), 241-253.

  38. Krezmien, M., Mulcahy, C., & Leone, P. (2008). Detained and committed youth: Examining differences in achievement, mental health needs, and special education status. Education and Treatment of Children, 31, 445–464.

  39. Kubek, J. B., Tindall-Biggins, C., Reed, K., Carr, L. E., & Fenning, P. A. (2020). A systematic literature review of school reentry practices among youth impacted by juvenile justice. Children and Youth Services Review, 110, 104773.

  40. Ladd, Helen F. (2008). Value-added modeling of teacher credentials: Policy implications. Paper presented at the second annual CALDER research conference, “The Ins and Outs of Value-Added Measures in Education: What Research Says.” Washington, D.C. http://www.

  41. Lea, C. H., III, & Abrams, L. S. (2017). “Everybody takes a road”: Perspectives on the pathway to delinquency among formerly incarcerated young men of color. Children and Youth Services Review, 75(C), 15–22.

  42. Le Maistre, C., & Paré, A. (2010). Whatever it takes: How beginning teachers learn to survive. Teaching and Teacher Education, 26(3), 559-564.

  43. Levenson, J. S., Baglivio, M., Wolff, K. T., Epps, N., Gomez, K. C., & Kaplan, D. (2017). You learn what you live: Prevalence of childhood adversity in the lives of juveniles arrested for sexual offenses. Advances in Social Work, 18(1), 313–334.

  44. Leone, P. E., & Wruble, P. C. (2015). Education services in juvenile corrections: 40 years of litigation and reform. Education and Treatment of Children, 38, 587–604.

  45. Makel, M. C., & Plucker, J. A. (2014). Facts are more important than novelty: Replication in the education sciences. Educational Researcher, 43(6), 304-316.

  46. Mallett, C. A. (2014). Youthful offending and delinquency: The comorbid impact of maltreatment, mental health problems, and learning disabilities. Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal, 31, 369–392.

  47. Marliasari, S. (2017). Teaching reading comprehension by using skimming and scanning techniques to the tenth grade students of SMAN 1 Gelumbang. English Community Journal, 1(2), 109-122.

  48. Mathur, S. R., Clark, H. G., LaCroix, L., & Short, J. (2018). Research-based practices for reintegrating students with emotional and behavioral disorders from the juvenile justice system. Beyond Behavior, 27(1), 28–36.

  49. Newton, D., Day, A., Giles, M., Wodak, J., Graffam, J., & Baldry, E. (2018). The impact of vocational education and training programs on recidivism: A systematic review of current experimental evidence. International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology, 62(1), 187–207.

  50. Norton, L. (2018). Action research in teaching and learning: A practical guide to conducting pedagogical research in universities. Routledge.

  51. O’Brien, N., Langhinrichsen-Rohling, M., & Shelley-Tremblay, J. (2007). Reading problems, attentional deficits, and current mental health status in adjudicated adolescent males. Journal of Correctional Education, 58, 293–315. Retrieved from

  52. Perez, N. M., Jennings, W. G., & Baglivio, M. T. (2018). A path to serious, violent, chronic delinquency: The harmful aftermath of adverse childhood experiences. Crime & Delinquency, 64(1), 3–25.

  53. Reeves, D. B. (2006). The learning leader: How to focus school improvement for better results. ASCD.

  54. Robison, S., Jaggers, J., Rhodes, J., Blackmon, B. J., & Church, W. (2017). Correlates of educational success: Predictors of school dropout and graduation for urban students in the deep South. Children and Youth Services Review, 73, 37–46.

  55. Sagor, R. (2000). Guiding school improvement with action research. ASCD.

  56. Schwartz, B., Ward, A., Monterosso, J., Lyubomirsky, S., White, K., & Lehman, D. R. (2002). Maximizing versus satisficing: Happiness is a matter of choice. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 83(5), 1178.

  57. Sedlak, A. J., & Bruce, C. (2016). Survey of youth in residential placement: Youth’s characteristics and backgrounds (SYRP Report). Retrieved from

  58. Snow, P. C. (2019). Speech-language pathology and the youth offender: Epidemiological overview and roadmap for future speech-language pathology research and scope of practice. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 50(2), 324-339.

  59. Somekh, B. (2005). Action research: A methodology for change and development: a methodology for change and development. McGraw-Hill Education (UK).

  60. Steele, J. L., Bozick, R., & Davis, L. M. (2016). Education for incarcerated juveniles: A meta-analysis. Journal of Education for Students Placed at Risk, 21(2), 65–89.

  61. Stigler, J. W., & Hiebert, J. (2009). The teaching gap: Best ideas from the world's teachers for improving education in the classroom. Simon and Schuster.

  62. Tangney, J. P., Boone, A. L., & Baumeister, R. F. (2018). High self-control predicts good adjustment, less pathology, better grades, and interpersonal success. In R. F. Baumeister (Ed.), Self-regulation and self-control (pp. 181–220). Abingdon, England: Routledge

  63. Tannis, L. (2014). Educating incarcerated youth: Exploring the impact of relationships, expectations, resources and accountability. Palgrave Macmillan.

  64. Trent, J. (2010). Teacher education as identity construction: Insights from action research. Journal of Education for Teaching, 36(2), 153-168.

  65. Vaughn, M. G., Salas-Wright, C. P., DeLisi, M., Maynard, B. R., & Boutwell, B. (2015). Prevalence and correlates of psychiatric disorders among former juvenile detainees in the United States. Comprehensive Psychiatry, 59,107–116.

  66. Wheldall, K., & Watkins, R. (2004). Literacy levels of male juvenile justice detainees. Educational Review, 56(1), 3–11.

  67. Williams, K. T. (2000). Reading-Level Indicator. Pearson Education, Inc.

  68. Winter, S. G. (2000). The satisficing principle in capability learning. Strategic Management Journal, 21(10‐11), 981-996.;2-4

  69. Zabrucky, K., & Commander, N. E. (1993). Rereading to understand: The role of text coherence and reader proficiency. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 18(4), 442-454.

bottom of page