After careful reading the article, it is clear to me that the required and set down rules were never followed in the research. The research in itself has so many flaws as indicated by the writer and I strongly agree with the criticism on it.
Publication of two reports, one of which is a later version of the of the other, did not follow rules of citation. This is a drawback that is reducing the credibility which will not meet its goal at the end of it all. If a research is rewritten to correct errors form the 1st publication, it should be indicated as a second volume and also indicate what is changed. No one will accept results that have been doctored. And so is any policy adopted as a result of a flawed research. A research report should entail also limitations of the research which evidently lacked in this report as stated by the writer. Some people my say it is not a must but it should be well indicated to emphasize on it and to avoid generalization.
Listing of studies that were used in the analysis has flows in it and which will make it difficult for anyone reading the report. The methodology of the research is also very important. The right methodology will give the correct data that at the end will give the correct results. To me this was not followed and as a result wrong results were acquired. The small number of studies used added to the many flaws on the results of the research, 38 in number according to the writer and the NPR terming it as unfortunate throws the question of how credible are the results? Critics may say that a good sample is enough to represent the population but the sample matters to me as a large sample will give close results compared to a large population and small sample which may not come up with a true picture of the population. Administration of uniform research questions matters a lot in research for uniformity which according to me was not followed. Some tests were conducted to some of the respondents and others were accepted which is wrong and will only skew the results.
NRP also did not touch on normally developing readers above grade 1. Any normal school has all categories of students from high performing to those having problems in English. This is also wrong as it not provide enough data for greater variability hence better results. Some will say it’s just a sample but for uniformity, we need to administer the same study procedure. To make it worse, they generalized the results to include the normal students. The data taken from the control group about decade ago will definitely differ from the sample being studied when the number of the sample changes. The writer points out that in some years a sample of 22 only was take. This throws the question of consistency and reliability that NRP tries to put across that it used it in coming up with the results of the study, yet they did not follow at all. This makes the results incredible.
Contradiction in the reports on different formats is also another setback for this report. To quote form the findings that “The meta-analysis revealed that systematic phonics instruction produces significant benefits for students in kindergarten through sixth grade and for children having difficulty learning to read” and then on the other hand saying “There were insufficient data to draw any conclusions about the effects of phonics instruction with normally developing readers above first grade”. This is unacceptable and it’s a major flaw in this paper.
To conclude, this research might have been interfered with by interested parties that were involved in the research leading to the results that are unsatisfactory to me