Nudging to Stimulate Reading in Primary and Secondary Education

SAGE Open, Volume 13, Issue 2, April-June 2023.
Many students infrequently read during leisure time. Due to fast, unconscious decisions, they may overlook the possibility of reading. We tested the impact of nudging on reading frequency, reading attitude, and reading skills. Two studies targeting Grades 4 to 6 (N = 105) and Grades 7 and 8 (N = 146) compared: (1) a nudging condition—participants twice a week receiving reminders to read, (2) an information condition—participants once receiving information about the importance of reading, and (3) a control condition—participants receiving neither information nor reminders. In primary education, nudges positively affected parents’ knowledge of children’s books and students’ reading attitudes. In secondary education, nudges positively impacted students’ book knowledge. All effects only occurred for those students and parents most prone to reading. For the majority of the students, nudges did not improve reading outcomes. Therefore, we speculate about more effective ways of nudging reading.

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