Master of Arts
This study is a systematic literature review of peer-reviewed intergenerational literacy studies published in the past 20 years. A key goal of the study is to address the concern of what knowledge has been reported about intergenerational literacy learning between young children and older people who are in their grandparents’ generation. The research questions are: 1) What are the trends of academic research on intergenerational literacy in terms of publication date, country of the research, research site, participants’ demographics, and literacy phenomenon? 2) What is the existing knowledge of intergenerational literacy? and 3) Based on the extant literature what are the future research needs related to intergenerational literacy? Adopting the theoretical approaches of literacy as social-material practices, I define, in my study, intergenerational literacy as social-material literacy practices between skipped generations (such as grandparents and grandchildren). Data sources were derived from the database ProQuest® according to a set of screening criteria and inclusion and exclusion criteria. Literature selection was also conducted strategically for the purpose of the study, resulting in 18 articles. The study utilized a method of deductive and inductive thematic analysis to analyze the collected data. Findings of this study indicate the roles that grandparents played in intergenerational literacy learning, knowledge construction and relationship building in intergenerational learning, the social nature of intergenerational literacy, and the links of intergenerational literacy with schools. This study provides researchers with information about the trends, existing knowledge, and future research needs of intergenerational literacy studies. The findings may also help enrich educators’ understanding of intergenerational literacy so as to support intergenerational programing in a variety of settings including school.
Summary for Lay Audience
Children learn different knowledge from different people, including their grandparents and other elders who are in the same generation of children’s grandparents, such as caregivers. For example, children can practice their literacy, namely, how children use their language(s), when they interact with their grandparents or other older adults. Grandparents hence also are regarded as important others, as opposed to teachers and parents, in young children’s meaning making. This systematic literature review focuses on studies concerning children’s literacy acquisition with their grandparents or other elders.
By searching and screening articles strategically from the database ProQuest®, I ended up with 18 studies to review. Using those 18 studies as the source of the data of the study, together with a method of inductive and deductive thematic analysis, I synthesized the extracted knowledge and reported the findings according to the following research questions: 1) What are the trends of academic research on intergenerational literacy in terms of publication date, country of the research, research site, participants’ demographics, and literacy phenomenon? 2) What is the existing knowledge of intergenerational literacy? and 3) Based on the extant literature what are the future research needs related to intergenerational literacy? This study aims to contribute to understanding of intergenerational literacy in a variety of contexts including school and family. It also offers recommendations to literacy researchers, scholars, and educators about future research needs.
Niu, Ling, "A Systematic Literature Review of Intergenerational Literacy Studies" (2021). Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository. 7868.