Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Dissertation


Educational Studies

First Advisor

Yasha Becton


This dissertation addresses a problem of practice stemming from the lack of engagement students exhibit for reading social justice texts. Students today are in more culturally and socially diverse classrooms; their curriculum needs to reflect these social changes. A review of the problem of practice led to the research question: Does implementing literature circles with social justice texts in a secondary classroom foster engagement in reading and classroom discussions for students? The primary purpose of this proposed action research study was to examine if implementing literature circles with social justice texts leads to increased conversations and engagement in the classroom. The results showed that the students’ self-reported median scores Likert scale from the pre-survey to the post-survey regarding social justice issues and reading engagement showed no significant change. However, the qualitative coding from observations with role sheets and journal entries showed themes which emerged of (1) significance of social justice/social injustice issues; (2) using social justice texts (3) effects of literature circles for engagement.