IPEELL: Using Self-Regulation To Improve Writing
A six stage structured approach to teaching writing. IPEELL uses memorable experiences, such as trips to local landmarks, as a focus for pupils’ writing then the Self-Regulated Strategy Development (SRSD) intervention is implemented. Frameworks and mnemonics are used to aid organisation and pupils use self and peer assessment. Pupils set goals for their writing, evaluate what they produce and positive behaviours are reinforced. IPEELL aims to encourage pupils to take ownership of their work and can be used to teach most genres of writing, including narrative writing.
The intervention is not currently available to schools in the UK, we have included the intervention on E4I due to the large positive impact on writing outcomes found in the Education Endowment Foundation evaluation and existing evidence from the United States and elsewhere.
Teachers were trained in the approach by the North American developers with support from the Calderdale Excellence Partnership team. Adaptations were made for the English context. The intervention is currently being delivered by the Calderdale Excellence Partnership, who will train trainers from Leeds Local Authority and Lincolnshire/Centre for British Teachers (CfBT), who will in turn train teachers in the approach.
The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) ran a project in 2012 investigating the effectiveness of IPEELL: Using self-regulation to improve writing, which found that it had a strong positive impact on the writing outcomes of low attaining pupils at the transition from primary to secondary school. The project aimed to help struggling writers in Years 6 and 7. The study found a mean effect size of +0.74 for primary writing.
The intervention had beneficial effects for pupils eligible for free school meals.
The EEF ran a second project in 2018 to test a more scalable version of the intervention and exploring further the impact of the intervention on pupils eligible for free school meals. The project involved two trials, a one year trial ran with Year 6 pupils across 84 schools and a two year trial ran across 83 schools with pupils in Years 5 and 6.
Pupils who used IPEELL for two years made additional progress in writing, compared to pupils who did not. The study found a mean effect size of +0.11 for primary writing. The pupils in the two year study made less progress in reading, spelling and maths compared to pupils who did not use the intervention. It is possible that increased focus on writing led to less time spent on these topics.
Pupils who used the intervention for one year made less progress in writing than the comparison pupils who did not use the intervention. This study found a mean effect size of -0.09 for primary writing.
Both studies showed similar results for pupils eligible for free schools meals. The two year study found a mean effect size of +0.11 and the one year study a mean effect size of -0.07.
In the first EEF study the teachers delivering the intervention were trained by the developers, in both of the more recent studies the teachers were trained by teachers less experienced in using the intervention.
The Education Endowment Foundation project findings, in combination with existing evidence from the United States and elsewhere, suggest that the Self-Regulated Strategy Development approach has substantial promise as a literacy catch up.
The Education Endowment Foundation ran a more scalable version of the intervention in 2018. The results were not as promising as the first trial.