The influence of an improved school library and individual feedback on reading motivation

Many Dutch children are able to read, but they hardly ever do. A negative spiral occurs: little practice in reading results in a decline in reading skill, which in turn results in a low reading motivation and less reading. ‘Bibliotheek op de Basisschool’ (library in elementary school) is an initiative to enhance reading and reading motivation in children in primary school. The local library collaborates with the school to create an attractive school library with a large book collection.

The research project focuses on the effectivity of this initiative and which of the many elements are most effective in terms of reading skill and motivation. Furthermore, the role of feedback in reading motivation is examined in a series of experiments. Is continuous, individual feedback a way to enhance reading motivation and help children to keep reading?


Key publications

Nielen, T. M. J., Jans, L., Plooij, J., Hermans, M., & Bus, A. G. (2012). Ontwikkeling van de leesattitude op de basisschool en de rol van sekse, leesniveau, de leescultuur thuis en kenmerken van de schoolbibliotheek. (Development of reading attitude in elementary school and the role of gender, reading skill, home literacy environment and school library characteristics.). Manuscript submitted for publication.

Conference lectures

  • Nielen, T. M. J., & Bus, A. G. (2012, November). A slump in reading attitude during primary school? Determinants of reading comprehension and reading attitude in upper elementary school. Symposium at the ISED Research Days, Utrecht, The Netherlands.

  • Nielen, T. M. J., & Bus, A. G. (2012, November). Ontwikkeling van de leesattitude op de basisschool. (Development of reading attitude in elementary school.). Presentation at the biannual scientific conference of Stichting Lezen, de aarzelende lezer over de streep [convincing the hesitating reader], Amsterdam.

  • Nielen, T. M. J., & Bus, A. G. (2012, December). Het meten van de effecten van de bibliotheek op school. (Measuring the effects of the library at school.). Presentation at the Bibliotheek tweedaagse (Library two-day), Middelburg, The Netherlands.


The research project is funded by Kunst van Lezen in which Stichting Lezen and Sectorinstituut Openbare Bibliotheken (SIOB) collaborate.

Last Modified: 05-01-2016