Document NameLocationResearch TypeMethodsDesignSample/SourcesOutcomeFindingsAuthors/APA Citation
AK, Juneau - DPIL Research.pdfAK
2-Early Stage/Exploratory
QuantitativeDescriptivePercentages of students meeting benchmark Measures of Academic Progress for Primary Grades (MAP): Reading & Math in Fall and Winter. All Kindergartners compared to 22 IL students.
K readiness (literacy and math)
IL participants entered K with higher levels of academic preparedness in both reading and math. IL students' scores increased 47 points in reading and 38 points in math, versus the general population's growth of 22 points in reading and 23 in math. Dolly Parton Imagination Library: Assessment, evaluation, and information management (2011).
AU, Ready-to-Read Impact Report - Nov. 2014.pdfAU1-FoundationalMixed methodsDescriptive Document review, 227 parents completed baseline survey, 913 parents completed follow up survey, 6 parent focus groups with 38 participants, 15 community stakeholders interviews Home literacy practices Similar demographic characteristics of baseline survey participants and follow-up survey participants. Increases pre to post on children asking to be read to, educed number of parents attending community literacy activities, increased shared reading behaviors. Parents in focus groups had positive perceptions of the program and its impact on literacy behaviors in the home. Riley, J. (2014). Ready to Read 2014 evaluation report. United Way Australia.
CA-First Nations DPIL Final Evaluation.pdfCanada1-FoundationalMixed methodsDescriptive53 participating parents surveyed, program coordinator interviews, program administrator interviews (all on perceptions of program implementation and effectiveness)Program perceptionsParents surveyed had positive perceptions of the program and its impact on literacy behaviors in the home. Community coordinators viewed the program positively & reported it having a positive impact on family literacy practices. Coordinators and administrators were not always informed about enrollment practices and details about the program. Montclaire, C. (2010). Imagination Library program evaluation.
LA, Louisian Assoc. of United Ways DPIL Report 2011 Final Draft, July 2007.pdfHI1-FoundationalMixed methodsDescriptive747 surveys of participating familiesHome literacy practices (retrospective pre/post), program perceptionsParticipants reported positive perceptions of IL program and increases in home literacy behaviors as a result of participation.Learning to Grow Project (2007) Hawai‘i’s Imagination Library Program.
TN-Knox County Imagination Library Third Grade Follow Up StudyKnoxville
3-Design & Development
QuantitativeQuasi-experimental1778 IL students, 1574 peers who took 3rd grade TCAP assessmentStudent literacy achievementIL students continued to outperform their nonIL peers on 3rd grade TCAP exams overall and in 10 subgroups.Beckett, J. The Imagination Library program and the kindergarten cohort of 2008-2009.
TN-Knox County-DPIL and Kindergarten LiteracyKnoxville
3-Design & Development
QuantitativeQuasi-experimental4189 K students, 51.4% DPIL participants, who began/ended K in Knox Co.Student literacy achievementSignificant differences in "Literacy Status" in K bet IL/nonIL. Beckett, J. (n.d.). An investigation of the relationship between the Imagination Library program and kindergarten literacy.
LA1-FoundationalMixed methodsDescriptivePre/post survey on perceptions of the program. 114 participant responses on pre-survey and 80 responses for post surveyProgram perceptionsParticipants who had been enrolled in the program longer reported higher levels of frequency of reading, number of children’s books in the home, enthusiasm and interest in reading, and parent’s value of the importance of reading in relation to their child’s cognitive development. Bryant, M. (2007). Louisiana Association of United Ways- Dolly Parton Imagination Library Project. Cecil J. Picard Center for Child Development and Lifelong Learning: University of Louisiana at Lafayette.
TN, Shelby County - Third Grade, Comparisons of Academic Data for Imagination Library Participants and Non-participants.pdfMemphis
3-Design & Development
QuantitativeQuasi-experimental166 IL, 151 nonIL took SAT10 in 2nd grade; 148 IL, 142 nonIL took istation assessment beginning of 3rd grade; 166 IL & 150 nonIL TCAP end of 3rd gradeStudent literacy achievementSignificant differences in SAT10 Reading Comprehension in 2nd grade between IL/nonIL when controlling for race, English proficiency, & PreK experience (other covariates not significant/excluded); istation IL significantly more likely to be at grade level (no covariates used); IL students TCAP scale scores significantly higher (w/ covariates).Sell, M. A. (2015, December). Comparisons of academic data for Imagination Library participants versus non-participants. Shelby County Schools Department of Performance Management and Research, Research brief.
TN, Shelby County- DPIL SCBFB Final Paper
3-Design & Development
QuantitativeQuasi-experimentalEntering kindergartners (143 IL participants and 120 nonIL) parent survey, Kindergarten Readiness Indicator assessment, Family Reading Habits surveyHome literacy practices, K readiness (math & literacy)No demographic differences between IL and nonIL, IL had more home reading behaviors than nonIL, participation in IL increases reading and math readiness when controlling for demographics.Evaluating the relationship between the Imagination Library early childhood literacy program and kindergarten readiness (2013).
MI, Allegan County DPIL Evaluation Final, Dec 2009-Statistical Analysis of Kindergarten DIBELS Test Scores in Response to the Imagination Library Program.docMI
3-Design & Development
QuantitativeQuasi-experimentalDIBELS scores from 2008 for Initial Sound Fluency (ISF) (967 students, 246 IL) and Letter Naming Fluency (LNF) (972 students, 247 IL) tests for Kindergarten students were examined for effects of enrollment in IL. Demographic data used as covariates. K readiness (literacy); student literacy achievement All variables, including IL participation and demographic variables, were significant in terms of impacting DIBELS scores. The model did not explain very much of the differences in student scores however. Including interaction effects eliminated the significance of IL participation on DIBELS scores.Westine, C. D. (2009). Imagination Library of Allegan County statistical analysis of kindergarten DIBELS test scores in response to the Imagination Library Program.
MI, Allegan County United Way 2007 DPIL survey results.docMI1-FoundationalMixed methodsDescriptiveSurveyed 219 participating parents to gauge satisfaction with the program and family reading practices, aggregated by socioeconomic status and education level.Home literacy practices, program perceptionsParents at all socioeconomic levels reported reading to children once a day. Positive relationship between children asking to be read to and families reading more often. Parents perceived children to be more enthusiastic about books and to look at books more often. Greatest increases were seen postIL in low-socioeconomic families and those with lower parent education levels. Allegan County Imagination Library: Report of parent survey results (2007).
MI, Kellogg DPIL 2011 Evaluation and Report-Willard (Kellogg).pdfMI1-FoundationalMixed methodsDescriptive207 responses to parent/family survey to measure changes in family interactions, amount of time spent reading, children's interest in reading. Interviews with program staff. IL program implementation data.Program perceptionsRespondents reported positive changes pre/post IL participation in books owned, children's interest in reading, and family reading activities.Lelle, M. A. (2011). Imagination Library: Annual evaluation report. A project of Willard Library funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.
Assessment overview 2013MN1-FoundationalMixed methodsDescriptiveLiterature review of prior evaluations; 51 participants in parent focus groups; 586/571 parent surveys; 15 teacher focus groups; synthesis of findings from all sourcesHome literacy practices, perceptions of K readiness (literacy)Increased reading in homes; increased interest in reading; increased book ownership; improved K readiness; differences in book availability by demographics.UpFront Organization Development Consulting (2013). Imagination Library program assessment overview and key points summary.
Child Service Provider Focus Group Report 2013.pdfMN1-FoundationalQualitativeDescriptive15 early childhood providers focus groupProgram perceptionsResponded to questions posed from data collected from surveys and parent focus groups. UpFront Organization Development Consulting (2013). Imagination Library provider focus group report.
MN, United Way of Central MN-DPIL evaluationMN
2-Early Stage/Exploratory
Mixed methodsDescriptiveEnrollment data/DPIL program records, county data; 303 participating parents survey; 28 interviews/focus groups w/ child care/service providersHome literacy practices; perceptions of K readiness (literacy)Increased perceptions of time spent reading with child; positive perceptions of IL program; increased perceptions of comfort reading to children; perceptions of increased early literacy skills; little evidence to support social development.UpFront Organization Development Consulting (2008). Imagination Library in central Minnesota, evaluation findings.
Parent Focus Group Report 2013.pdfMN1-FoundationalQualitativeDescriptive51 IL parents in 6 focus groups, some grouped by location and some by ethnicityProgram perceptionsParents overall had positive perceptions of the program and impact; some suggestions for improvement, such as duplicate books and change of address processes.UpFront Organization Development Consulting (2013). Imagination Library parent focus group report.
Parent Survey Report 2013.pdfMN1-FoundationalMixed methodsDescriptive586 IL parents to one survey, 571 to another, 45 parents of IL graduatesProgram perceptionsParents overall expressed positive perceptions, typically agree or strongly agree, to the program and impact.UpFront Organization Development Consulting (2013). Imagination Library parent survey report.
MO, Columbia - DPIL Study Timeline Draft.pdfMONANANAHome Literacy Questionnaire (HLQ), PALS-K literacy screening, Devereaux Student Strengths Assessment (DESSA) administered to all Kindergarten studentsHome literacy practices, K readiness, student literacy achievementNo analysis conducted. The paper outlines the proposed study and methodology.Thompson, A. M. (n.d.). Draft research proposal template and timeline: Independent evaluation of the Imagination Library & Parents as Teacher Program evaluation proposal.
Thompson Klemp Stinson 2016MO4-EfficacyQuantitativeQuasi-experimentalTwo studies: interviews w/ Likert scale responses based on Family Reading Survey (FRS) with 56IL, 56nonIL; test of emergent literacy skills (PALS-K and 15 item social-emotional school readiness assessment-TOCA-R) with 189IL, 189nonIL; matched comparison groupsHome literacy practices; K readiness (literacy); social-emotional readinessIL families had greater increases in literacy interactions than nonIL families; no differences in access to literacy materials, use of literacy space, child literacy interest, or caregiver literacy orientation; no differences in emergent literacy skills; no effects on social-emotional school readiness; no effects based on dosage.Thompson, A. M., Klemp, H., & Stinson, A. E. (2016). Effect of the imagination library on caregiver–child literacy interactions and school readiness: Findings from two quasi-experimental propensity score studies. Journal of Children and Poverty. doi: 10.1080/10796126.2016.1187587
MS, Indianola - DHA IPC Imagination Library Report.pdfMS
2-Early Stage/Exploratory
QuantitativeDescriptiveExtant data, Measure of Academic Performance (MAP) given to all K students at one schoolK readiness (literacy and math)Greater percentages of IL students "scored above the norm" in math and reading.Imagination Library Program in the Mississippi Delta: A report from Indianola, Mississippi (n.d.).
2-Early Stage/Exploratory
QuantitativeCorrelational1557 children in sample, 1031 completed; children ages 48-59 mos. at end took Woodcock Johnson III (174 kids); also implementation checklists & demographicsHome literacy practices, student literacy achievementIncrease in number of books in homes, number of families with a library card, & frequency of literacy behaviors. Significant increases in oral language skills, but not significantly different from normed sample (meaning typical growth for the time span/maturation).Center for Early Childhood Evaluation at HighScope (n.d.). Parents as Teachers: Innovative approaches to industry grant.
NM, 2014 Imagination Survey (includes eBooks questions).docxNM1-FoundationalQuantitativeDescriptive95 IL parents surveyedPerceptions of K readiness (literacy)Parents perceived increased interest in reading, increased vocabulary, increases in daily reading.Changing family literacy practices (2014).
NM, Grant County - 2013 Survey Final.docxNM1-FoundationalQuantitativeDescriptive86 IL parents surveyedHome literacy practices, program perceptionsParents reported positive impacts of the IL program on their children, interest in reading, and frequency of reading out loud to their children.The Imagination Library of Grant County 2013 parent satisfaction survey (2013).
NM, Longitudinal Study Year 1 - Sept. 2014 - School Effects of Participation in Imagination Library.docxNM
3-Design & Development
QuantitativeQuasi-experimental15 randomly selected IL students, 15 randomly selected comparison students administered DIBELSStudent literacy achievementMeans for IL students were higher on 5 tests than nonIL students. Appears only letter naming was statistically significant from ANOVA table.School effects of participation in Imagination Library (2014).
NM, Longitudinal Study Year 2 - Aug. 2015, Educational Trends Vol. 2 article - School Effects of Participation in Imagination Library.docxNM
3-Design & Development
QuantitativeQuasi-experimental18 randomly selected IL students, 18 randomly selected comparison students administered Discovery Reading TestStudent literacy achievementNo significant differences between IL and nonIL on Discovery Reading assessment.Harvey, A. (2015). Watch them grow: A longevity study of IL impact on Discovery Reading scores.
Refugee Family Literacy Interactions with DPIL.pdfNY1-FoundationalQualitativeEthnography8 Burmese & Karen speaking parent participants in combo IL/story circles program (interviews), 3 staff members, observations of group activitiesHome literacy practicesProgram exposed parents to the concept of reading storybooks. Parents had to invent stories from pictures as they didn't all speak/read English. Parents would model strategies learned in story circles at home with their children. Program overall increased academic learning of English at home.Singh, S., Sylvia, M. R., Ridzi, F. (2013). Exploring the literacy practices of refugee families enrolled in a book distribution program and an intergenerational family literacy program. Early Childhood Education Journal, 41(6).
OH, Middletown - Imagination Library Report.pdfOH
2-Early Stage/Exploratory
Mixed methodsDescriptive89 parent respondents represented the parents of 116 out of the 390 children in the program for 12-18 months at the time. Kindergarten Readiness Assessment-Literacy scores compared for 69 students whose parents indicated they participated in IL compared to 535 who indicated their child did not participate.Program perceptions, K readiness (literacy)Average KRA-L scores of IL participants were slightly higher than nonIL participants. Overall parents were satisfied with the Imagination Library program, felt reading to young children is the single most important factor in preparing them for school, and reported increases in reading time with their children.Gordon, T. D. (n.d.). Celebrating little dreamers: An analysis of the first 18 months of Dolly Parton's Imagination Library in Middletown, Ohio. Middletown, OH: Middletown Community Foundation.
PA, Erie County - UWEC Executive Summary FINAL 5.31.2016.docxPA
3-Design & Development
Mixed methodsQuasi-experimental394 Kindergarten students (114 IL) from six schools. Clay’s (2013) Concepts about Print (CAP) and Letter Identification (LI) tasks from An Observation Survey of Early Literacy Achievement (Third Edition). Survey of Parent/Caregiver’s Perceptions of IL and demographic characteristics to parents of the 114 IL students, 27 responses. K readiness (literacy); student literacy achievement T-tests found significant differences on LI between IL and nonIL students and on individual components of CAP (but not on composite score). Survey findings found IL parents valued reading, read to their child 3-4 times per week, and had home libraries of more than 20 books.Waldron, C. H., Magee, N., Kinnear, J., & Nixon, C. (2016). Dream more, learn more, care more, and be more: Erie County’s Imagination Library Project and the influence of storybook reading. Susan Hirt Hagen Center for Community Outreach, Research and Evaluation (CORE).
SC, Cherokee County First Steps DPIL Survey Results 2010.pdfSC 1-FoundationalMixed methodsDescriptiveSurvey of 88 IL-participating parents of program perceptions and demographicsHome literacy practices, program perceptionsParents surveyed reported reading more to their children as a result of IL, an increase in the number of books in the home, and had positive perceptions of the program.First Steps. (2010). Dolly Parton Imagination Library: Parent survey Fall 2010.
UK, Scottish Book Trust DPIL evaluation March 2014.pdfScotland1-FoundationalQuantitativeDescriptiveDocument review, 69 questionnaires of "carers" on perceptions of impact on home literacy activitiesHome literacy practices Increased reading with children and increased interest in books. Scottish Book Trust (2014). Dolly Parton Imagination Library for looked after children in Scotland.
NY, Onondaga County, Syracuse--Executive Summary--Examining the impact of the Imagination Library ProgramSyracuse
3-Design & Development
QuantitativeQuasi-experimentalEntering kindergartners (DPIL participants and non)/AIMSWeb letter naming fluency (numbers of participants not listed)K readiness (literacy)Increased percentages of IL participants scored 13 or higher on the AIMSWeb letter naming fluency screening even after controlling for socioeconomic factors.Ridzi, F., Sylvia, M. R., Qiao, X., & Craig, J. (n.d.). Executive summary - Examining the impact of the Imagination Library Program on kindergarten readiness.
NY, Reading Psychology Journal-DPIL SyracuseSyracuse
2-Early Stage/Exploratory
QuantitativeCorrelational170 parents of DPIL participants/survey; program participation dataHome literacy practicesIncreased duration of enrollment linked to increased likelihood of reading 3x or more per week, controlling for demographics. Found differences by race/ethnicity and asking questions about the story.Ridzi, F., Sylvia, M. R., & Singh, S. (2014). The Imagination Library Program: Increasing parental reading through book distribution. Reading Psychology. doi: 10.1080/02702711.2013.790324
IL Final RepTN, SD, GA
2-Early Stage/Exploratory
Mixed methodsCorrelational821 participating parents from 3 sites completed survey (demographics, program perceptions, home literacy environment), Reported reliability data on scales. Home literacy practices, program perceptionsSignificant differences found on parents' education level across the three sites. Compared sample on demographics to general population data from the census. Participants had much higher education level than the general population. Most families IL was a middle source of books, 1/3 of families it was a primary source. Parents reported children were more interested in books, spent more time reading together, and did the Shared-Reading type activities like asking questions or pointing out words and pictures. Positive correlation between how often parents who read to children and how often they read themselves. Lower education levels experienced greater program affects (correlational). Higher education levels correlated with more books in the home. HighScope educational research foundation. (n.d.). Literacy outcomes and the household literacy environment. An evaluation of the Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library.
KindergartenResultsFall07final.docTN, UT
2-Early Stage/Exploratory
QuantitativeDescriptive318 kindergarten teachers completed surveys, perceptions of IL vs nonIL studentsPerceptions of K readiness (literacy, social skills)Kindergarten teachers perceived IL participants to be better prepared than nonIL participants In reading, speaking, thinking, and social skills.Tennessee Board of Regents (2008). Imagination Library Program Fall 2007 summary of kindergarten teachers report of findings.
PreKindergartenResultsFall07final.docTN, UT
2-Early Stage/Exploratory
QuantitativeDescriptive153 pre-kindergarten teachers completed surveys (perceptions of IL vs nonIL students)Perceptions of K readiness (literacy, social skills)Pre-Kindergarten teachers perceived IL participants to be better prepared than nonIL in reading, speaking, thinking, and social skills.Tennessee Board of Regents (2008). Imagination Library Program Fall 2007 summary of pre-kindergarten teachers report of findings.
TX, Wichita Falls - North TX Area United Way, Parent Survey Results, 2008.docTX1-FoundationalQuantitativeDescriptive187 IL participant parents surveyedHome literacy practices, program perceptionsParents indicated reading more to children, children more interested in books, had positive view of program, did not use library.Wichita County Imagination Library report of parent survey results (2008).
Rotherham IL Annual Report 2011-2012.pdfUK
2-Early Stage/Exploratory
QuantitativeCorrelationalPost hoc scores on the early years foundation stage profile were compared for 3000 IL and non IL students.Student literacy achievementIL students showed greater progress than non IL students on communication language and literacy. Rotherham's Imagination Library annual report 2011-2012 (2012).
Rotherham IL Annual Report 2013-2014.pdfUK
2-Early Stage/Exploratory
QuantitativeCorrelationalPost hoc scores on the early years foundation stage profile were compared for 2522 IL and 778 non IL students.Student literacy achievementIL students showed greater progress than non IL students on communication language and literacy (about 3% different). Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council (2014). Rotherham's Imagination Library annual report 2013-2014.
UK, DPIL Review Report 28.5. 2010.docUK1-FoundationalQualitativeDescriptive9 practitioners (interviews), 8 families (interviews, observations via video), 18 additional surveys of practitioners involved in programHome literacy practices, program perceptionsPractitioners viewed the program positively & reported positive impact on family literacy practices. Video analysis showed opportunities for book sharing, for children to read different books, siblings to share books, and different generations of family members to share books and bond. Pahl, K., Lewis, M., & Ritchie, L. (2010). The ‘hundred languages of book sharing’ – so many different ways of sharing books. The Imagination Library study.
UK, Nottingham - DPIL Evaluation, Bilborough FINAL Report 15.9.14-3.pdfUK1-FoundationalQualitativeDescriptiveInterviews with funders, childcare staff, health visitors, and participating parents Program perceptionsKnowledge of the program was inconsistent among healthcare workers who were responsible for signing up families. Community support workers found families difficult to engage. Parents were enthusiastic about program and reported that it encouraged literacy behaviors in the home. Hall, C., & Jones, S. (2014). Dolly Parton's Imagination Library in Bilborough.
WV, Final IL Report.pdfWV1-FoundationalMixed methodsDescriptive31 parent interviews, 17 partner interviews, 13 educator interviews, 23 parent surveys, (all related to perceptions of program, demographics, impact, family reading habits), observations of special eventsProgram perceptionsParents reported positive perceptions of the program and of impact on school success, positive perceived impact of all students having received same books prior to entering school, seen as both leveling the playing field and creating shared experiences.Webb-Dempsey, J., & Diaz, S. R. (2010). Evaluation of the Dolly Parton Imagination Library Program in West Virginia.