The impact of social influences on high school students' recreational reading

Document Type

Journal Article


The University of North Carolina Press

Place of Publication

Chapel Hill, USA


School of Education




Originally published as: Merga, M. K., & Moon, B. (2016). The impact of social influences on high school students' recreational reading. The High School Journal. 99(2). 122-140. Original article available here


Aliteracy, the state in which the skill to read has been acquired, but not the will, is a growing concern in research on adolescence internationally. The West Australian Study in Adolescent Book Reading (WASABR) aimed to discover current attitudes toward and levels of engagement in recreational book reading among 520 adolescent students from 20 Western Australia schools. It also explored the role of social agents in influencing recreational book reading in this cohort, examining the influences of parents, English teachers, the peer group and friends on adolescents recreation book reading in order to understand how adolescents' engagement in recreational book reading is affected by social factors. These understandings were sought with a view to ultimately enhance the participation of high school students in recreational book reading. This paper outlines the current body of research findings from the WASABR, drawing together the broad areas covered within the study into a cohesive whole.

Access Rights

Not open access