Ventura County Reading Association
promoting literacy for all
VCRA Sponsored Research

Do Author Visits Make a Difference for Students?

When an author visits your school, what effect does it have on your students? Ventura County Reading Association is sponsoring research to find out the answer.

Dr. Jo Anne Pandey of California State Univeristy Northridge and Dr. Alexis O’Neill, a published children’s author, are working together with sponsorship by VCRA on a study to find out if author visits have a positive effect on students’ attitudes toward reading, writing and revision. This empirical study on author visits is the first of its kind. The statistics gathered will benefit students and educators alike.


The pilot study, conducted in 2013 with fourth graders, showed significant, positive outcomes for students following in-person author visits. This survey will assist with plans to expand the study into 2015.

As a part of this study, Dr. Pandey and Dr. O’Neill are gathering qualitative data from former hosts of author visits to weigh in on items such as what hosts perceive as the biggest benefits of an author visit, the major obstacles to hosting an author visit, and the impact on school culture that they may have witnessed as a result of an author visit. 

Have you hosted or know someone who has hosted an author visit? Would you be willing to fill out a very brief 
Author Visit Survey?  The goal is to reach 1,000 former author visit hosts from across the country.

VCRA actively encourages schools to participate in the
California Young Reader Medal (CYRM) program sponsored by California Reading Association (CRA), California School Library Association (CSLA) and California Library Association (CLA).

We hope that this author visit study will provide more information about the nature of the link between book creators and young readers when they have a chance to meet each other in person and share a literacy experience together.