Who do children choose as reading role models, and why? Are celebrity role models ‘too glossily distant to be useful role models’, and what is the relative impact of individuals from the direct social environment? Do children tend to choose role models who are of their same gender and ethnic background?
These are the questions that are addressed in this review, which informed a survey of children and young people by the National Literacy Trust. However, before these issues are explored, a working definition of the term role model is offered and the theoretical underpinnings are explained.