Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 1359

Search results for: vocabulary and reading skill

1359 Motivation on Vocabulary and Reading Skill via Teacher-Created Website for Thai Students

Authors: P. Klinkesorn, S. Yordchim, T. Gibbs, J. Achariyopas

Abstract:

Vocabulary and reading skill were examined in terms of teaching and learning via teacher-created website. The aims of this study are 1) to survey students’ opinions on the teacher-created website for learning vocabulary and reading skill 2) to survey the students’ motivation for learning vocabulary and reading skill through the teacher-created website. Motivation was applied to the results of the questionnaires and interview forms. Finding suggests that Teacher-Created Website can increase students’ motivation to read more, build up a large stock of vocabulary and improve their understanding of the vocabulary. Implications for developing both social engagement and emotional satisfaction are discussed.

Keywords: motivation, teacher-created website, Thai students, vocabulary and reading skill

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1358 Analysis of Digitized Stories Authored by a Struggling Grade 1 Reader

Authors: Daphne Dean C. Arenos, Glorificacion L. Quinopez

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This study has been conducted to describe the digitized stories authored by a Grade 1 pupil struggling in reading. The main goal was to find out the effect of authoring digital stories on the reading skill of a grade 1 pupil in terms of vocabulary and sequencing skills. To be able to explicate the data collected, a case study approach has been chosen. This case study focused on a 6 years old Filipino child born and raised in Spain and has just transferred to a private school a year ago. The pupil’s struggles in reading, as well as her experiences with digitized stories, were further described. The findings revealed that authoring digital stories facilitate the reading progress of a struggling pupil. The presence of literary elements in the pupil’s stories built her vocabulary and sequencing skills. Hence, authoring digital stories serve as an appropriate and effective scaffold for struggling readers.

Keywords: literary elements, reading skill, scaffold, sequencing skill, vocabulary

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1357 The Role of Vocabulary in Reading Comprehension

Authors: Engku Haliza Engku Ibrahim, Isarji Sarudin, Ainon Jariah Muhamad

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It is generally agreed that many factors contribute to one’s reading comprehension and there is consensus that vocabulary size one of the main factors. This study explores the relationship between second language learners’ vocabulary size and their reading comprehension scores. 130 Malay pre-university students of a public university participated in this study. They were students of an intensive English language programme doing preparatory English courses to pursue bachelors degree in English. A quantitative research method was employed based on the Vocabulary Levels Test by Nation (1990) and the reading comprehension score of the in-house English Proficiency Test. A review of the literature indicates that a somewhat positive correlation is to be expected though findings of this study can only be explicated once the final analysis has been carried out. This is an ongoing study and it is anticipated that results of this research will be finalized in the near future. The findings will help provide beneficial implications for the prediction of reading comprehension performance. It also has implications for the teaching of vocabulary in the ESL context. A better understanding of the relationship between vocabulary size and reading comprehension scores will enhance teachers’ and students’ awareness of the importance of vocabulary acquisition in the L2 classroom.

Keywords: vocabulary size, vocabulary learning, reading comprehension, ESL

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1356 Visual Working Memory, Reading Abilities, and Vocabulary in Mexican Deaf Signers

Authors: A. Mondaca, E. Mendoza, D. Jackson-Maldonado, A. García-Obregón

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Deaf signers usually show lower scores in Auditory Working Memory (AWM) tasks and higher scores in Visual Working Memory (VWM) tasks than their hearing pairs. Further, Working Memory has been correlated with reading abilities and vocabulary in Deaf and Hearing individuals. The aim of the present study is to compare the performance of Mexican Deaf signers and hearing adults in VWM, reading and Vocabulary tasks and observe if the latter are correlated to the former. 15 Mexican Deaf signers were assessed using the Corsi block test for VWM, four different subtests of PROLEC (Batería de Evaluación de los Procesos Lectores) for reading abilities, and the LexTale in its Spanish version for vocabulary. T-tests show significant differences between groups for VWM and Vocabulary but not for all the PROLEC subtests. A significant Pearson correlation was found between VWM and Vocabulary but not between VWM and reading abilities. This work is part of a larger research study and results are not yet conclusive. A discussion about the use of PROLEC as a tool to explore reading abilities in a Deaf population is included.

Keywords: deaf signers, visual working memory, reading, Mexican sign language

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1355 The Social Media, Reading Culture and Vocabulary Expansion: Three Universities from Northern Nigeria

Authors: Nasir Umar Abdullahi

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The social media profoundly causes the reading culture to decline in Nigeria, where the English language is a second language (SL), a language of instruction (LI), as well as the target language (TL). This is because the university students have, over the years, failed to make extensive reading their closest companion, with much emphasis on reading the European novels, newspapers, magazines, etc., so as to learn language from its original or native speakers for linguistic competence. Instead, they squander the most part of their day and nocturnal hours, sending and receiving messages through social media. The end result is their vocabulary become stagnant or ebbs, and that they cannot acquire the Cox head’s 570 vocabulary, let alone the Nation’s 2000 vocabulary to use the language fluently in writing, reading, listening, and speaking and to further compete with the native speaker in varying degrees of language usages. Be that as it may, if the social media is a monster in worsening the decline in reading culture, which degenerates in the Northern part of the country in contradistinction to the Southern part, it boosts it as well, for aside the social media language, slangs, cliché, for instance, students improve their vocabulary power, and at the same time it allows the students to privately and leisurely put the language into use, by using practically some of the vocabulary they have acquired to chart, to comment, socialize to adjudge, etc. This is what this paper tries to explore in Umaru Musa Yar’adua University Al-qalam University and the Federal University Dutin-ma.

Keywords: social media, reading, vocabulary, universities

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1354 Effects of Computer-Mediated Dictionaries on Reading Comprehension and Vocabulary Acquisition

Authors: Mohamed Amin Mekheimer

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This study aimed to investigate the effects of paper-based monolingual, pop-up and type-in electronic dictionaries on improving reading comprehension and incidental vocabulary acquisition and retention in an EFL context. It tapped into how computer-mediated dictionaries may have facilitated/impeded reading comprehension and vocabulary acquisition. Findings showed differential effects produced by the three treatments compared with the control group. Specifically, it revealed that the pop-up dictionary condition had the shortest average vocabulary searching time, vocabulary and text reading time, yet with less than the type-in dictionary group but more than the book dictionary group in terms of frequent dictionary 'look-ups' (p<.0001). In addition, ANOVA analyses also showed that text reading time differed significantly across all four treatments, and so did reading comprehension. Vocabulary acquisition was reported as enhanced in the three treatments rather than in the control group, but still with insignificant differences across the three treatments, yet with more differential effects in favour of the pop-up condition. Data also assert that participants preferred the pop-up e-dictionary more than the type-in and paper-based groups. Explanations of the findings vis-à-vis the cognitive load theory were presented. Pedagogical implications and suggestions for further research were forwarded at the end.

Keywords: computer-mediated dictionaries, type-in dictionaries, pop-up dictionaries, reading comprehension, vocabulary acquisition

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1353 Using Reading to Learn Pedagogy to Promote Chinese Written Vocabulary Acquisition: An Evaluative Study

Authors: Mengping Cheng, John Everatt, Alison Arrow, Amanda Denston

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Based on the available evidence, Chinese heritage language learners have a basic level of Chinese language proficiency with lower capability in literacy compared to speaking. Low levels of literacy are likely related to the lack of reading activities in current textbook-based pedagogy used in Chinese community schools. The present study aims to use Reading to Learn pedagogy which is a top-down language learning model and test the effectiveness of Reading to Learn on Chinese heritage learners’ written vocabulary acquisition. A quasi-experiment with the pre-test/post-test non-equivalent group design was conducted. The experimental group received Reading to Learn instructions and the control group had traditional textbook-based instructions. Participants were given Chinese characters tasks (a recognize-and-read task and a listen-and-point task), vocabulary tasks (a receptive vocabulary task and a productive vocabulary task) and a sentence cloze test in pre-tests and post-tests. Data collection is in progress and results will be available shortly. If the results show more improvement of Chinese written vocabulary in the experimental group than in the control group, it will be recommended that Reading to Learn pedagogy is valuable to be used to maintain and develop Chinese heritage language literacy.

Keywords: Chinese heritage language, experimental research, Reading to Learn pedagogy, vocabulary acquisition

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1352 EFL Saudi Students' Use of Vocabulary via Twitter

Authors: A. Alshabeb

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Vocabulary is one of the elements that links the four skills of reading, writing, speaking, and listening and is very critical in learning a foreign language. This study aims to determine how Saudi Arabian EFL students learn English vocabulary via Twitter. The study adopts a mixed sequential research design in collecting and analysing data. The results of the study provide several recommendations for vocabulary learning. Moreover, the study can help teachers to consider the possibilities of using Twitter further, and perhaps to develop new approaches to vocabulary teaching and to support students in their use of social media.

Keywords: social media, twitter, vocabulary, web 2

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1351 Exploring Reading Attitudes among Iranian English Language Teachers

Authors: Narges Nemati, Mohammadreza Fallahpour, Hossein Bozorgian

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Reading is one of the receptive skills which has an important role in improving other skills like writing and speaking. Furthermore, language learners can acquire plenty of vocabularies and become more acquainted with written expression through reading. Also, negative attitudes toward reading can cause negligible reading comprehension, which could prompt poor performance in the English language. Considering the fact that reading instruction was discussed as a low priority skill in the field of EFL teacher education, this study attempted to investigate EFL teachers’ attitudes toward reading instruction. Therefore, to serve the purpose of this study, a mixed-method approach was utilized by inviting 100 Iranian EFL teachers who taught at English language institutes of Iran to fill out a validated questionnaire on teachers’ attitude toward reading. Subsequently, 10 participants were randomly selected for further observations and interview sessions to evaluate the differences between their stated attitude and their actual practices. The findings from analyzing questionnaires, observations, and interviews revealed that EFL teachers’ stated attitude toward reading instruction was positive; whereas, due to some reasons like lack of time, scarcity of interesting passages, and lack of interest in reading long passages, teachers did not show positive actual attitude toward teaching reading skill.

Keywords: English as foreign language classroom, English language, reading skill, teachers' attitude

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1350 The Effects of Three Pre-Reading Activities (Text Summary, Vocabulary Definition, and Pre-Passage Questions) on the Reading Comprehension of Iranian EFL Learners

Authors: Leila Anjomshoa, Firooz Sadighi

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This study investigated the effects of three types of pre-reading activities (vocabulary definitions, text summary and pre-passage questions) on EFL learners’ English reading comprehension. On the basis of the results of a placement test administered to two hundred and thirty English students at Kerman Azad University, 200 subjects (one hundred intermediate and one hundred advanced) were selected.Four texts, two of them at intermediate level and two of them at advanced level were chosen. The data gathered was subjected to the statistical procedures of ANOVA. A close examination of the results through Tukey’s HSD showed the fact that the experimental groups performed better than the control group, highlighting the effect of the treatment on them. Also, the experimental group C (text summary), performed remarkably better than the other three groups (both experimental & control). Group B subjects, vocabulary definitions, performed better than groups A and D. The pre-passage questions group’s (D) performance showed higher scores than the control condition.

Keywords: pre-reading activities, text summary, vocabulary definition, and pre-passage questions, reading comprehension

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1349 From “Learning to Read” to “Reading to Learn”

Authors: Lucélia Alcântara

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Reading has been seen as a passive skill by many people for a long time. However, when one comes to study it deeply and in a such a way that the act of reading equals acquiring knowledge through living an experience that belongs to him/her, passive definitely becomes active. Material development with a focus on reading has to consider much more than reading strategies. The following questions are asked: Is the material appropriate to the students’ reality? Does it make students think and state their points of view? With that in mind a lesson has been developed to illustrate theory becoming practice. Knowledge, criticality, intercultural experience and social interaction. That is what reading is for.

Keywords: reading, culture, material development, learning

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1348 Developing a Model for the Lexical Analysis of Key Works of Children's Literature

Authors: Leigha Inman

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One of the most cutting-edge interdisciplinary topics in the social sciences is the application of understandings from the humanities to traditionally social scientific disciplines such as education studies. This paper proposes such a topic. It has often been observed that children enjoy literature. The role of reading in the development of reading ability is an important area of research. However, the role of vocabulary in reading development has long been neglected. This paper reports an investigation into the number of words found in key works of children's literature and attempts to correlate that figure with years elapsed since publication of the work. Pedagogical implications will be discussed.

Keywords: educational pedagogy, young learners, vocabulary teaching, reading development

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1347 Review of Literature: Using Technology to Help Language Learners at Improving Their Language Skills

Authors: Eyup Bayram Guzel, Osman Tunc

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People have been fairly interested in what technology offers to them around a scope of human necessities and it has become a part of human life. In this study, experimental studies were reviewed for the purpose of how technology helps language learners improve their phonemic awareness, reading comprehension and vocabulary development skills. As a conclusion, experimental studies demonstrated that students showed significant improvements up to 70% in phonological awareness, while they demonstrated up to 76% of improvements in reading comprehension and up to 77% in vocabulary development. The use of computer-assisted technologies and its positive outcomes were encouraged to be used more widely in order to meet the diverse needs of students.

Keywords: technology, phonemic awareness, reading comprehension, vocabulary development

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1346 Effect of Two Transactional Instructional Strategies on Primary School Pupils’ Achievement in English Language Vocabulary and Reading Comprehension in Ibadan Metropolis, Nigeria

Authors: Eniola Akande

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Introduction: English vocabulary and reading comprehension are core to academic achievement in many school subjects. Deficiency in both accounts for dismal performance in internal and external examinations among primary school pupils in Ibadan Metropolis, Nigeria. Previous studies largely focused on factors influencing pupils’ achievement in English vocabulary and reading comprehension. In spite of what literature has shown, the problem still persists, implying the need for other kinds of intervention. This study was therefore carried out to determine the effect of two transactional strategies Picture Walk (PW) and Know-Want to Learn-Learnt (KWL) on primary four pupils’ achievement in English vocabulary and reading comprehension in Ibadan Metropolis. The moderating effects of gender and learning style were also examined. Methodology: The study was anchored on Rosenblatt’s Transactional Reading and Piaget’s Cognitive Development theories; pretest-posttest control group quasi-experimental design with 3x2x3 factorial matrix was adopted. Six public primary schools were purposively selected based on the availability of qualified English language teachers in Primary Education Studies. Six intact classes (one per school) with a total of 101 primary four pupils (48 males and 53 females) participated. The intact classes were randomly assigned to PW (27), KWL (44) and conventional (30) groups. Instruments used were English Vocabulary (r=0.83), Reading Comprehension (r=0.84) achievement tests, Pupils’ Learning Style Preference Scale (r=0.93) and instructional guides. Treatment lasted six weeks. Data were analysed using the Descriptive statistics, Analysis of Covariance and Bonferroni post-hoc test at 0.05 level of significance. The mean age was 8.86±0.84 years. Result: Treatment had a significant main effect on pupils’ reading comprehension (F(2,82)=3.17), but not on English vocabulary. Participants in KWL obtained the highest post achievement means score in reading comprehension (8.93), followed by PW (8.06) and control (7.21) groups. Pupils’ learning style had a significant main effect on pupils’ achievement in reading comprehension (F(2,82)=4.41), but not on English vocabulary. Pupils with preference for tactile learning style had the highest post achievement mean score in reading comprehension (9.40), followed by the auditory (7.43) and the visual learning style (7.37) groups. Gender had no significant main effect on English vocabulary and reading comprehension. There was no significant two-way interaction effect of treatment and gender on pupils’ achievement in English vocabulary and reading comprehension. The two-way interaction effect of treatment and learning style on pupils’ achievement in reading comprehension was significant (F(4,82)=3.37), in favour of pupils with tactile learning style in PW group. There was no significant two-way interaction effect of gender and learning style on pupils’ achievement in English vocabulary and reading comprehension. The three-way interaction effects were not significant on English vocabulary and reading comprehension. Conclusion: Picture Walk and Know-Want to learn-Learnt instructional strategies were effective in enhancing pupils’ achievement in reading comprehension but not on English vocabulary. Learning style contributed considerably to achievement in reading comprehension but not to English vocabulary. Primary school, English language teachers, should put into consideration pupils’ learning style when adopting both strategies in teaching reading comprehension for improved achievement in the subject.

Keywords: comprehension-based intervention, know-want to learn-learnt, learning style, picture walk, primary school pupils

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1345 Explaining Listening Comprehension among L2 Learners of English: The Contribution of Vocabulary Knowledge and Working Memory Capacity

Authors: Ahmed Masrai

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Listening comprehension constitutes a considerable challenge for the second language (L2) learners, but a little is known about the explanatory power of different variables in explaining variance in listening comprehension. Since research in this area, to the researcher's knowledge, is relatively small in comparison to that focusing on the relationship between reading comprehension and factors such as vocabulary and working memory, there is a need for studies that are seeking to fill the gap in our knowledge about the specific contribution of working memory capacity (WMC), aural vocabulary knowledge and written vocabulary knowledge to explaining listening comprehension. Among 130 English as foreign language learners, the present study examines what proportion of the variance in listening comprehension is explained by aural vocabulary knowledge, written vocabulary knowledge, and WMC. Four measures were used to collect the required data for the study: (1) A-Lex, a measure of aural vocabulary knowledge; (2) XK-Lex, a measure of written vocabulary knowledge; (3) Listening Span Task, a measure of WMC and; (4) IELTS Listening Test, a measure of listening comprehension. The results show that aural vocabulary knowledge is the strongest predictor of listening comprehension, followed by WMC, while written vocabulary knowledge is the weakest predictor. The study discusses implications for the explanatory power of aural vocabulary knowledge and WMC to listening comprehension and pedagogical practice in L2 classrooms.

Keywords: listening comprehension, second language, vocabulary knowledge, working memory

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1344 An Experimental Study on the Variability of Nonnative and Native Inference of Word Meanings in Timed and Untimed Conditions

Authors: Swathi M. Vanniarajan

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Reading research suggests that online contextual vocabulary comprehension while reading is an interactive and integrative process. One’s success in it depends on a variety of factors including the amount and the nature of available linguistic and nonlinguistic cues, his/her analytical and integrative skills, schema memory (content familiarity), and processing speed characterized along the continuum of controlled to automatic processing. The experiment reported here, conducted with 30 native speakers as one group and 30 nonnative speakers as another group (all graduate students), hypothesized that while working on (24) tasks which required them to comprehend an unfamiliar word in real time without backtracking, due to the differences in the nature of their respective reading processes, the nonnative subjects would be less able to construct the meanings of the unknown words by integrating the multiple but sufficient contextual cues provided in the text but the native subjects would be able to. The results indicated that there were significant inter-group as well as intra-group differences in terms of the quality of definitions given. However, when given additional time, while the nonnative speakers could significantly improve the quality of their definitions, the native speakers in general would not, suggesting that all things being equal, time is a significant factor for success in nonnative vocabulary and reading comprehension processes and that accuracy precedes automaticity in the development of nonnative reading processes also.

Keywords: reading, second language processing, vocabulary comprehension

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1343 DDl Tasks and Involvement Load Hypothesis

Authors: Zaha Alanazi

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Despite the increasing research on the benefits of using corpora in language teaching and learning, data-driven learning (DDL) research has been criticized for its lack of contribution to second language theories. This paper intends to address this gap by examining the assumptions of the involvement load hypothesis (ILH) using two DDL tasks with different cognitive loads. Learners were assigned to one of two conditions: reading only or translation. Based on ILH, translation is more effective than reading in learning vocabulary, as it induces more cognitive involvement (Laufer &Hulstjin, 2001). The two groups received a pretest to ensure their unfamiliarity with six target words. Each group underwent one instructional session under one of the two conditions. After the session, students took three immediate post tests on the six target items: active recall of form, passive recall of meaning, and production. Contrary to the expectations of ILH, the results of the immediate post tests showed no statistically significant difference in the mean of vocabulary knowledge between the two groups. In addition, in the delayed test, the reading-only group showed statistically higher scores in the active recall of form than their translation peers. The findings highlight some important theoretical and pedagogical implications for using DDL tasks, particularly for EFL vocabulary learning.

Keywords: corpora, foreign language acquisition, ILH, vocabulary, cognitive load, DDL

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1342 Effective Glosses in Reading to Help L2 Vocabulary Learning for Low-Intermediate Technology University Students in Taiwan

Authors: Pi-Lan Yang

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It is controversial which type of gloss condition (i.e., gloss language or gloss position) is more effective in second or foreign language (L2) vocabulary learning. The present study compared the performance on learning ten English words in the conditions of L2 English reading with no glosses and with glosses of Chinese equivalents/translations and L2 English definitions at the side of a page and at an attached sheet for low-intermediate Chinese-speaking learners of English, who were technology university students in Taiwan. It is found first that the performances on the immediate posttest and the delayed posttest were overall better in the gloss condition than those in the no-gloss condition. Next, it is found that the glosses of Chinese translations were more effective and sustainable than those of L2 English definitions. Finally, the effects of L2 English glosses at the side of a page were observed to be less sustainable than those at an attached sheet. In addition, an opinion questionnaire used also showed a preference for the glosses of Chinese translations in L2 English reading. These results would be discussed in terms of automated lexical access, sentence processing mechanisms, and the trade-off nature of storage and processing functions in working memory system, proposed by the capacity theory of language comprehension.

Keywords: glosses of Chinese equivalents/translations, glosses of L2 English definitions, L2 vocabulary learning, L2 English reading

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1341 Background Knowledge and Reading Comprehension in ELT Classes: A Pedagogical Perspective

Authors: Davoud Ansari Kejal, Meysam Sabour

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For long, there has been a belief that a reader can easily comprehend a text if he is strong enough in vocabulary and grammatical knowledge but there was no account for the ability of understanding different subjects based on readers’ understanding of the surrounding world which is called world background knowledge. This paper attempts to investigate the reading comprehension process applying the schema theory as an influential factor in comprehending texts, in order to prove the important role of background knowledge in reading comprehension. Based on the discussion, some teaching methods are suggested for employing world background knowledge for an elaborated teaching of reading comprehension in an active learning environment in EFL classes.

Keywords: background knowledge, reading comprehension, schema theory, ELT classes

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1340 Signed Language Phonological Awareness: Building Deaf Children's Vocabulary in Signed and Written Language

Authors: Lynn Mcquarrie, Charlotte Enns

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The goal of this project was to develop a visually-based, signed language phonological awareness training program and to pilot the intervention with signing deaf children (ages 6 -10 years/ grades 1 - 4) who were beginning readers to assess the effects of systematic explicit American Sign Language (ASL) phonological instruction on both ASL vocabulary and English print vocabulary learning. Growing evidence that signing learners utilize visually-based signed language phonological knowledge (homologous to the sound-based phonological level of spoken language processing) when reading underscore the critical need for further research on the innovation of reading instructional practices for visual language learners. Multiple single-case studies using a multiple probe design across content (i.e., sign and print targets incorporating specific ASL phonological parameters – handshapes) was implemented to examine if a functional relationship existed between instruction and acquisition of these skills. The results indicated that for all cases, representing a variety of language abilities, the visually-based phonological teaching approach was exceptionally powerful in helping children to build their sign and print vocabularies. Although intervention/teaching studies have been essential in testing hypotheses about spoken language phonological processes supporting non-deaf children’s reading development, there are no parallel intervention/teaching studies exploring hypotheses about signed language phonological processes in supporting deaf children’s reading development. This study begins to provide the needed evidence to pursue innovative teaching strategies that incorporate the strengths of visual learners.

Keywords: American sign language phonological awareness, dual language strategies, vocabulary learning, word reading

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1339 Exploring the Types of Infants and Toddlers' Reading Responses in Nursery Centers: A Qualitative Study

Authors: Ming Fang Hsieh

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The purpose of this study was to investigate the reading responses of infants and toddlers across different contexts in nursery centers. The study adopted Sipe’s framework for children’s literacy education to explore the reading behavior of infants and toddlers. The study was conducted at two nurseries. The sample comprised 46 infants and toddlers and 6 caregivers. The methods of data collection included observation of various reading activities, including shared reading in a group, one-on-one reading, and unstructured reading activities, as well as interviews with caregivers. The data obtained through observations and interviews were transcribed and analyzed. The caregivers and the children’s parents signed an informed consent form before the start of the study. There was no risk anticipated during the course of the study. The analysis revealed five types of reading responses exhibited by the infants and toddlers: (1) linguistic- verbally responding to reading, repeating vocabulary, and answering questions; (2) affective- concentrating on reading or requesting for repeated reading, leaning on books, and gazing at caregivers; (3) explosive- children under 18 months were observed manipulating books through their bodies or different movements like flipping, rotating, or tapping on books; (4) social- during unstructured reading context, children were seen interacting with peers or following the rules of reading, sitting properly, and choosing one book at a time; and (5) distracted responses- paying attention to something else instead of reading, walking around, and playing, which was usually observed during shared reading in a group. The study concluded that children’s distraction and explosive reading behaviors may be a part of the process of their emergent reading behavior. As children develop, they demonstrate an increase in verbal responses, improved concentration, and better behavior. The study suggests that adults should continue to provide appropriate reading opportunities beginning from infancy to nurture children’s reading behaviors.

Keywords: reading response, infants and toddlers, early reading, picture books

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1338 Students Reading and Viewing the American Novel in a University EFL/ESL Context: A Picture of Real Life

Authors: Nola Nahla Bacha

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Research has indicated that ESL/EFL (nonnative students of English) students have difficulty in reading at the university as often times the requirements are long texts in which both cultural and linguistic factors impede their understanding and thus their motivation. This is especially the case in literature courses. It is the author’s view that if readings are selected according to the students’ interests and linguistic level, related to life situations and coupled with film study they will not only be motivated to read, but they will find reading interesting and exciting. They will view novels, and thus literature, as a picture of life. Students will also widen their vocabulary repertoire and overcome many of their linguistic problems. This study describes the procedure used in in a 20th Century American Novel class at one English medium university in Lebanon and explores students’ views on the novels assigned and their recommendations. Findings indicate that students significantly like to read novels, contrary to what some faculty claim and view the inclusion of novels as helping them with expanding their vocabulary repertoire and learning about real life which helps them linguistically, pedagogically, and above all personally during their life in and out of the university. Annotated texts, pictures and film will be used through technological aids to show how the class was conducted and how the students’ interacted with the novels assigned. Implications for teaching reading in the classroom are made.

Keywords: language, literature, novels, reading, university teaching

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1337 A Case Study on Improving Language Skills of Preschoolers by Parent-Child Reading

Authors: Hoi Yan Lau

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In Hong Kong, most families have working parents, and the primary caregivers of young children are helpers. This leads to a lack of interaction and language expression in children’s home environment, which affects their language development. This study aims to explore the effectiveness of parent-child reading in improving young children’s language skills. A 4-year-old girl and her mother are recruited to a 3 months’ parent-child reading program. There is a total of 26 reading sessions which target to enhance the parent’s skill of parent-child reading and to assess the child’s language ability. At the same time, the child’s use of language in normal classroom settings is analyzed by anecdotal records. It is shown that the parent is able to use more and better guiding questions during parent-child reading after this program, which in turn leads to more and longer response of the child during the reading sessions. The child also has an increase in Mean Length of Utterance and has a higher frequency of using complete sentences when interacting with other classmates in the classroom. It is worthwhile to further investigate the inclusion of promoting parent-child reading to enhance children’s language development in preschool curriculum planning.

Keywords: Hong Kong, language skills, parent-child reading, preschoolers

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1336 The Effects of Infographics as a Supplementary Tool in Promoting Academic Reading Skill in an EFL Class

Authors: Niracha Chompurach, Dararat Khampusaen

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EFL students have to be able to synthesize the texts they are reading critically to compose and connect the information. This study focuses on the effects of the application of Infographics as a supplementary tool to improve Thai EFL students’ Academic reading skills. Infographics are graphic visual representations of information, data, and knowledge offering students to work on gathering multiple types of information, such as pictures, texts, graphs, mapping, and charts. The study aims to investigate if the Infographics as a supplementary tool in academic reading lessons can make a difference in students’ reading skills, and the students’ opinions toward the application of infographics as a reading tool. The participants of this study were 3rd year Thai EFL Khon Kaen University students who took English Academic Reading course. This study employed Infographics assignments, Infographics rubric, and Gucus group interview. This study would advantage for both EFL teachers and students as a means to engage the students to handle the larger load of and represents the complex information in visible and comprehensible way.

Keywords: EFL, e-learning, infographics, language education

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1335 Grounding Chinese Language Vocabulary Teaching and Assessment in the Working Memory Research

Authors: Chan Kwong Tung

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Since Baddeley and Hitch’s seminal research in 1974 on working memory (WM), this topic has been of great interest to language educators. Although there are some variations in the definitions of WM, recent findings in WM have contributed vastly to our understanding of language learning, especially its effects on second language acquisition (SLA). For example, the phonological component of WM (PWM) and the executive component of WM (EWM) have been found to be positively correlated with language learning. This paper discusses two general, yet highly relevant WM findings that could directly affect the effectiveness of Chinese Language (CL) vocabulary teaching and learning, as well as the quality of its assessment. First, PWM is found to be critical for the long-term learning of phonological forms of new words. Second, EWM is heavily involved in interpreting the semantic characteristics of new words, which consequently affects the quality of learners’ reading comprehension. These two ideas are hardly discussed in the Chinese literature, both conceptual and empirical. While past vocabulary acquisition studies have mainly focused on the cognitive-processing approach, active processing, ‘elaborate processing’ (or lexical elaboration) and other effective learning tasks and strategies, it is high time to balance the spotlight to the WM (particularly PWM and EWM) to ensure an optimum control on the teaching and learning effectiveness of such approaches, as well as the validity of this language assessment. Given the unique phonological, orthographical and morphological properties of the CL, this discussion will shed some light on the vocabulary acquisition of this Sino-Tibetan language family member. Together, these two WM concepts could have crucial implications for the design, development, and planning of vocabularies and ultimately reading comprehension teaching and assessment in language education. Hopefully, this will raise an awareness and trigger a dialogue about the meaning of these findings for future language teaching, learning, and assessment.

Keywords: Chinese Language, working memory, vocabulary assessment, vocabulary teaching

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1334 Improving Young Learners' Vocabulary Acquisition: A Pilot Program in a Game-Based Environment

Authors: Vasiliki Stratidou

Abstract:

Modern simulation mobile games have the potential to enhance students’ interest, motivation and creativity. Research conducted on the effectiveness of digital games for educational purposes has shown that such games are also ideal at providing an appropriate environment for language learning. The paper examines the issue of simulation mobile games in regard to the potential positive impacts on L2 vocabulary learning. Sixteen intermediate level students, aged 10-14, participated in the experimental study for four weeks. The participants were divided into experimental (8 participants) and control group (8 participants). The experimental group was planned to learn some new vocabulary words via digital games while the control group used a reading passage to learn the same vocabulary words. The study investigated the effect of mobile games as well as the traditional learning methods on Greek EFL learners’ vocabulary learning in a pre-test, an immediate post-test, and a two-week delayed retention test. A teacher’s diary and learners’ interviews were also used as tools to estimate the effectiveness of the implementation. The findings indicated that the experimental group outperformed the control group in acquiring new words through mobile games. Therefore, digital games proved to be an effective tool in learning English vocabulary.

Keywords: control group, digital games, experimental group, second language vocabulary learning, simulation games

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1333 Salient Issues in Reading Comprehension Difficulties Faced by Primary School Children

Authors: Janet Fernandez

Abstract:

Reading is both for aesthetic and efferent purposes. In order for reading comprehension to take place, the reader needs to be able to make meaningful connections and enjoy the reading process. The notion of reading comprehension is discussed along with the plausible causes of poor reading comprehension abilities among primary school children. Among the major contributing causes are imaging, lack of schemata, selection of reading materials, and habits of the readers. Instruction methods are an integral part of making reading comprehension a meaningful experience, hence several models are presented for the classroom practitioner. Suggestions on how primary school children can improve their reading comprehension skills are offered.

Keywords: children, improve, reading comprehension, meaningful strategies

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1332 Using Vocabulary Instructional Materials in Improving the Grade Four Students' Learning in Science

Authors: Shirly May Balais

Abstract:

This study aims to evaluate the effects of vocabulary instruction in improving the students’ learning in science. The teacher-researcher utilized the vocabulary instructional materials in enriching the science vocabulary of grade four learners. The students were also given an achievement test to determine the effects of vocabulary instructional materials. The assessment indicated that students had shown improvement in comprehension and science literacy. This also helps the students to grasp, understand, and communicate appropriate science concepts and the integration of imagery makes learning science fun. In this research, descriptive qualitative methods and observation interviews were used to describe the effects of using vocabulary instructional materials in improving the science vocabulary of grade four learners. The students’ perceptions were studied, analyzed, and interpreted qualitatively.

Keywords: instruction, learning, science, vocabulary

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1331 The Role of Reading Self-Efficacy and Perception of Difficulty in English Reading among Chinese ESL Learners

Authors: Kevin Chan, Kevin K. H. Chung, Patcy P. S. Yeung, H. L. Ip, Bill T. C. Chung, Karen M. K. Chung

Abstract:

Purpose: Recent evidence shows that reading self-efficacy and students perceived difficulty in reading are significantly associated with word reading and reading fluency. However, little is known about these relationships among students learning to read English as a second language, particularly in Chinese students. This study examined the contributions of reading self-efficacy, perception of difficulty in reading, and cognitive-linguistic skills to performance on English word reading and reading fluency in Chinese students. Method: A sample of 122 second-and third-grade students in Hong Kong, China, participated in this study. Students completed the measures of reading self-efficacy and perception of difficulty in reading. They were assessed on their English cognitive-linguistic and reading skills: rapid automatized naming, nonword reading, phonological awareness, word reading, and one-minute word reading. Results: Results of path analysis indicated that when students’ grades were controlled, reading self-efficacy was a significant correlate of word reading and reading fluency, whereas perception of difficulty in reading negatively predicted word reading. Conclusion: These findings underscore the importance of taking students’ reading self-efficacy and perception of difficulty in reading and their cognitive-linguistic skills into consideration when designing reading intervention and instructions for students learning English as a second language.

Keywords: self-efficacy, perception of difficulty in reading, english as a second language, word reading

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1330 L2 Reading in Distance Education: Analysis of Students' Reading Attitude and Interests

Authors: Ma. Junithesmer, D. Rosales

Abstract:

The study is a baseline description of students’ attitude and interests about L2 reading in a state university in the Philippines that uses distance education as a delivery mode. Most research conducted on this area dealt with the analysis of reading in a traditional school set-up. For this reason, this research was written to discover if there are implications as regards students’ preferences, interests and attitude reveal about L2 reading in a non-traditional set-up. To form the corpus of this study, it included the literature and studies about reading, preferred technological devices, titles of books and authors, reading medium traditional/ print and electronic books that juxtapose with students’ interest and feelings when reading at home and in school; and their views about their strengths and weaknesses as readers.

Keywords: distance education, L2 reading, reading, reading attitude

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