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Title:A Descriptive Analysis of the Miscues Associated With the Construction of Meaning by Three Bilingual Spanish-English-Speaking Students Reading in Their Second Language, English
Author(s):Engels, Shirley Eunice
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Elementary
Abstract:Four case studies in this dissertation were designed to look at the first language logic by Spanish-English bilingual students while reading in their second language, English. The word recognition strategies they employed, as well as the uncertainty reduction they effected, were observed.
The reading performances of 43 students were recorded and analyzed. From these students, three students were selected. Their performances were subjected to microanalysis. They were 12- to 14-year-olds in the sixth and seventh grades. Each student read one 13-sentence passage into a tape recorder three times. One student read an additional 13-sentence passage three times. In 156 sentences, therefore, miscues were identified and their origins reconstructed. They were assigned to one of the Categories of Grasp that ranged from less correct to more correct. The Categories were (4) "Lack of connection with the surrounding words"; (3) "Partially incorrect grasp"; (2) "Erroneous grasp, but contextually consistent"; and (1) "Correct or approximately correct grasp." Approximately 500 miscues were reconstructed in this fashion, and the reduction of uncertainty was traced by using these categories.
Conclusion: (1) Uncertainty reduction (related to the author's intent) was not reduced. (2) The students' ideas changed depending upon the perceptions they had at the time. (3) First language interference caused the least disruptive kinds of miscues. (4) Word recognition strategies used by the students could be identified as top-down or bottom-up, (5) When these strategies were applied to the construction of meaning, the students supplied their interpretations from what Frank Smith called, "the brain side of the eyeballs."
An investigation of the evidence in this dissertation showed that the overall category totals did not reflect consistent reduction in miscues, or uncertainty, and that retired (or corrected) miscues frequently were replaced by new miscues. The intracategory totals of the individual categories should have indicated a consistent relocation from the less correct Categories of Grasp to those that were more correct. In three out of four examples, however, miscue totals reflected a shift from the more correct Categories of Grasp to the less correct categories.
In summary, it was suggested that the acquisition of meaning, or comprehension, could not automatically be considered a reduction of uncertainty through the process of information extraction. It was, instead, a reduction of uncertainty in the student's mind that produced an interpretation based on his relation to his cultural and linguistic background linked to the information he picked up from the printed page.
Issue Date:1981
Description:269 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1981.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8127587
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-12
Date Deposited:1981

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