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Title:The Reading Strategies Used by Selected Adult Spanish and Arabic Readers in Their Native Language and in English
Author(s):Gilbert, Carmen Castillo
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Reading
Abstract:The purpose of this study was to study the reading strategies of selected adult Spanish and Arabic speakers in their first language and in English. The frequency of usage of these strategies, their success level, the amount of transfer from L1 to L2, and sensitivity to cohesion in prose were some of the areas investigated.
Forty-eight non-native speakers of English were administered two cloze passages each followed by a tape-recorded interview in which they discussed the strategies they utilized to complete the missing items. Twelve "successful" Arabic and Spanish speakers and twelve "unsuccessful" Arabic and Spanish speakers comprised the sample. The successful subjects were students whose English proficiency was good enough to be enrolled in a major American university. The unsuccessful subjects were students less proficient in English enrolled in an intensive English program or in a local community college.
The cloze passages were taken from American undergraduate college textbooks and translated into Spanish and Arabic. Items on the tests were deleted using a rational deletion method and classified into either lexical or grammatical items. Each response was judged using an eight-point scale based on the degree of contextual appropriateness. A determination of the types of strategies used, their transfer and frequency of usage was made using the interview information.
One of the major findings was differences in performance on the English tests between the successful and unsuccessful students in both language groups. A second significant finding was that both groups in both language groups performed about the same in their native languages. A third finding was that all groups used the same types of strategies but in varying amounts and these ranked differently with regard to usage. A fourth finding was the subjects used the same strategies with the same relative frequencies across their L1 and L2, especially the Spanish speakers. Evidence also showed reading skills transfer among the Arabic speakers.
Implications arising from this investigation deal with areas such as first and second language reading instruction, teaching methodologies, curriculum planning for first and second language readers, and selection of appropriate reading materials.
Issue Date:1984
Description:272 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1984.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8422067
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-15
Date Deposited:1984

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