THE STRATEGIES READERS EMPLOY IN COMPREHENDING EXPOSITORY AND NARRATIVE TEXT OF DIFFERING LENGTHS
AuthorFarr, Pi Addie, 1941-
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThis study was undertaken to gain a greater understanding of what readers do to comprehend expository and narrative text. Specifically, 24 randomly selected good tenth grade readers used various strategies to comprehend both an expository and narrative selection. The selections assigned to them were from a group of 12 earth science and 12 short story selections, both groups randomly selected, presented in units of the following sequence and length: 400-, 250-, 100-words, and 10-sentence lengths. Students read silently and their "thinking aloud" in regard to their silent reading provided the basis for strategy identification and for the development of a strategy classification system which included four major categories of print-oriented, explicit and implicit message-oriented, and integrative-evaluative strategies. Descriptive and statistical comparisons among strategies were analyzed in terms of these four major categories. These comparisons offered strong evidence that readers used a variety of strategies within and across text types, since strategy use was investigated in relation to multiple texts. Differences were noted, however, in the frequency and proportion of strategies used between the two text types. For instance, readers used a greater frequency and proportion of strategies in reading narrative compared to expository text. Statistical significance at the .01 level was also shown for frequency and proportion of implicit message-oriented strategies used in reading narrative compared to expository text. Differences were detected in frequency and proportion of strategies used in relation to the length of unit read. Predominant patterns of individual reader's strategy use were noted for each of the text types and for the text types combined. Results of this study suggest several implications for further research. First, a study of the effect of other differing types of text on readers' strategy use is needed to clarify and specify readers' strategy use in comprehension. Secondly, a comparison of strategy use of good with poor readers in regard to differing types of text is required to identify strategies used by different types of readers. Thirdly, an investigation into the developmental aspects of readers' strategy use in regard to differing types of text needed to provide insights into the ways in which strategy use is acquired and modified. Fourthly, a comparison of readers' strategy use in regard to text presented in varying lengths is needed to better explain the relationship between reader comprehension and length of text read.
Degree ProgramGraduate College