Reader and text factors in reading comprehension

Journal of Research in Reading (Impact Factor: 1.25). 04/2010; 34(4):365 - 383. DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9817.2010.01436.x


The effects of epistemic beliefs and text structure on cognitive processes during comprehension of scientific texts were investigated. On-line processes were measured using think-aloud (Experiment 1) and reading time (Experiment 2) methodologies. Measures of off-line comprehension, prior knowledge and epistemic beliefs were obtained. Results indicated that readers adjust their processing as a function of the interaction between epistemic beliefs and text structure. Readers with misconceptions and more sophisticated epistemic beliefs engage in conceptual change processes, but only when reading refutation texts. Results also showed that memory for text is not affected by differences in epistemic beliefs or text structure. These findings contribute to our understanding of the relations among factors associated with text comprehension and have implications for theories of conceptual change.

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    • "and formation) that make text readable (Amundson, 2005; Feder & Majnemer, 2007; Ziviani & Elkins, 1984). Second, perceived legibility is also related to reading processes (Murray et al., 2012) such as context, prior knowledge of word combinations and word prediction based on first, last and ascender and descender letters (Beech & Mayall, 2005; Kendeou et al., 2011; Morton, 1964). Handwriting style has also been associated with legibility, with print or 'mixed' (print and cursive ) handwriting styles rated more legible than cursive handwriting alone (Graham et al., 1998; van Drempt et al., 2011). "
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    ABSTRACT: Aims: Handwriting processes deteriorate with age and following neurological conditions. Improving handwriting is often a focus of rehabilitation. Yet knowledge of handwriting legibility in the elderly is limited. This study describes the distribution of handwriting legibility scores in healthy older adults, relationships between handwriting legibility, age and writing task, and reliability of rating procedures. Methods: A cross-sectional study design was used involving 120 healthy older Australians. Tasks included writing sentences, shopping lists and transcribing a telephone message. Legibility was scored using the modified Four Point Scale—version 2. Results: Legibility differed between tasks but was not related to increasing age. Conclusions: Impaired handwriting legibility in the elderly is less likely due to the effects of aging than the required task or medical conditions. Findings from this study may help therapists set intervention goals and measure legibility changes during handwriting retraining.
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    • "The near transfer test required the use of knowledge acquired in each of the texts applied in a different context (Barnett & Ceci, 2002; Kinstch, 1998), whereas the questionnaire used as pre-and posttest required retrieval of the information from prior knowledge and the texts. Previous research with refutation texts suggests that evidence for Downloaded by [University of Oslo] at 22:52 17 August 2015 conceptual change is more likely to be reflected in tasks that assess readers' learning from text as opposed to memory for the text (Guzzetti et al., 1993; Kendeou et al., 2011; Mason et al., 2008). Thus, conceptual change is more likely to be reflected in the performance on the near transfer test than on the questionnaire used as pre-and posttest. "
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    ABSTRACT: A refutation text is designed to promote conceptual change by explicitly acknowledging commonly held misconceptions about a topic, directly refuting them, and providing an accurate explanation. In this study, we determined the impact of different types of refutation texts on adolescent readers’ conceptual change learning in science. Specifically, we manipulated the way the correct conception was justified and explained following work in epistemic cognition. Three different types of justification were compared to a control condition: justification by authority, justification by multiple sources, and justification by personal opinion. The findings showed that learning effects were optimized when the correct conceptions were presented in terms of a corroborated consensus among multiple sources. 2015
    No preview · Article · Aug 2015 · The Journal of Experimental Education
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    • "For example, in the context of reading science texts, readers often have to deal with the activation of inaccurate prior knowledge, incorrect beliefs, or misconceptions that disrupt comprehension. Unless this incorrect knowledge is revised, it can interfere with the acquisition of new knowledge ( Kendeou et al, 2011; van den Broek, 2010). The present set of results demonstrate that providing the reader with causal explanations supporting the updating or knowledge-revision process can serve to eliminate the interference produced by the reactivation of incorrect information and result in long-term learning. "
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    ABSTRACT: In the present set of experiments, we systematically examined the processes that occur while reading texts designed to refute and explain commonsense beliefs that reside in readers' long-term memory. In Experiment 1 (n = 36), providing readers with a refutation-plus-explanation of a commonsense belief was sufficient to significantly reduce disruption during reading caused by the commonsense belief. In Experiment 2 (n = 36), the refutation alone reduced but did not eliminate the disruption during reading caused by the commonsense belief. However, in Experiment 3 (n = 36), the explanation alone was as effective as the refutation-plus-explanation in reducing disruption during reading. Finally, in Experiment 4 (n = 73), the refutation-plus-explanation manipulation not only reduced disruption during reading caused by the commonsense belief, it also produced long-term learning outcomes. Findings are discussed in the context of the Knowledge Revision Components framework.
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