ERIC Number: ED188158
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979
Reference Count: 0
Readers' Expectations for Story Structures: Another Dimension in Reading Strategy?
Whaley, Jill Fitzgerald
A group of 50 third garde, 51 sixth grade, and 52 eleventh grade students participated in a study to examine the extent to which good readers at three grade levels expected structures in stories, the nature of their expectations, and developmental similarities and differences in their structural expectations. Materials for the study were prepared by parsing six simple stories into six major parts, using the story structure grammar devised by J. M. Mandler and N. S. Johnson. Each student silently read three stories in each of two task situations--the first asking them to predict what should occur next in a story and the second calling for them to predict a missing node in a story. Four major conclusions were drawn: (1) individuals' responses could be accounted for by the theory that readers do indeed use a set of rules for expecting particular structural elements and sequences of elements in stories; (2) the Mandler and Johnson story grammar could describe average and above average readers' expectations for story structure; (3) developmental differences existed in the extent to which good readers employed a set of expectations for stories, with third graders tending to expect particular structures less frequently than did sixth or eleventh grade students; and (4) students at each grade level appeared to use the same schema. (A summary of major story grammar rules and a copy of a story used in the study are appended.) (FL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Schema Theory; Schemata
Note: May be marginally legible.