ERIC Number: ED213990
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981
Reference Count: 0
Ethnographic Research on Word Recognition Strategies of Adult Beginning Readers: Summary Report.
Boraks, Nancy; Schumacher, Sally
A study was conducted to describe factors influencing the acquisition of facilitating and inhibiting reading strategies by adult beginning readers (ABRs) in order to generate potential guidelines for instruction. Using an adapted form of the Goodman and Burke taxonomy of oral reading miscues as initial framework, the investigators described ABRs' reading behavior. In addition, field notes on classroom observations and on interviews with ABRs, teachers, and consultants were considered in discussing the pattern of reading behavior of ABRs. A detailed analysis of the reading and learning-to-read behavior of seven ABRs and general descriptions of the reading behavior of seven more ABRs provided a basis for identifying reading behaviors associated with success and failure. Although the highly idiosyncratic reading behavior of ABRs and the limited number of teaching situations observed preclude generalizations, the long-term observation of ABRs made it possible to suggest that given reading behaviors promote success or failure in learning to read. Specifically, ABRs who thought of reading as discovering meaning, were aware of when they were not gaining meaning, and had been exposed to syllabication and could manipulate vowels and syllables, tended to make progress. It was also found that ABRs learned more when teachers considered how they wanted to learn as well as what they wanted to learn. In addition, the way a teacher conducts a lesson provides a model for learning; when teachers preceded reading with a discussion of concepts in the text, students tended to read for meaning. Students' beliefs about reading, perhaps guided by prior schooling, also influenced reading strategies. It was suggested that these findings, along with further research on ABRs' adult development, be considered in designing methods to teach reading to adults. (KC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Virginia State Dept. of Education, Richmond. Adult Education Service.; Office of Vocational and Adult Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Virginia Commonwealth Univ., Richmond.