ERIC Number: ED222858
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1980-Dec-20
Reference Count: N/A
Awareness of the Segmental Structure of English in Adults of Various Literacy Levels.
Barton, David; Hamilton, Mary E.
As part of a wider study of metalinguistic skills, a study examined the segmental awareness skills of adults with a low level of literacy and compared them with the skills of more literate adults of similar backgrounds. Subjects, 60 adults enrolled in adult education classes, were divided into three groups of 20 according to reading level. Structured interviews covered several different aspects of segmental awareness. Results confirmed that segmental awareness varied with reading level. Specifically, the components that gave rise to the most errors and accounted for differences between the groups were those measuring word segmentation and those measuring smaller units within a whole--in short, problems of identifying "units within units." Results also showed that most segmentation errors occurred where an element of convention entered into the decision as to whether the form should be written as one word. Literates, however, were more likely to treat contractions as one word. These results seem to indicate that certain aspects of segmental awareness are related to literacy, while others are not. (JL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A