ERIC Number: ED265516
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985-Dec
Measures of Word Frequency as Predictors of English Root Word Knowledge.
Power, Michael A.; White, Thomas G.
To determine if measures of the frequency of English root words can serve as reliable predictors of knowledge of those words, a 98-item multiple choice vocabulary test, in which all of the items were English root words, was administered to 46 third graders and 45 fourth graders. The percentage of correct responses for the words was correlated with four measures of word frequency, using two methods of grouping--arithmetic and logarithmic. Three hypotheses were tested: (1) for morphologically basic (unaffixed) root words, there should be a strong relationship between word frequency and word knowledge; (2) the advantage of logarithmic grouping over arithmetic grouping should be less apparent, or non-existent, for morphologically basic words; and (3) for grouped basic words, simple item frequency would prove as strong a predictor of word knowledge as family frequency. All three of the hypotheses were confirmed. All frequency by knowledge correlations were quite high, arithmetic grouping gave the highest correlations, and simple item frequency proved to be the strongest predictor of root word knowledge. (Author/HOD)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A