ERIC Number: ED340437
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Aug
The Impact of Reading Ability on Classroom Performance. Rancho Santiago College Research, Planning [and] Resource Development Report.
Kessler, Ronald P.; Pezzetti, Greg
In spring 1990, a study was conducted of students in six Psychology classes taught by three instructors at Rancho Santiago College (RSC) to assess the impact of reading ability on exam performance. Students who volunteered for the study were administered the Nelson-Denny reading test. Those scoring below the 10th grade level were designated as "low-skill readers," while those scoring above the 10th grade level were considered "high-skill readers." Student demographic data and information on employment and enrollment status were also obtained. Class performance was measured by the scores received on the major exams given during the semester, and outcomes were assessed separately for the three instructors. Study findings included the following: (1) 73% of the 120 students identified as high-skill readers and 64% of the 55 low-skill readers persisted to the end of the semester; (2) no relationship was found between exam performance and students' gender, hours worked, or returning versus new student status; (3) on the first of four exams of the semester, the better readers scored about 12% higher than the low-level readers; (4) by the last exam of the semester, the high-level readers scored 7% to 8% higher than the low-level readers; and (5) while the instructors used the same textbooks and exams, the "reading factor" did not influence performance consistently across instructors, though better readers performed better on tests than the poorer readers regardless of instructor. (PAA)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Rancho Santiago Community Coll., Santa Ana, CA.