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ERIC Number: ED359498
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993-Mar
Pages: 17
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
Improved Reading Comprehension: A Key to University Retention?
Dixon, Ruth A.
A study investigated the growth in reading comprehension of students successfully completing a college developmental reading course, and the retention of students taking (and not taking) the reading course. Subjects, 197 first-time freshmen who entered Indiana Wesleyan University during 1989-90 and the 1990-91 school years, were divided into a treatment group of 88 students who were required to enroll in a developmental reading course (using computer-assisted instruction) based on their entrance scores on the Nelson-Denny Reading Test, and 109 students whose scores were slightly higher and who were not required to enroll in the course. Of 39 surveys sent to students who completed the course and were still on campus during the spring semester 1993, 38% were returned. Results indicated that: (1) the average growth in reading comprehension for students who completed the course in 1989-90 was 4 years and almost 3 years for students in 1990-91; (2) retention rates for students who completed the course in 1989-90 was 59%, while retention rates for students who did not take the course was 35%; (3) retention rates for students who completed the course in 1990-91 was 65%, while retention rates for students who did not take the course was 36%; and (4) the overwhelming majority of the students who completed the survey said the reading course gave adequate preparation for reading assignments in other courses. Findings suggest that reading comprehension of underprepared freshman can be increased, computer-assisted instruction is effective, and such instruction can aid in university retention. (Four tables of data and the survey instrument are included; a list of 5 computer software packages is attached.) (RS)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A