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ERIC Number: ED534569
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 172
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-2670-3921-7
A Reader, Inside and Out: Exploring More Ecologically Valid Understandings of Reading Motivation
Neugebauer, Sabina Rak
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Harvard University
Literacy development is one of the most accurate predictors of academic success with motivation to read being a central component of that development. The documented decrease in reading motivation in adolescence is concerning for educators because of the strong association between reading motivation and reading performance. This motivational decline is generally identified using measures of reading motivation that do not attend to the reading practices of adolescents. Existing assessments assume that reading motivation is relatively fixed over short periods of time; daily shifts in the level of motivation as a function of the setting or type of text being read are not explored as meaningful indicators. However, qualitative research has demonstrated that adolescents are motivated to read different text types for a variety of purposes across settings. To my knowledge, there is no empirical quantitative research that systematically explores motivation to read as a dynamic construct influenced by context. A particularly important population for study in the area of cross-context motivation is language minority (LM) students, a group for which the linguistic and sociocultural features encountered inside and outside of school differ maximally. This dissertation presents findings from two daily diary studies that look at a context-sensitive conceptualization of reading motivation. The first study explores whether there are differences in reading motivation inside and outside of the school setting for 119 fifth graders, and whether English only students fluctuate less in their daily motivation to read in distinct contexts than their LM peers. This first study found large intra-individual fluctuations in reading motivation across contexts. Contrary to expectation, LM students exhibited, on average, a smaller discrepancy between contexts, but more intra-individual fluctuation than their monolingual English-speaking peers. In the second study I compared the power of two reading motivation measures--an in-school measure and a context-neutral measure--to predict standardized reading performance. The findings indicate that the context-neutral measure did not predict reading performance, while the in-school measure did. The association between reading motivation and performance was negative for poor readers and non-significant for skilled readers. These two studies support the value of reconceptualizing reading motivation as context sensitive. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 5
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A