Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Measuring the reading ability of incoming freshmen: A path analysis investigation into reading comprehension
by Schuster, Jonathan, Ph.D., University of Kansas, 2012, 161; 3509176
Abstract (Summary)

Reading is a complex process involving numerous skills and abilities contributing to acquiring meaning from text. Individuals without the requisite reading skills will have difficulty not only in school but throughout their lifetimes. The purpose of the study was to compare the reading ability of incoming college freshmen with that of adults with low literacy found in Mellard, Fall, and Woods (2010). Incoming college freshmen took tests on seven critical reading components: phonemic decoding, word recognition, vocabulary, WMS, reading fluency, listening comprehension, and reading comprehension. The associations between the reading components were used to compare the path model derived by Mellard, Fall, and Woods (2010) using adults with low literacy and incoming college freshmen. Subsequently, the best fitting model for incoming college freshmen was found to determine the associations between the reading components for incoming college freshmen. The two groups significantly differed in the path estimates using the path model from Mellard, Fall, and Woods (2010). Adults with low literacy had stronger paths for the early developing reading components, because they typically have difficulty in these areas. Incoming college freshmen had a stronger vocabulary and reading comprehension path than did adults with low literacy. The best fitting model for incoming college freshmen suggested that word recognition does not make a strong contribution on reading fluency once paths between WMS and vocabulary with reading fluency were included in the model. Overall, incoming college freshmen are skilled on most of the critical reading components, especially the later developing ones like vocabulary and reading comprehension.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Atchley, Ruth Ann
Commitee: Atchley, Paul, Massengill-Shaw, Donita, Mellard, Daryl, Wu, Wei
School: University of Kansas
Department: Psychology
School Location: United States -- Kansas
Source: DAI-B 73/09(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Educational psychology, Developmental psychology, Cognitive psychology, Higher education
Keywords: Assessment, College students, Comprehension, Decoding, Reading ability, Vocabulary, Word recognition
Publication Number: 3509176
ISBN: 978-1-267-35433-4
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