This paper is designed to address three research questions underlying the relationship between learners' vocabulary size and their reading comprehension. Burkhour, Harvey, "The Relationship Between Vocabulary and Reading . upon his / her prior knowledge and schemas and triggered by the writers. Vocabulary Knowledge and Reading Comprehension A Mutual Relationship link between types of vocabulary size tests and reading comprehension tests.
The t-value of grammatical knowledge as a predictor variable is meaningful at p The results in Table 4hence, indicate that grammatical knowledge and an awareness of the syntactic information contributes more to reading comprehension. The beta coefficient of 4. This finding is in line with earlier findings that indicate syntactic behavior is more related to reading comprehension than vocabulary knowledge Shiotsu and Weir, ; Alderson, ; Alavi, Based on observed means.
Regression coefficients for predicting performance on reading comprehension test Dependent variable: Correlations between knowledge of collocation, synonymy, polysemy and grammar To answer the third research question that sought to find out whether knowledge of collocation is related to performance on the grammar section, the scores on the tests were correlated.
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The results as presented in Table 5 confirm that the knowledge of collocation, synonymy, polysemy and grammar are significantly correlated. However, the findings also show that the strength of association between knowledge of vocabulary as measured by conventional TOEFL type test and grammar is more than that of the knowledge of collocation and synonymy, polysemy and grammar.
The results also indicate that the relationship between reading and grammatical knowledge is stronger than the link between TOEFL vocabulary and reading comprehension. These findings point to the age old problem of vocabulary tests: This finding, as Shiotsu and Weir argue highlight the fact that the test instruments are not reflective of the constructs they measure; as they argue, in several occasions, there is a great overlap between tests of grammar and tests of vocabulary.
The stronger correlation between knowledge of TOEFL vocabulary and grammar on the one hand and the close link between knowledge of vocabulary as measured by TOEFL test and reading comprehension on the other hand motivates us to conclude that vocabulary of TOEFL section is sensitive to both vocabulary knowledge and reading comprehension and addresses both knowledge sources. Further, it was found that relationship between polysemy and synonymy and reading is stronger than the relationship between collocation with reading 0.
More research is needed to add to the understanding of this relationship. Test takers with lower proficiency did not have an adequate knowledge to take depth of VK tests because this knowledge is incremental in nature and develops as the proficiency of the learners grows by being exposed to language for longer periods of time.
This finding is consistent with several studies that have demonstrated performance on any language test is influenced by linguistic knowledge of test takers. As Alderson and Urquhart argue a certain level of proficiency or competency in the language should be achieved to allow the learners to take advantage of their knowledge, otherwise learners will not be able to transfer reading skills, strategies and prior knowledge to second language reading.
This is hard to explain and further qualitative research is needed to explain the results. The results also indicated that the relationship between knowledge of collocation and synonymy, polysemy and grammatical knowledge is significant; this finding lends support to Lewisas cited in Westfall and Weber, who argues for inseparability of grammar and lexis and the relationship between collocation and grammar.
The results also show that the strength of association between knowledge of vocabulary as measured by conventional TOEFL type tests and grammar is more than the strength of the relationship between knowledge of collocation and polysemy on the one hand and knowledge of grammar on the other hand. This finding might relate to the inadequacy of the tests claiming to measure a certain construct. The high correlations between knowledge of vocabulary as measured by conventional TOEFL type test and grammar as Shiutsu and Weir have also noted raises question regarding the in divisibility of the two components.
It is quite possible that the developments of these putatively distinct elements of linguistic knowledge overlap. Thus, this finding encourages us to doubt claims regarding the independence of the construct of vocabulary knowledge; it seems that in the majority of cases the tests of vocabulary knowledge measure grammatical knowledge as well.
Since the correlation between variables was high, it was decided that variation in one of them could be explained by variation in the others. Therefore, the researchers sought to identify the variable that could account for the greatest amount of variation in reading comprehension.
The premise underlying this question is that vocabulary and grammar as components of linguistic proficiency are involved in reading comprehension. Given the earlier research findings concerning the role of vocabulary and grammar in reading comprehension are inconsistent Shiotsu and Weir,we sought to address this question once again and find out which one has a greater impact on reading comprehension. The scores of test takers on each vocabulary test and grammar subsection of TOEFL were correlated with their reading comprehension scores.How to use Mind Maps to understand and remember what you read!
The results revealed that grammar accounts for greater variation in reading comprehension than vocabulary knowledge. This finding of the present study is, therefore, consistent with those of Alaviwho found that grammar is more influential in reading than vocabulary knowledge.
On the basis of the findings it may be argued that the strong relationships between reading comprehension and grammar is related to the type of mental processes involved in test performance; in both tests, test takers need to focus on intertextual ties and logical relationships between sentences and the way these relationships influence meaning pp: It was also found that grammar accounts for the greatest amount of variation in reading performance than vocabulary section of TOEFL, vocabulary synonymy and polysemy and vocabulary collocation.
This is acceptable on the grounds that grammatical knowledge and lexical knowledge are two critical aspects of linguistic competence that seem to account for a better reading performance.
This is echoed by Shiotsu and Weirwho reported that syntactic knowledge is superior to vocabulary knowledge in predicting performance on reading comprehension. The findings of the present study suggest that language learners who have not reached a certain proficiency level experience difficulties in taking DVKT tests and comprehension of the written texts. Therefore, language teachers are recommended to help learners take advantage of their linguistic and lexical knowledge in comprehending the texts.
On the basis of the findings, it may be argued that grammatical knowledge predicts better comprehension and may be used as an indicator of success in reading. Breadth of vocabulary relates to the size of vocabulary that a person knows, and depth of vocabulary knowledge refers to how well a person knows a word. The two factors are critical as they play an important role in learning words; it is very likely that learners come across words with which they are not familiar.
In brief, the above studies demonstrate that the role of vocabulary knowledge in reading is an intriguing and complex concept. Based on research findings, it is clear that if the text 6 contains too many difficult words, that is high-frequency words, or words that learners do not know, comprehension of the reading text is likely to be impaired even if the text is cohesive.
Even if the students have background knowledge on the reading, difficult vocabulary still diminishes the comprehension of the reading. The studies above also acknowledge and attest to the significance of the role of vocabulary in reading comprehension.
Effective Strategies for Teaching Vocabulary in the ESL Classroom Having established the importance of the role of vocabulary in reading comprehension, it is time to discuss effective vocabulary instruction.
Teaching vocabulary learning strategies is significant to both teachers and learners. Tassana-ngam conducted a study training Thai EFL university students in using five vocabulary learning methods, including dictionary work, keyboard method, semantic context, grouping, and semantic mapping.
Creating many opportunities for students to learn words, related concepts, and their meanings is considered to be an effective vocabulary instruction. Strong instructional opportunities are needed in order to help students develop profound word knowledge and to build their personal vocabulary repertoire. It is important to note that vocabulary learning can be either incidental or intentional. Incidental learning is the process of learning something without intending to learn it.
"The Relationship Between Vocabulary Knowledge and Reading Comprehensio" by Shereen Maher Salah
Incidental learning takes place through extensive reading in environments rich in input even though it occurs at a slow rate Coady, J, Intentional vocabulary learning is mostly based on synonyms, antonyms, word substitution, multiple choice, scrambled words and crossword puzzles. This technique is less effective because learners are pushed to memorization learning. This method encourages learners to cram the meaning of new words without undergoing cognitive processes.
According to Nationa very few words acquired through this technique are transformed into active process. Thus, the process of guessing is crucial for vocabulary learning.
The importance of incidental vocabulary learning is, thus, evident because it activates the cognitive processes of learners and motivates them to read and guess the meaning of new words, whereas intentional vocabulary learning relies much on cramming the meaning of the new words, which is easy to forget.
Intentional and direct vocabulary learning involves teaching individual words, teaching word learning strategies, and building word consciousness in students. Even though many words can be learned incidentally and might become stronger when supported with a language rich environment, students benefit much from systematic and direct teaching of words Graves, Direct vocabulary instruction should provide information about the context and the meaning of the word, engage students and allows time for word processing, exposes students multiple times to the words and let them review and practice newly learned vocabulary, and create a dialogue around the words Graves, Another direct teaching strategy is training the students on word learning strategies.
Instructors should focus on word parts to help learners decode the meaning of unfamiliar words through directly teaching them the meaning of the most common suffixes, prefixes. Promoting word consciousness is another important strategy in intentional vocabulary instruction.
Teachers need to develop word consciousness within their students and maintain their interest in learning vocabulary. Although it is unreasonable to claim that one can teach all the new words students have to learn each year, it is useful to provide direct instruction for some words. This can occur through pre-teaching key words before reading a text or a passage. Teachers, however, should remember that intentional instruction of specific words is just one way of 9 effective vocabulary instruction.
An important question may rise in this regard: According to Juel and Deffesteachers should choose words that are significant to understanding the text, useful to know in many situations, and those which are uncommon in spoken language but found frequently in books.
Students must be provided with opportunities to discuss, analyze, and use the words in different contexts. With that being said, it is acknowledged by researchers that there is no one best strategy for vocabulary instruction National Reading Panel, Therefore, instructors should teach vocabulary both directly and indirectly. Vocabulary instruction researchers propose a multi-component approach to promoting vocabulary knowledge. For example, Graves has recommended a four-part approach that involves wide reading, teaching sole words, training learners on word learning strategies, and developing word consciousness.
Improving Vocabulary Knowledge through Reading The indirect vocabulary instruction method advocated wide reading, multiple exposures to words, and activating background knowledge.
Students acquire new words by coming across them in text, either through reading them by themselves or they are being read to. Stahl affirmed that the development of 10 word knowledge is slow and incremental, which requires multiple exposures to words. This does not simply imply that students should repeat the words they want to learn through definition and synonym, but they should encounter the word in different types of texts and different contexts.
Knowledge of a word involves knowing how it is pronounced, written, used as a part of speech, and its different meanings. Stahl distinguishes between definitional knowledge and contextual knowledge. Learners, thus, need multiple exposures to the word in different reading contexts in order to fully recognize and understand a word. Furthermore, background knowledge is critical for comprehending what one is reading and being able to guess the meaning of words from the contexts.
To gain greater understanding of the vocabulary in a text, a student needs a threshold level of knowledge about the topic. Therefore, reading comprehension and vocabulary knowledge complement one another. Vocabulary knowledge is of crucial importance to understanding and comprehending any given selection.
Likewise, reading comprehension plays a critical role in developing vocabulary knowledge both incidental and intentional. For example, Lee and Muncie demonstrated that a post-reading composition task enables ESL students to improve the productive use of high- level target vocabulary. One effective strategy for vocabulary retention is reading and retelling 11 task Reading and retelling promotes vocabulary acquisition and improves vocabulary gains for unknown words because of its demand of higher level of generation.
Vocabulary exercises are another task in which reading and vocabulary converge. Students have to read a text and then they have to work on some vocabulary exercises such as matching, filling the gap…etc.
Vocabulary gains for unfamiliar words may be augmented more effectively when a reading excerpt is accompanied by text-based vocabulary exercises than without them. For better retention of words, students need to be highly involved in vocabulary production e.
Conclusion and Implications This paper discusses the relationship between reading comprehension and vocabulary knowledge.
The author finds a strong correlation between reading comprehension and vocabulary knowledge. Students need a large vocabulary repertoire in order to understand concepts, infer the implied meaning, and make informed prediction of a reading text. Similarly, teachers need to instill a passion and interest in the learners to read in order to increase their vocabulary knowledge.
Thus, reading comprehension and vocabulary knowledge have a reciprocal relationship. Teachers can use reading to help students increase their vocabulary.
Likewise, teachers can utilize the vocabulary learners acquire to promote comprehension. Language teachers should motivate learners to read and help them acquire vocabulary incidentally and intentionally through reading. Moreover, reading should be purposeful in that students read something interesting to them and at the same time they should work on exercise, preferably vocabulary exercises, on what they have read. Moreover, reading should not simply be just practice.
Instead, it should be aimed at gaining knowledge. With proper reading materials, learners will be able to develop their knowledge of vocabulary more effectively. Moreover, teachers should combine various vocabulary teaching strategies and not rely on just one strategy, believing that it would be more effective than others. Incidental, intentional, direct and indirect instruction of vocabulary should be employed according to the vocabulary type and their importance to language learning in general, and reading comprehension in particular.
Modelling connections between word recognition and reading. In Theoretical Models and Processes of Reading, eds. Ruddell, and Norman J.
Cambridge University Press Barcroft, J. Effects of synonym generation on incidental and intentional L2 vocabulary learning during reading. Progress and procrastination in second language reading.
- The relationship between vocabulary knowledge and reading comprehension among Moroccan EFL learners
- The relationship between vocabulary knowledge and reading comprehension among Moroccan EFL learners
Annual Review of Applied Linguistics Putting it in context.