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Recognition of vowel sounds as a function of phoneme-grapheme context Johnson, Patricia 1982

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RECOGNITION OF VOWEL SOUNDS AS A FUNCTION OF PHONEME-GRAPHEME CONTEXT by PATRICIA JOHNSON B.Ed., U n i v e r s i t y of Michigan, 1965 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS i n THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES Department of Language Education We accept t h i s t h e s i s as conforming to the re q u i r e d standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA A p r i l 1982 ^ P a t r i c i a Johnson ABSTRACT The e f f e c t s on vowel recognition of long vs_. short vowel sounds presented i n i s o l a t i o n as opposed to within the context of beginning and ending phonograms were investigated. Subjects were 90 f i r s t - and 90 second-grade p u p i l s who were c l a s s i f i e d as high, average, or low with respect to reading a b i l i t y . The Gates-MacGinitie Reading Test, 1978, Canadian e d i t i o n , was used to designate reading a b i l i t y . The experimental task was comprised of a Vowel-Discrimination Test designed for the study. I t contained 14 subtests which corresponded to the treatment conditions i n the experiment. For every item on each of the 14 t e s t s , subjects were required to l i s t e n to the examiner pronounce eit h e r a long or a short vowel sound. The auditory presentation was varied so that the vowel sound was pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n , i n a beginning phonogram (for example, pa) or i n an ending phonogram such as (ap). Following the auditory presentation of the vowel sound, each subject was required to se l e c t the vowel that had been pronounced from an array of f i v e vowel l e t t e r s that was g r a p h i c a l l y presented on a response sheet. This graphic presentation was varied to include vowel l e t t e r s printed i n i s o l a t i o n or imbedded i n a beginning or ending phonogram. An example of a response item for each of these v a r i a t i o n s follows: a-e-i-o-u (Iso- l a t i o n ; ep ap op ip up (Ending Phonogram); and pu pe pa po p i (Beginning Phonogram). i i The performance of each subject on the Vowel D i s c r i m i n a t i o n Test was determined by c a l c u l a t i n g the p r o p o r t i o n of items c o r r e c t f o r each of the 14 t e s t c o n d i t i o n s . The f o l l o w i n g r e s u l t s were found f o r the short vowel t e s t s . (1) The main e f f e c t of grade l e v e l was not s i g n i f i c a n t . (2) Performance was s u p e r i o r when short vowel sounds were pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n as opposed to i n a phonogram, e i t h e r beginning or ending. (3) When short vowel sounds were pronounced i n beginning v s . ending phonograms, r e c o g n i - t i o n performance was b e t t e r under the ending phonogram c o n d i t i o n f o r grade-two subjects only. (4) Given that a short vowel sound was pro- nounced i n an ending phonogram, r e c o g n i t i o n performance was b e t t e r when vowel l e t t e r s were g r a p h i c a l l y presented i n i s o l a t i o n . However, t h i s enhanced performance was r e s t r i c t e d to grade-two s u b j e c t s . Grade-one subjects performed e q u a l l y w e l l under both c o n d i t i o n s . (5) When a short vowel sound was pronounced In a beginning phonogram, r e c o g n i t i o n per- formance was b e t t e r i f the graphic p r e s e n t a t i o n was a vowel l e t t e r p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n . (6) Given that a short vowel sound was pronounced i n i s o - l a t i o n , enhanced r e c o g n i t i o n performance, when vowel l e t t e r s were a l s o p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n , was r e s t r i c t e d to grade-one subjects of average and low reading a b i l i t y . A n a l y s i s of the long vowel data revealed the f o l l o w i n g f i n d i n g s . (1) The main e f f e c t of grade l e v e l was not s i g n i f i c a n t . However, the main e f f e c t of a b i l i t y l e v e l was s i g n i f i c a n t . The e f f e c t f o r a b i l i t y l e v e l was a t t r i b u t a b l e almost e n t i r e l y to the d i f f e r e n c e among grade-one students. (2) Subjects performed b e t t e r when long vowels were pronounced i n beginning vs. ending phonograms. (.3) When long vowel sounds were pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n , r e c o g n i t i o n performance was b e t t e r when the i i i vowel l e t t e r s were g r a p h i c a l l y presented i n i s o l a t i o n as contrasted with beginning and ending phonograms. The following conclusions may be drawn from these f i n d i n g s . (1) Long vowel sounds are more e a s i l y recognized than short vowel sounds. Therefore, long vowel i n s t r u c t i o n should perhaps precede short vowel i n s t r u c t i o n . (2) The phonogram i s not the easiest unit i n which to recognize vowel sounds. Recognition performance was usually better when the vowel sounds were pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n rather than i n beginning or ending phonograms. i v T A B L E OF CONTENTS A B S T R A C T i i L I S T OF T A B L E S v i ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS v i i C h a p t e r I I N T R O D U C T I O N AND R E V I E W OF THE L I T E R A T U R E 1 P h o n i c s 1 T e a c h i n g V o w e l S o u n d s . . . 3 T h e R o l e o f t h e P h o n o g r a m i n R e a d i n g I n s t r u c t i o n . 5 T e a c h i n g V o w e l s i n P h o n o g r a m s 8 T h e G e n e r a l P r o b l e m 9 I I METHOD 1 1 S u b j e c t s . 1 1 M a t e r i a l s 1 1 D e s i g n 14 P r o c e d u r e 17 T a b u l a t i n g R e s u l t s 2 0 I I I R E S U L T S . . 2 1 S h o r t V o w e l R e c o g n i t i o n T a s k s 2 1 L o n g V o w e l R e c o g n i t i o n T a s k s 2 9 I V D I S C U S S I O N 3 6 S u g g e s t i o n s f o r F u r t h e r R e s e a r c h 4 2 V C O N C L U S I O N S 4 3 R E F E R E N C E S 4 6 A P P E N D I X 5 0 v LIST OF TABLES Table 1 Vowel D i s c r i m i n a t i o n Test Short-Vowel Subtests 15 2 Vowel D i s c r i m i n a t i o n Test Long-Vowel Subtests 16 3 Grade One Mean Percent Correct f o r Short-Vowel D i s c r i m i n a t i o n Tests . 22 4 Grade Two Mean Percent Correct f o r Short-Vowel D i s c r i m i n a t i o n Test 23 5 Summary of A n a l y s i s of Variance of Short-Vowel Recognition Scores 24 6 Grade One Mean Percent Correct f o r Long-Vowel D i s c r i m i n a t i o n Tests . 30 7 Grade Two Mean Percent Correct f o r Long-Vowel D i s c r i m i n a t i o n Test 31 8 Summary of Chi Square A n a l y s i s of Long-Vowel Recognition Scores . . . . . . . 32 v i ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Thank you to Dr. Kenneth Slade f o r advice and support throughout the completion of t h i s p r o j e c t . I g r a t e f u l l y acknowledge the a s s i s - tance of Dr. G. J . Johnson f o r h i s i n v a l u a b l e help w i t h the data a n a l y s i s . v i i CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION AND REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE Phonics In reading education there has never been a subject that has generated more controversy among p r o f e s s i o n a l s and laymen than has the subject of phonics. The controversy over the r o l e of phonics i n reading i n s t r u c t i o n has been r e f l e c t e d by reams of p r o f e s s i o n a l j o u r n a l a r t i c l e s and popular p e r i o d i c a l coverage. The d i f f e r e n c e s of o p i n i o n have to do w i t h the importance of teaching phonics. Some authors contend that reading d i f f i c u l t i e s (even the d e c l i n e of ed u c a t i o n a l standards) are due to a f a i l u r e to teach phonics or to teach "enough" or the " r i g h t k i n d " of phonics. H a r r i s and Sipay (1975) d e f i n e phonics as "the study of the r e l a - t i o n s h i p of phonemes to the p r i n t e d or w r i t t e n symbols that represent them ( l e t t e r s and l e t t e r s t r i n g s , c a l l e d graphemes) and t h e i r use i n d i s c o v e r i n g the p r o n u n c i a t i o n of p r i n t e d and w r i t t e n words. Phonics i s t h e r e f o r e , the part of phonology and phonetics that i s most in v o l v e d i n reading i n s t r u c t i o n " (p. 61). Phonics i s sometimes r e f e r r e d to as a "method" of reading i n s t r u c - t i o n . I t has f r e q u e n t l y been c i t e d as the "best method" of teaching reading. A good example of t h i s a t t i t u d e i s found i n the book Why Johnny Can't Read. F l e s c h (1955) s t a t e s that "as soon as you switch to 1 2 the common-sense method of teaching sounds of l e t t e r s , you can give them a l i t t l e primer and then proceed immediately to anything from the Reader's Digest to Treasure I s l a n d " (p. 14). Most reading s p e c i a l i s t s and researchers are l e s s e n t h u s i a s t i c i n t h e i r assessments of the importance of phonics i n reading i n s t r u c t i o n . I t i s g e n e r a l l y agreed that phonics i s only one of many means that a reader employs to decode words. Some w r i t e r s have cautioned that phon- i c s should not be considered a "method" of teaching reading, but r a t h e r , phonics should be perceived as one of s e v e r a l cues a v a i l a b l e to the reader as an a i d to word r e c o g n i t i o n (e.g., A r t l e y , 1977). Some of the c o n t r o v e r s i e s that educators have attempted to r e s o l v e have had to do w i t h whether or not phonics should be taught, when to teach i t , how much should be taught, what i n s t r u c t i o n a l sequences ought to be followed and what method of i n s t r u c t i o n should be employed. Numerous volumes have been w r i t t e n i n an attempt to answer these questions. The research that has been conducted i n an e f f o r t to r e s o l v e the i s s u e s i s considerable. The experimental f i n d i n g s , however, have been o f t e n c o n t r a d i c t o r y and i n c o n c l u s i v e (Spache, 1976). The phonics- teaching p r a c t i c e s that are discussed i n reading methodology t e x t s are d i v e r s e , c o n f l i c t i n g , and sometimes l a c k i n g e m p i r i c a l v a l i d a t i o n . Authors of i n s t r u c t i o n a l reading programs and workbooks vary widely i n terms of t h e i r approaches to phonics i n s t r u c t i o n . This l a c k of c o n s i s - tency i s p a r t i c u l a r l y evident i n the d i v e r s i t y of p r a c t i c e s recommended f o r teaching vowel sounds. 3 Teaching Vowel Sounds Vowel sounds have long been considered to be the most d i f f i c u l t aspect of phonics to master. This d i f f i c u l t y i s u s u a l l y a t t r i b u t e d to the wide v a r i e t y of s p e l l i n g s used to represent these sounds i n the E n g l i s h language. Authors of reading t e x t s and j o u r n a l a r t i c l e s o f t e n c i t e examples of the co m p l e x i t i e s and i n c o n s i s t e n c i e s of vowel sounds. Horn (1954) demonstrated the v a r i a b i l i t y of these sounds by p o i n t i n g out that there are at l e a s t 22 d i f f e r e n t ways to represent g r a p h i c a l l y the short " i " sound i n E n g l i s h . Anderson (1964) suggested that there are at l e a s t 300 d i f f e r e n t graphic r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s of approximately 17 vowel phonemes. Teachers have sought new techniques to d i m i n i s h the d i f f i c u l t y that t h i s aspect of E n g l i s h orthography poses during beginning reading i n s t r u c - t i o n . The most commonly used p r a c t i c e s appear to be based on conven- t i o n a l wisdoms or time honored t r a d i t i o n s . Few of the proposed prac- t i c e s or published i n s t r u c t i o n a l programs appear to be soundly supported by research f i n d i n g s . Thus, many of the i n s t r u c t i o n a l methods and m a t e r i a l s suggested f o r teaching vowel sounds may be of questionable value. The proposals f o r teaching vowel sounds are numerous and v a r i e d . Each advocate of the v a r i o u s techniques claims that h i s p r e f e r r e d method lessens the d i f f i c u l t y of vowel l e a r n i n g . Some of these approaches i n c l u d e : (1) c o l o r coding the vowels (Gattegno, 1962); (2) r e g u l a t i n g the reading vocabulary i n an e f f o r t to introduce only one vowel sound at a t i m e — e . g . , Nan has a tan fan (Bloomfield & Barnhart, 1961); (3) a l t e r i n g the orthography to e s t a b l i s h a one-to-one phoneme-grapheme correspondence (Downing, 1965); (.4) teaching vowels only w i t h i n the 4 context of the ending phonogram ( D u r r e l l & Murphy, 1972; Wylie & D u r r e l l , 1971); (5) teaching r u l e s and/or mnemonic devices regarding the p r o n u n c i a t i o n of vowel sounds (Ingham, 1969); (6) d i a c r i t i c a l mark- ing systems (Fry, 1961). The research f i n d i n g s as to the r e l a t i v e e f f e c t i v e n e s s of these programs are not c l e a r . Thus, one phonic i n s t r u c - t i o n a l system has not been shown to have a d i s t i n c t advantage over the others ( H a r r i s & Sipay, 1976). Many educators have r e l i e d on the teaching of r u l e s i n an attempt to help p u p i l s s o r t out the v a r i a b l e p ronunciations of vowel sounds. These r u l e s have been emphasized i n the b e l i e f that they f a c i l i t a t e word r e c o g n i t i o n by p r o v i d i n g students w i t h a systematic approach to decoding vowels. The e f f e c t i v e n e s s of such an approach to vowel l e a r n i n g c o n t i n - ues to be unquestionably accepted by many teachers as w e l l as by the p u b l i s h e r s of a wide v a r i e t y of phonics workbooks. Common teaching p r a c t i c e s continue to r e v e a l a r e l i a n c e on r u l e l e a r n i n g as an important p a r t of vowel i n s t r u c t i o n , e s p e c i a l l y during the primary grades. A few of the most f r e q u e n t l y taught r u l e s i n c l u d e the f o l l o w i n g time honoured examples: 1. When two vowels go walking the f i r s t does the t a l k i n g and has the long sound. 2. "E" at the end makes the f i r s t vowel say i t s name. 3. When a s i n g l e vowel i s i n the middle of a o n e - s y l l a b l e word, the vowel has the short sound. Many i n v e s t i g a t o r s have attempted to assess the v a l u e of r u l e s such as'these i n teaching the p r o n u n c i a t i o n of vowel sounds. Much of the r e s e a r c h has focused on determining the r e l i a b i l i t y of such r u l e s when they are a p p l i e d to the reading vocabulary encountered i n b a s a l 5 reading textbooks. The most f r e q u e n t l y c i t e d s t u d i e s are those.of B a i l e y (.1967) , Clymer (1963) , and Emans (1965) . These authors i n v e s t i g a t e d the u t i l i t y of phonic r u l e s commonly found i n b a s a l reading s e r i e s . They t e s t e d the r e l i a b i l i t y of the r u l e s as they were a p p l i e d to the vocabu- l a r y taught i n s e v e r a l commonly used reading t e x t s at both the primary and the intermediate grade l e v e l s . Each of a . t o t a l of 45 r u l e s was assessed i n the combined s t u d i e s of these authors. Of these 45 r u l e s , 24 r e l a t e d s p e c i f i c a l l y to vowel sounds. Only 8 of the 24 vowel r u l e s were found to be r e l i a b l e so much as 75% of the time. Clymer (1963) a r b i t r a r i l y determined that a r u l e can be considered u s e f u l i f i t i s a p p l i c a b l e to 75% of the words that are used i n an i n s t r u c t i o n a l program. The r e s u l t s of s t u d i e s of t h i s nature i l l u s t r a t e the l a c k of agree- ment that can e x i s t between research, f i n d i n g s and commonly accepted teach- ing p r a c t i c e s . I t should a l s o be noted that the r e s u l t s of s e v e r a l s t u d i e s which were conducted to assess teachers' knowledge of phonic r u l e s revealed that many teachers, themselves, do not know the r u l e s that are f r e q u e n t l y taught to students (Aaron, 1960; F a r i n e l l a , 1960; Gagnon, 1960; Ramsey, 1962; Schubert, 1959). The Role of the Phonogram i n Reading I n s t r u c t i o n Educators are not i n agreement regarding the r o l e of the phonogram (or s y l l a b l e ) i n reading i n s t r u c t i o n . Groff (1981) reviewed the i s s u e s i n v o l v e d i n the controversy over the usefulness of the phonogram. He noted that some proponents of s y l l a b l e or phonogram l e a r n i n g such as Jones (.1970) and Rozin and Gleitman (1977) contend that the s y l l a b l e should be the i n i t i a l u n i t of reading i n s t r u c t i o n . These authors suggest that the d i f f i c u l t y of l e a r n i n g to read can be eased f o r beginning readers i f 6 the syllable-phoneme correspondences are introduced and developed p r i o r to the teaching of the i n d i v i d u a l grapheme-phoneme correspondences. The r a t i o n a l e f o r the i n i t i a l teaching of s y l l a b l e s or phonograms i s based on the a p r i o r i n o t i o n that the i n s t r u c t i o n a l sequence f o r "decoding" or "segmenting" w r i t t e n language should approximate the order i n which c h i l d r e n l e a r n to segment spoken language. The r e s u l t s of s e v e r a l s t u d i e s t h a t were conducted to assess the a b i l i t y of young c h i l - dren to segment o r a l language suggest that young c h i l d r e n f i n d the s y l l a b l e segmentation of o r a l language to be a much e a s i e r task than phoneme segmentation (Fox & Routh, 1975; Liberman et a l . , 1974; Rozin & Gleitman, 1977). In the study of Liberman et a l . , f o u r , f i v e , or s i x year o l d c h i l - dren were i n s t r u c t e d to repeat a word pronounced by the examiner. The c h i l d r e n were then asked to tap out the number of segments i n each word. R e s u l t s i n d i c a t e d that at each age l e v e l phoneme segmentation was the more d i f f i c u l t task. Test items were more e a s i l y segmented i n t o s y l - l a b l e s than phonemes. Many educators do not agree w i t h the s y l l a b l e advocates' concep- t u a l i z a t i o n of beginning reading i n s t r u c t i o n . They contend that the evidence i s not s u f f i c i e n t l y strong to support the teaching of phono- grams e i t h e r as the i n i t i a l u n i t of reading i n s t r u c t i o n or as an a i d to word r e c o g n i t i o n (Canney & Schreiner, 1976, 1977; Durkin, 1976; Good- man, 1973; H a r r i s & Sipay, 1979; Smith, 1978). Thus, the i s s u e as to the usefulness of the phonogram i n teaching reading i s by no means re s o l v e d . The f i n d i n g s of the s t u d i e s which were conducted to assess i t s u s e f u l n e s s are not always i n agreement. This may be due to the wide v a r i e t y of s u b j e c t s , t a s k s , and procedures which were used i n the 7 v a r i o u s i n v e s t i g a t i o n s . For example, Hoisington (1969) i n v e s t i g a t e d the . e f f e c t i v e n e s s of vocabulary t e a c h i n g , which emphasized s y l l a b l e i n s t r u c t i o n , on the read- i n g performance of sixth-grade students. R e s u l t s i n d i c a t e d that vocabulary and s p e l l i n g performance was not enhanced, as measured by the M e t r o p o l i t a n Achievement Test. However, there was a s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r - ence i n reading a b i l i t y between the c o n t r o l group and the experimental group on the reading comprehension subtest. Subjects i n the e x p e r i - mental group performed b e t t e r on the comprehension subtest than those students who r e c e i v e d no systematic vocabulary teaching which emphasized s y l l a b i c a t i o n . Murai (1975) i n v e s t i g a t e d the e f f e c t i v e n e s s of the s y l l a b l e versus the phoneme as an i n i t i a l u n i t of phonic i n s t r u c t i o n . Subjects were 32 c h i l d r e n ranging i n age from four to s i x years. R e s u l t s i n d i c a t e d that there was no d i f f e r e n c e i n performance on a t r a n s f e r word-recognition task between subjects who were t r a i n e d i n the r e c o g n i t i o n of s y l l a b l e s and those who r e c e i v e d t r a i n i n g i n i n d i v i d u a l l e t t e r phonemes. On the b a s i s of h i s r e s u l t s Murai suggested that teachers should be cautious about f a v o r i n g one i n s t r u c t i o n a l u n i t over another, e.g., s y l l a b l e t r a i n i n g versus phonemes i n i s o l a t i o n . Ganney and Schreiner (1976, 1977) assessed the e f f e c t i v e n e s s of phonogram t r a i n i n g on 108 second-grade p u p i l s of h i g h , average, and low reading a b i l i t y . R e s u l t s i n d i c a t e d that phonogram t r a i n i n g d i d not s i g n i f i c a n t l y improve the word a t t a c k s k i l l s or reading comprehension of the s u b j e c t s . Attempts to demonstrate the e f f e c t i v e n e s s of phonogram l e a r n i n g on general word r e c o g n i t i o n a b i l i t y or reading comprehension have not 8 y i e l d e d r e s u l t s that are c o n c l u s i v e . Despite the l a c k of agreement over the r o l e of the phonogram i n reading i n s t r u c t i o n i t continues to be a commonly accepted i n s t r u c t i o n a l u n i t . The a d v i s a b i l i t y of teaching phonograms i s not unchallenged. Durkin (1976) c i t e s the concerns of many educators regarding the use of the ending phonogram as a u n i t of i n s t r u c t i o n . These concerns are: 1. Improper eye movements may be c u l t i v a t e d by encouraging students to o r i e n t to the ends of words. 2. T r a i n i n g i n ending phonograms may have l i t t l e t r a n s f e r to word r e c o g n i t i o n , e s p e c i a l l y w i t h regard to m u l t i - s y l l a b l e words. "3. Rhyming phonograms are infrequent i n m u l t i s y l l a b i c words. 4. C e r t a i n c h i l d r e n may not be able to focus on the sound that i s being studied when i t i s presented i n a l a r g e r u n i t such as a whole word or a phonogram. They may r e q u i r e more i s o l a t e d and e x p l i c i t i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of the sound that i s being s t u d i e d . Teaching Vowels i i i Phonograms Wylie and D u r r e l l (.1971) attempted to v a l i d a t e the usefulness of the ending phonogram as a means of f a c i l i t a t i n g vowel l e a r n i n g i n begin- ning reading i n s t r u c t i o n . On the b a s i s of t h e i r i n v e s t i g a t i o n , they concluded t h a t the phonogram i s the best u n i t of i n s t r u c t i o n f o r teach- i n g beginning readers vowel sounds. These authors assessed the a b i l i t y ^ of grade-one students' to i d e n t i f y vowel sounds as a f u n c t i o n of whether the examiner pronounced the vowel i n i s o l a t i o n or whether he pronounced i t i n a short vowel phonogram. Two-hundred and t h i r t y f i r s t - g r a d e c h i l d r e n of average reading a b i l i t y were assessed i n the month, of May on a 32-item .test. The experimental procedure r e q u i r e d that the students be presented w i t h a 35-item t e s t sheet comprised of short vowel phonograms. Each t e s t item p r i n t e d on t h i s sheet c o n s i s t e d of f i v e phonograms i n which only the vowel v a r i e d . For example, consider the f o l l o w i n g two items: 9 1. ack i c k ock eck uck 2. ed i d ud od ad Subjects were re q u i r e d to i d e n t i f y whole phonograms by being t o l d , f o r example, to " c i r c l e the one that says ock." (The e n t i r e phonogram was pronounced.) The a b i l i t y to i d e n t i f y vowel sounds i n i s o l a t i o n was assessed by using the same t e s t sheet the f o l l o w i n g day. This time, however, the examiner i n s t r u c t e d the c h i l d r e n to look at the array of phonograms and to " c i r c l e the one that has an 'o' i n i t . " (The short sound of the l e t t e r "o" was pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n . ) The mean score f o r i d e n t i f y i n g the vowel sound pronounced i n a whole phonogram was s i g n i f i c a n t l y higher than that f o r i d e n t i f y i n g vowel sounds pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n . On the b a s i s of these r e s u l t s , Wylie and D u r r e l l con- cluded that vowel sounds should not be i s o l a t e d f o r i n s t r u c t i o n a l purposes and that these sounds should be taught w i t h i n the context of the ending phonogram. F u r t h e r , the authors concluded that the ending phonogram i s the p r e f e r r e d i n s t r u c t i o n a l u n i t f o r teaching vowel sounds as i t " s t a b i l i z e s " the vowel sound. That i s , the l e t t e r s which f o l l o w a vowel determine the pr o n u n c i a t i o n that the vowel should have. The General Problem The recommendations of Wylie and D u r r e l l should perhaps be viewed c a u t i o u s l y . There are s e v e r a l methodological c o n s i d e r a t i o n s which l i m i t the i n s t r u c t i o n a l i m p l i c a t i o n s of these data. F i r s t , because of the procedure used to s e l e c t s u b j e c t s , the f i n d i n g s can be g e n e r a l i z e d only ^ to grade-one students of average reading a b i l i t y . Second, although short vowels only were assessed on t h i s experimental task, the authors g e n e r a l i z e d the f i n d i n g s to the teaching of a l l vowel sounds. T h i r d , 10 the design of the experimental task was such that only the a u d i t o r y p r e s e n t a t i o n of the vowel sound was v a r i e d . That i s , short vowel sounds were pronounced by the examiner i n i s o l a t i o n and w i t h i n the framework of a short vowel phonogram. However, the a b i l i t y of the subjects :to i d e n - t i f y the sound that was pronounced was always assessed by r e q u i r i n g students to f i n d the sound i n an ending phonogram. Thus, subjects were never v i s u a l l y presented w i t h vowels i n i s o l a t i o n . That i s , the response mode was not v a r i e d to i n c l u d e vowels w r i t t e n i n i s o l a t i o n as w e l l as vowels imbedded i n phonograms. (E.g., a-e-i-o-u, as w e l l as ack-eck- ick-ock-uck.) Fourth, vowel sounds were not presented i n beginning phonograms so as to a l l o w an assessment regarding the accuracy of vowel r e c o g n i t i o n i n the ending phonogram as w e l l as the beginning phonogram. The present study was a p a r t i a l r e p l i c a t i o n of and an extension of the work of Wylie and D u r r e l l (1971). The b a s i c experimental task was the same. Subjects were re q u i r e d to i d e n t i f y the vowel sound that the examiner pronounced by c i r c l i n g the c o r r e c t vowel l e t t e r from an array of l e t t e r s p r i n t e d on a response sheet. However, the response mode was v a r i e d to i n c l u d e vowels p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n as w e l l as vowels imbedded i n beginning and ending phonograms. This i s a major extension of the Wylie and D u r r e l l experimental procedure. The study i s more expansive i n that subjects were c l a s s i f i e d w i t h respect to two grade l e v e l s ( f i r s t and second) and three l e v e l s of reading a b i l i t y ( high, average, and low). The e f f e c t s of presenting vowel sounds i n i s o l a t i o n as opposed to presenting them w i t h i n the context of a phonogram were i n v e s t i g a t e d f o r both beginning phonograms (e.g., ba) and ending phono- grams (e.g., ah) and long vowel sounds as w e l l as short vowel sounds. CHAPTER I I METHOD Subjects Subjects were s e l e c t e d from two elementary schools i n the lower mainland of B r i t i s h Columbia. Each- of these schools serves p u p i l s from ki n d e r g a r t e n to grade seven. The catchment areas from which the schools draw t h e i r p u p i l s are comprised of people whose occupations::represent a wide cross s e c t i o n of socioeconomic l e v e l s . M a t e r i a l s Gates-MacGinitie Reading Test, 1978, Canadian E d i t i o n , L e v e l s A and B, Form 1. Each t e s t at the L e v e l s A and B i s comprised of a Vocabulary subtest and a Comprehension subtest. The authors of the t e s t d e s c r i b e the Vocabulary Test as a means of assessing decoding s k i l l s . I t i s comprised of 45 t e s t items. Each of .these items contains four p r i n t e d words which, are of s i m i l a r c o n f i g u r a t i o n and a p i c t u r e which i l l u s t r a t e s o n l y one of the words. The task i s to s e l e c t the one word that c o r r e - sponds to the p i c t u r e f o r each t e s t item. The Comprehension Test measures the a b i l i t y to understand words and ideas w i t h i n n a r r a t i v e prose. Each- of the 40 t e s t items c o n s i s t s of a passage accompanied by four p i c t u r e s . The passages are arranged i n ascending order of d i f f i c u l t y . The task i s to s e l e c t the p i c t u r e that best i l l u s t r a t e s the t e s t passage or that answers a question about 11 12 the passage ( M a c G i n i t i e , 1978). ; Three scores are u s u a l l y c a l c u l a t e d , one f o r each subtest and an o v e r a l l score. Vowel-Discrimination Test. The Vowel-Discrimination Test was designed f o r the purposes of the present study. I t contained 14 sub- t e s t s which correspond to the treatment c o n d i t i o n s i n v o l v e d i n the experiment. The t e s t c l o s e l y p a r a l l e l e d the instrument constructed by Wylie and D u r r e l l (1971). F u r t h e r , the method of a d m i n i s t r a t i o n used i n the present study c l o s e l y approximated the procedure used by Wylie and D u r r e l l . The t e s t i s an a u d i t o r y - v i s u a l i n t e g r a t i o n task. That i s , f o r every item on the t e s t , each subject was r e q u i r e d to l i s t e n to the examiner pronounce a vowel sound. The vowel sound was e i t h e r long or sho r t . The a u d i t o r y p r e s e n t a t i o n was v a r i e d so that the vowel sound was pronounced e i t h e r i n i s o l a t i o n , i n a beginning phonogram, or i n an ending phonogram. For example, the short sound of the l e t t e r "a" was pronounced I s i s o l a t i o n ( a ) , i n the beginning phonogram (ba), and i n the ending phonogram (ab). F o l l o w i n g the a u d i t o r y p r e s e n t a t i o n of the vowel sound, each subject was r e q u i r e d to s e l e c t the vowel that had been pronounced from an arra y of f i v e vowel l e t t e r s that was g r a p h i c a l l y presented on a response sheet. The manner i n which the vowel l e t t e r s were g r a p h i c a l l y represented was v a r i e d to i n c l u d e vowel l e t t e r s p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n or imbedded i n a beginning or ending phonogram. An example of a response item f o r each of these v a r i a t i o n s f o l l o w s : a-e-i-o-u ( I s o l a t i o n ) ; ep ap op i p up (Ending Phonogram) and pu pe pa po p i (Beginning Phonogram). For the purpose of t h i s study, the manner of p r o n u n c i a t i o n of the vowel sound i s r e f e r r e d to as the Input Mode ( I ) . The graphic manner 13 of p r e s e n t a t i o n of a vowel l e t t e r i s termed the Response Mode (R). The numbers 1, 2, and 3 are used to designate the c o n d i t i o n s under which the vowel was presented i n each of the modes. Thus, 1^ r e f e r s to a vowel pronounced i n an ending phonogram, ^ to one that was pronounced i n a beginning phonogram, and I ^ to one that was pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n . S i m i l a r l y , R^ i n d i c a t e s that the vowel l e t t e r was g r a p h i c a l l y represented i n an a r r a y of ending phonograms i n which only the vowel l e t t e r was v a r i e d . In the case of R2, the vowel was p r i n t e d i n an array of begin- ning phonograms i n which only the vowel l e t t e r was v a r i e d . For R^, the vowel l e t t e r s were p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n . One of the major purposes of the present i n v e s t i g a t i o n was to con- t r a s t the e f f e c t i v e n e s s of presenting vowels i n i s o l a t i o n , i n beginning, and i n ending phonograms. Only those short-vowel ending phonograms were s e l e c t e d whose consonant l e t t e r s could be transposed to the i n i t i a l p o s i t i o n of a phonogram to form a beginning phonogram. Phonograms such as " i n g " and "ock" were e l i m i n a t e d as being i n a p p r o p r i a t e . The l e t t e r s "ng" and "ck" would not form a phonogram i n the i n i t i a l p o s i t i o n of a word, e.g., " n g i " and "cko". Thus, the s e l e c t i o n of short-vowel ending phonograms f o r use as t e s t items was r e s t r i c t e d to seven phonogram p a t t e r n s . The f o l l o w i n g short-vowel ending phonograms represent the pa t t e r n s that were used: i s h ; un; ep; om; ag; ud; and i b . The Vowel D i s c r i m i n a t i o n Test was comprised of 14 subtests each of which, corresponded to a given combination of three l e v e l s of the Input Mode ( i s o l a t i o n , ending, and beginning phonograms) w i t h three correspond- in g l e v e l s of the Response Mode w i t h two l e v e l s of type of vowel sound (long and s h o r t ) . A complete f a c t o r i a l arrangement of I*R f o r a given type of vowel sound would c o n s i s t of nine c o n d i t i o n s . However, two of 14 these nine c o n d i t i o n s were excluded from the study. One of them was the c o n d i t i o n f o r which the input mode was beginning phonogram and the r e s - ponse mode was ending phonogram. Under t h i s c o n d i t i o n the subjects would have been given a set of p r i n t e d response a l t e r n a t i v e s such as "ap, i p , op, up, ep" and asked to s e l e c t the one that corresponded most c l o s e l y to the vowel sound that they heard i n an a u d i t o r y stimulus such as "pa". The other c o n d i t i o n excluded was the one f o r which the input mode was an ending phonogram and the response mode was a beginning phono- gram. Here the sub j e c t s would have been shown a set of a l t e r n a t i v e s such as "pa, p i , po, pu, pe" and asked to choose the one corresponding to an input item such as "ap." These two c o n d i t i o n s may be considered on a p r i o r i grounds'to repre- sent c o n s i d e r a b l y more complex tasks than the other seven. I t was f e l t t h at a s u b s t a n t i a l p o r t i o n of the subjects might have d i f f i c u l t y a s cer- t a i n i n g what they were being asked to do on these two t a s k s . I f the subj e c t s were confused or discouraged by them, t h e i r performance on the other tasks might be contaminated. To avoid t h i s p o s s i b i l i t y , the combinations of 1-^2 a n c* ^2^1 w e r e excluded from the design. Presented i n Tables 1 and 2 i s a b r i e f d e s c r i p t i o n of the 14 subtests as w e l l as the number of items i n c l u d e d i n each of the subtests. A complete copy of the Vowel D i s c r i m i n a t i o n Test i s presented i n Appendix A. Design The study may be conceptualized as a 2x3x2x3x3 incomplete f a c t o r i a l between-within-subject design. The between-subject f a c t o r s are Grade l e v e l (one and two) and Reading a b i l i t y (low, average, and h i g h ) . The w i t h i n - s u b j e c t f a c t o r s are Vowel sound (long and s h o r t ) , Input mode 15 TABLE 1 VOWEL DISCRIMINATION TEST SHORT-VOWEL SUBTESTS Test No. No. of Items I = Input Mode R = Response Mode I = Ending Phonogram 14 R = Ending Phonogram I = I s o l a t i o n 14 R = Ending Phonogram I = Ending Phonogram 14 R = I s o l a t i o n I = I s o l a t i o n R = I s o l a t i o n I = Beginning Phonogram 14 R = Beginning Phonogram I = I s o l a t i o n 14 R- = Beginning Phonogram I = Beginning Phonogram 14 R = I s o l a t i o n 16 TABLE 2 VOWEL DISCRIMINATION TEST LONG-VOWEL SUBTESTS Test No. No. of Items I = Input Mode R = Response Mode I = Beginning Phonogram 14 R = Beginning Phonogram I = I s o l a t i o n 14 R = Beginning Phonogram I = Beginning Phonogram 10 14 R = I s o l a t i o n I = I s o l a t i o n 11 .5 R = I s o l a t i o n I = Ending Phonogram 12 8 R = Ending Phonogram I = I s o l a t i o n 13 8 R = Ending Phonogram 14 8 I = Ending Phonogram R = I s o l a t i o n 17 (beginning phonogram, ending phonogram, and i s o l a t i o n ) , and Response mode (beginning phonogram, ending phonogram, and i s o l a t i o n ) . The missing c e l l s i n the design correspond to I - j ^ a n c* "̂ 2̂ 1 a t e a c ^ °^ fc^e t w o l e v e i s of the Vowel sound v a r i a b l e . The dependent v a r i a b l e i n t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n was the p r o p o r t i o n of c o r r e c t r e c o g n i t i o n s of vowel sounds under each of the 14 treatment l e v e l s . There were two independent v a r i a b l e s , Response Mode and Input Mode. There were three c l a s s i f i c a t i o n v a r i a b l e s , grade l e v e l , reading a b i l i t y , and vowel type. Procedure Data were c o l l e c t e d during the months of May and June, 1981. The Gates-MacGinitie Reading Test was administered to a l l students i n grade one and grade two of the schools included i n t h i s study. T e s t i n g sessions f o r a l l subjects were conducted i n the morning. The standard d i r e c t i o n s - f o r a d m i n i s t r a t i o n were s t r i c t l y adhered t o . A t o t a l of 183 zj grade-one students, i n seven c l a s s e s , were t e s t e d during the f i r s t two weeks of May. One-hundred and seventy-six grade two students, i n seven c l a s s e s were assessed during the l a s t two weeks of May. The experimental task (Vowel D i s c r i m i n a t i o n Test) was administered i n classroom sessions during the afternoons of the f i r s t three weeks i n June. To avoid boredom and f a t i g u e on the p a r t of the s u b j e c t s , t h i s t a s k was administered i n two sessions and on separate days. Each s e s s i o n was one hour long w i t h a 20-minute r e s t p e r i o d midway through the s e s s i o n . During t h i s r e s t p e r i o d the games "Doggy, Doggy, Where's Your Bone?" and •"7 Up" were played. The short vowel subtests (1-7) were administered to a l l c l a s s e s i n s e s s i o n number one. The long vowel subtests (8-14) 18 were administered i n s e s s i o n number two. The.order i n which the t e s t s were presented under each l e v e l of the dependent v a r i a b l e was counterbalanced to o f f s e t the e f f e c t of order of p r e s e n t a t i o n . Thus, h a l f the subjects i n each grade l e v e l r e c e i v e d the short-vowel t e s t items i n order 1-7. The other h a l f of the subjects r e c e i v e d the short-vowel t e s t items i n order 7-1. The long-vowel t e s t items were counterbalanced i n the same f a s h i o n . That i s , h a l f the subjects i n each of the two grade l e v e l s r e c e i v e d the long-vowel t a s k s by t a k i n g subtests 7-14 i n that order. The other h a l f were administered t e s t s 14-7 i n that order. The order of p r e s e n t a t i o n of response a l t e r - n a t i v e s was random. The d i r e c t i o n s f o r a d m i n i s t e r i n g each of the t e s t s and the a d m i n i s t r a t i v e procedures were the same f o r a l l s u b j e c t s . The examiner v i s i t e d each classroom and informed the students that they were going to p l a y some l i s t e n i n g games. They were t o l d that they were not going to l i s t e n to whole words, but r a t h e r to p a r t s of words. They were a l s o t o l d that sometimes the examiner would pronounce one l e t t e r only and at other times s e v e r a l l e t t e r s . Examples were given using the short sound of the l e t t e r "e" as w e l l as the phonograms "eck" and "ent". Several p r a c t i c e items were placed on the blackboard using the f o l l o w i n g phonogram p a t t e r n s : eck i c k ock ack uck i n t ant ent ont unt The short vowel sound of the l e t t e r "e" was pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n as w e l l as: w i t h i n the phonograms "eck" and "ent". Subjects were given p r a c t i c e i d e n t i f y i n g the c o r r e c t items. Vowel l e t t e r s presented i n i s o l a t i o n were a l s o p r i n t e d on the blackboard. The phonograms "eck" and "ent" were again pronounced and c h i l d r e n were given p r a c t i c e 19 i d e n t i f y i n g the l e t t e r that corresponded to the one that was pronounced i n the input mode. Subjects were informed that the examiner would v i s i t t h e i r classroom on s e v e r a l occasions and that many l i s t e n i n g games would be played. Their task would be to " l i s t e n c a r e f u l l y " and f i n d the l e t t e r or l e t t e r s that the examiner pronounced. During each t e s t i n g s e s s i o n subjects were supplied w i t h a booklet c o n t a i n i n g the t e s t items f o r that s e s s i o n as w e l l as a three x eight i n c h piece of colored c o n s t r u c t i o n paper. The purpose of t h i s marker was to ensure that subjects were responding to a t e s t item i n the approp- r i a t e place on the response sheet. The standard t e s t i n g procedure f o r the Input Mode was as f o l l o w s : 1. When vowels were pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n the examiner (E) s a i d , "Put your marker under l i n e . L i s t e n to what I say" (E pronounced e i t h e r a long or short-vowel i n i s o l a t i o n ) . "Look at l i n e . Find the one that says ." ( f o r Response Mode I s o l a t i o n ) or "Find the one that has the sound i n i t . " ( f o r Response Mode Phonograms). 2. When both Input Mode and Response Mode were phonogram pr e s e n t a t i o n s subjects were i n s t r u c t e d i n the f o l l o w i n g manner: "Put your marker under l i n e . L i s t e n to what I say. (E_ pronounces the phonogram) " C i r c l e the one that says ." (E pronounces the phonogram a g a i n ) . S i m i l a r l y , under Response Mode-Isolation and Input Mode phonogram the examiner s a i d , "Find the one that you hear i n ." (E pronounces phonogram). Each input mode item was pronounced twice. 20 Tabulating R e s u l t s A score on the Vocabulary Test and the Comprehension Test was c a l - c u l a t e d f o r each subject to whom the Gates-MacGinitie t e s t was admin- i s t e r e d . A t o t a l reading score was c a l c u l a t e d . For the purposes of t h i s study, each of the . t o t a l reading scores was then t r a n s l a t e d to a p e r c e n t i l e rank according to the norms i n the t e s t manual. The percen- t i l e rank was used to c a t e g o r i z e s u b j e c t s on the b a s i s of reading a b i l i t y . Ranges i n reading a b i l i t y were designated as f o l l o w s : Good Readers (99th-68th p e r c e n t i l e s ) ; Average Readers (67th-34th p e r c e n t i l e s ) ; and Poor Readers ( 3 3 r d - l s t p e r c e n t i l e ) . The performance of each, subject on the Vowel D i s c r i m i n a t i o n Test was determined by c a l c u l a t i n g , f o r each s u b j e c t , the p r o p o r t i o n of items c o r r e c t f o r each of the 14 t e s t c o n d i t i o n s . (Number c o r r e c t d i v i d e d by the number of items.) Scores were c a l c u l a t e d i n t h i s manner because each of the 14 s u b t e s t s d i d not c o n t a i n the same number of items. An a r b i t r a r y d e c i s i o n was made to i n c l u d e only enough items, i n each subtest, to r e l i a b l y assess the experimental task. This was necessary due to the l a r g e number of subtests i n v o l v e d i n the experimental c o n d i t i o n . Caution was taken to avoid developing a measuring instrument that would be long and p o t e n t i a l l y f a t i g u i n g f o r p a r t i c i p a n t s i n the study. CHAPTER I ' l l RESULTS The r e s u l t s f o r long vowel performance and short vowel performance were analysed s e p a r a t e l y . Due to the l a c k of variance i n some of the long vowel treatment c o n d i t i o n s , an a n a l y s i s of va r i a n c e could not be conducted on the long vowel data. This l a c k of vari a n c e was due to the l a r g e number of subjects who achieved a p e r f e c t l e v e l of performance on some of the long vowel treatment c o n d i t i o n s . Thus, an a n a l y s i s of var i a n c e was performed on the short vowel data and a Chi Square a n a l y s i s was conducted on the long vowel r e s u l t s . Short Vowel Recognition Tasks Presented i n Table 3 are mean percent c o r r e c t responses f o r the grade-one s u b j e c t s under the v a r i o u s treatment l e v e l s . Shown i n Table 4 are the corresponding measures f o r the grade-two s u b j e c t s . The percent- age of c o r r e c t responses f o r each, subject under each of the seven short vowel c o n d i t i o n s was subjected to arc si n e transformation before a n a l y s i s of v a r i a n c e was a p p l i e d . Showri-;in Table 5 i s a summary of the a n a l y s i s of v a r i a n c e . 21 TABLE 3 GRADE ONE MEAN PERCENT CORRECT FOR SHORT-VOWEL. DISCRIMINATION TESTS Input Mode X l I, 5 : I 1 ". I, 5 T I 2 "'•I.-: $ I I 2 i Response Mode R ] R ] L R, 1 R, i R 2 R 2 R 3 Test No. 1 2 5 L [ c 6 1 High A b i l i t y 95. .00 97. ,14 97. ,61 98. 66 95. .00 98. 09 93. ,09 Average A b i l i t y 91. 66 95. .23 92. 85 97. ,33 91. ,42 94. 76 93. , 33 Low A b i l i t y 78. ,09 79. , 52 77. ,38 86 . .66 78. , 57 81. 42 79. ,28 TABLE 4 I GRADE TWO MEAN PERCENT CORRECT FOR SHORT-VOWEL DISCRIMINATION TEST Input Mode X l X 3 I, 1 X2 X 3 1 2 Response Mode R l R l R 3 R 3 R2 R2 R 3 T e s t No. 1 2 5 4 5 6 1 High A b i l i t y 98. 09 98. 88 98. ,88 98. ,66 93. 88 98. ,57 96. 66 Average A b i l i t y 92. 85 96. 42 96 . ,19 94. ,66 86 . ,66 92. ,38 90. 71 Low" A b i l i t y 87. ,57 91. 42 88. , 81 90. ,00 83. 81 89. ,99 90. 47 24 Source TABLE 5 SUMMARY OF ANALYSIS OF VARIANCE OF SHORT-VOWEL RECOGNITION SCORES SS df MS Between Subjects Grade L e v e l Reading A b i l i t y GXA Ss/GXA Wi t h i n Subjects 1^ arid I2 vs. I3 X l I 2 R± vs. R 3 / I 1 R2 — ' R 3 / / I 2 R 1 and R 2 vs. R̂ ĵ  v s . R 2 / / I3 R 3 / I 3 124.79 179 1. 74 1 1. 74 3. 22 26.45 2 13.22 24. 48 < .001 3.26 ' '2 1.63 3. 02 93. 34 174 .54 54.09 1080 . 70 1 . 70 14. 00 .001 . 46 1 . 46 6. 57 < .05 . 50 1 . 50 10. 00 < . 001 .26 1 .26 5. 20 < .05 1.06 1 1.06 35. 33 < .001 . 05 1 . 05 1. 67 1^ and I2 vs. I 3 X Ss 9.20 179 xl and X2 vs. I^ X G .03 1 .03 ^ 1 Jl and X2 vs . 13 X A .15 2 .07 1. 40 x l and J2 vs. I3 X GXA .03 2 .01 < 1 Tl and J2 vs. 13 X Ss/GXA 8.99 174 .05 Jl vs. X2 X Ss 12. 47 179 • xl v s . X2 X G .47 1 . 47 6. 71 xl vs. J2 X A . 31 2 . 15 2.14 Jl v s . J2 X GXA . 17 2 .08 1. 14 Jl vs. T2 X Ss/GXA 11. 52 174 .07 • <.05 25 TABLE 5 (continued) Source SS df MS V 1 ! vs. R l v s • R l v s • R, vs. V 1 ! V 1 ! R 3 / I 1 X Ss 8.99 179 X G . 37 1 . 37 7.40 X A .13 2 . 06 1.20 X GXA .04 2 .02 ^ 1 X Ss/GXA 8.45 174 .05 4. .01 R. R2 vs R 2 vs R 2 vs R„ vs. R 3 / I 2 R 3 / I 2 X Ss 8. 31 179 X G .01 1 . 01 ^. 1 X A .04 2 .02 < 1 X GXA .10 2 . 05 1. 00 X Ss/GXA 8.16 174 .05 Rx and R2 vs. R3/I3 X Ss R1 and R 2 vs. R3/I3 X G .R-ĵ  and R 2 vs. R3/I3 X A R-̂  and R 2 vs. R̂  and R 2 vs. R3/I3 X GXA R 3 / I 3 X Ss/( R x vs. R 2 / I 3 X Ss R 1 vs. R 2 / I 3 X G R-ĵ  vs. R 2 / / I3 X A R x vs. R 2 / I 3 X GXA Rx vs. R 2 / I 3 X Ss/GXA 6.74 179 .21 1 .21 7.00 ^.01 .29 2 .14 4.67 < .05 .14 2 .07 2.33 6.10 174 .03 5. 35 179 .13 1 .13 4.33 <£.05 .09 2 .04 1. 33 . 02 2 .01 ^ 1 5.11 174 03 Total 178.88 1259 26 E f f e c t s of grade l e v e l and a b i l i t y . The main e f f e c t of Grade l e v e l was not s i g n i f i c a n t . Mean percent c o r r e c t f o r grade one was 90.35, w h i l e f o r grade two i t was 93.31. The main e f f e c t of A b i l i t y was s i g n i f - i c a n t beyond the .001 l e v e l . Mean percent c o r r e c t f o r h i g h , average, and low reading a b i l i t y groups were 97.17, 93.55, and 84.77 r e s p e c t i v e l y . The i n t e r a c t i o n between grade l e v e l and a b i l i t y l e v e l was not s i g n i f i c a n t . E f f e c t of vowel sounds pronounced i n Ending and Beginning Phonograms (combined) vs. I s o l a t i o n . The e f f e c t of I and 1^ combined v s . I ^ was s i g n i f i c a n t beyond the ,001 l e v e l . Performance was su p e r i o r when vowel sounds were pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n as opposed to i n a phonogram. Mean percent c o r r e c t f o r I and 1^ combined was 90.34. Mean percent c o r r e c t f o r the i s o l a t i o n c o n d i t i o n was: 93.32. None of the i n t e r a c t i o n s i n v o l v i n g 1^ and I'2 vs. I ^ was s i g n i f i c a n t . That i s , the a b i l i t y of subjects to perform b e t t e r when the vowel was pronounced in - i s o l a t i o n v s . i n a phono- gram d i d not d i f f e r w i t h v a r i a t i o n s i n grade l e v e l or reading a b i l i t y . The e f f e c t of 1^ vs. T^ was s i g n i f i c a n t at the .05 l e v e l . Mean percent c o r r e c t f o r vowels pronounced i n an ending phonogram was 91.27 compared to 89.30 f o r beginning phonograms. The i n t e r a c t i o n of T vs_. 1^ x Grade l e v e l was s i g n i f i c a n t at the .05 l e v e l . The tendency of subjects to perform b e t t e r under the ending phonogram c o n d i t i o n was r e s t r i c t e d to subjects i n grade two. Performance of subjects i n grade one d i d not vary according to the type of phonogram i n which the vowel was pronounced. Mean percentage of c o r r e c t responses f o r grade-one subjects was 88.77 f o r I and 88.45 f o r I ^ . Mean percent c o r r e c t f o r grade two subjects was 93.77 f o r I , and 90.36 f o r I„. 27 E f f e c t of Response Mode p r e s e n t a t i o n of vowel l e t t e r s p r i n t e d i n Ending Phonograms v s . vowel l e t t e r s p r i n t e d i n I s o l a t i o n when the Input Mode i s Ending Phonogram. The c o n t r a s t of R^ vs_. R^ w i t h i n 1^ was s i g n i f i c a n t a t the .05 l e v e l i n favor of R^. This means that when a short vowel sound was pronounced i n an ending phonogram, performance was b e t t e r when the vowels were g r a p h i c a l l y presented i n i s o l a t i o n than when they were presented i n an ending phonogram. Mean percent c o r r e c t f o r vowels p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n (R^) was 90.59 as compared to 88.21 f o r vowels imbedded i n ending phonograms (R^) . The i n t e r a c t i o n of R^ v&. R^ w i t h i n I by Grade l e v e l was s i g n i f i - cant at the .01 l e v e l . An a n a l y s i s of the simple main e f f e c t s f o r t h i s i n t e r a c t i o n showed R^ vs. R^ d i f f e r e n c e s to be s i g n i f i c a n t only f o r grade two s u b j e c t s . Mean percentage of c o r r e c t responses f o r grade one subjects were 88.33 f o r R^ and 88.57 f o r R^. However, the corresponding measures f o r grade two subjects were 88.10 f o r vowels p r i n t e d i n ending phonograms (R^) and 92.62 f o r vowels p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n (R3). E f f e c t of Response Mode p r e s e n t a t i o n of vowel l e t t e r s imbedded i n Beginning Phonograms, v s . p r i n t i n g vowel l e t t e r s i n I s o l a t i o n when the Input Mode i s Beginning Phonogram. The e f f e c t of R^ vjs. R^ w i t h i n was s i g n i f i c a n t at the .05 l e v e l . Mean percentages of c o r r e c t responses f o r R2 v s . R^ were 90.59 and 91.94. Thus, when the vowel sound was pronounced i n a beginning phonogram r e c o g n i t i o n was b e t t e r when the r e - sponse mode was i s o l a t i o n than i t was when the response mode was beginning phonogram. None of the i n t e r a c t i o n s i n v o l v i n g R2 v s . R^ w i t h i n I2 was s i g n i f i c a n t . 28 E f f e c t of the Response Mode p r e s e n t a t i o n of vowels i n Beginning and Ending Phonograms (combined) v s . I s o l a t i o n when the Input Mode was vowel sounds pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n . The e f f e c t of R^ and R2 (combined) v s . R3 w i t h i n I ^ was s i g n i f i c a n t at the .001 l e v e l . Mean percent c o r r e c t was 94.33 f o r vowel l e t t e r s p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n (R^) and 92.81 f o r those i n beginning and ending phonograms (R^ and Rp . There were two s i g n i f i - cant i n t e r a c t i o n s i n v o l v i n g the f a c t o r R^ and R 2 vs. R^ w i t h i n I ^ . These were R^ and R 2 vs. R^ by Grade and R^ and R 2 vs. R^ w i t h i n I ^ by A b i l i t y . The i n t e r a c t i o n w i t h Grade was s i g n i f i c a n t at the .01 l e v e l , w h i l e t h a t w i t h A b i l i t y was s i g n i f i c a n t at the .05 l e v e l . An a n a l y s i s of the simple main e f f e c t s f o r R^ and R 2 v s . R^ w i t h i n I ^ by Grade i n d i c a t e d that the co n t r a s t among l e v e l s of R was s i g n i f i c a n t f o r grade-one subjects only. That i s , the su p e r i o r r e c o g n i t i o n f o r vowels p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n (R3) as opposed to i n a phonogram (R^ and R 2) was not observed at the grade two l e v e l . The grade-one s u b j e c t s ' score f o r R^ and R 2 combined was 91.03, w h i l e f o r R^ i t was 94.22. The c o r r e s - ponding measures f o r grade-two subjects were 94.06 and 94.45. An a n a l y s i s of the simple main e f f e c t s f o r R^ and R 2 ys_. R^ w i t h i n I ^ by A b i l i t y i n d i c a t e s t h a t the e f f e c t was s i g n i f i c a n t f o r Aver- age and L o w - A b i l i t y subjects but not f o r H i g h - A b i l i t y s u b j e c t s . For H i g h - A b i l i t y subjects mean percent c o r r e c t f o r R^ and R 2 combined was 98.15 and f o r R^ i t was 98.67. The corresponding measures f o r the Average and L o w - A b i l i t y s u b j e c t s were 94.70 v s . 96.00 and 85.59 vs_. 88.33 r e s p e c t i v e l y . The e f f e c t of R^ vs. R 2 w i t h i n I ^ was not s i g n i f i c a n t . However, the i n t e r a c t i o n of vs. R 2 w i t h i n I ^ by Grade l e v e l was s i g n i f i c a n t at the .05 l e v e l . Mean percentage of c o r r e c t responses f o r v s . at the grade one l e v e l were 90.63 and 91.43 r e s p e c t i v e l y (p > .05). The corresponding measures were 95.56 and 93.65 at the grade two l e v e l (p < .05). Thus, the supe r i o r r e c o g n i t i o n of vowel sounds i n an ending phonogram response mode (R^) was l i m i t e d to grade two s u b j e c t s . Long Vowel Recognition Tasks A n a l y s i s of v a r i a n c e of the data f o r the long-vowel tasks was pre- cluded by marked heterogeneity of v a r i a n c e . Consequently the a n a l y s i s was conducted by s u b j e c t i n g the data to a s e r i e s of orthogonal C h i Square t e s t s that p a r a l l e l the a n a l y s i s of v a r i a n c e of the short-vowel data. Shown i n Table 6 are mean percent c o r r e c t responses f o r the grade one su b j e c t s under the various: long-vowel treatment c o n d i t i o n s . Presented i n Table 7 are the corresponding measures f o r the grade-two s u b j e c t s . A summary of the a n a l y s i s i s presented i n Table 8. A l l of the values of Chi Square have been co r r e c t e d f o r c o n t i n u i t y . Between-subject e f f e c t s . A n a l y s i s of the between-subject e f f e c t s , t h a t i s , Grade, A b i l i t y , and Grade by A b i l i t y were based upon the number of s u b j e c t s who performed p e r f e c t l y on a l l items of a l l the seven tasks as opposed to the number of subjects who gave at l e a s t one erroneous response. The main e f f e c t of Grade l e v e l was not s i g n i f i c a n t . The main e f f e c t of A b i l i t y l e v e l was s i g n i f i c a n t at the .01 l e v e l . The f r e - quency of subjects who had p e r f e c t scores f o r a l l of the seven tasks was 12 f o r the l o w - a b i l i t y group, 22 f o r the a v e r a g e - a b i l i t y group and 30 f o r the h i g h - a b i l i t y group (n=60 f o r each group). The i n t e r a c t i v e e f f e c t s of GxA were s i g n i f i c a n t (p < .05). A n a l - y s i s of the simple main e f f e c t s i n v o l v e d i n t h i s i n t e r a c t i o n revealed TABLE 6 GRADE ONE MEAN PERCENT CORRECT FOR LONG-VOWEL DISCRIMINATION TESTS Input Mode X 2 I, J J 3 J l J3 T l Response Mode R 2 R 2 R 3 R 3 R l R l R 3 Test No. 8 9 1 0 1 1 1 2 1 3 1 4 High A b i l i t y 9 7 . 6 1 9 9 . 7 2 9 9 . 7 6 1 0 0 9 8 . 7 5 1 0 0 9 8 . 7 5 Average A b i l i t y 9 3 . 5 7 9 8 . 5 7 9 6 . 1 9 9 8 9 4 . 5 8 9 8 . 3 3 9 7 . 5 Low A b i l i t y 8 5 . 2 3 9 5 . , 9 5 • : 8 3 . 3 3 9 8 . 6 6 8 9 . 1 6 9 8 . 7 5 9 4 . 5 8 TABLE 7 - • GRADE TWO MEAN PERCENT CORRECT FOR LONG-VOWEL DISCRIMINATION TEST I n p u t Mode X2 Z 3 X2 X 3 X l X 3 Z l R e s p o n s e Mode ; ? R2 R2 R 3 R 3 R l R l R 3 T e s t No. 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 H i g h A b i l i t y 98. 57 99. 28 95. 47 99.33 99. 58 99. 16 98. 75 A v e r a g e A b i l i t y 95. 23 99. , 52 96 . 90 100 98. 33 97. 91 99. 58 Low A b i l i t y 94. 52 97, .14 91. 42 98 .66 96. 66 98. 75 97. 91 TABLE 8 SUMMARY OF CHI SQUARE ANALYSIS OF LONG-VOWEL RECOGNITION SCORES E f f e c t df p Between Subjects Grade .60 1 A b i l i t y 10.53 2 .01 Grade X A b i l i t y 13. 79 5 < .05 A b i l i t y within Grade 1 12.93 2 < . 01 A b i l i t y within Grade 2 . 86 2 Within Subjects 1^ and X2 vs. I 3 65. 25 1 .001 1^ and X2 vs. I 3 X G 3.68 1 1^ and X2 vs. I 3 X A 3. 01 2 1^ and H vs. I 3 X GXA 3.94 5 1^ vs. X2 22.23 1 .001 1.̂  vs. X2 X G .04 1 1-̂  vs. J2 X A .03 2 1^ vs. T2 X GXA 1. 73 5 33 TABLE 8 ( c o n t i n u e d ) E f f e c t d f R 1 v s . ^3/!-!^ R 1 v s . R 3 / I 1 X G R l Xs. • R 3 / I i x A R 1 v s . R 3 / I 1 X GXA. 1.22 .00 2.14 2.17 1 1 2 5 R 2 v s . R3/I2 54 R 2 v s . R3/I2 x G R̂ ^ v s . R3/I2 x A R 2 Xs.- R 3 / I 2 X G X A 3.57 1.26 7.44 1 2 5 R^ and R 2 v s . R3/I3 19.12 -^.001 R 1 and R 2 v s . R3/I3 X G R.̂  and R 2 v s . R^/I^ X A R x and R 2 v s . R3/I3 X GXA .00 .05 1.24 1 2 5 R 1 v s . R 2 /' I3 3. 36 R̂ ^ v s . R 2 / / I3 X G R x v s . R 2/ I3 X A R 1 v s . R 2 / / I3 X G X A .34 2. 30 2.62 1 2 5 34 that the e f f e c t f o r a b i l i t y l e v e l was a t t r i b u t a b l e almost e n t i r e l y to the d i f f e r e n c e among a b i l i t y l e v e l s f o r grade-one students. The number of subj e c t s w i t h p e r f e c t scores on a l l seven tasks f o r low, average, and high groups i n grade one were 3, 9, and 17. The corresponding f r e - quencies f o r the grade two subjects were 9, 13, and 13 (n=30 f o r each group). Within-subject e f f e c t s . The a n a l y s i s of w i t h i n - s u b j e c t e f f e c t s on performance on the long-vowel r e c o g n i t i o n tasks was based upon the percentage of c o r r e c t responses f o r each subject i n each of the s i x GxA groups under each of the seven i x R c o n d i t i o n s . For a cont r a s t between, say, c o n d i t i o n s A and B, the number of subjects who performed b e t t e r under A than under B and the number whose performance under B was b e t t e r than t h a t under A were t a b u l a t e d . The c a l c u l a t i o n of C h i square f o r the c o n t r a s t was based upon these fr e q u e n c i e s , w i t h t i e s being excluded. For example, consider the co n t r a s t between I and I 2 v s . I ^ . Fourteen subjects performed b e t t e r under the beginning or ending phono- gram c o n d i t i o n s , w h i l e 102 subjects performed b e t t e r under the i s o l a t i o n c o n d i t i o n . There were 64 cases of t i e s . The r e s u l t i n g value of X 2 i s 65.25; p <; .001. Long vowels pronounced i n Beginning v s . Ending Phonograms. The e f f e c t of T^ vs. I 2 was s i g n i f i c a n t at the .001 l e v e l . Twenty-nine sub- j e c t s performed b e t t e r when the input mode was ending phonogram, w h i l e 79 subjects performed b e t t e r when the input mode was beginning phonogram. There were 72 t i e s . Vowels p r i n t e d i n Beginning and Ending Phonograms (combined) vs. I s o l a t i o n when the Input Mode was I s o l a t i o n . The e f f e c t of R^ and R 2 vs. R^ w i t h i n I ^ was s i g n i f i c a n t at the .001 l e v e l . S i x of the subjects performed b e t t e r when the response mode was R^ and R 2 w h i l e 35 of the sub j e c t s performed b e t t e r when the response mode was R^. However, when the input mode was i s o l a t i o n , 139 of the subjects showed no d i f f e r e n c e between the two c o n d i t i o n s . CHAPTER IV DISCUSSION The present study was conducted to i n v e s t i g a t e the e f f e c t s on vowel r e c o g n i t i o n performance of v a r i a t i o n s i n each of two p r e s e n t a t i o n modes. These modes were an a u d i t o r y input mode and a v i s u a l response mode. The e f f e c t s of these v a r i a t i o n s were studied f o r both l o n g - and short-vowel sounds and f o r three l e v e l s of reading a b i l i t y ( high, aver- age, and low) w i t h i n each of two grade l e v e l s (one and two). In the input mode, the vowel sounds were pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n , i n beginning phonograms and i n ending phonograms. In the response mode, the graphic p r e s e n t a t i o n of vowel l e t t e r s was v a r i e d i n a corresponding manner. That i s , the vowel l e t t e r s were p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n as w e l l as i n beginning and ending phonograms. The study addressed s e v e r a l questions. They were: (1) Does vowel r e c o g n i t i o n performance d i f f e r as a f u n c t i o n of grade l e v e l p l a c e - ment? (2) Does r e c o g n i t i o n performance d i f f e r f o r v a r y i n g l e v e l s of Reading A b i l i t y ? (3) Does r e c o g n i t i o n performance d i f f e r f o r long v s . short vowel sounds? (4) Does r e c o g n i t i o n performance vary as a f u n c t i o n of whether the vowel i s pronounced i n a phonogram or i n i s o l a t i o n ? (5) Does r e c o g n i t i o n performance d i f f e r f o r vowels pronounced i n beginning v s . ending phonograms? (6) Does vowel r e c o g n i t i o n performance vary when the response mode p r e s e n t a t i o n i s the graphic r e p r e s e n t a t i o n 36 37 of a vowel imbedded i n a phonogram vs. a vowel p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n ? (7) Does vowel r e c o g n i t i o n d i f f e r when the response mode p r e s e n t a t i o n i s a vowel l e t t e r p r i n t e d i n beginning v s . ending phonograms? The r e s u l t s of the study i n d i c a t e d that the main e f f e c t of grade l e v e l was not s i g n i f i c a n t f o r e i t h e r long or short vowels. However, the main e f f e c t of reading a b i l i t y was s i g n i f i c a n t f o r both long and short vowel r e c o g n i t i o n t a s k s . This f i n d i n g may confirm the need to determine phonics programming on the b a s i s of reading achievement l e v e l and not according to grade placement. This might suggest that vowel sounds could be introduced q u i t e e a r l y i n the grade-one program. Many reading programs, however, emphasize vowel l e a r n i n g i n the second-year program. Such an emphasis may be warranted even though the present f i n d i n g s i n d i c a t e that grade one students, of the lowest reading a b i l i t y , recognize vowel sounds w i t h a high degree of accuracy. The mean percent c o r r e c t f o r l o w - a b i l i t y grade one subjects was 84.77. One i n t e r p r e t a - t i o n of t h i s f i n d i n g may be that i t takes s e v e r a l years of p r a c t i c e at the easy r e c o g n i t i o n l e v e l , before students are able to generate vowel sounds. There was no i n t e r a c t i o n of Grade l e v e l by Reading a b i l i t y on the short vowel t a s k s . However, there was such an i n t e r e a c t i o n on the long vowel t a s k s . That i s , s i g n i f i c a n t performance d i f f e r e n c e s on the long vowel tasks were observed only i n l o w - a b i l i t y grade one s u b j e c t s . Such a f i n d i n g may be i n t e r p r e t e d to r e f l e c t the r e l a t i v e ease of long vowel r e c o g n i t i o n as compared to short vowel r e c o g n i t i o n . The superi o r recog- n i t i o n performance on the long vowel tasks does not corroborate a f i n d - ing of Wylie and D u r r e l l (1971). These authors, however, used a procedure which was q u i t e d i f f e r e n t from the one used i n the present 38 study. A l s o , t h e i r p o p u l a t i o n sample was r e s t r i c t e d to grade one sub-", j e c t s of average reading a b i l i t y . This b e t t e r long vowel r e c o g n i t i o n performance c a s t s doubt on the a d v i s a b i l i t y of teaching short vowel sounds f i r s t . This common teaching p r a c t i c e i s based on the a p r i o r i n o t i o n that the r u l e s f o r short vowel sound a p p l i c a t i o n are more r e l i a b l e than those governing the a p p l i c a t i o n of long vowel s o u n d s . ' Attempts to v a l i d a t e t h i s assumption have been unsuccessful (Clymer, 1963). Another major f i n d i n g of the study was that vowel r e c o g n i t i o n performance was b e t t e r when the vowel sounds were pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n as compared to i n a phonogram ( I and ̂  v s . I ^ ) . The e f f e c t was observed across l e v e l s of both Grade and A b i l i t y and f o r long as w e l l as short vowel sounds. This b e t t e r r e c o g n i t i o n performance under the i s o l a t i o n mode i s , once more, not i n accord w i t h the f i n d i n g s of Wylie and D u r r e l l (.1971) . The s p e c i f i c source of t h i s discrepancy i s not immediately apparent. However, one source may be the type of phonics t r a i n i n g that t h e i r s u bjects r e c e i v e d as part of the grade-one reading program. Although the type of phonics t r a i n i n g was not a f a c t o r i n the a n a l y s i s of the Wylie and D u r r e l l r e s u l t s , the d e s c r i p t i o n of t h e i r s u b jects revealed that a l l of .them read the Scott Foresman b a s a l readers. However, only h a l f of these subjects r e c e i v e d the phonics i n s t r u c t i o n which accompanies the Scott Foresman s e r i e s , whereas the other h a l f r e c e i v e d Speech to P r i n t phonics t r a i n i n g . I t should be noted that Speech to' P r i n t i s a phonics program which provides d i r e c t p r a c t i c e i n the i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of vowel sounds i n ending phonograms. Thus, i t may be that the task which, was e a s i e r f o r Wylie and D u r r e l l ' s subjects was a r e f l e c t i o n of the manner i n which h a l f of them had been i n s t r u c t e d . 39 Ginn 720 and the Bookmark b a s a l s e r i e s were the i n s t r u c t i o n a l t e x t s used by subjects i n the present study. Type of reading program was a l s o not a f a c t o r i n the study. However, i t should be noted that the i n s t r u c t i o n a l teaching p r a c t i c e s suggested i n the Teachers' Manuals, which accompany Bookmark and Ginn 720, emphasize presenting ending phono- gram p a t t e r n s . However, the phonogram teaching p r a c t i c e s suggested i n these manuals more c l o s e l y resemble the techniques used i n the Scott Foresman s e r i e s . They do not p a r a l l e l the experimental t e s t i n g proce- dures used i n t h i s present study and i n the Wylie and D u r r e l l study, to the h i g h degree that the Speech to P r i n t phonics program does. The c o n t r a s t between ending and beginning phonograms r e s u l t e d i n ambiguous f i n d i n g s . These were that r e c o g n i t i o n performance was b e t t e r when vowel sounds were pronounced i n ending phonograms only i n the short vowel c o n d i t i o n . In the long vowel c o n d i t i o n , r e c o g n i t i o n performance was b e t t e r when vowel sounds were pronounced i n beginning phonograms. Furthermore, the i n t e r a c t i o n of 1^ v s . 1^ by Grade under the short vowel c o n d i t i o n showed the superi o r ending phonogram performance to be r e s t r i c t e d to grade-two s u b j e c t s . This s u p e r i o r performance of grade-two subjects i n the short vowel ending phonogram c o n d i t i o n may be viewed as a by-product of the b e n e f i t s which accrue from " p r a c t i c e " at a f a m i l i a r task. That i s , conventional teaching p r a c t i c e s tend to emphasize ending phonogram phonics i n s t r u c - t i o n to a much greater degree than beginning phonogram i n s t r u c t i o n . The v a l i d i t y of t h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n appears to be d o u b t f u l as performance was b e t t e r i n the corresponding long vowel c o n t r a s t s when the input mode was beginning phonogram. I t should be noted though, that 72 out of 180 s u b j e c t s performed e q u a l l y w e l l under both beginning and ending phonograms c o n d i t i o n s i n the long vowel t a s k s . Another major f i n d i n g was that r e c o g n i t i o n performance was b e t t e r f o r short vowel sounds when the response mode p r e s e n t a t i o n was vowel l e t t e r s p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n . There were, however, s e v e r a l i n t e r - a c t i o n s which l i m i t the g e n e r a l i t y of t h i s f i n d i n g . The performance of s u b j e c t s i n vs. R^/l^ revealed that when short vowel sounds were pronounced i n an ending phonogram, the b e t t e r r e c o g n i t i o n i n the i s o l a - t i o n response mode was r e s t r i c t e d to grade-two s u b j e c t s . The grade- one su b j e c t s performed e q u a l l y w e l l when the vowel was p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n and when i t was p r i n t e d i n an ending phonogram. On the other hand, when vowel sounds were pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n , the b e t t e r r e c o g n i - t i o n i n the .response mode i s o l a t i o n was observed only f o r low a b i l i t y grade one s u b j e c t s . T h i s f i n d i n g may i n d i c a t e t h a t once a subject can recognize a vowel sound pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n , i t does not matter whether the response mode i s vowel p r i n t e d i n i s o l a t i o n or i n a phonogram. Such r e s u l t s do not support the claims that the ending phonogram f a c i l i t a t e s vowel r e c o g n i t i o n . On the c o n t r a r y , i n the present study the o v e r a l l tendency was f o r su p e r i o r r e c o g n i t i o n i n the i s o l a t i o n response mode. Another major f i n d i n g i n v o l v e d the co n t r a s t of beginning v s . ending phonograms i n the response mode. Performance of grade-one sub- j e c t s d i d not vary as a f u n c t i o n of beginning v s . ending phonogram p r e s e n t a t i o n . Again, t h i s c a s t s doubt on the u t i l i t y of the ending phonogram f o r vowel r e c o g n i t i o n . The only s u b j e c t s whose r e c o g n i t i o n performance was b e t t e r under the ending phonogram response mode co n d i - t i o n were those i n grade two. Once more, t h i s f i n d i n g may r e f l e c t the tendency, i n most reading programs, to focus on ending phonogram 41 I n s t r u c t i o n . Grade-two subjects would have more p r a c t i c e r e c o g n i z i n g the ending vs. the beginning phonogram. Furthermore, the l a c k of v a r i a - t i o n i n grade-one performance may i n d i c a t e that the beginning phonogram i s a c t u a l l y the e a s i e r mode of graphic p r e s e n t a t i o n . The grade-one sub j e c t s d i d as w e l l i n the beginning phonogram c o n d i t i o n as they d i d i n the ending phonogram c o n d i t i o n . This i s an i n t e r e s t i n g f i n d i n g i n view of the t r a d i t i o n a l l a c k of emphasis placed on beginning phonogram i n s t r u c t i o n . V a r i a t i o n s i n response mode p r e s e n t a t i o n d i d not a f f e c t long vowel r e c o g n i t i o n performance to the degree that was observed under the short vowel c o n d i t i o n s . Thus, i t appears that when teaching long vowel sounds r e c o g n i t i o n performance i s not enhanced as a f u n c t i o n of graphic presen- t a t i o n . Once more, t h i s may be i n t e r p r e t e d to r e f l e c t the r e l a t i v e ease of long vowel sound r e c o g n i t i o n . One exception to t h i s f i n d i n g was observed however, i n the co n t r a s t i n v o l v i n g the pr o n u n c i a t i o n of long vowels i n i s o l a t i o n . When long vowel sounds were pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n , r e c o g n i t i o n performance was b e t t e r when the vowels were g r a p h i c a l l y represented i n i s o l a t i o n . Again, t h i s does not support the suggestion that the ending phonogram enhances vowel r e c o g n i t i o n . The f i n d i n g s of the present study do not support claims that the phonogram i s the e a s i e s t u n i t i n which to recognize vowel sounds. Such c l a i m s are somewhat c o n t r a d i c t o r y to the general l e a r n i n g p r i n c i p l e that i n s t r u c t i o n should proceed from simple to complex. Wi t h i n such a frame- work, i t makes more sense to i s o l a t e the phonemic sound and i t s graphic counterpart at the onset of vowel i n s t r u c t i o n , This would a l l o w students to focus on the s a l i e n t f e a t u r e s of the i n s t r u c t i o n a l u n i t under 42 c o n s i d e r a t i o n . C r i t i c s of the phonogram, as a u n i t of i n s t r u c t i o n , have suggested that the phonogram makes i t more d i f f i c u l t to focus on i n d i v i d - u a l phonemic elements. Such a c r i t i c i s m may be warranted. On the b a s i s of the present f i n d i n g s , vowel teaching would proceed from vowels presented i n i s o l a t i o n to vowels presented i n phonograms. However, i t appears to make more sense to present ending phonograms w i t h i n the context of rhyming word f a m i l i e s . This would make phonic i n s t r u c t i o n more meaningful as the phonogram would be presented i n a whole word context and not i n i s o l a t i o n . The i s o l a t i o n of the l e t t e r and the sound should be r e s t r i c t e d to the i n i t i a l p r a c t i c e of the vowel sounds. Once t h i s has been mastered, p r a c t i c e should be i n more meaning- f u l contexts. Such an approach would be l e s s f e a s i b l e w i t h beginning phonograms. I t i s l i k e l y t hat beginning phonogram p r a c t i c e would have to take p l a c e outside the context of a whole word. Suggestions f o r Further Research The f i n d i n g s of the present study are l i m i t e d to statements regard- i n g the manner i n which vowel sounds are recognized. There can be no statements made regarding the ease of vowel l e a r n i n g . A f u r t h e r area of study would c o n t r a s t the ease of l e a r n i n g vowel sounds under the v a r i o u s p r e s e n t a t i o n modes. CHAPTER V CONCLUSIONS The f o l l o w i n g conclusions may be drawn from the f i n d i n g s of t h i s study: 1. The teaching of vowel sounds should perhaps be i n s t r u c t i o n a l l y designated on the b a s i s of reading a b i l i t y and not grade l e v e l . I t i s a common p r a c t i c e to concentrate on vowel i n s t r u c t i o n i n second and t h i r d year reading programs. However, vowel i n s t r u c t i o n can be emphasized during the i n i t i a l stages of reading i n s t r u c t i o n i f the focus i s on r e c o g n i t i o n tasks as opposed to decoding t a s k s . 2. Long vowel sounds are more e a s i l y recognized than short vowel sounds. Therefore, long vowel i n s t r u c t i o n should perhaps precede short vowel i n s t r u c t i o n . 3 . Recognition performance was b e t t e r when the vowel sounds were pro- nounced i n i s o l a t i o n r a t h e r than i n a phonogram, e i t h e r beginning or ending. This f i n d i n g was tru e f o r both long and short vowel sounds. Thus, the phonogram i s not the e a s i e s t u n i t i n which to recognize vowel sounds. 4. Recognition of short vowel sounds was b e t t e r when the response mode p r e s e n t a t i o n was i s o l a t i o n . T his preference was not observed i n the long vowel c o n t r a s t s to the same degree. That i s , i n the long vowel c o n d i t i o n , performance was b e t t e r when vowel l e t t e r s were 4 4 g r a p h i c a l l y represented i n i s o l a t i o n o n ly when the vowel sound was pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n . There were no s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s i n the long vowel c o n d i t i o n s when vowels were p r i n t e d i n e i t h e r begin- ning or ending phonograms. This l a c k of v a r i a n c e may be a t t r i b u t - a b l e to the ease of the long vowel r e c o g n i t i o n task as compared w i t h short vowels. Contrasts i n v o l v i n g ending phonogram p r o n u n c i a t i o n v s . beginning phonogram p r o n u n c i a t i o n revealed that r e c o g n i t i o n performance was b e t t e r i n the short vowel c o n d i t i o n s when the input mode was ending phonogram. On the other hand, long vowel r e c o g n i t i o n performance was su p e r i o r when the input mode was the beginning phonogram. In the response mode, c o n t r a s t s i n v o l v i n g type of phonogram presen- t a t i o n revealed that r e c o g n i t i o n performance was b e t t e r f o r short vowels p r i n t e d i n ending phonograms. There was no performance d i f - ference f o r long vowel r e c o g n i t i o n as a f u n c t i o n of beginning or ending phonogram response p r e s e n t a t i o n . Again, t h i s may be due to the ease w i t h which most subjects: performed the long vowel t a s k s . The i n s t r u c t i o n a l i m p l i c a t i o n s of these f i n d i n g s may r e f l e c t on the manner i n which vowel teaching should be sequenced. The f o l l o w i n g suggested sequence i s based on the f i n d i n g s of the present study: Ca) Long vowel i n s t r u c t i o n should precede short vowel i n s t r u c t i o n , (b) Vowels should be presented i n the input mode i n the f o l l o w i n g manner: i s o l a t i o n , ending phonogram, and then beginning phono- gram f o r short vowel i n s t r u c t i o n . I s o l a t i o n , beginning phono- gram, and ending phonogram f o r long vowel i n s t r u c t i o n . 45 Vowels should be presented i n the response modes i n a correspond- ing s e q u e n t i a l manner. However, the sequencing of response mode v a r i a t i o n s are not as c r u c i a l f o r long vowel sounds as they are f o r short vowel sounds. 46 REFERENCES Aaron, I. E. What teachers and prospective teachers know about phonic generalization. Journal of Educational Research, 1960, 53, 323-30. Anderson, P. S. Language s k i l l s i n elementary education. New York: Macmillan, 1964. Ar t l e y , A. S. 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G e n e r a l i z a t i o n s i n s p e l l i n g . New York: Teachers Co l l e g e , 1931. Schubert, D. G. Teachers and word a n a l y s i s s k i l l s . J o u r n a l of Develop- mental reading, 1959, _2, 62-4. Smith, F. Understanding reading. New York: H o l t , Rinehart and Winston, 1978. Spache, G. D. C h a r a c t e r i s t i c e r r o r s of good and poor s p e l l e r s . J o u r n a l of E d u c a t i o n a l Research, 1940, 34_> 182-89. Spache, G. D. I n v e s t i g a t i n g the i s s u e s of reading d i s a b i l i t i e s . A l l y n and Bacon, Inc., 1976. Spache, G., & Baggett, M. What do teachers know about phonics and s y l l a b i c a t i o n ? The Reading Teacher, 1966, 19, 96-99. Wylie, R. E., & D u r r e l l , D. D. Teaching vowels through phonograms. Elementary E n g l i s h , 1970, 47_, 787-91. 49 A P P E N D I X ' A. 1. ush esh 2. i n un 3. ep up 4. ' em urn 5. eg ag 6. od ed 7. ub i b 8. od ad 9. i s h ush 10. ug i g 11. em im 12. ep up 13. un i n 14. i b ab T e s t 1 i s h ash osh an en on op i p ap am im om og i g ug i d ud ad ab eb ob i d ud ed esh ash osh og eg ag om am urn ap op i p en an on eb ob ub Input Mode: Short vowel pronounced i n ending phonogram Response Mode: Ending phonogram U n d e r l i n e d i t em i n d i c a t e s c o r r e c t response 1. ob ab 2. i d od 3 • ag og 4. urn em 5. ep up 6. on un 7. i s h ush 8. i b ub 9. en an 10. up op 11. am om 12. eg ug 13. osh esh 14. od ad eb ub i b ud ad. ed ug i g eg im am om i p ap op en an i n ' ash osh esh ob eb ab on i n un ep ap i p im em urn og i g ag ash ush i s h i d ud ed Input Mode: Short vowel pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n Response Mode: Ending phonogram U n d e r l i n e d item i n d i c a t e s c o r r e c t response 52 T e s t 3 1. a i _ o u e ( i b ) 2. e o a i u (ud) 3. a o e i u (ag) 4. i o a u e (om) 5. a e u o i (ep) 6. a u e i o (un) 7. o a e i u ( i s h ) 8. i u e a o (ab) 9. e o a i u (en) 10. e i o a u (op) 11. u o i e a (urn) 12. i o a e u (og) 13. a e o u i (ash) 14. ' o a u e i (ed) I n p u t Mode: S h o r t vowel pronounced i n e n d i n g phonogram Response Mode: E n d i n g phonogram U n d e r l i n e d i t e m i n d i c a t e s c o r r e c t response Items i n p a r e n t h e s i s i n d i c a t e i n p u t mode s t i m u l u s i t e m T e s t 4 1. o a u • e i 2. e u o a i 3. o a e i ^ u 4. u o a i e 5. i u o a e Input Mode: Short vowel pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n Response Mode: I s o l a t i o n U n d e r l i n e d i t e m i n d i c a t e s c o r r e c t response 1. bu bi_ 2 . do de 3. g i ga 4. me mu 5. p i pe 6. n i nu 7. shu she 8. bo be 9. n i nu 10. pu p i 11. mu mi 12. ge gu 13. shu she 14. d i du Te s t 5 be ba bo da d i du go ge gu ma mi mo po pu pa ne no na sha s h i sho b i bu ba ne na no po pe pa mo ma me ga go g i s h i sha sho da do de Input Mode: Short vowel pronounced i n be g i n n i n g phonogram Response Mode: Beginning phonogram U n d e r l i n e d item i n d i c a t e s c o r r e c t response 1. be bu 2. du do 3. ga ge 4. mo mu 5. pa p i 6. nu na 7. she s h i 8. bu bo 9. ne no 10. pe po 11. mi mu 12. go ga 13. sha shu 14. da de Te s t 6 bo ba bi_ da d i de g i go gu mi ma me pu pe po n i no ne sha sho shu b i ba be na n i nu pa p i pu me ma mo ge g i gu she s h i sho du do d i Input Mode: Short vowel pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n Response Mode: Beginning phonogram U n d e r l i n e d item i n d i c a t e s c o r r e c t response Test 7 1. u 3. 6. 10, 11. 12, 13, 14. u u u u u o u u u u u u u u (bi) (du) (ga) (mo) (pe) (nu) (shi) (ba) (ne) (po) (mu) (go) (sha) (de) Input Mode: Short vowel pronounced i n beginning phonogram Response Mode: Isolation Item i n parenthesis indicate input mode Underlined item indicates correct response 1. bo b_i 2. de du 3. ge gu 4. mu mi 5. pe p i 6. ne no 7. s h i sha 8 • bu ba 9. ne nu 10. pu p i 11. mu mi 12. g i gu 13. sho sha 14. du de Te s t 8 bu be ba do de da go g i ga mo ma me pa po pu n i na nu sho shu she b i be bo na no n i po pa pe mo me ma ge ga go s h i shu she da d i do Input Mode: Long vowel pronounced i n be g i n n i n g phonogram Response Mode: Beginning Phonogram U n d e r l i n e d item i n d i c a t e s " c o r r e c t response 1. bo b_i 2. du de 3. gu ge 4. me mu 5. pu po 6. no ne 7. she shu 8. bu ba. 9. n i ne 10. p i pu 11. me ma 12. gu go 13. sha sho 14. de du Test 9 be bu ba da do d i go ga g i mo ma mi pa pe p i n i na nu sha sho s h i b i be bo na no nu po pa pe mo mi mu ge ga g i s h i she shu do d i da Input Mode: Long vowel pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n Response Mode: Beginning Phonogram U n d e r l i n e d item i n d i c a t e s c o r r e c t response T e s t 10 1. a i o u e (bi) 2. e o a i u (du) 3. a o e i u (ga) 4. i o a u e (mo) 5. a e u o i (pe) 6. a u e i o (nu) 7. o a e i u (shi) 8. i u e a o (ba) 9. e o a i u (ne) 10. e i o a u (po) 11. u o i e a (mu) 12. i o a e u (go) 13. a e o u i (sha) 14. o a u e i (de) Input Mode: Long vowel pronounced i n be g i n n i n g phonogram Response Mode: I s o l a t i o n Items i n p a r e n t h e s i s i n d i c a t e i n p u t stimulus U n d e r l i n e d item i n d i c a t e s c o r r e c t response T e s t 11 1. o a u e i 2 . e u o a i 3 . o a e i u 4. u o a i e 5. i u o a e Input Mode: Long vowel pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n Response Mode: I s o l a t i o n U n d e r l i n e d item i n d i c a t e s c o r r e c t response 61 Test 12 1. i l e e l e . o l e a l e ule 2. ime ome ame eme ume 3. ote i t e ete ate ute 4. ade ede ide ode M< l ude 5. one ine ene une ane 6. eke oke uke i k e ake 7. epe upe ope ape ipe 8. ebe abe obe ube ibe Input Mode: Long vowel pronounced i n ending phonogram Response Mode: Ending phonogram Underlined item i n d i c a t e s c o r r e c t response 62 Te s t 13 1. i l e e l e u l e a l e o l e 2. ume ome ame erne ime 3. ate ete i t e ute ote 4. ode ude ede i d e ade 5. une ene ine one ane 6. i k e oke eke uke ake 7. i p e ope ape epe upe 8. ube ebe obe ibe abe Input Mode: Long vowel pronounced i n i s o l a t i o n Response Mode: Long vowel ending phonogram U n d e r l i n e d item i n d i c a t e s c o r r e c t response 1. a e i 2. e i u 3. u e a 4. o a e 5. i_ u e 6. u i o 7. u i_ o 8. a i e Test 14 u o (ale) a o (eme) i o (ote) u i (ude) a o (irie) e a (ake) a e (ipe) u o (ube) Input Mode: Long vowel pronounced i n ending phonogram Response Mode: I s o l a t i o n Items i n p a r e n t h e s i s i n d i c a t e i n p u t stimulus item U n d e r l i n e d item i n d i c a t e s the c o r r e c t response

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