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Relationships between working memory and reading comprehension in beginning and intermediate readers Molloy, Peter John 1991

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RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN WORKING MEMORY7AND READING COMPREHENSION I N BEGINNING AND INTERMEDIATE READERS By PETER JOHN MOLLOY B.A. U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , 1977 A THESIS SUBMITTED I N PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS i n THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES ( D e p a r t m e n t o f E d u c a t i o n a l P s y c h o l o g y a n d S p e c i a l E d u c a t i o n Human L e a r n i n g , D e v e l o p m e n t a n d I n s t r u c t i o n ) We a c c e p t t h i s t h e s i s a s c o n f o r m i n g t o t h e r e q u i r e d s t a n d a r d THE UNIVERSITY OF B R I T I S H COLUMBIA A u g u s t 1991 s—v. © P e t e r J o h n M o l l o y , \L991 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada DE-6 (2/88) ABSTRACT T h i s s t u d y i n v e s t i g a t e d t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s b e t w e e n w o r k i n g memory a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . Two n o n - l i n g u i s t i c ( d i g i t s p a n a n d m o d i f i e d d i g i t s pan) a n d two l i n g u i s t i c ( w o r d s p a n a n d r e a d i n g s p a n ) memory m e a s u r e s w e r e u s e d . T h e s e m e a s u r e s w e r e c o m p r i s e d o f 11 t e s t s . From t h e s e t e s t s , p r e d i c t o r s o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n w e r e s o u g h t . Two s u b t e s t s f r o m t h e Woodcock R e a d i n g M a s t e r y T e s t s (W.R.M.T.) w e r e u s e d a s a m e a s u r e o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . Age r e l a t e d d i f f e r e n c e s b e t w e e n t h e 30 G r a d e 2 a n d 30 G r a d e 6 s u b j e c t s w e r e a l s o i n v e s t i g a t e d . S i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h e mean s c o r e s o f t h e G r a d e 2 a n d 6's w e r e f o u n d o f a l l 5 o f t h e n o n - l i n g u i s t i c t e s t s b u t o n l y on 1 o f t h e l i n g u i s t i c t e s t s . F a m i l i a r i t y w i t h t h e l e x i c o n u s e d i n t h e l i n g u i s t i c t a s k s may a c c o u n t f o r t h i s . No s i g n i f i c a n t i n t e r a c t i o n s w e r e f o u n d b e t w e e n g r a d e m e a s u r e s . The m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n , w o r d s p a n a n d r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k s w e r e f o u n d t o be s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r s o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . The c o m p l e x r e a d i n g s p a n m e a s u r e h a d t h e h i g h e s t l e v e l o f s i g n i f i c a n c e o f t h e t h r e e . T h i s s u g g e s t s t h a t l i n g u i s t i c w o r k i n g memory t a s k t h a t h a d a c a p a c i t y a n d p r o c e s s i n g component b e s t p r e d i c t s r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . i TABLE OF CONTENTS Page ABSTRACT i TABLE OF CONTENTS i i L I S T OF TABLES i v ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS V CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION 1 P u r p o s e 1 B a c k g r o u n d 2 CHAPTER 2 WORKING MEMORY AND READING 4 C a p a c i t y 4 P r o c e s s i n g 6 ^ ^ J S o o d - - a n c r - P o c ^ - C ^ p r e h — , R e c e n t Rej^eaxsb - . 3 " p — ^ C o n c e p t u a l ~ R e l a t i o n s h i p s B e t w e e n W o r k i n g V Memory a n d R e a d i n g C o m p r e h e n s i o n a n d — P r e d i c t e d F i n d i n g s 16 CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY 21 Sub j e c t s 21 T e s t M a t e r i a l s 21 P r o c e d u r e 24 D e s i g n a n d A n a l y s i s 28 S c o r i n g 28 CHAPTER 4 RESEARCH FINDINGS 30 R e s u l t s ' 30 A n a l y s i s o f O b s e r v e d Means D i f f e r e n c e s b e t w e e n G r a d e 2 a n d 6 32 A n a l y s i s o f P r e d i c t i v e R e l a t i o n s b e t w e e n Two C l a s s e s o f Memory M e a s u r e s a n d R e a d i n g C o m p r e h e n s i o n 33 i i CHAPTER 5 D i s c u s s i o n 41 Summary a n d C o n c l u s i o n s 41 S u g g e s t i o n s f o r F u t u r e R e s e a r c h 47 REFERENCES 50 BIBLIOGRAPHY 53 APPENDIX 1: W o r k i n g Memory Span T a s k s a n d T a s k D a t a S h e e t s 56 APPENDIX 2: P a r e n t I n i t i a l C o n t a c t L e t t e r a n d P a r e n t P e r m i s s i o n L e t t e r 68 i i i LIST OF TABLES Page TABLE 1 O b s e r v e d Means b y G r a d e a n d t h e S t a t i s t i c a l S i g n i f i c a n c e o f t h e i r D i f f e r e n c e s 31 TABLE 2 Summary T e s t R e s u l t s o f t h e G e n e r a l L i n e a r M o d e l A n a l y s i s o f R e a d i n g C o m p r e h e n s i o n a s t h e F u n c t i o n o f G r a d e a n d N o n - l i n g u i s t i c Memory Span M e a s u r e s . . 3 5 TABLE 3 Summary T e s t R e s u l t s o f t h e G e n e r a l L i n e a r M o d e l A n a l y s i s o f R e a d i n g C o m p r e h e n s i o n a s t h e F u n c t i o n o f G r a d e a n d L i n g u i s t i c Memory Span M e a s u r e s 36 TABLE 4 Summary T e s t R e s u l t s o f t h e G e n e r a l L i n e a r M o d e l A n a l y s i s o f R e a d i n g C o m p r e h e n s i o n a s t h e F u n c t i o n o f G r a d e a n d FDS, MDS4, WS4 a n d RS3 39 TABLE 5 Summary T e s t R e s u l t s o f t h e G e n e r a l L i n e a r M o d e l A n a l y s i s o f R e a d i n g C o m p r e h e n s i o n a s t h e F u n c t i o n o f FDS, MDS4, WS4 a n d RS3, R e g r e s s i o n C o e f f i c i e n t s a n d t s c o r e s 40 i v ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I wish to express my sincere appreciation to Dr. S.S. Lee for h i s i n t e r e s t and support as my thesis advisor, Dr. D. Whittaker and Dr. L. Gunderson for t h e i r valued assistance as members of the thesi s committee. Special thank are given to my wife, Mavis fo r her support and dedication to t h i s thesis. Without her help i t would not have been completed. Thanks also go to Kieran for h i s patience and understanding. v CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION Purpose A considerable body of research exists which examines the rel a t i o n s h i p s between reading comprehension and short-term or working memory. Much of t h i s research has i t s basis i n the un i v e r s i t y laboratory setting, using undergraduate psychology students as i t s subjects. I t involves, for the most part, the use of l i n g u i s t i c and non-linguistic measures of short-term or working memory and standardized measures of reading comprehension. The r e s u l t s of these studies have shown a range of corr e l a t i o n s from highly signd'fTeantrelationships to no rela t i o n s h i p s at a l l . term or woWcjng' memory has both a storage and a processing component and that individual differences i n the components can ex i s t . They also looked at previous measures of short-term or working memory as only tests of storage capacity. They argued that i f i n d i v i d u a l differences i n short-term or working memory were to be observed a task that measures not only storage but processing capacity must be used. Since that study was published many extensions and r e p l i c a t i o n s with extensions have been performed with varying r e s u l t s . Few of these studies have investigated the re l a t i o n s h i p between reading comprehension and short-term or working memory i n school-age children. The purpose of the present study was to determine the extent (1980) presented the view that short-1 2 to which some selected l i n g u i s t i c and no n - l i n g u i s t i c memory tasks pr e d i c t reading comprehension i n beginning and intermediate readers. This study attempted to answer two questions. The f i r s t question was which of the l i n g u i s t i c or n o n - l i n g u i s t i c tasks best pr e d i c t reading comprehension a b i l i t y . L i n g u i s t i c tasks are defined i n t h i s study as tasks using words or sentences ( i . e . , language), while non-linguistic tasks are defined as tasks using d i g i t s or numbers ( i . e . , symbols). The second question raised was with regards to the p o s s i b i l i t y of a difference i n the rel a t i o n s h i p s between reading comprehension and working memory i n the two reading grade groups ( i . e . , Grade 2 and 6). Background T r a d i t i o n a l measures of short-term or working memory have involved simple word span or d i g i t span tasks that were considered to assess only the capacity of t h i s type of memory. Research into short-term memory or working memory, looked at t h i s component of memory as a passive temporary storage for information that i s eventually transferred to long term storage or l o s t through decay or replacement. More current theories of memory view short-term memory as more active and being comprised of a storage and a processing component. The term working memory has i n many instances come to replace the name short-term memory and i s used from t h i s point on i n t h i s thesis. Working memory i n t h i s study i s used to r e f e r to an active working memory where storage and processing both can take place. 3 A f t e r t h e p u b l i c a t i o n o f t h e Daneman and C a r p e n t e r (1980) s t u d y , r e s e a r c h i n t o w o r k i n g memory span and t a s k s t o measure t h e span, and i t s r e l a t i o n s h i p t o r e a d i n g comprehension, broadened. Many new and v a r i e d t a s k s were d e s i g n e d and t e s t e d w i t h c o n f l i c t i n g r e s u l t s . B a ddeley, L o g i e , Nimmo-Smith and B r e r e t o n (1985) sp e n t much t i m e and e f f o r t i n v e s t i g a t i n g t h e r e a d i n g span t a s k t h a t Daneman and C a r p e n t e r (1980) used and t h e n d e s i g n i n g what t h e y s t a t e d t o be a m o d i f i e d r e a d i n g span t a s k . Word span and d i g i t span t a s k s gave way t o more and more complex measures o f w o r k i n g memory w i t h v a r y i n g degrees of s u c c e s s . C u r r e n t r e s e a r c h by Y u i l l , O a k h i l l and P a r k i n (1989) has r e t u r n e d t o t h e d i g i t span t a s k and r e v i s e d i t . T h e i r f i n d i n g s appear t o i n d i c a t e a s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a t i o n s h i p between a m o d i f i e d d i g i t span t a s k ( n o n - l i n g u i s t i c t a s k ) and r e a d i n g comprehension i n young r e a d e r s . W h i l e T u r n e r and E n g l e (1989) and L a P o i n t e and E n g l e (1990) have i n v e s t i g a t e d a number o f word span, d i g i t span, o p e r a t i o n span and s e n t e n c e span t a s k s , t h e r e s u l t s o f t h e i r r e s e a r c h i n d i c a t e s t h a t t h e s i m p l e word span t a s k ( l i n g u i s t i c t a s k ) shows e v i d e n c e o f b e i n g s i g n i f i c a n t l y r e l a t e d t o w o r k i n g memory. These f i n d i n g s and o t h e r s i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e do not seem t o p r e s e n t a c l e a r p i c t u r e o f w o r k i n g memory's r o l e i n r e a d i n g comprehension. T h e r e f o r e , t h e p r e s e n t r e s e a r c h was d e s i g n e d t o reexamine t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p between r e a d i n g comprehension and w o r k i n g memory, as measured by two c l a s s e s o f memory measures, w i t h p a r t i c u l a r r e f e r e n c e t o b e g i n n i n g and i n t e r m e d i a t e r e a d e r s . CHAPTER 2 WORKING MEMORY AND READING While t r a d i t i o n a l theories of short-term memory have previously been based on a s t o i c , non-active storage buffer, more contemporary views see t h i s storage f a c i l i t y as much more active and r e f e r to i t as working memory (Best 1986). This t h e s i s takes the l a t t e r view. I t also emphasizes that there are differences e x i s t i n g between individuals with respect to the u t i l i z a t i o n of the capacity component of working memory and the u t i l i z a t i o n of working memory processing, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n reading. This chapter w i l l be divided into four parts. I t w i l l look at (1) the capacity component of working memory, (2) the processing component of working memory, (3) individual differences i n reading comprehension a b i l i t y and (4) recent research i n the area of working memory and reading comprehension. Capacity Working memory has a limited capacity and as a storage f a c i l i t y i s not large enough to hold and comprehend a l l of a text base presented o r a l l y or v i s u a l l y at once (Vipond, 1980). Information previously stored i n working memory has a short duration and may decay or be displaced. Decay r e s u l t s from information not being retrieved, rehearsed or activated for a period of time. Displacement occurs when too much information i s entered or processed and "old" information i s removed or replaced. 4 5 I n p u t f o r w o r k i n g memory i s a u d i t o r y and v i s u a l . Once i n f o r m a t i o n b e g i n s t o be s t o r e d i n w o r k i n g memory, problems w i t h c a p a c i t y b e g i n t o d e v e l o p . We cannot keep a d d i n g i n f o r m a t i o n w i t h o u t some d i s p l a c e m e n t o c c u r r i n g . A s u b s t r u c t u r e (a b u f f e r ) t o w o r k i n g memory appears t o s e l e c t what i n f o r m a t i o n i s t o be h e l d i n w o r k i n g memory and what i s t o be d i s p l a c e d ( K i n t s c h & Van D i j k , 1978) . R e h e a r s a l , r e c e n c y and p l a n s and g o a l s a r e among t h e s t r a t e g i e s u s e d t o s e l e c t and keep i n f o r m a t i o n f o r t h e b u f f e r ( F l e t c h e r , 1981) . Even w i t h a b u f f e r t o a s s i s t i n m a i n t a i n i n g and w o r k i n g w i t h i n f o r m a t i o n i n w o r k i n g memory, some i n f o r m a t i o n decays o r i s d i s p l a c e d . When measurements o f c a p a c i t y o f s h o r t - t e r m memory a r e mentioned i n c o g n i t i v e p s y c h o l o g y l i t e r a t u r e t h e word "chunk" i s g e n e r a l l y g i v e n as t h e p r e v a l e n t and f u n c t i o n a l u n i t . The number of chunks a v a i l a b l e i n w o r k i n g memory i s l i m i t e d t o 7 and/or -2 chunks ( M i l l e r , 1956) and does n ot appear t o change w i t h age ( C h i , 197 6) . Though some a u t h o r s l i k e Simon (1974), have argued f o r a number more i n t h e a r e a o f 5 chunks. What does v a r y w i t h m a t u r i t y i s t h e c o m p l e x i t y , r i c h n e s s and t h e degree t o w h i c h one can e l a b o r a t e from a chunk. C h i l d r e n chunk i n p u t i n a more s i m p l i s t i c manner t h a n a d u l t s ( C h i , 1976). There a r e fewer c o n c e p t s c o n t a i n e d i n t h e i r chunks and t h e y have more d i f f i c u l t y making a c o h e r e n t r e p r e s e n t a t i o n o f t h e t e x t o r passage i n t h e i r w o r k i n g memories. L e s s o f t h e p r o c e s s e s i n v o l v e d i n c h u n k i n g have r e a c h e d a s t a g e where t h e y a r e a u t o m a t i c t o t h e c h i l d (LaBerge & Samuels, 1974). When d e v e l o p i n g t a s k s t o measure t h e c a p a c i t y component o f 6 c h i l d r e n ' s w o r k i n g memory, t h e s e f a c t o r s m u s t be t a k e n i n t o a c c o u n t . T r a d i t i o n a l l y , t o m e a s u r e t h e c a p a c i t y o f w o r k i n g memory, t e s t s l i k e t h e d i g i t o r w o r d s p a n t a s k s a n d t h e d i g i t memory t e s t w e r e u s e d . The r e s u l t s w e r e c o n f l i c t i n g ( P e r f e t t i & G o l d m a n , 1 9 7 6 ) . Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r ( 1 9 8 0 , 1983) a r g u e t h a t t h e s e t e s t s do n o t c o r r e l a t e w e l l w i t h r e a d i n g a b i l i t y n o r do t h e y t a x t h e p r o c e s s i n g c omponent o f w o r k i n g memory. T h e y s u g g e s t t h a t a r e a d i n g s p a n t e s t , t h a t c o r r e l a t e s w i t h r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n , be u s e d i n s t e a d . L i t t l e e v i d e n c e c a n be f o u n d i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e t o c o n t r a d i c t t h e i r v i e w . T h e i r c o n c l u s i o n s a r e t h a t a s i g n i f i c a n t r e a s o n why g o o d r e a d e r s h a v e l a r g e r w o r k i n g memory s t o r a g e c a p a c i t y t h a n p o o r r e a d e r s i s b e c a u s e t h e f o r m e r p r o c e s s more e f f i c i e n t l y . T h i s f i n d i n g i s c o n s i s t e n t w i t h t h e o r i e s o f p r o c e s s i n g p r e s e n t e d by V i p o n d (1980) a n d K i n t s c h a n d Van D i j k (1978) . I t i s o b v i o u s t h a t g o o d r e a d e r s u s e more o f what V i p o n d (1980) c a l l s a u t o m a t i c p r o c e s s e s a n d t h u s t h e i r p r o c e s s i n g r e q u i r e m e n t s a r e l e s s . P o o r r e a d e r s w o u l d h a v e f e w e r a u t o m a t i c p r o c e s s e s . T h e r e f o r e , t h e y w o u l d h a v e more d i f f i c u l t p r o c e s s i n g demands, l e s s s t o r a g e s p a c e a n d more t r o u b l e r e a d i n g . P r o c e s s e s s u c h a s d e c o d i n g a n d i n f e r e n c i n g a r e n o t a l w a y s a u t o m a t i c t o t h e p o o r r e a d e r , w h i l e t h e g o o d r e a d e r s p e n d s l e s s e f f o r t on t h e s e a n d c a n s p e n d a d d i t i o n a l r e s o u r c e s p r o d u c i n g r i c h c h u n k s a n d a p p e a r s t o h a v e more c a p a c i t y . P r o c e s s i n g The e m p h a s i s o f t h i s s e c t i o n w i l l be o n p r o c e s s i n g a n d 7 c o m p r e h e n s i o n . I n t h e w o r d s o f L a B e r g e a n d S a m u e l s ( 1 9 7 4 , p . 3 2 0 ) : " ( T ) h e c o m p l e x i t y o f t h e c o m p r e h e n s i o n o p e r a t i o n a p p e a r s t o be a s en o r m o u s a s t h a t o f t h i n k i n g i n g e n e r a l . " D e s p i t e t h i s c o m p l e x i t y r e s e a r c h i n t o r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n c o n t i n u e s . C o m p r e h e n s i o n p r o c e s s i n g i t s e l f t a k e s p l a c e , a c c o r d i n g t o t h e l i t e r a t u r e , i n b o t h s e r i a l a n d p a r a l l e l . Once t h e s e p r o c e s s e s become a u t o m a t i c t h e n r e a d i n g becomes e a s y . T h o u g h , i t s h o u l d n o t be f o r g o t t e n t h a t r e a d i n g i s a c o m p l e x p r o c e s s . When we r e a d , w r i t t e n i n f o r m a t i o n i s t r a n s l a t e d i n t o p r o p o s i t i o n s . F o r g o o d r e a d e r s t h i s t r a n s l a t i o n i s a l m o s t a u t o m a t i c . From t h e s e p r o p o s i t i o n s a t e x t b a s e i s c r e a t e d t h a t m u s t b e r e f e r e n t i a l l y c o h e r e n t ( K i n t s c h a n d V a n D i j k , 1 9 7 8 ) . The b a s e i s c o n s t r a i n e d b y ; d e l e t i o n o f i n e s s e n t i a l p r o p o s i t i o n s , r e p l a c i n g g r o u p s o f p r o p o s i t i o n s w i t h g e n e r a l i z a t i o n s a n d c o n s t r u c t i o n o f " g l o b a l " p r o p o s i t i o n s t h a t c o n n e c t o v e r l a p p i n g p r o p o s i t i o n s . W i t h t h e s e c o n s t r a i n t s i n m i n d , i t i s f a i r l y c l e a r t h a t many t y p e s o f a d d i t i o n s a n d a l t e r a t i o n s , s u c h a s i n f e r e n c i n g , c a n n o t be done w i t h i n t h e l i m i t a t i o n s o f w o r k i n g memory c a p a c i t y . What t h i s means f o r g o o d r e a d e r s i s t h a t t h e c o n s t r u c t i o n o f a c o h e r e n t t e x t b a s e i s e a s i e r b e c a u s e o f t h e i r s m a l l e r a l l o t m e n t o f r e s o u r c e s d u e t o a u t o m a t e d p r o c e s s e s . C o n t r o l p r o c e s s e s f o r r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n , s u c h a s t h e r e a d e r ' s u s e o f k n o w l e d g e , p u r p o s e , i n t e r e s t , a n d s e t , a f f e c t t h e r e a d e r a n d t h e y w i l l i n t e r a c t ( F l e t c h e r , 1 9 8 1 , R e c h t & L e s l i e , 1988) . I t f o l l o w s t h a t i f y o u h a v e a n i n t e r e s t o r g o a l i n w h a t y o u a r e r e a d i n g y o u w i l l c o m p r e h e n d b e t t e r , i f o n l y b e c a u s e y o u 8 c o n c e n t r a t e a n d f o c u s y o u r a t t e n t i o n on i t . A t t e n t i o n i s one o f t h e r e q u i r e d r e s o u r c e s f o r c o m p r e h e n s i o n . A s s t a t e d b y L a B e r g e a n d S a m u e l s ( 1 9 7 4 , p. 3 1 3 ) , " t h e g o a l o f a f l u e n t r e a d e r i s t o m a i n t a i n h i s a t t e n t i o n c o n t i n u o u s l y on t h e m e a n i n g u n i t s o f s e m a n t i c memory, w h i l e d e c o d i n g f r o m v i s u a l s e m a n t i c s y s t e m s p r o c e e d s a u t o m a t i c a l l y . " T h i s s t r e s s e s t h e r o l e o f a t t e n t i o n i n r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . A t t e n t i o n i s a f a c t o r t h a t c a n be s e l e c t i v e a n d d o e s h a v e a l i m i t e d c a p a c i t y . We may a l w a y s f o c u s o n w h a t we a t t e n d t o b u t we s t i l l p r o c e s s many d i f f e r e n t t h i n g s a t t h e same t i m e . I n r e a d i n g i t i s e s s e n t i a l t o p a y a t t e n t i o n t o t h e t e x t s i n c e s o many component s k i l l s a r e i n v o l v e d . A l o n g w i t h a t t e n t i o n , memory, c o n s c i o u s n e s s a n d t h e d e c i s i o n s i n v o l v e d a r e a l s o r e q u i r e d r e s o u r c e s f o r c o m p r e h e n s i o n ( K i n t s c h & V a n D i j k , 1 9 7 8 ) . The a l l o c a t i o n o f t h e s e r e s o u r c e s i s r e s t r i c t e d b y t h e c a p a c i t y o f w o r k i n g memory. From t h i s i t becomes f a i r l y e v i d e n t t h a t c a p a c i t y a n d p r o c e s s i n g b o t h p l a y a n i n t e g r a l p a r t i n r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . Good and Poor Comprehenders R e a d i n g i s a s e t o f c o m p l e x s k i l l s t h a t m o s t a d u l t r e a d e r s t a k e f o r g r a n t e d . However, f o r c h i l d r e n l e a r n i n g t o r e a d , a c q u i r i n g t h e s e s k i l l s i s a l o n g p r o c e s s . E v e n a f t e r many y e a r s o f p r a c t i s i n g t h e s e s k i l l s , some c h i l d r e n do n o t become f l u e n t r e a d e r s . T h e s e f a i l u r e s h a v e b e e n o f c o n c e r n t o b o t h e d u c a t o r s a n d r e s e a r c h e r s . A s a r e s u l t , t h e r e h a s b e e n much r e s e a r c h i n t o t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n r e a d i n g a n d memory o v e r t h e p a s t 20 y e a r s . The r e s u l t s h a v e shown t h a t a p o s i t i v e c o r r e l a t i o n e x i s t s b e t w e e n 9 s k i l l e d r e a d i n g a n d t h e e f f e c t i v e u s e o f memory p r o c e s s e s a n d i n p a r t i c u l a r , w o r k i n g memory p r o c e s s e s . A s s t a t e d e a r l i e r , t h e f i n d i n g s p o i n t t o t h e b a s i s o f w o r k i n g memory a s b e i n g composed o f a s t o r a g e a n d a p r o c e s s i n g f a c i l i t y , a n d h a v i n g l i m i t e d c a p a c i t y . I n a d d i t i o n , t h e t w o c o m p o n e n t s c o m p e t e f o r t h e a v a i l a b l e r e s o u r c e s w i t h i n w o r k i n g memory. Much e a r l y r e s e a r c h l o o k e d f o r d i f f e r e n c e s i n w o r k i n g memory c a p a c i t y b e t w e e n g o o d a n d p o o r r e a d e r s . I t was t h o u g h t t h a t p o o r r e a d e r s h a d a d e f i c i t i n w o r k i n g memory c a p a c i t y b u t , C h i (1976) a n d o t h e r s (Daneman & C a r p e n t e r , 1983) f o u n d t h a t t h e r e i s s i m i l a r c a p a c i t y i n c h i l d r e n o v e r 5 a n d a d u l t s . Thus t h e e m p h a s i s o f more r e c e n t r e s e a r c h h a s s h i f t e d away f r o m t h e s t o i c v i e w o f a s t o r a g e c a p a c i t y a n d l o o k s t o w a r d s d i f f e r e n c e s i n p r o c e s s e s a n d p r o c e d u r e s b e t w e e n t h e t w o t y p e s o f r e a d e r s . I n d i v i d u a l s d i f f e r e n c e s i n w o r k i n g memory a p p e a r t o r e f l e c t d i f f e r e n c e s i n p r o c e s s i n g e f f i c i e n c y (Daneman & C a r p e n t e r , 1 9 8 3 ) . P r o c e s s e s i n w o r k i n g memory t h a t a r e more d e m a n d i n g r e q u i r e more c a p a c i t y a n d t h e r e f o r e r e d u c e t h e amount o f s t o r a g e a v a i l a b l e f o r i n f o r m a t i o n t o be m a i n t a i n e d . A t t e n t i o n i s s u c h a p r o c e s s . I t c a n be b r o k e n down i n t o two p a r t s : o v e r t a n d c o v e r t c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s ( S a m u e l s 1 9 8 7 ) . O v e r t a t t e n t i o n c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s a r e t h e p h y s i c a l a t t r i b u t e s t h a t a r e " d i r e c t l y o b s e r v a b l e . " On t h e o t h e r h a n d , c o v e r t a t t e n t i o n i s n o t a s " o b s e r v a b l e " f r o m t h e o u t s i d e . S a m u e l s (1987) b r e a k s c o v e r t a t t e n t i o n i n t o 4 p a r t s : l e v e l o f a r o u s a l , a l e r t n e s s , v i g i l e n c e a n d s e l e c t i v e a t t e n t i o n . E a c h o f t h e s e c o m p o n e n t s o f a t t e n t i o n a s s i s t s i n t h e s u c c e s s f u l d e c o d i n g a n d 10 c o m p r e h e n s i o n o f t e x t , b u t , t h e r e a r e o n l y l i m i t e d r e s o u r c e s a v a i l a b l e i n w o r k i n g memory f o r a t t e n t i o n . T h u s l i k e many o t h e r p r o c e s s e s , t o r e d u c e t h e b u r d e n on w o r k i n g memory, a t t e n t i o n m ust be a s a u t o m a t i c a s p o s s i b l e . Many o f t h e d i f f e r e n c e s b e t w e e n g o o d a n d p o o r r e a d e r s a p p e a r t o be t h e l a c k o f a u t o m a t e d p r o c e s s e s . D e c o d i n g a n d e n c o d i n g a r e a l s o p r o c e s s e s t h a t n e e d t o be a u t o m a t i c . S u c c e s s f u l d e c o d i n g a n d e n c o d i n g o f t e x t i n w o r k i n g memory a r e n e c e s s a r y f o r a m e a n i n g f u l r e p r e s e n t a t i o n o f p r o p o s i t i o n s i n a " t e x t b a s e . " Much a t t e n t i o n by t h e r e a d e r i s r e q u i r e d f o r d e c o d i n g . S l o w a n d d i f f i c u l t d e c o d i n g b y p o o r r e a d e r s p l a c e s a h e a v y demand on w o r k i n g memory. The p o o r r e a d e r i s c o n s t a n t l y s h i f t i n g f o r m d e c o d i n g t o c o m p r e h e n s i o n i n o r d e r t o r e a d a n d g e t m e a n i n g ( S a m u e l s , 1987) . Good r e a d e r s t h o u g h , c a n s i m u l t a n e o u s l y s w i t c h b e t w e e n t h e t w o p r o c e s s e s t h u s r e d u c i n g demand on w o r k i n g memory a n d l e a v i n g more c a p a c i t y f o r s t o r a g e . T h i s makes t h e p o o r r e a d e r s ' s w o r k i n g memory c a p a c i t y a p p e a r s m a l l e r . M ore c o d i n g p r o c e s s d i f f i c u l t i e s f o r p o o r r e a d e r s h a v e b e e n i d e n t i f i e d t h a t s u p p o r t t h i s c o n c l u s i o n . S t a n o v i c h ( 1 9 8 2 a ) s t a t e s t h a t p o o r r e a d e r s h a v e d e f i c i e n t p h o n o l o g i c a l c o d i n g p r o c e s s e s s u c h a s : r e h e a r s a l , i m a g e r y a n d e l a b o r a t i o n . W h i l e Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r (1983) f o u n d l e s s e f f i c i e n t r e a d e r s d e v o t e s o much c a p a c i t y t o p r o c e s s i n g i n c o m i n g w o r d s t h a t t h e y a r e l e s s l i k e l y t o h a v e r e l e v a n t a n d m e a n i n g f u l i n f o r m a t i o n s t i l l i n w o r k i n g memory. P o o r r e a d e r s commit t o o much c a p a c i t y t o t h e s e l o w e r f u n c t i o n s a n d t h e r e f o r e do l e s s h i g h e r l e v e l c o d i n g . T h a t i s , t h e p o o r r e a d e r r e c o g n i z e s s m a l l e r u n i t s o f p r i n t l i k e l e t t e r s 11 o r d i g r a p h s a n d n o t l a r g e r u n i t s l i k e w h o l e w o r d s . A g a i n , t h i s p l a c e s a h e a v y demand on w o r k i n g memory. Good r e a d e r s p r o c e s s l a r g e r o r s m a l l e r u n i t s d e p e n d e n t on n e e d ( S a m u e l s , 1 9 8 7 ) . T h e y a r e a l s o more a d e p t a t d e t e c t i n g c o n t e x t a n d u s i n g i t t o f a c i l i t a t e memory a n d c o m p r e h e n s i o n o f t e x t . On s e m a n t i c m a t c h i n g t a s k s s u c h a s l e t t e r m a t c h i n g , a n d i d e n t i f y i n g synonyms a n d homonyms p o o r r e a d e r s r e s p o n d s l o w e r (Daneman & C a r p e n t e r , 1 9 8 0 , 1 9 8 3 ) . P o o r r e a d e r s a l s o remember l e s s s p o k e n w o r d s a n d l i n g u i s t i c m a t e r i a l t h a n g o o d r e a d e r s (Mann, C o w i n & S c h o e n h e i m e r , 1 9 8 9 ) . A s w e l l , t h e s e r e a d e r s d i f f e r i n a b i l i t y t o s t o r e t e x t i n w o r k i n g memory a f t e r i t i s e n c o d e d . D i f f e r e n c e s among g o o d a nd p o o r r e a d e r s h a v e b e e n f o u n d i n t h e p r o c e s s o f m a i n t a i n i n g i n f o r m a t i o n i n w o r k i n g memory. To i n c o r p o r a t e new p r o p o s i t i o n s i n t o t h e " t e x t b a s e " t h e y m u s t r e l a t e t o p r e v i o u s l y s t o r e d m a t e r i a l . T h i s p r o v e s more d i f f i c u l t f o r p o o r r e a d e r s who u s e much o f w o r k i n g memory c a p a c i t y f o r l o w e r l e v e l p r o c e s s i n g a n d n o t f o r s t o r a g e . P o o r r e a d e r s a r e a l s o l e s s p r o n e t o e m p l o y a c t i v e , p l a n f u l m e m o r i z a t i o n s t r a t e g i e s a n d p h o n o l o g i c a l p r o c e s s e s t o h e l p t h e m s e l v e s . On t h e t o p i c o f s y n t a c t i c a b i l i t y , p o o r r e a d e r s h a v e b e e n f o u n d t o be l e s s a d e p t a t t e x t s c a n n i n g , l e s s s e n s i t i v e t o t e x t s t r u c t u r e a n d l a c k l i n g u i s t i c a w a r e n e s s ( S t a n o v i c h , 1 9 8 2 b ) . D e f i c i t s i n c o m p r e h e n s i o n o f p o o r r e a d e r s a p p e a r t o be c a u s e d b y t a k i n g t o o much t i m e t o " e n c o d e a n d r e t r i e v e m e a n i n g . " I f t o o much t i m e i s t a k e n by p o o r r e a d e r s i t c o u l d a l s o r e s u l t i n some d e c a y o f i n f o r m a t i o n i n w o r k i n g memory (Daneman & C a r p e n t e r , 1 9 8 3 ) . W o r k i n g memory c a p a c i t y p l a y s a n i m p o r t a n t r o l e 12 i n t e x t p r o c e s s i n g p a r t i c u l a r l y i n i n t e g r a t i n g new i n f o r m a t i o n w i t h p r i o r t e x t . The more c a p a c i t y y o u h a v e f o r new i n f o r m a t i o n t h e more l i k e l y y o u c a n r e l a t e i t t o p r e v i o u s t e x t p r o p o s i t i o n s . S a m u e l s (1987) a r g u e s t h a t p o o r r e a d e r s h a v e l i m i t e d a c c e s s t o l e x i c a l i n f o r m a t i o n . He s t a t e s t h a t i n e f f i c i e n t n a m i n g a n d s e q u e n t i a l p r o c e s s i n g i n t e r f e r e w i t h t h e a b i l i t y t o s i m u l t a n e o u s l y decode t e x t a n d process f o r m e a n i n g , t w o p r o c e s s e s t h a t a r e c r i t i c a l f o r s k i l l e d r e a d i n g . A n o t h e r a r e a o f d i f f e r e n c e s among r e a d e r s i s r e c a l l o r r e t r i e v a l . E f f e c t i v e r e t r i e v a l i s d e p e n d e n t o n t h e i n i t i a l c o d i n g o f m a t e r i a l w i t h i n t h e k n o w l e d g e s t r u c t u r e i n l o n g - t e r m memory. I t a l s o l e a v e s r e t r i e v a l c u e s i n w o r k i n g memory (Daneman & C a r p e n t e r , 1 9 8 3 ) . R e c h t a n d L e s l i e (1988) f o u n d t h a t p r i o r k n o w l e d g e o f c o n t e n t d o m a i n i s a p o w e r f u l d e t e r m i n a n t o f amount a n d q u a l i t y o f i n f o r m a t i o n r e c a l l , p o w e r f u l e nough t o c o m p e n s a t e f o r l o w a b i l i t y . I f f t e x t i s f a m i l i a r t o g o o d a nd p o o r r e a d e r s b o t h w i l l h a v e s i m i l a r s h o r t t e r m r e c a l l . To t h e a u t h o r s , p r i o r k n o w l e d g e c r e a t e s a s c a f f o l d i n g f o r i n f o r m a t i o n i n memory. I n p o o r r e a d e r s i t h e l p s c o m p e n s a t e f o r i n e f f i c i e n c y o f p r o c e s s i n g . I n s h o r t t o q u o t e S a m u e l s ( 1 9 8 7 , p. 20) f a c t o r s t h a t a c c o u n t f o r p o o r r e a d i n g i n c l u d e " f a i l u r e t o m a i n t a i n o v e r t a t t e n t i o n d u r i n g i n s t r u c t i o n ; d e f e c t s i n a r o u s a l , a l e r t n e s s , v i g i l a n c e , a n d s e l e c t i v e a t t e n t i o n ; l a c k o f a c c u r a c y a n d a u t o m a t i c i t y i n d e c o d i n g ; i n a b i l i t y t o u s e b o t h l a r g e a n d s m a l l v i s u a l u n i t s i n w o r d r e c o g n i t i o n ; l a c k o f a c c u r a c y a n d a u t o m a t i c i t y i n m a p p i n g s o u n d s on t o v i s u a l u n i t s a n d f i n a l l y , d i f f i c u l t y i n a c c e s s i n g l e x i c a l 13 w o r d i n f o r m a t i o n . " Recent Research A g r e a t d e a l o f r e s e a r c h c o n t i n u e s t o be g e n e r a t e d i n t h e a r e a o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a n d w o r k i n g memory a n d a v a r i e t y o f t a s k s t o m e a s u r e w o r k i n g memory h a v e b e e n u t i l i z e d . B o t h l i n g u i s t i c a n d n o n - l i n g u i s t i c t a s k s h a v e b e e n d e v e l o p e d a n d t e s t e d w i t h v a r y i n g d e g r e e s o f s u c c e s s a n d a r a n g e o f c o r r e l a t i o n s f r o m n o n - s i g n i f i c a n t t o v e r y s i g n i f i c a n t . The t a s k t h a t seems t o d r a w t h e m o s t r e s e a r c h a t t e n t i o n i s t h e r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k o f Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r ( 1 9 8 0 ) . I t was d e s i g n e d t o m e a s u r e b o t h t h e s t o r a g e a n d p r o c e s s i n g c o m p o n e n t s o f w o r k i n g memory. Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r f e l t t h a t t a s k s l i k e d i g i t s p a n a n d w o r d s p a n d i d n o t a d e q u a t e l y p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a n d d i d n o t a c c e s s t h e p r o c e s s i n g a s p e c t o f w o r k i n g memory. D i g i t Span a n d w o r d s p a n w e r e b e l i e v e d t o be s i m p l y m e a s u r e s o f c a p a c i t y . B a d d e l e y , L o g i e , Nimmo-Smith a n d B r e r e t o n (1985) s u p p o r t e d t h e r e s e a r c h f i n d i n g s o f Daneman and C a r p e n t e r u s i n g a r e a d i n g s p a n m e a s u r e ( a n d o t h e r t a s k s ) . B a d d e l e y e t a l . ' s m e a s u r e was a v a r i a t i o n o f Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r ' s t a s k w i t h a v e r i f i c a t i o n component ( p r o c e s s i n g ) a n d a w o r d s p a n c o m p o n e n t ( c a p a c i t y ) i n i t . E v e n t h o u g h t h e r e a r e d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h e p r o c e d u r e s t h e a u t h o r s u s e d i n t h e i r t a s k s , t h e r e i s a g r e e m e n t on t h e i r f i n d i n g s . I n e v a l u a t i n g t h e r e s u l t s o f t h e i r own r e s e a r c h , B a d d e l e y e t a l . p o s e t h e q u e s t i o n : I s t h e r e a g e n e r a l w o r k i n g memory s y s t e m o r a r e t h e r e s p e c i f i c w o r k i n g memory s y s t e m s ( e . g . , a s p e c i f i c 14 l a n g u a g e - b a s e d s y s t e m ) ? T h i s l i n e o f i n q u i r y h a s b e e n f o l l o w e d up i n s t u d i e s b y s u c h a u t h o r s a s O a k h i l l , Y u i l l a n d P a r k i n ( 1 9 8 8 ) , Y u i l l a n d O a k h i l l ( 1 9 8 8 ) , L a P o i n t e a n d E n g l e ( 1 9 9 0 ) , a n d T u r n e r a n d E n g l e ( 1 9 8 9 ) . Y u i l l , O a k h i l l a n d P a r k i n ' s (1989) r e s e a r c h l o o k e d a t a m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n t a s k t h a t t h e y f e l t w o u l d t a x b o t h t h e p r o c e s s i n g a n d t h e s t o r a g e c o m p o n e n t s o f w o r k i n g memory. T h e i r r e s u l t s w o u l d a p p e a r t o i n d i c a t e t h a t a d i g i t s p a n t a s k o f t h e n a t u r e t h e y p r o p o s e d c a n p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n w i t h c o r r e l a t i o n s t h a t w e r e s i m i l a r i n m a g n i t u d e t o t h o s e f o u n d b y Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r ( 1 9 8 0 , 1 9 8 3 ) . Y u i l l , O a k h i l l a n d P a r k i n s t a t e t h a t i f t h i s i s a c c u r a t e a n d r e p l i c a b l e i t w o u l d s u p p o r t a g e n e r a l w o r k i n g memory s y s t e m t h e o r y . A f t e r r e v i e w i n g t h e t a s k ' s p r o c e d u r e a number o f c o n c e r n s w e r e l e f t u n a n s w e r e d . The f i r s t c o n c e r n i s t h a t r e a d i n g o u t d i g i t s i s c o n s i d e r e d b y t h e a u t h o r s a s a p r o c e s s i n g t a s k , y e t r e a d i n g d i g i t s i s a r e c o g n i t i o n o r memory r e t r i e v a l t a s k n o t a p r o c e s s i n g t a s k f o r many s u b j e c t s e v e n a t s e v e n o r e i g h t y e a r s o f a g e . A s e c o n d c o n c e r n i s : W i t h y o u n g c h i l d r e n w o u l d t h e r e s u l t s o f u s i n g a t r a d i t i o n a l d i g i t s p a n t a s k be a n y d i f f e r e n t t h a t w h a t Y u i l l e t a l . ( 1989) f o u n d w i t h t h e i r d i g i t s p a n t a s k ? A l s o o f c o n c e r n i s : Can t h e i r f i n d i n g s be r e p l i c a t e d w i t h o l d e r c h i l d r e n who a r e a t a more i n t e r m e d i a t e l e v e l o f r e a d i n g a n d m a t h e m a t i c a l a b i l i t y ? W i t h t h e o l d e r g r o u p o f c h i l d r e n , t h e t a s k o f r e c o g n i t i o n o f d i g i t s w o u l d be l e s s d e m a n d i n g t h a n w i t h y o u n g e r c h i l d r e n ( i n m o s t c a s e s ) . The m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n t a s k i s a l s o l e s s l i k e l y t o be a much b e t t e r p r e d i c t o r o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n t h a n a r e g u l a r d i g i t s p a n t a s k . 15 Extensive research with d i g i t span tasks already e x i s t s with experienced and s k i l l e d adult readers ( i e . undergraduate psychology students) and children with varying r e s u l t s . Another area of recent research i n the f i e l d of reading comprehension and working memory has involved the use of a variety of word span and reading span type tasks. Authors l i k e Turner and Engle (1989) have investigated Daneman and Carpenter's (1980, 1983) findings. Turner and Engle looked at the p o s s i b i l i t y that "people are good readers because they have a large W(orking) M(emory) capacity independent of the tasks being performed" (pg. 129). To t e s t t h i s theory they used complex span tasks varying the background task (processing) between mathematical operations and sentences and the primary task (capacity) between d i g i t s and word. They also looked at simple d i g i t span and word span tasks. The r e s u l t s of the studies support t h e i r hypothesis that a "complex span r e f l e c t i n g W(orking ) M(emory) capacity does not have to be 'reading* related to generate a s i g n i f i c a n t c o r r e l a t i o n with reading comprehension (pg. 149). Yet t h e i r s i g n i f i c a n t c o r r e l a t i o n s were with the complex tasks that had a word span as the primary task and not a d i g i t . They can not account for t h i s f i n d i n g other than to state "the differences i n the to-be-remembered items appear to be c r u c i a l . " In addition to t h i s , they are not sure of the accuracy of the r e s u l t s of the operation-word task. Turner and Engle (1989) believe that the strong p r e d i c t a b i l i t y of the operation span task i s because the operation component of the task may lead to a spurious c o r r e l a t i o n between 16 t h i s t a s k a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . The r e a s o n f o r t h i s i s t h a t g o o d r e a d e r s a l s o h a v e g o o d quantitative s k i l l s ( T u r n e r a n d E n g l e (1989) . T h u s t h e t a s k t h a t s t i l l m o s t c o n s i s t e n t l y p r e d i c t s r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n i s t h e r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k . I n a d d i t i o n t o u s i n g a r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k , L a P o i n t e a n d E n g l e (1990) r e - e x a m i n e d t h e s i m p l e w o r d s p a n t a s k a s a p o s s i b l e p r e d i c t o r o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . They l o o k e d a t t h e e f f e c t o f w o r d l e n g t h o n s i m p l e a n d c o m p l e x t a s k s . I n a s e r i e s o f f i v e w e l l l a i d - o u t a n d d e v e l o p e d e x p e r i m e n t s L a P o i n t e a n d E n g l e d e m o n s t r a t e d t h a t t h e s i m p l e w o r d s p a n t a s k c a n p r e d i c t c o m p r e h e n s i o n . Conceptual Relationships Between Working Memory and Reading Comprehension and Predicted Findings W o r k i n g memory i s c o m p r i s e d o f a s t o r a g e a n d a p r o c e s s i n g c o m p o n e n t . The t w o c o m p o n e n t s c o n s t a n t l y s t r i v e f o r t h e l i m i t e d r e s o u r c e s a v a i l a b l e t o w o r k i n g memory. The c a p a c i t y i s l i m i t e d by t h e amount o f i n f o r m a t i o n i t c a n m a i n t a i n a t a n y t i m e , w h i l e t h e amount a n d t y p e o f p r o c e s s i n g t h a t c a n be a c c o m p l i s h e d i n w o r k i n g memory i s a l s o l i m i t e d . To b e s t u t i l i z e w o r k i n g memory, p r o c e s s i n g n e e d s t o be a s a u t o m a t i c a s p o s s i b l e . T h i s a l l o w s t h e s t o r a g e c o m p o n e n t o f w o r k i n g memory t o be m a x i m i z e d . I n t h i s way c a p a c i t y a n d p r o c e s s i n g a r e i n t e r r e l a t e d a n d i n t e r d e p e n d e n t . R e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n c a n be v i e w e d i n a somewhat s i m i l a r v e i n t o w o r k i n g memory. I t i s a c o m p l e x o p e r a t i o n a n d c a n be c o n c e i v e d o f a s t h e a b i l i t y t o d e c o d e a n d e s t a b l i s h m e a n i n g f r o m t e x t o r m e s s a g e s . F o r t h i s t o be a c c o m p l i s h e d , d e c o d e d a n d e n c o d e d 17 i n f o r m a t i o n m u s t be s t o r e d . A s i n f o r m a t i o n i s b e i n g s t o r e d , i n t e g r a t e d p r o c e s s i n g o f t h e p i e c e s i s t a k i n g p l a c e s u c h a s e s t a b l i s h i n g m e a n i n g o f w o r d s o r e s t a b l i s h i n g c o n t e x t . L i k e w o r k i n g memory, r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n i s l i m i t e d , t h u s m e a n i n g f o r a l l o f t h e t e x t b a s e c a n n o t be e s t a b l i s h e d a t o n c e . The more a u t o m a t e d t h e p r o c e s s e s f o r r e a d i n g a r e , t h e more i n f o r m a t i o n t h a t c a n be s t o r e d a n d , t h e r e f o r e , t h e more e f f i c i e n t t h e r e a d e r . T hus t h e e f f i c i e n t u s e o f w o r k i n g memory a n d b e i n g a n e f f i c i e n t r e a d e r h a v e p a r a l l e l s . B o t h o p e r a t i o n s i n v o l v e s t o r a g e a n d p r o c e s s i n g o f i n f o r m a t i o n a n d a r e c o m p l e x i n n a t u r e . When l o o k i n g a t t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s b e t w e e n w o r k i n g memory a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n one q u e s t i o n t h a t a r i s e s i s : Do n o n - l i n g u i s t i c o r l i n g u i s t i c memory m e a s u r e s b e s t p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a b i l i t y ? T r a d i t i o n a l n o n - l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s l i k e t h e d i g i t s p a n a r e s i m p l e c a p a c i t y m e a s u r e s a n d w o u l d n o t be e x p e c t e d t o p r e d i c t a c o m p l e x o p e r a t i o n l i k e r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . ( P e r f e t t i & Goldman, 1 9 7 6 ) . Y e t a b a c k w a r d d i g i t s p a n w h i c h r e q u i r e s r e v e r s e s e r i a t i o n ( p r o c e s s i n g o f t h e d i g i t s d u r i n g t h e r e v e r s a l s t a g e a s w e l l a s s t o r a g e ) may p r e d i c t b e t t e r . T h i s i s b e c a u s e t h e b a c k w a r d d i g i t s p a n t a s k h a s a c a p a c i t y a n d a p r o c e s s i n g c o m p o n e n t s i m i l a r t o a r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k . Y u i l l , O a k h i l l a n d P a r k i n (1989) d e v e l o p e d a m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n t a s k t h a t t h e y a r g u e h a s a c a p a c i t y a n d a p r o c e s s i n g c o m p o n e n t . I f t h i s i s t h e c a s e t h e n i t s h o u l d p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n b e t t e r t h a n a s t r i c t c a p a c i t y t e s t i n g d i g i t s p a n t a s k s . Y e t , s i n c e t h e i r t a s k i s n o n - l i n g u i s t i c a n d t h u s n o t a s c l o s e l y r e l a t e d t o r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a s a l i n g u i s t i c t a s k , 18 l i k e r e a d i n g s p a n , i t s h o u l d n o t p r e d i c t a s w e l l a s a r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k . When l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s o f w o r k i n g memory a r e m e n t i o n e d i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e , w o r d s p a n and r e a d i n g s p a n a r e g e n e r a l l y t h e o n e s d i s c u s s e d . Word s p a n i s a g a i n a c a p a c i t y m e a s u r e a n d i s n o t f e l t t o m e a s u r e p r o c e s s i n g i n w o r k i n g memory (Daneman & C a r p e n t e r , 1980, 1 9 8 3 ) . B u t , b e c a u s e i t i s l i n g u i s t i c i t s h o u l d p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n b e t t e r t h a n a n o n - l i n g u i s t i c c a p a c i t y m e a s u r e . I n t h e l i t e r a t u r e , t h e m e a s u r e t h a t m o s t c o n s i s t e n t l y p r e d i c t s r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a b i l i t y i s t h e r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k . T h i s may be b e c a u s e i t i s t h e m o s t s i m i l a r t o r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n i n i t s demands on w o r k i n g memory ( B a d d e l e y , L o g i e , N immo-Smith a n d B r e r e t o n , 1 9 8 5 ) . B e c a u s e t h e t a s k h a s a s t o r a g e a n d a p r o c e s s i n g c o m p o n e n t a n d i t i s l i n g u i s t i c , i t s h o u l d s i g n i f i c a n t l y p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . R e l a t i o n s h i p s b e t w e e n w o r k i n g memory a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n may v a r y d e p e n d i n g u p on age d i f f e r e n c e s . Age r e l a t e d d i f f e r e n c e s seem t o p l a y a p a r t i n b o t h w o r k i n g memory a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . C a p a c i t y i n w o r k i n g memory a p p e a r s t o i n c r e a s e u n t i l a d o l e s c e n c e ( B e s t , 1986) . T h i s may be t h e r e s u l t o f more e f f i c i e n t p r o c e s s i n g and t h e a b i l i t y t o g e n e r a t e r i c h e r c h u n k s o f i n f o r m a t i o n ( C h i , 1 9 7 6 ) . The m a t u r a t i o n o f r e a d e r s p a r a l l e l s t h e d e v e l o p m e n t o f w o r k i n g memory a b i l i t y . A s r e a d e r s m a t u r e a n d g a i n more e x p e r i e n c e w i t h t h e c o m p l e x o p e r a t i o n s i n v o l v e d i n r e a d i n g , t h e i r a b i l i t y t o p r o c e s s t e x t becomes more a u t o m a t i c a n d t h e y t h e n h a v e more c a p a c i t y f o r s t o r a g e . 19 A s e c o n d q u e s t i o n p o s e d i s : Do d i f f e r e n c e s e x i s t i n t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s b e t w e e n w o r k i n g memory a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n i n t h e t w o g r a d e g r o u p s ? A number o f t h e m e a s u r e s u s e d i n t h i s s t u d y , s h o u l d show s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s b e t w e e n t h e t w o g r a d e s . T h i s i s p a r t i c u l a r l y t r u e o f t h e n o n - l i n g u i s t i c memory m e a s u r e s ( d i g i t s p a n a n d m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n ) w h i c h a r e c o n t e x t i n d e p e n d e n t a n d b a s i c a l l y t a x t h e s t o r a g e component o f w o r k i n g memory. The l i t e r a t u r e w o u l d seem t o p r e d i c t t h a t t h e o l d e r c h i l d r e n , who h a v e more c a p a c i t y i n w o r k i n g memory, w o u l d remember more d i g i t s t h a n t h e y o u n g e r c h i l d r e n . W i t h r e g a r d t o t h e l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s , w o r d s p a n a n d r e a d i n g s p a n , d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h e w o r d s p a n s c o r e s may n o t be a s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . T h i s i s b e c a u s e t h e w o r d l i s t s i n v o l v e d s h o u l d be f a m i l i a r t o m o s t o f t h e c h i l d r e n i n b o t h g r a d e g r o u p s a n d t h e w o r d s a r e c o n t e x t i n d e p e n d e n t o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a b i l i t y . I n c o n t r a s t , t h e r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k i s c o n t e x t d e p e n d e n t a n d s h o u l d p r o v e t o be more d i f f i c u l t a t t h e h i g h e r l e v e l s (RS2 a n d RS3) f o r y o u n g e r c h i l d r e n . T he G r a d e 2 g r o u p s h o u l d h a v e more d i f f i c u l t y w i t h t h e i n c r e a s e d demands o f t h e c o m p l e x r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k t h a n t h e w o r d s p a n t a s k . The r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k b e c a u s e o f i t s b a c k g r o u n d a n d p r i m a r y t a s k d o e s n o t a l l o w f o r a s much u s e o f s t r a t e g y ( s u c h a s r e h e a r s a l ) a s a w o r d s p a n o r d i g i t s p a n t a s k a n d t h i s s h o u l d p r o v e t o make i t more d i f f i c u l t f o r t h e s e i n t e r m e d i a t e l e v e l r e a d e r s . The r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k w o u l d t h u s seem t o be t h e b e s t o v e r a l l p r e d i c t o r o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n f o r b o t h g r o u p s a n d i n p a r t i c u l a r t h e o l d e r o f t h e t w o g r o u p s . A n o t h e r p o s s i b l e f i n d i n g i s t h a t t h e p r e d i c t e d r e g r e s s i o n s l o p e s o f t h e s c o r e s o f t h e G r a d e s 2 a n d 6 s u b j e c t s s h o u l d be d i f f e r e n t i a l l y a f f e c t e d b y t h e e x c l u s i o n o f a number o f G r a d e 2 c h i l d r e n . The c h i l d r e n t h a t w e r e e l i m i n a t e d a s s u b j e c t s h a d b e l o w a v e r a g e v o c a b u l a r y a b i l i t y . The u s e o f o n l y t h e s e l e c t e d G r a d e 2 c h i l d r e n i n t h e s t u d y s h o u l d r e s u l t i n s h o r t e r r a n g e o f s c o r e s w i t h t h e b o t t o m e n d t r u n c a t e d . T h i s s h o u l d p r o b a b l y r e s u l t s i n a f l a t t e r s l o p e o f t h e r e g r e s s i o n l i n e s f o r G r a d e 2 t h a n G r a d e 6. T h e r e f o r e i t w o u l d a l s o be e x p e c t e d t h a t t h e i n t e r a c t i o n t e r m s b e t w e e n g r a d e a n d memory s u b t e s t s s c o r e s w o u l d be s i g n i f i c a n t . Y e t , a l s o b e c a u s e o f t h e r e s t r i c t i v e s e l e c t i o n p r o c e s s f o r s u b j e c t s , t h e l e v e l o f f a m i l i a r i t y w i t h r e a d i n g i s more s i m i l a r b e t w e e n t h e g r a d e g r o u p s . T h i s s i m i l a r i t y i n r e a d i n g a b i l i t y i s more l i k e l y t o r e s u l t i n t h e s l o p e s o f r e g r e s s i o n l i n e s f o r G r a d e 2 a n d 6 b e i n g p a r a l l e l a n d no s i g n i f i c a n t i n t e r a c t i o n s b e t w e e n g r a d e a n d memory s c o r e s b e i n g f o u n d . CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY Subjects The s u b j e c t s a r e 30 s e v e n a n d e i g h t y e a r o l d s i n G r a d e 2 a n d 30 e l e v e n a n d t w e l v e y e a r o l d s i n G r a d e 6. The s u b j e c t s a r e i n t w o s u b u r b a n e l e m e n t a r y s c h o o l s i n m i d d l e c l a s s n e i g h b o u r h o o d s . The number o f b o y s a n d g i r l s was n o t d e f i n e d a s a f a c t o r i n t h e s t u d y . T h e r e w e r e 13 b o y s i n t h e y o u n g e r g r a d e a n d 17 b o y s i n t h e o l d e r g r a d e . I n G r a d e 2 t h e r e w e r e 17 g i r l s a n d 13 g i r l s w e r e i n G r a d e 6. A l l s u b j e c t s h a v e a t l e a s t a v e r a g e r e a d i n g d e c o d i n g a b i l i t y a s d e f i n e d b y t h e Y u i l l , O a k h i l l a n d P a r k i n (1989) m o d e l . The s u b j e c t s w e r e d i v i d e d i n t o t h e t w o g r o u p s o n t h e b a s i s o f t h e i r g r a d e . The G r a d e 2 g r o u p was c h o s e n t o r e p l i c a t e a n d e x t e n d t h e Y u i l l , O a k h i l l a n d P a r k i n (1989) r e s u l t s . The c h o i c e o f t h e G r a d e 6 g r o u p was b e c a u s e t h e y a r e more e x p e r i e n c e d r e a d e r s w h i l e s t i l l a t t h e e l e m e n t a r y s c h o o l l e v e l . Test Materials R e a d i n g C o m p r e h e n s i o n T e s t : The r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n t e s t u s e d was t h e Woodcock R e a d i n g M a s t e r y T e s t s (W.R.M.T., Woodcock, 1973) . The W.R.M.T. i s a n o r m - r e f e r e n c e d s t a n d a r d i z e d t e s t o f r e a d i n g . I t c o n s i s t s o f f i v e s u b t e s t s ; l e t t e r i d e n t i f i c a t i o n , w o r d i d e n t i f i c a t i o n , w o r d a t t a c k , w o r d c o m p r e h e n s i o n a n d p a s s a g e c o m p r e h e n s i o n . The w o r d i d e n t i f i c a t i o n a n d p a s s a g e c o m p r e h e n i s o n s u b t e s t s w e r e a d m i n i s t e r e d t o t h e s u b j e c t s . R e a d i n g v o c a b u l a r y 21 ( w o r d i d e n t i f i c a t i o n ) s c o r e s a r e i n c l u d e d a s t h e b a s e l i n e s e l e c t i o n m e a s u r e f o r a l l s u b j e c t s . A l l s u b j e c t s t o be i n c l u d e d i n t h e s t u d y w e r e t o h a v e a t l e a s t a v e r a g e r e a d i n g d e c o d i n g s k i l l s , r e g a r d l e s s o f c o m p r e h e n s i o n a b i l i t y . T h o s e s u b j e c t s who w e r e n o t s e l e c t e d h a d w o r d i d e n t i f i c a t i o n s k i l l s t h a t w e r e more t h a n one s t a n d a r d d e v i a t i o n b e l o w t h e mean (< 16 % i l e ) . T h i s s e l e c t i o n p r o c e s s i s a m o d i f i e d v e r s i o n o f t h e one u s e d by Y u i l l , O a k h i l l a n d P a r k i n (1989) . The p a s s a g e c o m p r e h e n s i o n s u b t e s t i s c l o z e f o r m a t a n d i n c l u d e s 85 i t e m s . D i g i t S p a n ( P S ) : The d i g i t s p a n i s a v a r i a t i o n o f t h e t a s k i n c l u d e d i n t h e S t a n f o r d - B i n e t I n t e l l i g e n c e S c a l e s : F o u r t h E d i t i o n ( S B I V ) . The v a r i a t i o n a r e t h a t some o f t h e d i g i t s i n t h e i t e m s a r e c h a n g e d a n d a n e q u a l number o f t r i a l s i s g i v e n f o r b o t h p a r t s o f t h e t a s k . (The S B I V h a s two more i t e m s i n t h e d i g i t f o r w a r d t h a n t h e d i g i t r e v e r s e s e c t i o n . ) B o t h a f o r w a r d (FDS) a n d b a c k w a r d d i g i t s p a n (BDS) w e r e g i v e n . The number o f d i g i t s was 70 f o r t h e f o r w a r d t a s k a n d 58 f o r t h e b a c k w a r d t a s k ( i n c l u d i n g s a m p l e s ) . B o t h s e t s h a d t w o s a m p l e q u e s t i o n s o f t w o d i g i t s e a c h . The f o r w a r d s p a n r a n g e s f r o m t h r e e t o e i g h t d i g i t s a n d t h e b a c k w a r d s p a n f r o m t w o t o s e v e n d i g i t s l o n g . Two i t e m s o f e a c h l e n g t h w e r e g e n e r a t e d f o r b o t h t h e f o r w a r d a n d b a c k w a r d s p a n s . ( A p p e n d i x 1 ) . M o d i f i e d D i g i t Span (MPS): T h i s t a s k was d e s i g n e d u s i n g t h e g u i d e l i n e s s e t o u t i n by Y u i l l , O a k h i l l a n d P a r k i n ( 1 9 8 9 ) . L i s t s o f t h r e e d i g i t numbers w e r e g e n e r a t e d f r o m random number t a b l e s . E i g h t l i s t s o f t w o (MPS2), t h r e e (MPS3) a n d f o u r (MPS4) g r o u p s o f t h r e e d i g i t s a n d two s a m p l e a n d a p a i r o f p r a c t i c e i t e m s a t e a c h o f 22 t h e t h r e e l e v e l s w e r e u s e d . R e s t r i c t i o n s i n t h e s e l e c t i o n o f g r o u p s o f d i g i t s w e r e t h e same a s t h o s e u s e d by Y u i l l , e t a l . ( 1 9 8 9 ) . T h o s e r e s t r i c t i o n s a r e : t h e same d i g i t n e v e r a p p e a r e d t w i c e i n a g r o u p , t h e f i n a l d i g i t s a r e n e v e r z e r o , t h e d i g i t s do n o t f o r m a n o b v i o u s s e q u e n c e ( e . g . 2-3-4) a n d t h e d i g i t s a r e n o t p h o n o l o g i c a l l y c o n f u s a b l e ( e . g . , 5 - 9 ) . ( A p p e n d i x 1 ) . Word S p a n (VIS) : The w o r d s p a n t a s k i s a v a r i a t i o n o f t h e t a s k u s e d b y L a P o i n t e a n d E n g l e (1990) . T h e y r e f e r r e d t o i t a s a " s i m p l e " w o r d s p a n t a s k . The w o r d s u s e d f o r t h e t a s k a r e one s y l l a b l e w o r d s s e l e c t e d f r o m t h e l i s t s p r e s e n t e d b y L a P o i n t e a n d E n g l e ( 1 9 9 0 ) . The w o r d s c h o s e n w e r e r a n d o m i z e d i n t h e i r g r o u p i n g s . E i g h t l i s t s o f t w o (WS2) , t h r e e (WS3) a n d f o u r (WS4) w o r d s w e r e g e n e r a t e d t o m a t c h t h e s t r u c t u r e o f t h e m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n t a s k . T h e r e w e r e 76 w o r d s g e n e r a t e d f o r t h e t a s k . The w o r d s f o r t h e l i s t s w e r e g e n e r a t e d f r o m t h e most common t h r e e t o f i v e l e t t e r w o r d s p u b l i s h e d i n F r a n c i s a n d K u c h e r a (1982) a n d u s e d i n L a P o i n t e a n d E n g l e ' s (1990) r e s e a r c h . ( A p p e n d i x 1 ) . R e a d i n g S p a n (RS) : The t a s k f o r t h e r e a d i n g s p a n m e a s u r e was b a s e d on t h e m o d e l e s t a b l i s h e d by Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r (1980) a n d m o d i f i e d s i m i l a r t o t h e m e thod u s e d by B a d d e l e y , L o g i e , Nimmo-Smith a n d B r e r e t o n ( 1 9 8 5 ) . The t a s k i n v o l v e s a b a c k g r o u n d t a s k ( r e a d i n g a s e n t e n c e a n d v e r i f y i n g w h e t h e r o r n o t i t makes s e n s e ) a n d a p r i m a r y t a s k ( r e m e m b e r i n g t h e l a s t w o r d i n t h e s e n t e n c e ) . S e n t e n c e s a r e s h o r t i n n a t u r e ( f i v e t o e i g h t w o r d s ) w i t h h a l f o f t h e m s e n s i b l e a n d h a l f n o n s e n s i c a l . The s t r u c t u r e o f t h e s e n t e n c e s was; n o u n ( a n i m a l ) , v e r b t h e n o b j e c t . T w e n t y - e i g h t s e n t e n c e s w e r e g e n e r a t e d , t w o a s s a m p l e s a n d f o u r s e t s o f one ( R S I ) , t w o (RS2) a n d t h r e e (RS3) s e n t e n c e s . The s e n t e n c e s w e r e g e n e r a t e d u s i n g p r i m a r y l e v e l s o f b a s a l r e a d e r s f r o m t h e I m p r e s s i o n s s e r i e s ( B o o t h , B o o t h , P a u l i , & P h e n i x , 1 9 8 5 ) . ( A p p e n d i x 1 ) . Procedure I n o r d e r t o e x a m i n e t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n w o r k i n g memory a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n t h i s r e s e a r c h u s e d b o t h n o n - l i n g u i s t i c ( s t a n d a r d d i g i t s p a n a n d m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n ) a n d l i n g u i s t i c ( w o r d s p a n a n d r e a d i n g s p a n ) memory s p a n t a s k s . R e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n i s v i e w e d i n t h i s p r o p o s a l a s r e a d i n g v o c a b u l a r y a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n b o t h m e a s u r e d by s t a n d a r d i z e d r e a d i n g a c h i e v e m e n t t e s t s . A s p r e v i o u s l y m e n t i o n e d , G r a d e 2 a n d 6 s u b j e c t s w e r e s e l e c t e d i n t e r m s o f r e a d i n g a c h i e v e m e n t b a s e d on t h e i r s c o r e s o n t h e w o r d i d e n t i f i c a t i o n s u b t e s t o f t h e Woodcock R e a d i n g M a s t e r y T e s t s (W.R.M.T.). To be s e l e c t e d a s s u b j e c t s , s t u d e n t s h a d t o h a v e a t l e a s t a v e r a g e v o c a b u l a r y a b i l i t y . T h i s was t o e n s u r e t h e y w o u l d be a b l e t o p e r f o r m t h e r e a d i n g s p a n a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n t a s k s . A l l s u b j e c t s w e r e t h e n t e s t e d on t h e p a s s a g e c o m p r e h e n s i o n s u b t e s t o f t h e W.R.M.T. S u b j e c t s w e r e t e s t e d i n g r o u p s o f 15 a t a t i m e i n r a n d o m a s s i g n m e n t on t h e r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n s u b t e s t ( a s t h e y w e r e o n t h e w o r d i d e n t i f i c a t i o n s u b t e s t ) . S t u d y m a t e r i a l s ( i . e . , a c t i v i t y s h e e t s ) w e r e p r o v i d e d f o r t h o s e s t u d e n t s who f i n i s h e d e a r l y . P r i o r t o b e g i n n i n g t h e t a s k s a l l s u b j e c t s w e r e p r e s e n t e d w i t h t e s t b o o k l e t s f o r r e c o r d i n g t h e i r r e s p o n s e s a n d g i v e n d i r e c t i o n s f o r t h e t e s t s ( f o r t h e W.R.M.T.). T h i s p a r t o f t h e t e s t i n g p r o c e d u r e was a d m i n i s t e r e d a s o u t l i n e d i n T u i n m a n , K i n t z e r a n d M a h t a d i (1980) a n d i n t h e t e s t m a n u a l . The T u i n m a n e t a l . v a r i a t i o n i s t o a d m i n i s t e r t h e p a s s a g e c o m p r e h e n s i o n s u b t e s t a s a w r i t t e n t e s t a s o p p o s e d t o a n o r a l one. T h e y f o u n d t h a t t h e " r e s u l t i n g s c o r e s w e r e e v e r y b i t a s v a l i d a s t h o s e o b t a i n e d b y f o l l o w i n g t h e Woodcock's o r i g i n a l f o r m a t " ( p . 1 0 5 ) . The m a t e r i a l s u s e d f o r t h i s p a r t o f t h e r e s e a r c h w e r e n o t m o d i f i e d i n a n y o t h e r way. The a v e r a g e a d m i n i s t r a t i o n t i m e was a p p r o x i m a t e l y 30 m i n u t e s . Once t h e r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n t e s t i n g was c o m p l e t e , t h e s u b j e c t s w e r e t h e n a s s e s s e d i n d i v i d u a l l y o r i n s m a l l g r o u p s ( t w o t o f i v e i n number) u s i n g t h e f o u r memory t a s k s . A s s i g n m e n t t o t h e t e s t g r o u p s was random u s i n g t a b l e s o f random n u m b e r s . A n s w e r s h e e t s w e r e p r o v i d e d f o r t h e s u b j e c t s ' u s e . These, s h e e t s w e r e s t a n d a r d f o r m s d e v e l o p e d b y t h e e x p e r i m e n t e r . A s e p a r a t e a n s w e r s h e e t i s d e s i g n e d f o r e a c h o f t h e f o u r memory t a s k s ( A p p e n d i x 1 ) . The f i r s t o f t h e memory t a s k s t o be a d m i n i s t e r e d was t h e d i g i t s p a n t a s k . S u b j e c t s w e r e t e s t e d on t h e d i g i t s p a n t a s k i n s m a l l g r o u p s o f t h r e e t o s i x , a t i n d i v i d u a l s e a t s . S u b j e c t s w e r e f a c i n g t h e e x p e r i m e n t e r a n d two a s s i s t a n t s s o t h a t a l l t h e i r r e s p o n s e s c a n be m o n i t o r e d . (The a s s i s t a n t s w e r e u s e d h e r e b e c a u s e o f t h e age o f t h e c h i l d r e n , t o h e l p r e d u c e t h e i n s t r u c t i o n t i m e . ) S a m p l e i t e m s w e r e p r e s e n t e d o n a n o v e r h e a d p r o j e c t o r , t o e n a b l e t h e e x a m i n e r a n d a s s i s t a n t s t o c h e c k t h a t t h e s u b j e c t s u n d e r s t o o d w h a t t h e t a s k r e q u i r e m e n t s w e r e . Two s a m p l e i t e m s w e r e p r e s e n t e d f o r b o t h t h e f o r w a r d a n d t h e r e v e r s e d i g i t s p a n p a r t s o f t h e t a s k ( s e e pp. 57 & 61 ) . D u r i n g t h e a c t u a l t e s t i n g , i t e m s w e r e g i v e n o r a l l y b y t h e e x p e r i m e n t e r , a t t h e r a t e o f one d i g i t p e r s e c o n d a n d t h e a n s w e r s h e e t was t u r n e d f a c e down. A f t e r e a c h i n d i v i d u a l i t e m was p r e s e n t e d t h e a n s w e r s h e e t was t u r n e d o v e r a n d t h e s u b j e c t r e c o r d e d a s much o f t h e i t e m a s t h e y remembered. A n s w e r s h e e t s w e r e t u r n e d f a c e down b e t w e e n i t e m s . T w e l v e i t e m s w e r e p r e s e n t e d i n t h e f o r w a r d s p a n a n d t h e same number i n t h e r e v e r s e s p a n t a s k . S u b j e c t s w e r e i n s t r u c t e d t o p u t down on t h e p a p e r a s many o f t h e d i g i t s a s t h e y c o u l d remember e v e n i f t h e y c o u l d n o t remember a l l t h e d i g i t s . A s i m i l a r p r o c e d u r e was u s e d w i t h t h e m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n t a s k ( s e e pp. 58 & 62) . An o v e r h e a d p r o j e c t o r was a g a i n u s e d t o p r e s e n t t h e s a m p l e a n d p r a c t i s e i t e m s t o e n s u r e t h a t a l l s u b j e c t s u n d e r s t a n d w h a t was t o be done i n t h e t a s k ( a s was d o n e i n t h e p r e v i o u s t a s k ) . Two s a m p l e i t e m s w e r e u s e d a n d t w o p r a c t i s e i t e m s w e r e p r e s e n t e d a t e a c h o f t h e t h r e e l e v e l s . The s u b j e c t s w e r e t o w r i t e down t h e f i n a l d i g i t s o f t h e g r o u p s on t h e a n s w e r s h e e t p r o v i d e d . G r o u p s i z e was a g a i n f r o m t h r e e t o s i x w i t h t w o a s s i s t a n t s p r e s e n t . E a c h g r o u p was o r a l l y p r e s e n t e d w i t h e i g h t e x p e r i m e n t a l t r i a l s a t e a c h o f t h e t h r e e l e v e l s o f d i f f i c u l t y . The d i g i t s w e r e p r e s e n t e d a t a r a t e o f one d i g i t p e r s e c o n d w i t h a two s e c o n d p a u s e b e t w e e n g r o u p s o f d i g i t s . The b l o c k s o f d i g i t s i n t h e t w o - g r o u p t r i a l s w e r e p r e s e n t e d f i r s t , t h e n t h e t h r e e - g r o u p t r i a l s a n d f i n a l l y t h e f o u r - g r o u p t r i a l s . A l l t h e s u b j e c t s p e r f o r m e d t h e t a s k s i n t h e same manner f o r t h i s a nd a l l t h e t a s k s p r e s e n t e d . E a c h o f t h e s u b j e c t s a l s o c o m p l e t e d a w o r d s p a n a n d a r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k . The w o r d s p a n t a s k was a d m i n i s t e r e d i n a f o r m a t s i m i l a r t o t h e p r e v i o u s t w o t a s k s ( s e e pp. 59 & 64) . S a m p l e i t e m s w e r e o r a l l y p r e s e n t e d a l o n g w i t h an o v e r h e a d p r o j e c t o r , b y t h e e x a m i n e r o n a n i n d i v i d u a l b a s i s . A l l t h e w o r d s p a n t a s k w e r e a d m i n i s t e r e d i n d i v i d u a l l y . R e s p o n s e s w e r e r e c o r d e d f o r t h e s u b j e c t o n a n a n s w e r s h e e t b y t h e e x a m i n e r . The w o r d s f o r t h e t a s k w e r e p r e s e n t e d i n t w o - g r o u p , t h r e e - g r o u p a n d t h e n f o u r - g r o u p t r i a l s , t h e same a s was d o n e i n t h e d i g i t s p a n t a s k s . The r a t e o f p r e s e n t a t i o n was one d i g i t p e r s e c o n d . The r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k was p r e s e n t e d t o s u b j e c t s a g a i n o n a n i n d i v i d u a l b a s i s ( s e e pp. 60 & 66) . The s a m p l e i t e m s w e r e p r e s e n t e d i n l a r g e p r i n t on m a n i l l a t a g c a r d s . A s t h e s e n t e n c e s w e r e p r e s e n t e d , t h e e x p e r i m e n t e r r e a d t h e s e n t e n c e t o t h e s u b j e c t . The s e n t e n c e s w e r e p r e s e n t e d a t a s l o w s t e a d y r a t e ( a p p r o x i m a t e l y t w o w o r d s p e r s e c o n d ) . The s u b j e c t f i r s t r e s p o n d e d a s t o w h e t h e r o r n o t t h e s e n t e n c e made s e n s e a n d t h e n s t a t e d w h a t t h e l a s t w o r d i n t h e s e n t e n c e was. The t a s k s w e re p r e s e n t e d o n o n e - g r o u p , t w o -g r o u p a n d t h r e e - g r o u p t r i a l s . A l l r e s p o n s e s w e r e r e c o r d e d b y t h e e x p e r i m e n t e r o n d a t a s h e e t s . The p r e s e n t a t i o n methods a n d t a s k d e s i g n s w e r e d e c i d e d u p o n a f t e r p r e l i m i n a r y p i l o t s a m p l e s w e r e c o n d u c t e d . The s u b j e c t s t e s t e d w e r e n o t t h e same s u b j e c t s a s t h o s e t o be u s e d i n t h i s s t u d y . A d d i t i o n a l c o n s u l t a t i o n a n d a d v i c e o n t h e t a s k s t o be u s e d was p r o v i d e d b y a s c h o o l d i s t r i c t s p e e c h / l a n g u a g e p a t h o l o g i s t a n d t h e d i s t r i c t ' s p r i m a r y l a n g u a g e d e v e l o p m e n t t e a c h e r . 28 Design and Analysis A t w o age g r o u p ( s e v e n a n d e i g h t y e a r o l d s a n d e l e v e n a n d t w e l v e y e a r o l d s ) x t w e l v e m e a s u r e s r e p e a t e d - m e a s u r e s d e s i g n was u s e d . The t w e l v e m e a s u r e s w e r e : (1) r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n f ( f r o m t h e W.R.M.T.), (2) f o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n ( F D S ) , (3) b a c k w a r d d i g i t s p a n (BDS) , (4) m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 2 (MDS2) , (5) m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 3 (MDS3), (6) m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4 (MDS4) , (7) w o r d s p a n 2 (WS2), (8) w o r d s p a n 3 (WS3), (9) w o r d s p a n 4 (WS4), (10) r e a d i n g s p a n 1 ( R S I ) , (11) r e a d i n g s p a n 2 (RS2) a n d (12) r e a d i n g s p a n 3 ( R S 3 ) . G e n e r a l l i n e a r m o d e l a n a l y s e s w e r e p e r f o r m e d o n t h e d a t a s e t u s i n g t h e SAS s t a t i s t i c a l p a c k a g e ( 1 9 8 5 ) . T h i s p a c k a g e u s e s f o u r t y p e s o f p a r t i t i o n i n g t h e sums o f s q u a r e s . T y p e I a r e m o d e l -o r d e r d e p e n d e n t ; e a c h e f f e c t i s a d j u s t e d o n l y f o r t h e p r e c e d i n g e f f e c t s i n t h e m o d e l . I n Type I I , e a c h e f f e c t i s a d j u s t e d f o r a l l o t h e r e f f e c t s p o s s i b l e . The p r e d i c t i n g ( d e p e n d e n t ) v a r i a b l e was r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n s c o r e (W.R.M.T.). T y p e I I I i s u s e d t o c a l c u l a t e t w o t y p e s o f sums f o r s q u a r e s a n d T y p e I V i s u s e d f o r d e s i g n s w i t h c e l l s m i s s i n g . The p r e d i c t i n g ( i n d e p e n d e n t ) v a r i a b l e s i n c l u d e d : g r a d e , t h e number o f c o r r e c t i t e m r e s p o n s e s t o t a l f o r t h e d i g i t s p a n a n d s e n t e n c e v e r i f i c a t i o n t a s k s a n d t h e number o f c o r r e c t w o r d s o r d i g i t s a t e a c h l e v e l o f t h e m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n , w o r d s p a n a n d r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k s . The m a i n e f f e c t o f t h e i n d e p e n d e n t v a r i a b l e ( g r a d e ) a nd t h e p r e d i c t i n g v a r i a b l e s , a s w e l l a s t h e i r i n t e r a c t i o n , w i t h g r a d e a s a c a t e g o r i c a l v a r i a b l e w e r e a n a l y z e d . 29 Scoring A m e t h o d o f s c o r i n g was t o sum a l l o f t h e w o r d s o r d i g i t s c o r r e c t l y r e c a l l e d by t h e s u b j e c t s on e a c h o f t h e s u b t e s t s . Words o r d i g i t s w e r e c o u n t e d w h e t h e r o r n o t t h e e n t i r e t r i a l was c o r r e c t ( a b s o l u t e s c o r e ) . T h i s method o f s c o r i n g i s c o n s i d e r e d b y B r o a d b e n t (1971) t o be " t h e b e s t way t o m e a s u r e STM." E a c h t r i a l t y p e i s r e c o r d e d s e p a r a t e l y ( e . g . , f o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n t o t a l , b a c k w a r d d i g i t s p a n t o t a l a n d w o r d s p a n 2 t o t a l , e t c . ) . S e r i a l o r d e r i s c o n s i d e r e d p a r t o f a c o r r e c t r e s p o n s e b e c a u s e o f t h e d i g i t s p a n t a s k . I n t h e d i g i t s p a n t a s k s e r i a l o r d e r i s p a r t o f t h e s t a n d a r d i z e d p r o c e d u r e f o r t h e s c o r i n g o f t h e s e t a s k s a s i n t h e S t a n f o r d - B i n e t I n t e l l i g e n c e S c a l e s : F o u r t h E d i t i o n ( T h o r n d i k e , H a g e n & S a t t l e r , 1 9 8 5 ) . An i n d e x o f t h e s e n t e n c e v e r i f i c a t i o n t a s k was o b t a i n e d . The s c o r e s f o r t h i s t a s k w e r e k e p t t o c h e c k a n d s e e i f s u b j e c t s f o c u s e d on t h e r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k o r w e r e r e s p o n d i n g i n a f r i v o l o u s manner. The o v e r a l l s c o r i n g method was u s e d f o r t h e p u r p o s e o f c a l c u l a t i n g d e s c r i p t i v e s t a t i s t i c s a nd t h e g e n e r a l l i n e a r m o d e l a n a l y s e s . T h i s was done t o be i n k e e p i n g w i t h t h e a f o r e m e n t i o n e d s u g g e s t i o n by B r o a d b e n t (1971) a n d a l s o t o e n h a n c e t h e s o u r c e s o f v a l i d i t y i n m e a s u r e m e n t o p e r a t i o n s i f e q u a l w e i g h t i n g f o r t r i a l s was t o b e u s e d ( B o r g & G a l l , 1 9 8 3 ) . CHAPTER 4 RESULTS Four memory span measures (two l i n g u i s t i c and two non-l i n g u i s t i c ) comprising 11 s u b t e s t s , were a d m i n i s t e r e d t o 60 s u b j e c t s who had p r e v i o u s l y been assessed on the W.R.M.T. passage comprehension s u b t e s t . The t e s t s administered were: forward d i g i t span (FDS), backward d i g i t span (BDS), m o d i f i e d d i g i t span 2 (MDS2), m o d i f i e d d i g i t span 3 (MDS3), m o d i f i e d d i g i t span 4 (MDS4), word span 2 (WS2), word span 3 (WS3), word span 4 (WS4), r e a d i n g span 1 (RSI) , r e a d i n g span 2 (RDS2) , and r e a d i n g span 3 (RS3) . The sc o r e s o f r e a d i n g comprehension u s i n g the W.R.M.T. ra n g i n g from 11 to 75 were o b t a i n e d . The maximum t o t a l f o r the s u b t e s t i s 85. A sc o r e o f 20 would be considered average f o r a Grade 2 and a score of 56 i s average f o r a Grade 6. An examination of the a n a l y s i s of the r e s u l t s determined the r e l a t i v e s t r e n g t h s o f each of the measures as p r e d i c t o r s of rea d i n g comprehension l e v e l a c r o s s two grade l e v e l s . The observed means of a l l scores of Grades 2 and 6 s u b j e c t s under the v a r i o u s c o n d i t i o n s i s presented i n t a b l e 1. 30 31 TABLE 1 Observed Means by Grade and the S t a t i s t i c a l Significance of t h e i r Differences V a r i a b l e s Grade 2 Grade 6 F( l , 5 8 ) p. v a l u e n = 30 n = 30 N o n - l i n g u i s t i c Measures of Memory Span FDS 4.07 (1.22)a 5.30 (0. 98) 18. 34 <. 0001 BDS 2.80z (1.44) 4.50 (1. 54) 19. 30 <• 0001 MDS2 13.17 (3.22) 15.87 (0. 43) 20. 62 <. 0001 MDS3 15.77 (7.27) 23.03 (1. 71) 28. 49 <. 0001 MDS4 17.40 (9.24) 27.37 (5. 32) 26. 16 <• 0001 L i n g u i s t i c Measures of Memory Span WS2 15.57 (0.85) 15.90 (0. 30) 4. 02 <. 0497 WS3 23.10 (1.80) 23.07 (1- 28) 0. 01 <• 9347 WS4 25.47 (7.78) 27.20 (5. 22) 1. 03 <. 3154 RSI 3.90 (0.30) 3.96 (0. 18) 1. 05 <. 3087 RS2 7.10 (1.93) 7.37 (1. 18) 0. 41 <. 5228 RS3 6.73 (3.77) 10.23 (2. 60) 17. 44 <. 0001 Comprehension Measures Reading comprehension 35.43 (13.81) 60.63 (V. 30) 78. 03 <. 0001 Sentence 22.43 ( 1.94) 23.63 (0. 55) 10. 59 <• 002 v e r i f i c a t i o n a - Numbers i n parentheses stand f o r standard d e v i a t i o n s . 32 Analysis of Observed Means Differences between Grade 2 and 6 The means o f G r a d e 2 a n d 6 w e r e c o m p a r e d by ANOVA on t h e n o n -l i n g u i s t i c a n d l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s o f memory s p a n a s w e l l a s t h e c o m p r e h e n s i o n m e a s u r e s . The t e s t r e s u l t s a r e a l s o shown i n T a b l e 1. G r a d e 2 a n d 6 c h i l d r e n ' s p e r f o r m a n c e d i f f e r e n c e s o n t h e n o n -l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s a r e h i g h l y s i g n i f i c a n t i n f a v o r o f g r a d e 6 c h i l d r e n , a s i n d i c a t e d by t h e l a r g e F - v a l u e s a n d v e r y s m a l l p -v a l u e s t h a t c a n be s e e n i n T a b l e 1. I n c o n t r a s t , t h e i r p e r f o r m a n c e d i f f e r e n c e s on a l l t h e l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s , e x c e p t f o r t h e r e a d i n g s p a n 3, w e r e f o u n d t o be n o n s i g n i f i c a n t . T h e i r d i f f e r e n c e i n r e a d i n g s p a n 3 was s i g n i f i c a n t , F ( l , 5 8 ) = 17.44, p_<.0001. I n v i e w o f t h e s i g n i f i c a n c e o f t h e d i f f e r e n c e i n t h e r e a d i n g s p a n 3 t e s t , t h e l a c k o f s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h e o t h e r l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s i s m o s t l i k e l y t o be due t o t h e f l o o r e f f e c t o f t h e t e s t s u s e d . A s t o t h e i n d e x o f s e n t e n c e v e r i f i c a t i o n o f t h e r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k , G r a d e 2 a n d 6 c h i l d r e n p e r f o r m e d w e l l . To c o r r e c t l y i d e n t i f y t h e s e n t e n c e s a s s e n s i c a l o r n o n s e n s i c a l , w i t h a n y d e g r e e o f s u c c e s s , t h e c h i l d r e n m ust c o m p r e h e n d i t . B o t h g r a d e g r o u p s o f c h i l d r e n c o r r e c t l y v e r i f i e d more t h a n 22 o u t o f a t o t a l o f 24 s e n t e n c e s , w i t h G r a d e 6 c h i l d r e n v e r i f y i n g one more s e n t e n c e (22.63 v s . 22.43) c o r r e c t l y t h a n G r a d e 2 c h i l d r e n , F (1,58) = 1 0 . 5 9 , p_< .002. D e s p i t e t h e h i g h l e v e l o f j u d g e m e n t a l v e r i f i c a t i o n o f e a c h s e n t e n c e ( a s t o i t s s e n s i c a l o r n o n s e n e n s i c a l m e a n i n g s t a t u s ) b y b o t h g r a d e g r o u p s , G r a d e 6 c h i l d r e n ' s r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n , a s m e a s u r e d b y t h e W.R.M.T., was f a r s u p e r i o r t o g r a d e 2 c h i l d r e n (means o f 60.63 v s . 3 5 . 4 3 ) , F ( 1 , 5 8 ) = 7 8 . 0 3 , p_< .0001. A q u e s t i o n t h a t a r i s e s f r o m t h e s e o b s e r v a t i o n s i s : What f a c t o r s c o n t r i b u t e t o t h i s s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e i n r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n b e t w e e n t h e g r a d e g r o u p s ? A common s e n s i c a l e x p l a n t a t i o n f o r t h e d i f f e r e n c e i s t h e m a t u r a t i o n o f t h e r e a d e r s . I n t h e p u r s u i t o f t h e r e l e v a n t f a c t o r s i n v o l v e d , a n i n t e r e s t i n g f i n d i n g i s t h a t t h e d i f f e r e n c e i n t h e n o n - l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s b e t w e e n g r a d e 2 a n d 6, b u t n o t t h a t i n l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e c o r r e s p o n d s t o t h e d i f f e r e n c e i n r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n s c o r e s . T h u s , i t i s h i g h l y t e m p t i n g t o i n f e r t h a t t h e f o r m e r m e a s u r e s a r e t h e r e s p o n s i b l e f a c t o r s f o r t h e d i f f e r e n c e i n r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . I t s h o u l d be n o t e d , h o w e v e r , t h a t t h e d a t a a n a l y s i s n e c e s s a r y f o r a d d r e s s i n g t h i s q u e s t i o n r e q u i r e s more t h a n n o m o t h e t i c a n a l y s e s . Analysis of Predictive Relations between Two Classes of Memory Measures and Reading Comprehension I n o r d e r t o o b t a i n a d e q u a t e a n a l y s e s o f t h e d a t a t o d e t e r m i n e t h e r e l a t i v e p r e d i c t i v e r e l a t i o n s , t h e g e n e r a l l i n e a r m o d e l i n c l u d i n g i n t e r a c t i o n t e r m s was e s t a b l i s h e d t o p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n f r o m b o t h t h e n o n - l i n g u i s t i c a n d l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s o f memory s p a n . The s t a t i s t i c a l s e l e c t i o n o f s e n s i t i v e a n d p o t e n t p r e d i c t o r s f r o m t h e s e two c l a s s e s n e e d s t o be made f i r s t s i n c e a l l p r e d i c t o r s a r e t o o numerous t o be e n t e r e d i n t h e m o d e l . T h i s i s e s p e c i a l l y t r u e i n v i e w o f t h e s m a l l s a m p l e s i z e e m p l o y e d i n t h i s s t u d y , t h a t . i s , t h e s m a l l number o f d e g r e e s o f f r e e d o m a v a i l a b l e f o r t e s t i n g t h e f i n a l h y p o t h e s i s o f i n t e r e s t . T h e r e f o r e , i t was d e c i d e d t o p e r f o r m two l i n e a r m o d e l a n a l y s e s , one w i t h t h e n o n -l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s , a n d t h e o t h e r w i t h t h e l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s . The t w o a n a l y s e s w e r e made u s i n g t h e SAS p r o g r a m (1985) . The l e v e l o f s i g n i f i c a n c e f o r e a c h v a r i a b l e t e s t was s e t a t t h e .05 l e v e l . R e s u l t s o f t h e s e t w o a n a l y s e s c a n be s e e n i n T a b l e s t w o a n d t h r e e . From a r e v i e w o f t h e A n o v a t a b l e s , t h r e e f i n d i n g s become a p p a r e n t . The f i r s t o f t h e s e i s t h a t t h e r e a r e t w o r e s u l t s s i g n i f i c a n t i n t h e a n a l y s i s o f t h e n o n - l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s . The o v e r a l l f o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n s c o r e was a s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r , F ( l , 48) = 5.26, p < .26, w h i l e t h e b a c k w a r d d i g i t s p a n was n o t . Of t h e m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n s c o r e s t h e o n l y s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r was t h e m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4, F ( l , 48) = 4.05, p_ < .050. The s e c o n d f i n d i n g i s f r o m t h e l i n g u i s t i c t r i a l s , w h e r e two o f t h o s e r e s u l t s a r e s i g n i f i c a n t a s w e l l . Of t h e l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s , t h e w o r d s p a n 4 t r i a l was s i g n i f i c a n t F ( l , 46) = 4.14, p_ < .048, w h i l e t h e o t h e r t w o w o r d s p a n t r i a l s w e r e n o t . The r e a d i n g s p a n 1 a n d 2 w e r e n o t s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r s , b u t t h e r e a d i n g s p a n 3 s c o r e was a s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r F ( l , 46) = 9.62, p. < .003. The t h i r d f i n d i n g i s f r o m a r e v i e w o f t h e F v a l u e s o f t h e i n t e r a c t i o n s o f memory t r i a l s a n d g r a d e . N e i t h e r t h e l i n g u i s t i c n o r t h e n o n - l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s w e r e shown t o h a v e any s i g n i f i c a n t i n t e r a c t i o n w i t h g r a d e l e v e l s . 35 TABLE 2 Summary Test Results of the General Linear Model Analysis of Reading Comprehension as the Function of Grade and Non-linguistic Memory Span Measures M e a s u r e s ( d f 1,48) F v a l u e s p_ (n f o r a l l m e a s u r e s = 60) v a l u e s I n t e r c e p t 0.03 0.853 G r a d e 0.02 0.890 F o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n 5.26 0.026* B a c k w a r d d i g i t s p a n 1.34 0.253 M o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 2 2.67 0.109 M o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 3 2.98 0.091 M o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4 4.05 0.050* I n t e r a c t i o n s F o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n b y G r a d e 0.25 0.622 B a c k w a r d d i g i t s p a n b y G r a d e 0.04 0.841 M o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 2 b y G r a d e 0.72 0.399 M o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 3 by G r a d e 3.48 0.068 M o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4 by G r a d e 0.15 0.704 * s i g n i f i c a n t a t p_ >.05 36 TABLE 3 Summary Test Results of the General Linear Model Analysis of Reading Comprehension as the Function of Grade and L i n g u i s t i c Memory Span Measures M e a s u r e s ( d f 1,46) F v a l u e s p v a l u e s ( n f o r a l l m e a s u r e s = 60)  I n t e r c e p t 0.31 0.582 G r a d e 0.36 0. 553 Word s p a n 2 0.00 0.951 Word s p a n 3 0.06 0.804 Word s p a n 4 4.14 0.048* R e a d i n g s p a n 1 0.01 0.935 R e a d i n g s p a n 2 0.00 0.949 R e a d i n g s p a n 3 9. 62 I n t e r a c t i o n s 0.003* Word s p a n 2 b y G r a d e 0.01 0.917 Word s p a n 3 b y G r a d e 0.08 0.778 Word s p a n 4 b y G r a d e 0.52 0.473 R e a d i n g s p a n 1 by G r a d e 0.34 0.563 R e a d i n g s p a n 2 by G r a d e 0.83 0.367 R e a d i n g s p a n 3 by G r a d e 0.09 0.764 * s i g n i f i c a n t a t p <0.05 A n o t h e r l i n e a r m o d e l a n a l y s i s was c o n d u c t e d t o t e s t t h e f o u r s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t i o n s w i t h o u t s e p a r a t i n g t h e l i n g u i s t i c a n d n o n -l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s , b u t r e m o v i n g t h e n o n s i g n i f i c a n t m e a s u r e s t o e c o n o m i z e t h e d e g r e e s o f f r e e d o m f o r a s t a t i s t i c a l summary. When t h i s was c o m p l e t e d t h e r e s u l t s showed t h a t t h r e e o f t h e f o u r m e a s u r e s c o n t i n u e d t o y i e l d s i g n i f i c a n t r e s u l t s . A s c a n be s e e n i n T a b l e 4 t h e f o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n was n o t a s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r F ( l , 50) = 1.76, p_ < .19. The m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4 t a s k was a s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r F ( l , 50) = 4.17, p_ < .047, a s was t h e w o r d s p a n 4, F ( l , 50) = 4.83, p < .033 arid t h e r e a d i n g s p a n 3, F ( l , 50) = 1 2 . 5 5 , p < .0009. I n t h i s f i n a l m o d e l , i n c l u d i n g t h e i n t e r a c t i o n t e r m s o f g r a d e w i t h o t h e r memory m e a s u r e s , t h e i n t e r a c t i o n t e r m s w e r e f o u n d n o n s i g n i f i c a n t a s i n t h e p r e v i o u s m o d e l . T h i s means t h a t t h e p r e d i c t a b i l i t i e s o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a r e l a r g e l y f r o m t h r e e p r e d i c t o r s , n a m e l y t h e m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4, w o r d s p a n 4, a n d e s p e c i a l l y r e a d i n g s p a n 3. They a r e s i g n i f i c a n t i r r e s p e c t i v e o f g r a d e d i f f e r e n c e s . I n o r d e r t o g e t u n b i a s e d e s t i m a t e s o f t h e i r r e g r e s s i o n c o e f f i c i e n t s , t h e l a s t m ost p a r s i m o n i o u s l i n e a r m o d e l ( w i t h o u t t h e n o n s i g n i f i c a n t i n t e r a c t i o n t e r m s b e t w e e n g r a d e a n d t h e f o u r s e l e c t e d memory s p a n m e a s u r e s ) was o b t a i n e d . A s c a n be s e e n i n t a b l e 5 t h e r e g r e s s i o n c o e f f i c i e n t s o f t h e FDS, MDS4, WS4 a n d RS3 t h u s d e t e r m i n e d a r e 1.29, 0.37, 0.45 a n d 1.32, w h i c h w e r e m o s t l y s i g n i f i c a n t , t s (54) = 1.36, 2.71, 2.56 a n d 3.94, p s < .18, .01, .014 a n d .0002, r e s p e c t i v e l y . I n g e n e r a l , t h e l i n g u i s i t c m e a s u r e s o f memory s p a n a p p e a r t o p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n more t h a n 38 t h e n o n - l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s . I t r e q u i r e s , h o w e v e r , some c a u t i o n i n i n t e r p r e t i n g t h e s e f i n d i n g s f o r two r e a s o n s . The e s t i m a t e o f g r a d e e f f e c t i s s t i l l a b i a s e s e s t i m a t e , a nd t h e r e g r e s s i o n c o e f f i c i e n t o f FDS i s n o n s i g n i f i c a n t , d e s p i t e i t s e s t i m a t e (1.29) b e i n g l a r g e r t h a n t h a t o f MDS4 ( 0 . 3 7 ) . I t may w e l l be due t o i t s l a r g e r v a r i a n c e , r e l a t i v e t o MDS4. 39 TABLE 4 Summary Test Results of the General Linear Model Analysis of Reading Comprehension as the Function of Grade and FDS, MDS4, WS4 and RS3. M e a s u r e s ( d f 1,48) F v a l u e s p v a l u e s ( n f o r a l l m e a s u r e s = 60)  I n t e r c e p t 0.03 0.853 G r a d e 0.02 0.890 F o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n 1.76 0.1908 M o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4 4.17 0.0465* Word s p a n 4 4.83 0.0326* R e a d i n g s p a n 3 12.55 0.0009* I n t e r a c t i o n s F o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n b y G r a d e 0.43 0.5164 M o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4 b y G r a d e 0.00 0.9918 Word s p a n 4 b y G r a d e 0.04 0.8435 R e a d i n g s p a n 3 b y G r a d e 0.84 0.3641 * s i g n i f i c a n t a t p > .05 40 TABLE 5 Summary Test Results of the General Linear Model Analysis of Reading Comprehension as the Function of FDS, MDS4, WS4 and RS3, Regression C o e f f i c i e n t s and t scores. M e a s u r e s ( d f 1,54) (n f o r a l l m e a s u r e s = 60 F v a l u e s E v a l u e s I n t e r c e p t 5.80 0.0194 G r a d e 37.29 0.0001 F o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n 1.84 0.1810 M o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4 7.34 0.0090* Word s p a n 4 6.54 0.0134* R e a d i n g s p a n 3 15.53 0.0002* R e g r e s s i o n c o f f i c i e n t s I n t e r a c t i o n s F o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n 1.29* M o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4 0.37* Word s p a n 4 0.45* R e a d i n g s p a n 3 1.32* t s c o r e s p_ s c o r e s F o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n 1.36 0.1810 M o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4 2.71 0.0090* Word s p a n 4 2.56 0.0134* R e a d i n g s p a n 3 3.94 0.0002* * s i g n i f i c a n t a t p > .05 CHAPTER 5 DISCUSSION The purpose of t h i s research was to examine the rela t i o n s h i p s between working memory and reading comprehension i n beginning and intermediate readers. After reviewing the l i t e r a t u r e two questions were developed. The questions were: 1. Which of these memory measures best predict reading comprehension? 2. Is there a difference i n relationships between reading comprehension and working memory i n Grade 2 and Grade 6 subjects? These questions were examined i n the present research. Summary and Conclusions From the i n i t i a l general l i n e a r model analysis, four memory subtest scores were found to produce s i g n i f i c a n t r e s u l t s . Two of the measures were non-linguistic (forward d i g i t span and modified d i g i t span 4) and two l i n g u i s t i c (word span 4 and reading span 3). Thus one measure from each of the four types of memory measures was found to be a good predictor of reading comprehension a b i l i t y . The f i r s t of these measures, forward d i g i t span, was a s i g n i f i c a n t predictor i n the i n i t i a l analysis of a l l the n o n - l i n g u i s t i c t r i a l s . I t was not found to be a s i g n i f i c a n t predictor i n the second analysis, which compared only the four s i g n i f i c a n t r e s u l t s . This may be because some of i t s p r e d i c t a b i l i t y was taken care of by the l i n g u i s t i c measures. The backward d i g i t span score did not prove to be a s i g n i f i c a n t predictor despite the more complex nature of the task. The task may have proven to be too d i f f i c u l t f o r even 41 42 g o o d c o m p r e h e n d e r s . The r e s u l t s o f t h e s e d i g i t s p a n m e a s u r e s s u p p o r t t h e f i n d i n g s o f Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r (1980) a n d P e r f e t t i a n d L e s g o l d ( 1 9 7 7 ) . They f o u n d d i g i t s p a n t a s k s t o e i t h e r n o t be c o r r e l a t e d a t a l l o r o n l y w e a k l y c o r r e l a t e d t o r e a d i n g a b i l i t y . The t h r e e s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r s (MDS4, WS4 a n d RS3) w e r e a l l t h e h i g h e s t l e v e l o f t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e m e a s u r e s . The f a i l u r e o f t h e l o w e r l e v e l s o f t h e s e m e a s u r e s (MDS2, MDS3, WS2, WS3, R S I a n d RS2) t o s i g n i f i c a n t l y p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n may be t h e r e s u l t o f a f l o o r e f f e c t . From t h e s e c o n d a n a l y s i s o f t h e t h r e e s i g n i f i c a n t f i n d i n g s , t h e r e a d i n g s p a n 3 s u b t e s t s c o r e i s o b s e r v e d t o be t h e s t r o n g e s t p r e d i c t o r . The m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4 a n d t h e w o r d s p a n 4 s u b t e s t s c o r e s , a r e s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r s , b u t n o t t o t h e e x t e n t o f t h e r e a d i n g s p a n 3 s c o r e . B o t h o f t h o s e s c o r e s t h o u g h , s t i l l i n d i c a t e t h a t t h e y a r e g o o d p r e d i c t o r s o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a b i l i t y . The s i g n i f i c a n t r e s u l t s o f t h e MDS4 an d t h e WS4 s c o r e s w e r e p r e d i c t e d b y Y u i l l , O a k h i l l a n d P a r k i n (1989) a n d L a P o i n t e a n d E n g l e ( 1 9 9 0 ) , r e s p e c t i v e l y . Y u i l l , O a k h i l l a n d P a r k i n a r g u e t h a t t h e m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n t a s k d o e s t a p p r o c e s s i n g a b i l i t y a s w e l l a s c a p a c i t y a n d p r e d i c t s r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a s w e l l a s a r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k . Y e t , t h e e v i d e n c e i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e a n d i n t h i s r e s e a r c h d o e s n o t s u p p o r t t h e i r v i e w . The L a P o i n t e a n d E n g l e s i m p l e w o r d s p a n t a s k i s s t r i c t l y a m e a s u r e o f c a p a c i t y w i t h no p r o c e s s i n g . S i n c e b o t h o f t h e s e t e s t s a p p e a r t o m e a s u r e o n l y c a p a c i t y , i t i s e x p e c t e d t h a t t h e y w o u l d y i e l d s i m i l a r r e s u l t s , w h i c h t h e y d o . The s i g n i f i c a n t r e s u l t s f o u n d h e r e , t h o u g h , s h o u l d be v i e w e d w i t h c a u t i o n . T h i s i s b e c a u s e t h e s e r e s u l t s may be i n f l u e n c e d b y t h e u s e o f s t r a t e g i e s l i k e r e h e a r s a l a n d r e g r o u p i n g t h a t may a l l o w s u b j e c t s t o " c i r c u m v e n t t h e c a p a c i t y l i m i t a t i o n s o f s h o r t - t e r m memory" ( T u r n e r a n d E n g l e , 1989) a n d " o b s c u r e a n y r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n s h o r t - t e r m memory c a p a c i t y a n d h i g h e r l e v e l c o g n i t i v e t a s k s " ( L a P o i n t e a n d E n g l e , 1 9 9 0 ) . E v i d e n c e o f r e h e a r s a l a n d r e g r o u p i n g s u b v o c a l i z a t i o n b y s u b j e c t s o n t h e s e t a s k s was h e a r d b y t h e e x a m i n e r . S i m i l a r s t r a t e g i e s ( s u c h a s r e h e a r s i n g k e y numbers a n d r e h e a r s i n g w o r d s ) w e r e u s e d b y s u b j e c t s o n b o t h o f t h e s e m e a s u r e s . D u r i n g t h e a d m i n i s t r a t i o n o f t h e r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k t h e r e was no a u d i t o r y e v i d e n c e o f r e h e a r s a l o r r e g r o u p i n g s t r a t e g i e s b e i n g e m p l o y e d by t h e s u b j e c t s . O v e r a l l , t h e r e a d i n g s p a n 3 s u b t e s t i s t h e s t r o n g e s t p r e d i c t o r o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . T h i s f i n d i n g s u p p o r t s t h e r e s u l t s o f Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r ' s s t u d i e s ( 1 9 8 0 , 1 9 8 3 ) , b u t w i t h b e g i n n i n g a n d i n t e r m e d i a t e r e a d e r s . The r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k seems t o p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n i n b e g i n n i n g a n d i n t e r m e d i a t e r e a d e r s a s w e l l a s i t d o e s f o r a d u l t r e a d e r s . From t h e r e s u l t s o f t h i s r e s e a r c h i t i s a p p a r e n t t h a t t h e b e s t memory m e a s u r e t o c l e a r l y p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a b i l i t y i s s t i l l t h e r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k . I t w o u l d seem t h a t t h e b e s t m e a s u r e o f a c o m p l e x o p e r a t i o n ( s u c h a s r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n ) i s a c o m p l e x t a s k ( s u c h a s t h e r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k u s e d i n t h i s s t u d y ) . The s e c o n d f i n d i n g s a r e f r o m t h e o b s e r v e d means d i f f e r e n c e s a n d t h e r e g r e s s i o n a n a l y s i s o f t h e G r a d e 2 a n d G r a d e 6 s c o r e s o n e a c h o f t h e m e a s u r e s . The f i n d i n g s i n d i c a t e t h a t t h e r e a r e s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s b e t w e e n t h e g r a d e s on a l l t h e n o n -l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s (FDS, BDS, MDS2, MDS3 an d MDS4). The r e s u l t s a r e i n f a v o u r o f t h e G r a d e 6 s u b j e c t s . G i v e n t h a t t h e s e m e a s u r e s b a s i c a l l y t a x t h e s t o r a g e component o f w o r k i n g memory a n d t h a t i t s c a p a c i t y i n c r e a s e s w i t h age (up t o a d o l e s c e n c e ) , t h e s e r e s u l t s w e r e e x p e c t e d . The l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s , w i t h t h e e x c e p t i o n o f r e a d i n g s p a n 3, w e r e n o t f o u n d t o be s i g n i f i c a n t . The l a c k o f s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e s may be a c c o u n t e d f o r by t h e f a c t t h a t t h e w o r d l i s t s w e r e c o m p r i s e d o f t h e most f r e q u e n t l y u s e d w o r d s i n t h e E n g l i s h l a n g u a g e ( L a P o i n t e & E n g l e , 1990; F r a n c i s & K u c e r a , 1982) a n d t h e r e a d i n g s p a n s e n t e n c e s w e r e d e v e l o p e d f r o m P r i m a r y g r a d e r e a d e r s ( B o o t h , B o o t h , P a u l i & P h e n i x , 1 9 8 5 ) . B o t h g r a d e g r o u p s w o u l d t h u s b e f a m i l i a r w i t h some i t e m s i n t h e t a s k s a n d t h i s may h a v e made i t e a s i e r f o r a l l s u b j e c t s ( R e c h t & L e s l i e , 1 9 8 8 ) . The s i g n i f i c a n t r e s u l t s f o u n d w i t h t h e r e a d i n g s p a n 3 t e s t c a n b e a c c o u n t e d f o r b e c a u s e o f i t s h i g h l e v e l o f d i f f i c u l t y . I t w o u l d seem t h a t t h e c a p a c i t y a n d p r o c e s s i n g demands o f t h e m e a s u r e w e r e more a r d u o u s f o r t h e G r a d e 2 t h a n t h e G r a d e 6 s u b j e c t s . The d e v e l o p i n g c a p a c i t y o f w o r k i n g memory w o u l d a p p e a r t o p l a y a p a r t i n t h i s , s i n c e t h e more c a p a c i t y a v a i l a b l e t h e more i n f o r m a t i o n t h a t c a n be s t o r e d and p r o c e s s e d . The r e a d i n g s p a n 3 f i n d i n g was e x p e c t e d . The r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a n d s e n t e n c e v e r i f i c a t i o n means w e r e b o t h s i g n i f i c a n t l y d i f f e r e n t , a l s o i n f a v o u r o f t h e G r a d e 6 s u b j e c t s . T h i s i s a n e x p e c t e d r e s u l t a s w e l l . I t c a n be a c c o u n t e d f o r b e c a u s e o f t h e m a t u r a t i o n p r o c e s s w i t h r e s p e c t t o r e a d i n g . T h a t i s t o s a y , t h e G r a d e 6 s t u d e n t s h a v e h a d more e x p e r i e n c e a n d y e a r s o f 45 p r a c t i s i n g t h e s k i l l s i n v o l v e d i n r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . From t h e f i r s t g e n e r a l l i n e a r m o d e l a n a l y s i s i t was f o u n d t h a t r e g a r d l e s s o f w h i c h t y p e o f memory m e a s u r e was t e s t e d , none w e r e f o u n d t o h a v e s i g n i f i c a n t i n t e r a c t i o n w i t h t h e g r a d e v a r i a b l e . The s e c o n d a n a l y s i s u s i n g o n l y t h e i n i t i a l f o u r s i g n i f i c a n t r e s u l t s ( f o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n , m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4, w o r d s p a n 4 a n d r e a d i n g s p a n 3) a l s o y i e l d e d no s i g n i f i c a n t i n t e r a c t i o n s a n d t h e f o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n s c o r e ( a s p r e v i o u s l y m e n t i o n e d ) was n o t f o u n d s i g n i f i c a n t . T h i s w o u l d seem t o i n d i c a t e t h a t r e g a r d l e s s o f g r a d e , m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4, w o r d s p a n 4, a n d r e a d i n g s p a n 3 a r e t h e s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r s o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a b i l i t y i n t h i s s t u d y . The r e g r e s s i o n c o e f f i c i e n t s o f t h e f o r w a r d d i g i t s p a n , m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4, w o r d s p a n 4, a n d r e a d i n g s p a n 3 w e r e a l l s i g n i f i c a n t , w i t h t h e l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s a p p e a r i n g t o be b e t t e r p r e d i c t o r s o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n t h a n t h e n o n - l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s . B e c a u s e o f t h e r e s t r i c t i o n s o f t h e s t u d y ' s s u b j e c t s e l e c t i o n , i t was e x p e c t e d t h a t 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 t h e s l o p e s o f t h e r e g r e s s i o n l i n e s f o r t h e t w o g r a d e s w o u l d be f o u n d . T h i s was t h e c a s e a f t e r t h e r e s u l t s w e r e a n a l y z e d . T h e r e f o r e G r a d e 2 s t u d e n t s i n t h i s s t u d y p e r f o r m e d i n a s i m i l a r manner t o G r a d e 6 s t u d e n t s o n w o r k i n g memory m e a s u r e s . The m a j o r i t y o f t h e s t u d i e s r e v i e w e d i n t h i s t h e s i s u s e d u n i v e r s i t y u n d e r g r a d u a t e p s y c h o l o g y s t u d e n t s a s s u b j e c t s n o t c h i l d r e n . C h i l d r e n w e r e u s e d a s s u b j e c t s t o t r y t o r e p l i c a t e t h e r e s u l t s o f p r e v i o u s r e s e a r c h t h a t e x a m i n e d t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s b e t w e e n w o r k i n g memory a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a b i l i t y . Many t y p e s o f l i n g u i s t i c a n d n o n - l i n g u i s t i c memory m e a s u r e s h a v e b e e n d e v e l o p e d a n d t e s t e d on g r o u p s o f a d u l t s u b j e c t s . Of t h e s e m e a s u r e s t h e one t h a t a p p e a r e d t o b e s t a n d m o s t c o n s i s t e n t l y p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n was t h e r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k d e v e l o p e d b y Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r (1980) . T h e y a r g u e d t h a t t o t e s t w o r k i n g memory, a t a s k m u s t t a x b o t h t h e c a p a c i t y a n d s t o r a g e c o m p o n e n t s o f w o r k i n g memory. T r a d i t i o n a l memory m e a s u r e s s u c h a s d i g i t s p a n a n d w o r d s p a n t a s k s w e r e c o n s i d e r e d b y Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r t o be o n l y m e a s u r e s o f c a p a c i t y a n d d i d n o t p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a b i l i t y . The r e s u l t s o f Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r ' s ( 1 9 8 0 , 1983) r e s e a r c h s u p p o r t e d t h e i r c l a i m s . Many r e p l i c a t i o n s a n d e x t e n t i o n s o r t h e i r r e s e a r c h h a v e b e e n c o n d u c t e d w i t h v a r y i n g d e g r e e s o f s u c c e s s . R e c e n t l y , r e s e a r c h e r s s u c h a s ; B a d d e l e y , L o g i e , Nimmo-Smith a n d B r e r e t o n (1985) a n d T u r n e r a n d E n g l e (1989) f o u n d t h a t a v a r i a t i o n o f t h e r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k ( s t i l l c o m p r i s e d o f c a p a c i t y a n d p r o c e s s i n g c o m p o n e n t s ) p r e d i c t e d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a s w e l l a s Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r ' s t a s k d i d . O t h e r r e s e a r c h e r s s u c h a s Y u i l l , O a k h i l l a n d P a r k i n (1989) r e p o r t e d s i g n i f i c a n t r e s u l t s u s i n g a m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n t a s k . L a P o i n t e a n d E n g l e (1990) r e - e x a m i n e d s i m p l e a n d c o m p l e x w o r d s p a n memory m e a s u r e s a n d u s e d t h e m t o a t t e m p t t o p r e d i c t r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a b i l i t y . The r e s u l t s o f t h e i r r e s e a r c h seem t o p o i n t t o a s i g n i f i c a n t r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n w o r d s p a n t a s k s a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . None o f t h e r e s e a r c h r e v i e w e d a b o v e u s e d a l l o f t h e s e a p p a r e n t s i g n i f i c a n t memory m e a s u r e s i n t h e same s t u d y w i t h c h i l d r e n a s s u b j e c t s , u n l i k e t h i s 47 t h e s i s . The r e s u l t s o f t h i s s t u d y s u p p o r t t h e Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r ( 1 9 8 0 , 1983) f i n d i n g t h a t t h e r e a d i n g s p a n t a s k i s t h e b e s t p r e d i c t o r o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a b i l i t y . Suggestions for Future Research F o u r s u g g e s t i o n s f o r f u t u r e r e s e a r c h a r e p r e s e n t e d h e r e . The f i r s t o ne d e a l s w i t h f u t u r e r e p l i c a t i o n s a n d e x t e n t i o n s o f t h i s s t u d y . S i n c e v e r y l i t t l e p a s t r e s e a r c h w i t h b e g i n n i n g a n d i n t e r m e d i a t e r e a d e r s h a s done more r e p l i c a t i o n o f t h e f i n d i n g s w o u l d seem w a r r e n t e d . A l a r g e r a n d more r a n d o m i z e d s a m p l e i n b o t h g r a d e g r o u p s w o u l d a l l o w f o r more g e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y o f t h e r e s u l t s . A n e x t e n t i o n o f t h e r e s e a r c h u s i n g o n l y one g r a d e g r o u p o r t h e o t h e r w o u l d a l s o p r o v i d e i n f o r m a t i o n s i n c e no i n t e r a c t i o n o f g r a d e a n d memory m e a s u r e was f o u n d i n t h i s s t u d y . T h i s s t u d y c o u l d a l s o be e x t e n d e d t o u s e G r a d e 6, 10 a n d a d u l t s a s s u b j e c t s . The s e c o n d s u g g e s t i o n comes f r o m a r e v i e w o f t h e memory m e a s u r e s . The l o w e s t l e v e l s u b t e s t s o f t h e m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n (MDS2), w o r d s p a n (WS2) a n d r e a d i n g s p a n ( R S I ) d i d n o t p r o v e t o be d i f f i c u l t f o r e i t h e r t h e g r a d e two o r t h e g r a d e s i x g r o u p . T h e s e l e v e l s s h o u l d be r e m o v e d a n d a n o t h e r l e v e l o f s u b t e s t s s h o u l d be d e v e l o p e d a n d a d d e d ( i . e . , MDS5, WS5 a n d RS4 ) a t t h e h i g h e r e n d o f t h e s u b t e s t s . T h i s may h e l p t o b e t t e r d i f f e r e n t i a t e t h e a b i l i t i e s o f t h e s u b j e c t s . The t h i r d s u g g e s t i o n comes f r o m t h e r e s u l t s o f t h e r e s e a r c h a n d a r e v i e w o f t h e l i t e r a t u r e . T u r n e r a n d E n g l e (1989) i n t h e i r w o r d s p a n r e s e a r c h u s e d b o t h r e a d i n g s p a n a n d o p e r a t i o n s p a n t a s k s 48 t o m e a s u r e t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n a n d w o r k i n g memory. They f o u n d t h a t a n o p e r a t i o n s p a n t a s k c o u l d " g e n e r a t e a s i g n i f i c a n t c o r r e l a t i o n w i t h r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . " T h i s f i n d i n g c o u l d be t e s t e d i n a f u t u r e s t u d y o f memory m e a s u r e s w i t h b e g i n n i n g a n d i n t e r m e d i a t e r e a d e r s . B e c a u s e o f t h e i n e x p e r i e n c e o f a G r a d e 2 g r o u p w i t h m a t h e m a t i c a l o p e r a t i o n s e n t e n c e s , i t m i g h t be more i n f o r m a t i v e t o u s e t h i s t a s k w i t h a G r a d e 6 g r o u p . The f o u r t h a n d f i n a l r e c o m m e n d a t i o n i s a l s o f o r f u t u r e r e s e a r c h . C h a n g e s c o u l d be made i n t h e a d m i n i s t r a t i o n o f t h e d i g i t s p a n , m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n a nd w o r d s p a n t a s k s . The d e v e l o p m e n t f o r t h e d i g i t s p a n t e s t c o u l d be c h a n g e d s o t h a t t h e f o r w a r d a n d b a c k w a r d i t e m s a r e m i x e d t o g e t h e r . S u b j e c t s w o u l d n o t be t o l d w h i c h way t o r e s p o n d ( i . e . , f o r w a r d o r b a c k w a r d ) u n t i l a f t e r t h e s e q u e n c e o f d i g i t s was g i v e n . The e x a m i n e r w o u l d t h e n s i g n a l t h e s u b j e c t s b y r a i s i n g one f o r f o r w a r d o r two f i n g e r s f o r b a c k w a r d o r s a y i n g " f o r w a r d " o r " b a c k w a r d " . The m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n c o u l d be c h a n g e d s o t h a t s u b j e c t s d i d n o t know w h i c h d i g i t s i n e a c h s e q u e n c e t h e y w e r e t o r e c a l l a g a i n u n t i l t h e i t e m was p r e s e n t e d . The d i g i t s t o be r e c a l l e d c o u l d be v a r i e d ( i . e . , f i r s t d i g i t s o r l a s t d i g i t s ) . The w o r d s p a n t a s k c o u l d be m o d i f i e d s o t h a t w o r d s c o u l d be r e c a l l e d i n e i t h e r f o r w a r d o r b a c k w a r d o r d e r . A s i g n a l s y s t e m s i m i l a r t o t h e one s u g g e s t a b o v e , c o u l d be u s e d . T h e s e c h a n g e s w o u l d h e l p t o r e d u c e t h e u s e o f s t r a t e g i e s , l i k e r e h e a r s a l a n d r e g r o u p i n g , b y t h e s u b j e c t s . I f t h i s was d o n e , t h e p r e d i c t a b i l i t i e s o f t h e s e m e a s u r e s may c h a n g e , t h u s p r o v i d i n g 49 better r e f i n e d and more clear-cut pictures of the p r e d i c t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p s . REFERENCES B a d d e l e y , A. L o g i e , R. Nimmo-Smith, I . & B r e r e t o n , N. ( 1 9 8 5 ) . C o m p onents o f f l u e n t r e a d i n g . J o u r n a l o f Memory a n d  L a n g u a g e . 24., 11 9 - 1 3 1 . B e s t , J . B. ( 1 9 8 6 ) . C o g n i t i v e P s y c h o l o g y . S t . P a u l : West P u b l i s h i n g . B o r g , W. R. , & G a l l , M. D. ( 1 9 8 3 ) . E d u c a t i o n a l R e s e a r c h . New Y o r k : Longman. B o o t h , J . , B o o t h , D., P a u l i , W., & P h e n i x J . ( 1 9 8 5 ) . I m p r e s s i o n s :  E a s t o f t h e Sun. C a n a d a : H o l t , R i n e h a r t a n d W i n s t o n . B o o t h , J . , B o o t h , D., P a u l i , W., & P h e n i x J . ( 1 9 8 5 ) . I m p r e s s i o n s :  O v e r t h e M o u n t a i n . C a n a d a : H o l t , R i n e h a r t a n d W i n s t o n . B o o t h , J . , B o o t h , D., P a u l i , W., & P h e n i x J . ( 1 9 8 5 ) . I m p r e s s i o n s :  W e st o f t h e Moon. C a n a d a : H o l t , R i n e h a r t a n d W i n s t o n . B r o a d b e n t , D. E. ( 1 9 7 1 ) . The m a g i c number s e v e n a f t e r f i f t e e n y e a r s . I n R. A. K e n n e d y & A. W i l k e s ( E d s . ) , S t u d i e s i n  l i n g - t e r m memory. New Y o r k , W i l e y . C h i , M.T. ( 1 9 7 6 ) . S h o r t - t e r m memory l i m i t a t i o n s i n c h i l d r e n : C a p a c i t y o r p r o c e s s i n g d e f i c i t s ? Memory a n d C o g n i t i o n . 4 . 5 5 9 - 5 8 0 . Daneman, M., & C a r p e n t e r , P.A. ( 1 9 8 0 ) . I n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n w o r k i n g memory a n d r e a d i n g . J o u r n a l o f V e r b a l L e a r n i n g a n d  V e r b a l B e h a v i o r . 19, 450-466. Daneman, M., & C a r p e n t e r , P.A. ( 1 9 8 3 ) . I n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n i n t e g r a t i n g i n f o r m a t i o n b e t w e e n a n d w i t h i n s e n t e n c e s . J o u r n a l Of E x p e r i m e n t a l P s y c h o l o g y : L e a r n i n g Memory and  C o g n i t i o n . 9 , 561-584. F l e t c h e r , C.R. ( 1 9 8 1 ) . S h o r t - t e r m memory p r o c e s s e s i n t e x t c o m p r e h e n s i o n . J o u r n a l o f V e r b a l L e a r n i n g a n d V e r b a l  B e h a v i o r . 20. 564-574. F r a n c i s , W.N., & K u c e r a , H. , ( 1 9 8 2 ) . F r e q u e n c y A n a l y s i s o f E n g l i s h  L a n g u a g e • B o s t o n : H o u g h t o n M i f f l i n . K i n t s c h , W. , & Van D i j k , T.A. (1978) . T o w a r d a m o d e l o f t e x t c o m p r e h e n s i o n a n d p r o d u c t i o n . P s y c h o l o g i c a l R e v i e w . 85., 3 6 3 - 3 9 4 . 50 51 L a B e r g e , D., & S a m u e l s , S . J . ( 1 9 7 4 ) . T o w a r d s a t h e o r y o f a u t o m a t i c i n f o r m a t i o n p r o c e s s i n g i n r e a d i n g . C o g n i t i v e P s y c h o l o g y , 6, 2 9 3 - 3 2 3 . L a P o i n t e , L.B., & E n g l e , R.W., ( 1 9 9 0 ) . S i m p l e a n d c o m p l e x w o r d s p a n s a s m e a s u r e s o f w o r k i n g memory c a p a c i t y . J o u r n a l o f  E x p e r i m e n t a l P s y c h o l o g y : L e a r n i n g . Memory a n d C o g n i t i o n . 16, 1 1 1 8 - 1 1 3 3 . Mann, V.A., C o w i n , A. & S c h o e n h e i m e r , J . ( 1 9 8 9 ) . P h o n o l o g i c a l p r o c e s s i n g , l a n g u a g e c o m p r e h e n s i o n a n d r e a d i n g a b i l i t y . J o u r n a l o f L e a r n i n g D i s a b i l i t i e s . 22., 7 6 - 8 9 . M i l l e r , G.A., ( 1 9 5 6 ) . The m a g i c number s e v e n , p l u s o r m i n u s t w o : Some l i m i t s f o r o u r c a p a c i t y f o r p r o c e s s i n g i n f o r m a t i o n . P s y c h o l o g i c a l R e v i e w . 63, 81-97. O a k h i l l , J . , Y u i l l , N., & P a r k i n , A. ( 1 9 8 8 ) . On t h e n a t u r e o f t h e d i f f e r e n c e b e t w e e n s k i l l e d a n d l e s s s k i l l e d c o m p r e h e n d e r s . J o u r n a l o f R e s e a r c h i n R e a d i n g . 9. 8 0 - 9 1 . P e r f e t t i , C A . & Goldman, S.R. ( 1 9 7 6 ) . D i s c o u r s e memory a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n s k i l l . J o u r n a l o f V e r b a l L e a r n i n g a n d V e r b a l  B e h a v i o u r . 14, 33-42. P e r f e t t i , C.A., & L e s g o l d , A. ( 1 9 7 7 ) . D i s c o u r s e c o m p r e h e n s i o n a n d s o u r c e s o f i n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s . I n M. J u s t & P. C a r p e n t e r ( E d s . ) , C o g n i t i v e P r o c e s s e s i n C o m p r e h e n s i o n ( p p . 141-183) . H i l l s d a l e , N J : E r l b a u m . R e c h t , D.R., & L e s l i e , L. ( 1 9 8 8 ) . E f f e c t o f p r i o r K n o w l e d g e o n g o o d a n d p o o r r e a d e r s ' memory o f t e x t . J o u r n a l o f E d u c a t i o n a l  P s y c h o l o g y . 80, 16-20. S a m u e l s , S . J . ( 1 9 8 7 ) . I n f o r m a t i o n p r o c e s s i n g a b i l i t y a n d r e a d i n g . J o u r n a l o f L e a r n i n g D i s a b i l i t i e s . 2 0 , 1 8 - 2 2 . S i m o n , H.A. ( 1 9 7 4 ) . How b i g i s a c h u n k ? S c i e n c e . 1 8 3 , 4 8 2 - 4 8 8 . S t a n o v i c h , K.E. ( 1 9 8 2 a ) . I n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h e c o g n i t i v e p r o c e s s e s o f r e a d i n g : I . Word d e c o d i n g . J o u r n a l o f  L e a r n i n g D i s a b i l i t i e s . 15, 4 8 5 - 4 9 3 . S t a n o v i c h , K.E. ( 1 9 8 2 b ) . I n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h e c o g n i t i v e p r o c e s s e s o f r e a d i n g : I I . T e x t L e v e l P r o c e s s e s . J o u r n a l o f  L e a r n i n g D i s a b i l i t i e s , 15, 549-554. T h o r n d i k e , R.L., Hagen, E.P. & S a t t l e r , J.M. ( 1 9 8 5 ) . S t a n f o r d - B i n e t  I n t e l l i g e n c e S c a l e : F o u r t h E d i t i o n . R i v e r s i d e , CA. R i v e r s i d e P u b l i s h i n g . 52 T u i n m a n , J . J . , K i n z e r , C.K. & M u h t a d i , N.A. ( 1 9 8 0 ) . A s h o r t c u t t o t e s t i n g r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . R e a d i n g H o r i z o n s . 20, 1 0 3 -105. T u r n e r , M.L., & E n g l e , R.W., ( 1 9 8 9 ) . I s w o r k i n g memory c a p a c i t y t a s k d e p e n d e n t ? J o u r n a l o f Memory a n d L a n g u a g e . 28., 127-154. V i p o n d , D. ( 1 9 8 0 ) . M i c r o - a n d m a c r o p r o c e s s e s i n t e x t c o m p r e h e n s i o n . J o u r n a l o f V e r b a l L e a r n i n g a n d V e r b a l B e h a v i o r , 19, 2 7 6 -296. Woodcock, R.W. ( 1 9 7 3 ) . Woodcock R e a d i n g M a s t e r y T e s t s . C i r c l e P i n e s , MN: A m e r i c a n G u i d a n c e S e r v i c e . Y u i l l , N., & O a k h i l l , J . ( 1 9 8 8 ) . U n d e r s t a n d i n g o f a n a p h o r i c r e l a t i o n s i n s k i l l e d a n d l e s s s k i l l e d c o m p r e h e n d e r s . B r i t i s h  J o u r n a l o f P s y c h o l o g y . 79, 173-186. Y u i l l , N., O a k h i l l , J . , & P a r k i n , A. ( 1 9 8 9 ) . W o r k i n g Memory, c o m p r e h e n s i o n a b i l i t y a n d t h e r e s o l u t i o n o f t e x t a n o m a l y . B r i t i s h J o u r n a l o f P s y c h o l o g y . 80. 3 5 1 - 3 6 1 . BIBLIOGRAPHY A l e g r i a , J . , P i g n o t , E., & M o r a i s , J . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . P h o n e t i c a n a l y s i s o f s p e e c h a n d memory c o d e s i n b e g i n n i n g r e a d e r s . Memory &  C o g n i t i o n . 10. 451-456. A n d e r s o n , J.R. ( 1 9 8 3 ) . The A r c h i t e c t u r e o f C o g n i t i o n . C a m b r i d g e , MA: H a r v a r d U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s . B a d d e l e y , A. ( 1 9 8 1 ) . The c o m p o n e n t s o f w o r k i n g memory: A v i e w o f i t s c u r r e n t s t a t e a n d p r o b a b l e f u t u r e d e v e l o p m e n t . C o g n i t i o n . 10. 17-23. B a d d e l e y , A. ( 1 9 8 6 ) , D e v e l o p m e n t a l A p p l i c a t i o n s Of W o r k i n g Memory. I n A. B a d d e l y ( E d . ) , W o r k i n g Memory. New Y o r k : O x f o r d U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s . B a d d e l e y , A., & H i t c h , G. J . ( 1 9 7 4 ) . W o r k i n g Memory. I n G. Bower ( E d . ) , The P s y c h o l o g y o f L e a r n i n g a n d M o t i v a t i o n ( p p . 4 7 -9 0 ) . New Y o r k : A c a d e m i c P r e s s . B r a d y , S. ( 1 9 8 6 ) . S h o r t - t e r m memory, p r o c e s s i n g , a n d r e a d i n g a b i l i t y . A n n a l s o f D y s l e x i a , 36, 138-15 2 . B r a d y , S., S h a n k w e i l e r , D., & Mann, V. ( 1 9 8 3 ) . S p e e c h p e r c e p t i o n a n d memory c o d i n g i n r e l a t i o n t o r e a d i n g a b i l i t y . J o u r n a l o f  E x p e r i m e n t a l C h i l d P s y c h o l o g y . 3 5, 345-367. C a r r , T. ( 1 9 8 1 ) . B u i l d i n g t h e o r i e s o f r e a d i n g a b i l i t y : On t h e r e l a t i o n b e t w e e n i n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n c o g n i t i v e s k i l l s a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . C o g n i t i o n . 9, 7 3 - 1 1 3 . C a s e , R., K u r k l a n d , D., & G o l d b e r g , J . ( 1 9 8 2 ) . O p e r a t i o n a l e f f i c i e n c y a n d t h e g r o w t h o f s h o r t - t e r m memory s p a n . Journal  o f E x p e r i m e n t a l C h i l d P s y c h o l o g y . 33. 386-404. Chen, H.C. ( 1 9 8 6 ) . E f f e c t s o f r e a d i n g s p a n a n d t e x t u a l c o h e r e n c e on r a p i d - s e q u e n t i a l r e a d i n g . Memory a n d C o g n i t i o n , 14. 2 0 2 -208. C r a i k , F., & B y r d , M. ( 1 9 8 2 ) . A g i n g a n d c o g n i t i v e d e f i c i t s : The r o l e o f a t t e n t i o n a l r e s o u r c e s . I n F. I . M. C r a i k & S. E. T r e h u b ( E d s . ) , A g i n g a n d C o g n i t i v e P r o c e s s e s ( p p . 1 9 1 - 2 1 1 ) . New Y o r k : P l e n u m P r e s s . C u r t i s , M.E. ( 1 9 8 0 ) . D e v e l o p m e n t o f c o m p o n e n t s o f r e a d i n g s k i l l . J o u r n a l o f E d u c a t i o n a l P s y c h o l o g y . 7 2 , 6 5 6 - 6 6 9 . Daneman, M., fie G r e e n , I . ( 1 9 8 6 ) . I n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n c o m p r e h e n d i n g a n d p r o d u c i n g w o r d s i n c o n t e x t . J o u r n a l o f  Memory a n d L a n g u a g e . 25, 1-18. 53 54 D e m p s t e r , F. N. ( 1 9 8 1 ) . Memory s p a n : S o u r c e s o f i n d i v i d u a l a n d d e v e l o p m e n t a l d i f f e r e n c e s . P s y c h o l o g i c a l B u l l e t i n . 8 9 , 6 3 -100. E h r i , L. C , & W i l c e , L. S. ( 1 9 7 9 ) . The mnemonic v a l u e o f o r t h o g r a p h y among b e g i n n i n g r e a d e r s . J o u r n a l o f E d u c a t i o n a l  P s y c h o l o g y . 7 1 , 26-40. G i c k , M.L., C r a i k , F.I.M., & M o r r i s , R.G. ( 1 9 8 8 ) . T a s k c o m p l e x i t y a n d a g e d i f f e r e n c e s i n w o r k i n g memory. Memory a n d  C o g n i t i o n . 16, 3 5 3 - 3 6 1 . J o h n s o n - L a i r d , P.N. ( 1 9 8 3 ) . M e n t a l M o d e l s : T o w a r d s a C o g n i t i v e  S c i e n c e o f L a n g u a g e . I n f e r e n c e . a n d C o n s c i o u s n e s s . C a m b r i d g e : H a r v a r d U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s . J e n s e n , A. ( 1 9 8 0 ) . B i a s i n M e n t a l T e s t i n g . New Y o r k : F r e e P r e s s . J o h n s o n , M.K. & H a s h e r , L. ( 1 9 8 7 ) . Human l e a r n i n g a n d memory. A n n u a l R e v i e w o f P s y c h o l o g y . 38, 63 1 - 6 6 8 . J u s t , M.A., & C a r p e n t e r , P.A. ( 1 9 8 0 ) . A t h e o r y o f r e a d i n g : From e y e f i x a t i o n s t o c o m p r e h e n s i o n . P s y c h o l o g i c a l R e v i e w . 87, 3 29-354. K a t z , R., S h a n k w e i l e r , D., & L i b e r m a n , I . ( 1 9 8 1 ) . Memory f o r i t e m o r d e r a n d p h o n e t i c r e c o d i n g i n t h e b e g i n n i n g r e a d e r . Journal  o f E x p e r i m e n t a l C h i l d P s y c h o l o g y . 3 2 , 4 7 4 - 4 8 4 . K i n t s c h , W., & M r o s s , E.F. ( 1 9 8 5 ) . C o n t e x t e f f e c t s i n w o r d i d e n t i f i c a t i o n . J o u r n a l o f Memory a n d L a n g u a g e , 24, 3 3 6 - 3 4 9 . L e s g o l d , A., & P e r f e t t i , C. ( 1 9 7 8 ) . I n t e r a c t i v e p r o c e s s e s i n r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n . D i s c o u r s e P r o c e s s e s . 1, 3 2 3 - 3 3 6 . L e s g o l d , A.M., & R e s n i c k , L.B. ( 1 9 8 2 ) . How r e a d i n g d i s a b i l i t i e s d e v e l o p : P e r s p e c t i v e s f r o m a l o n g i t u d i n a l s t u d y . I n J . P . Das, R. M u l c a h y , & A.E. W a l l ( E d s . ) , T h e o r y a n d r e s e a r c h i n  l e a r n i n g d i s a b i l i t y . New Y o r k : P l e n u m . M a s s o n , M. , & M i l l e r , J . ( 1 9 8 3 ) . W o r k i n g memory a n d i n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n c o m p r e h e n s i o n a n d memory o f t e x t . J o u r n a l o f  E d u c a t i o n a l P s y c h o l o g y , 7 5 , 3141-318. P e r f e t t i , C.A., ( 1 9 8 5 ) . R e a d i n g A b i l i t y . New Y o r k : O x f o r d U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s . P e r f e t t i , C A . , B e c k , I . , & Hughes, C. ( 1 9 8 1 ) . P h o n e m i c K n o w l e d g e  a n d L e a r n i n g t o Re a d . P a p e r p r e s e n t e d a t t h e B i a n n u a l Meeting o f t h e S o c i e t y f o r R e s e a r c h i n C h i l d D e v e l o p m e n t , B o s t o n . 55 P e r f e t t i , C.A., Goldman, S.R., & Hogaboam, T.W. ( 1 9 7 9 ) . R e a d i n g s k i l l a n d t h e i d e n t i f i c a t i o n o f w o r d s i n d i s c o u r s e c o n t e x t . Memory a n d C o g n i t i o n . 7, 273- 2 8 2 . P e r f e t t i , C.A., & Hogaboam, T. ( 1 9 7 5 ) . R e l a t i o n s h i p b e t w e e n s i n g l e w o r d d e c o d i n g a n d r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n s k i l l . J o u r n a l o f  E d u c a t i o n a l P s y c h o l o g y . 67, 461-469. P e r f e t t i , C.A., & R o t h , S.F. ( 1 9 8 1 ) . Some o f t h e i n t e r a c t i v e p r o c e s s e s i n r e a d i n g a n d t h e i r r o l e i n r e a d i n g s k i l l . I n A.M. L e s g o l d a n d C A . P e r f e t t i ( E d s . ) , I n t e r a c t i v e P r o c e s s e s i n  R e a d i n g . H i l l s d a l e , N J : Erbaum. S a l t h o u s e , T. ( 1 9 9 0 ) . W o r k i n g memory a s a p r o c e s s i n g r e s o u r c e i n c o g n i t i v e a g i n g . D e v e l o p m e n t a l R e v i e w . 10. 1 0 1 - 1 2 4 . S h a n k w e i l e r , D. , L i b e r m a n , I . , M a r k , L., F o w l e r , C , & F i s c h e r , F. ( 1 9 7 9 ) . The s p e e c h c o d e a nd l e a r n i n g t o r e a d . J o u r n a l o f  E x p e r i m e n t a l P s y c h o l o g y : Human. L e a r n i n g a n d Memory. 5, 5 3 1 -545 . V a n D i j k , T.A., & K i n t s c h , W. ( 1 9 8 3 ) . S t r a t e g i e s o f D i s c o u r s e  C o m p r e h e n s i o n . New Y o r k : A c a d e m i c P r e s s . V e l l u t i n o , F. ( 1 9 7 9 ) . D y s l e x i a : T h e o r y a n d R e s e a r c h . C a m b r i d g e , MA: MIT P r e s s . APPENDIX 1 Working Memory Span Tasks Task Data Sheets 56 The D i g i t Numbers F o r w a r d S a m p l e 5-1 I t e m s 5- 2-8 2- 7-6-3 3- 5-8-1-9 2- 8-3-9-5-4 3- 1-9-6-8-4-7 7- 3-9-2-8-5-1-2 Numbers B a c k w a r d S a m p l e 1 4-2 I t e m s 6- 3 2-7-5 8- 4-2-7 8-3-1-7-9 4- 9-7-5-1-2 1-8-4-2-5-7-3 57 Span Task Sample 2 3-8 4- 9-1 5- 2-8-3 4-7-8-2-5 7- 9-1-5-6-3 2-8-5-1-3-6-9 1-7-2-8-3-6-9-5 Sample 2 3-8 4-9 8- 3-6 4-9-1-7 4-2-5-8-3 6- 2-5-7-3-8 4-7-3-9-1-6-2 58 Modified D i g i t Span Task S a m p l e s 2 1 s a. 4 5 3 , 318 b. 189, 412 P r a c t i s e i t e m s 2's 3's 4 »s 4 7 2 , 157 396, 125, 068 854, 367, 3 0 1 , 165 504, 496 824, 537, 261 467, 7 2 5 , 2 8 1 , 986 I t e m s 1 9 2 , 795 726, 0 2 1 , 304 0 8 3 , 9 2 7 , 519, 246 104, 832 245, 198, 074 5 4 8 , 306, 7 2 1 , 567 198, 765 364, 158, 216 2 1 8 , 9 3 1 , 247, 465 638, 534 643, 3 2 1 , 398 6 9 5 , 7 0 8 , 3 1 2 , 174 9 1 5 , 728 067, 296, 948 0 9 2 , 7 2 8 , 637, 916 694, 927 9 3 1 , 638, 085 4 9 2 , 106, 274, 526 952, 754 236, 798, 863 693, 7 3 5 , 9 7 2 , 046 647, 703 167, 594, 361 8 6 3 , 9 2 8 , 2 8 5 , 597 59 Word Span Task Samples a. fun, l i k e b. rod, boat Items 2's 3's 4 1 s gas, key need, sea, taste aid, break, door, forth king, out small, tree, b i r d cut, f i l e , jump, own stay, wire camp, east, head near, snake , add, cause form, lock scene, trade, buy far, log, score, type close, gun mouth, talk, blue fact, miss, sum, bomb brown, f l y pale, week, cross knee, seat, act, end meet, cry test, lock, shoe base, farm, nod, why deep, sole lean, box, l i s t t r a i n , dry, roof, bad READING SPAN TASK T H E CAT RAN UP T H E T R E E . (S) T H E MOUSE A T E T H E C A R . (NS) T H E DOG JUMPED OVER T H E L O G . (S) T H E CAT A T E T H E R A D I O . (NS) T H E R A B B I T SWAM UNDER THE R O C K . (NS) TWO E A G L E S FLEW OVER T H E L A K E . (S) T H E PUPPY S L E P T I N THE H O U S E . (S) T H E E L E P H A N T READ T H E S I G N . (NS) A L L T H E L I O N S WENT TO T H E D A N C E . (NS) A S Q U I R R E L S K I P P E D TO T H E S T O R E . (NS) SOME OF T H E BEARS A T E HONEY. (S) T H E F I S H SWAM I N T H E O C E A N . (S) OUR HORSE SANG I N T H E B A R N . (NS) R A T S HID UNDER T H E S H E D . (S) T H E C H I C K E N PECKED A T T H E S E E D S . (S) T H E SHEEP WENT TO THE P A R T Y . (NS) T H E T H R E E PIGS B U I L T A B U S H . (NS) A DONKEY DROVE T H E B U S . (NS) ONE TURKEY SPOKE TO THE W A L L . (NS) T H E PENGUIN SWAM I N T H E WATER. (S) A COW STOOD BY T H E F E N C E . (S) T H E OWL RAN B E S I D E T H E T R A I N . (NS) K I T T E N S P L A Y E D WITH T H E B A L L . (S) TWO DEER STOOD I N THE F I E L D . (S) T H E WOLF WAITED I N T H E C A V E . (S) MANY DUCKS P L A Y E D T H E P I A N O . (NS) NONSENSE SENTENCE S - S E N S I B L E S E N T E N C E DIGIT SPAN DATA SHEET NAME: FORWARD SAMPLES b. D I G I T S 2. 4. 6. 8. 10. 12. BACKWARDS SAMPLES b. D I G I T S _ 2. _ 4. _ 6. _ 8. 10. 12. NAME: 62 MODIFIED DIGIT SPAN DATA SHEET SAMPLES a. b. PRACTISE ITEMS a. b. TWO'S 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. PRACTISE ITEMS a. b. THREE'S 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. PRACTISE ITEMS a. FOURS 1S 1. 2, 3. 4, 5. 6, 7. 8. 64 WORD SPAM DATA SHEET NAME: SAMPLES a. b . TWO'S 1. 3. 5. 7. 2, 4, 6, 8. THREE'S 1. ; 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 65 FOUR1S 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 66 READING SPAN DATA SHEET NAME: SAMPLES YES NO WORDS a. b. ONE'S 1. _ 2. _ 3 . _ 4 . TWO'S 1. _ 1. _ 2. _ 2. _ 3 . _ 3 . 4 . 4 . 67 THREE'S 1. 1. 1. 2. 2. 2. 3. 3. 3. 4. 4. 4. APPENDIX 2 I n i t i a l Parent Contact Letter Parent Permission Letter 68 70 (PARENT PERMISSION LETTER) J u l y 1 5 , 1991 D e a r P a r e n t s , W i t h t h e p e r m i s s i o n o f S c h o o l D i s t r i c t #37 D e l t a a n d y o u r s c h o o l p r i n c i p a l , I w o u l d l i k e t o a s k f o r y o u r s u p p o r t a n d p e r m i s s i o n i n a l l o w i n g y o u r c h i l d t o t a k e p a r t i n a s t u d y . T h i s s t u d y w i l l be l o o k i n g a t t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s b e t w e e n r e a d i n g a n d s h o r t - t e r m memory. The s t u d y r e s u l t s w i l l be u s e d a s a c o m p o n e n t o f my t h e s i s e n t i t l e d "The R e l a t i o n s h i p s B e t w e e n R e a d i n g C o m p r e h e n s i o n a n d W o r k i n g Memory i n B e g i n n i n g a n d I n t e r m e d i a t e R e a d e r s " . The t h e s i s w i l l c o m p l e t e t h e r e q u i r e m e n t s f o r my M a s t e r s o f A r t s d e g r e e ( E d u c a t i o n a l P s y c h o l o g y ) f r o m t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a . The s t u d y w i l l i n v o l v e s t u d e n t s t r y i n g t o remember s e r i e s ' o f w o r d s a n d d i g i t s . I t w i l l be done i n d i v i d u a l l y a n d i n g r o u p s w i t h i n t h e c l a s s r o o m o r i n t h e s c h o o l l e a r n i n g a s s i s t a n c e c e n t e r . T h e r e w i l l be f i v e s e s s i o n s ( a p p r o x i m a t e l y 35 m i n u t e s e a c h ) . They w i l l be c o n d u c t e d w i t h t h e c l a s s r o o m t e a c h e r s a n d t e a c h i n g a s s i s t a n t s p r e s e n t a n d h e l p i n g . T h i s s t u d y w i l l be p e r f o r m e d a t t i m e s t h a t a r e c o o r d i n a t e d w i t h t h e t e a c h e r s s o t h a t l i t t l e o r no i n s t r u c t i o n a l t i m e w i l l be l o s t . P l e a s e n o t e t h a t t h e i n f o r m a t i o n c o l l e c t e d w i l l be s t r i c t l y c o n f i d e n t i a l a n d names w i l l n o t be u s e d . S t u d e n t s w i l l b e a s s i g n e d a number a n d i n f o r m a t i o n c o l l e c t e d w i l l be r e c o r d e d u s i n g t h e s e n u m b e r s . P u p i l s may w i t h d r a w a t a n y t i m e f r o m t h e s t u d y o r n o t t a k e p a r t a t a l l . 

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