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

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R E L A T I O N S H I P S BETWEEN WORKING MEMORY7AND R E A D I N G COMPREHENSION  I N B E G I N N I N G AND  INTERMEDIATE READERS  By P E T E R JOHN  MOLLOY  B.A. U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h  Columbia,  1977  A T H E S I S S U B M I T T E D I N P A R T I A L F U L F I L L M E N T OF  THE  R E Q U I R E M E N T S FOR THE DEGREE OF M A S T E R OF A R T S  in  THE F A C U L T Y OF GRADUATE S T U D I E S (Department o f E d u c a t i o n a l Human L e a r n i n g ,  We  accept  Psychology  Education  Development and I n s t r u c t i o n )  this  t h e s i s as  to the required  August  conforming  standard  T H E U N I V E R S I T Y OF B R I T I S H  © Peter  and S p e c i a l  1991  COLUMBIA s—v.  J o h n M o l l o y , \L991  In  presenting  degree  this  thesis  in  at the University of  partial  fulfilment  British Columbia,  of  the  I agree  requirements  for  an  advanced  that the Library shall make it  freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying  of  department  this or  thesis by  for scholarly  his  publication of this thesis  or  her  may  representatives.  It  be is  granted  by the head of  understood  that  for financial gain shall not be allowed without  permission.  Department The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada  DE-6 (2/88)  purposes  copying  my or  my written  ABSTRACT This  study  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 between  memory a n d r e a d i n g  comprehension.  and m o d i f i e d  span)  span) 11  digit  From t h e s e t e s t s ,  were sought.  related  were a l s o i n v e s t i g a t e d .  These measures were c o m p r i s e d o f  predictors of reading  t h e 30 G r a d e  i n the linguistic i n t e r a c t i o n s were  modified digit be  span, word  significant  2 a n d 30 G r a d e  tests.  tasks  found  may  6 subjects scores  the non-linguistic Familiarity with the  account  between  Age  grade  f o r this. measures.  No The  span and r e a d i n g span t a s k s were found t o  predictors of reading  reading  span measure had t h e h i g h e s t  three.  This  a  Tests  comprehension.  2 a n d 6's w e r e f o u n d o f a l l 5 o f  used  significant  comprehension  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  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 lexicon  span  (word span and r e a d i n g  as a measure o f r e a d i n g  d i f f e r e n c e s between  t h e Grade  (digit  Two s u b t e s t s f r o m t h e W o o d c o c k R e a d i n g M a s t e r y  (W.R.M.T.) w e r e u s e d  of  and two l i n g u i s t i c  memory m e a s u r e s w e r e u s e d .  tests.  Two n o n - l i n g u i s t i c  working  comprehension. level  The  of significance  complex of the  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  capacity  and  processing  component  comprehension.  i  best  predicts  reading  TABLE OF CONTENTS Page ABSTRACT  i  T A B L E OF CONTENTS LIST  i  OF T A B L E S  i i v V  ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION  1  Purpose Background  1 2  CHAPTER 2 WORKING MEMORY AND R E A D I N G  4  Capacity Processing ^^JSood--ancr Poc^-C^preh R e c e n t Rej^eaxsb-.3 p—^Conceptual~Relationships Between Working V Memory a n d R e a d i n g Comprehension a n d —Predicted Findings  4 6 —, "  -  16  CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY  21  Sub j e c t s Test Materials Procedure Design and Analysis Scoring  21 21 24 28 28  CHAPTER 4 RESEARCH FINDINGS  30  Results ' 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 between Grade 2 and 6 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 Comprehension i i  30 32 33  CHAPTER 5 Discussion Summary a n d C o n c l u s i o n s Suggestions f o r Future Research  41 41 47  REFERENCES  50  BIBLIOGRAPHY  53  APPENDIX APPENDIX  1: 2:  W o r k i n g Memory S p a n T a s k s a n d Task Data Sheets Parent Parent  I n i t i a l Contact Letter Permission Letter  i i i  56 and 68  L I S T OF TABLES Page TABLE  1 O b s e r v e d Means by Grade and t h e S t a t i s t i c a l Significance of their Differences  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 Reading Comprehension as 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 Reading Comprehension as 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 S p a n 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 Reading Comprehension as t h e F u n c t i o n o f G r a d e a n d F D S , MDS4, WS4 a n d R S 3 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 Reading Comprehension as t h e F u n c t i o n o f F D S , MDS4, WS4 a n d R S 3 , R e g r e s s i o n Coefficients and t scores 40  iv  ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I wish t o express my s i n c e r e a p p r e c i a t i o n t o Dr. S.S. Lee f o r h i s i n t e r e s t and support as my t h e s i s a d v i s o r , Dr. D. Whittaker and Dr.  L. Gunderson f o r t h e i r  valued  assistance  as members o f t h e  t h e s i s committee. S p e c i a l thank are g i v e n t o my w i f e , Mavis f o r h e r support and dedication to this thesis.  Without her help i t would not have been  completed.  go  Thanks  also  to Kieran  understanding.  v  f o r h i s patience  and  CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION  Purpose  A  c o n s i d e r a b l e body  relationships working  between  memory.  university  of r e s e a r c h e x i s t s  reading  comprehension  Much of t h i s  laboratory  research  setting,  s t u d e n t s as i t s s u b j e c t s .  using  which  examines t h e  and s h o r t - t e r m  has i t s b a s i s  undergraduate  or  i n the  psychology  I t i n v o l v e s , f o r t h e most p a r t , t h e use  of l i n g u i s t i c and n o n - l i n g u i s t i c measures o f s h o r t - t e r m o r working memory and s t a n d a r d i z e d measures of r e a d i n g comprehension.  The  r e s u l t s o f these s t u d i e s have shown a range o f c o r r e l a t i o n s  from  h i g h l y s i g n d ' f T e a n t r e l a t i o n s h i p s t o no r e l a t i o n s h i p s a t a l l . (1980) presented t h e view t h a t s h o r t term  o r woWcjng' memory  has both  a  storage  component and t h a t i n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s exist.  They a l s o  looked  and a  processing  i n t h e components can  a t p r e v i o u s measures o f s h o r t - t e r m or  working memory as only t e s t s of storage c a p a c i t y . They argued t h a t if  i n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n short-term or working memory were t o  be observed capacity  a t a s k t h a t measures not o n l y s t o r a g e but p r o c e s s i n g  must  extensions  be used.  Since  that  and r e p l i c a t i o n s with  study  was  published  extensions have been  many  performed  with varying r e s u l t s .  Few of these s t u d i e s have i n v e s t i g a t e d t h e  relationship  reading  between  working memory i n school-age  comprehension  and  short-term  or  children.  The purpose o f t h e present study was t o determine 1  t h e extent  2  t o which some s e l e c t e d l i n g u i s t i c and n o n - l i n g u i s t i c memory t a s k s predict  reading  readers.  comprehension  i n beginning  and  intermediate  T h i s study attempted t o answer two q u e s t i o n s .  The f i r s t  q u e s t i o n was which of t h e l i n g u i s t i c o r n o n - l i n g u i s t i c t a s k s best predict  reading  defined  i n this  language),  comprehension study  ability.  tasks are  as t a s k s u s i n g words o r sentences  (i.e.,  w h i l e n o n - l i n g u i s t i c t a s k s a r e d e f i n e d as t a s k s u s i n g  d i g i t s o r numbers ( i . e . , symbols). with  Linguistic  regards  to  the  The second q u e s t i o n r a i s e d was  possibility  of  a  difference  i n the  r e l a t i o n s h i p s between r e a d i n g comprehension and working memory i n the two r e a d i n g grade groups ( i . e . , Grade 2 and 6 ) .  Background Traditional  measures o f short-term  or working  memory  have  i n v o l v e d simple word span o r d i g i t span t a s k s t h a t were c o n s i d e r e d t o a s s e s s o n l y t h e c a p a c i t y of t h i s type o f memory.  Research i n t o  s h o r t - t e r m memory o r working memory, looked a t t h i s component of memory  as a p a s s i v e  temporary  storage  f o r information  that i s  e v e n t u a l l y t r a n s f e r r e d t o long term storage o r l o s t through or replacement. memory  More c u r r e n t t h e o r i e s o f memory view  as more a c t i v e  processing  component.  and being The  term  comprised working  short-term  of a storage memory  decay  has  and a  i n many  i n s t a n c e s come t o r e p l a c e the name short-term memory and i s used from t h i s p o i n t on i n t h i s t h e s i s . used  to refer  t o an a c t i v e  Working memory i n t h i s study i s  working  p r o c e s s i n g both can take p l a c e .  memory  where  storage  and  3  After study,  the  research i n t o working  s p a n , and Many new  Daneman and  memory s p a n and  and v a r i e d t a s k s were d e s i g n e d  and  Daneman a n d  effort  investigating  Carpenter  t o be  (1980) u s e d  a modified  s p a n t a s k s g a v e way  reading  t o more and  revised  P a r k i n (1989) h a s  i t .  Their  relationship  t a s k s t o measure  conflicting  the and  Brereton  reading then  span t a s k .  and  spent  span  task  that  designing  what  they  Word s p a n and  more c o m p l e x m e a s u r e s o f  f i n d i n g s appear  LaPointe  (1985)  C u r r e n t r e s e a r c h by  digit working Yuill,  r e t u r n e d t o the d i g i t span t a s k  between a m o d i f i e d  (1989)  the  and t e s t e d w i t h  to  digit  indicate a  span t a s k  t a s k ) and r e a d i n g comprehension i n young r e a d e r s . Engle  (1980)  broadened.  memory 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 . O a k h i l l and  Carpenter  comprehension,  B a d d e l e y , L o g i e , Nimmo-Smith and  time  stated  the  i t s relationship to reading  results. much  p u b l i c a t i o n of  and  Engle  and  significant  (non-linguistic While Turner  (1990) h a v e  and  investigated a  number o f w o r d s p a n , d i g i t s p a n , o p e r a t i o n s p a n and  sentence span  t a s k s , t h e r e s u l t s of 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 related  ( l i n g u i s t i c task)  to  literature  working do  memory's r o l e r e s e a r c h was  not  memory. seem  to  These present  of being  f i n d i n g s and a  i n r e a d i n g comprehension.  clear  significantly others  p i c t u r e of  Therefore,  the  in  the  working present  designed t o reexamine the r e l a t i o n s h i p between r e a d i n g  c o m p r e h e n s i o n and  working  memory  with  measures,  intermediate  shows e v i d e n c e  readers.  memory, a s m e a s u r e d by  particular  reference  to  two  classes  beginning  of and  CHAPTER 2 WORKING MEMORY AND READING  While  traditional  theories  of  short-term  memory  have  p r e v i o u s l y been based on a s t o i c , non-active storage b u f f e r , more contemporary views see t h i s storage  facility  as much more a c t i v e  and r e f e r t o i t as working memory (Best 1986). the  latter  view.  I t a l s o emphasizes  T h i s t h e s i s takes  that there are d i f f e r e n c e s  e x i s t i n g between i n d i v i d u a l s with r e s p e c t t o t h e u t i l i z a t i o n o f t h e c a p a c i t y component o f working memory and t h e u t i l i z a t i o n o f working memory p r o c e s s i n g , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n r e a d i n g . divided  into  component  four  parts.  o f working  It will  memory,  T h i s chapter w i l l be  look  at  (1) t h e c a p a c i t y  (2) t h e p r o c e s s i n g  component of  working memory, (3) i n d i v i d u a l d i f f e r e n c e s i n r e a d i n g comprehension a b i l i t y and (4) r e c e n t r e s e a r c h i n t h e area o f working memory and reading  comprehension.  Capacity Working facility base  memory  limited  capacity  and as a  storage  i s not l a r g e enough t o h o l d and comprehend a l l o f a t e x t  presented  Information duration  has a  orally  previously  and may  information  or  p e r i o d o f time.  stored  decay  not being  visually  at  once  (Vipond,  i n working  memory  or be d i s p l a c e d .  Decay  r e t r i e v e d , rehearsed  has  1980). a  results  short from  or a c t i v a t e d f o r a  Displacement occurs when t o o much i n f o r m a t i o n i s  e n t e r e d o r processed and " o l d " i n f o r m a t i o n i s removed o r r e p l a c e d . 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 a n d 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 b e s t o r e d i n w o r k i n g memory, p r o b l e m s w i t h c a p a c i t y  begin  to  some  develop.  displacement  We  cannot  keep  occurring.  A  adding  information  substructure  without  (a b u f f e r )  t o working  memory a p p e a r s t o s e l e c t w h a t i n f o r m a t i o n i s t o b e h e l d i n w o r k i n g memory a n d w h a t Rehearsal, used  with  recency and p l a n s  to select  1981) .  i s t o be d i s p l a c e d  and keep  Even w i t h  information  (Kintsch  and g o a l s  information  & Van D i j k ,  a r e among t h e s t r a t e g i e s f o r the buffer  a buffer to assist  1978) .  i n maintaining  (Fletcher, and working  i n w o r k i n g memory, some i n f o r m a t i o n d e c a y s o r i s  displaced. When mentioned  measurements  of  capacity  i n c o g n i t i v e psychology  g e n e r a l l y given as t h e prevalent of  197 6) .  and f u n c t i o n a l u n i t .  t h e complexity,  richness  from a chunk.  t o 7 a n d / o r -2  have argued f o r a  t o which  maturity one c a n  C h i l d r e n c h u n k i n p u t i n a more s i m p l i s t i c There a r e fewer c o n c e p t s  contained  making a coherent  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.  Less of the processes  involved  i n chunking have reached  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 developing  T h e number  What d o e s v a r y w i t h  c h u n k s a n d t h e y h a v e more d i f f i c u l t y  representation  When  (1974),  and t h e degree  manner t h a n a d u l t s ( C h i , 1 9 7 6 ) . their  are  1956) a n d d o e s n o t a p p e a r t o c h a n g e w i t h a g e ( C h i ,  T h o u g h some a u t h o r s l i k e Simon  elaborate  memory  l i t e r a t u r e t h e word "chunk" i s  number m o r e i n t h e a r e a o f 5 c h u n k s .  in  short-term  c h u n k s 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  chunks ( M i l l e r ,  is  of  tasks  t o measure  (LaBerge & Samuels, the capacity  a  stage 1974).  component  of  6 children's  working  memory,  these  factors  must  be  taken  into  account. Traditionally, tests were  like  do  the d i g i t  used.  1976).  The  correlate  processing reading used  instead.  contradict r e a s o n why than poor  with of  that  Little  their  were  Carpenter  well  test,  the  or word span  component  span  measure  results  Daneman and  not  to  capacity  of  working  t a s k s and  the d i g i t  conflicting  (Perfetti  (1980,  1983)  reading  working  argue  ability  memory.  memory &  that  nor  do  They  test  Goldman,  these  they  tests  tax  suggest  the  that  c o r r e l a t e s w i t h r e a d i n g comprehension,  evidence  view.  can  be  found  i n the  Their conclusions are  that  a  i s because the  former  p r o c e s s more  good  (1980) and readers  processes readers would and  and  would  K i n t s c h and Van  use  more  thus  their  have  of  trouble  fewer  reader  spends  capacity  efficiently.  I t i s obvious  (1980)  calls  Processes  less  such  as  on  these  and  r e s o u r c e s p r o d u c i n g r i c h chunks and appears  automatic less.  Poor  storage  they space  decoding  reader, while  can  by  that  Therefore,  automatic to the poor  effort  are  processes.  p r o c e s s i n g demands,  reading.  less  Vipond  automatic  i n f e r e n c i n g are not always good  (1978) .  processing requirements  have more d i f f i c u l t more  what  Dijk  to  significant  This f i n d i n g i s consistent w i t h theories of p r o c e s s i n g presented Vipond  a be  literature  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 readers  memory,  spend  t o have more  and the  additional capacity.  Processing The  emphasis  of  this  section  will  be  on  processing  and  7 comprehension.  I n t h e words o f LaBerge and Samuels  "(T)he complexity enormous as t h a t research  o f t h e comprehension operation of thinking i n general."  into reading  comprehension  Comprehension processing literature,  i n both  serial  forgotten When  that  we  read,  propositions. automatic.  reading  For  From  good  these  must be r e f e r e n t i a l l y base  i s constrained  replacing  groups  construction propositions.  of  i s a complex  this  complexity  according these  i s  translation  a text  of  propositions  base  With these constraints  not  i s  into almost  i s created  inessential  with  propositions  processes  translated  (Kintsch and Van D i j k ,  deletion  tothe  process.  this  propositions  "global"  a p p e a r s t o be as  Though, i ts h o u l d  information  readers  by;  Once  becomes e a s y .  coherent  of  takes place,  and p a r a l l e l .  written  p.320):  continues.  itself  become a u t o m a t i c t h e n r e a d i n g be  Despite  (1974,  that  1978).  The  propositions,  generalizations  that  connect  i n mind,  and  overlapping  i ti s fairly  clear  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 b e d o n e 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 What  this  means  f o r good  readers  i s that  the construction  coherent t e x t base i s e a s i e r because o f t h e i r resources  due t o automated  Control  processes  smaller  f o r reading  1988)  I t f o l l o w s t h a t i f you have an i n t e r e s t o r g o a l  reading  you  will  allotment  (Fletcher,  comprehend  such  i n t e r e s t , and s e t ,  and they  are  interact  comprehension,  reader .  of a of  processes.  r e a d e r ' s use o f knowledge, purpose, will  capacity.  better,  1981, Recht  i f only  as the  affect the &  Leslie,  i n what you because  you  8 concentrate the  and focus  your  required resources  Samuels his  f o r comprehension.  while  decoding  This  comprehension. have  a  visual  stresses  Attention  As s t a t e d by LaBerge and  s t i l l  I n reading  semantic  the role  i s a  factor  limited capacity.  t o b u t we  time.  i s one o f  We  systems  of attention  that  may  proceeds i n  c a n be s e l e c t i v e and  always  focus  on what  i t i s e s s e n t i a l t o pay a t t e n t i o n  to the text  are involved.  Along with  attention,  involved are also  resources  &  and  f o r comprehension of these  processing  (Kintsch  resources  From t h i s  i t becomes f a i r l y  both p l a y an i n t e g r a l p a r t  take  i s a  However,  acquiring these s k i l l s practising readers.  these  1978).  The  the capacity  evident  that  of  capacity  comprehension.  skills  that  f o r children  children  most  adult  learning  readers  to  read,  E v e n a f t e r many y e a r s o f do  not  become  fluent  These f a i l u r e s have been o f concern t o b o t h e d u c a t o r s and  researchers. relationship The  some  by  i nreading  i s a long process.  skills,  Dijk,  required  Comprehenders  s e t o f complex  f o r granted.  Van  i s restricted  Good and Poor Reading  we  a t t h e same  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  w o r k i n g memory.  reading  p r o c e s s many d i f f e r e n t t h i n g s  s i n c e s o many c o m p o n e n t s k i l l s  allocation  maintain  o n 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,  from  automatically."  attend  Attention  (1974, 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  attention continuously  does  a t t e n t i o n on i t .  As a r e s u l t , between  there  reading  r e s u l t s have shown t h a t  h a s b e e n much r e s e a r c h  a n d memory  over  the past  into the 20  a positive correlation exists  years. between  9 skilled  reading  particular, As memory and  w o r k i n g memory  stated  earlier,  as being  having  compete early  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  limited  processes.  the findings point  composed  of a storage  capacity.  looked  t o the basis  of working  and a p r o c e s s i n g  facility,  In addition,  f o r t h e a v a i l a b l e resources  research  within  f o rdifferences readers.  and poor  had  i n w o r k i n g memory c a p a c i t y b u t ,  research  over  5  looks  the  two t y p e s o f  differences Processes  memory.  memory  that  differences  i n processing  capacity  poor  C h i (1976) a n d  o f more  attributes  that  recent  capacity between  memory  appear  to  reflect  e f f i c i e n c y (Daneman & C a r p e n t e r , a r e more demanding  r e d u c e t h e amount o f s t o r a g e  1983).  require  overt  more  availablefor  A t t e n t i o n i s such a process.  i n t o two p a r t s :  1987).  others  i ssimilar capacity i n  t h e emphasis  i n working  t o be m a i n t a i n e d .  down  readers  i n processes and procedures  memory t h a t  and therefore  broken  Much  readers.  i n working  information  (Samuels  Thus  towards differences  Individuals  be  and a d u l t s .  components  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  and  capacity  working  I t was t h o u g h t  (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 children  t h e two  i n working  between good a deficit  and i n  I tcan  and c o v e r t c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s  Overt attention c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s a r e t h e physical are "directly  observable."  covert  a t t e n t i o n i s not as "observable"  (1987)  breaks  covert  attention  alertness,  vigilence  and  components  of attention  into  selective  assists  On  the other  from t h e o u t s i d e .  4 parts: attention.  level  of  Each  i n the successful  hand, Samuels  arousal, of  decoding  these and  10 comprehension available  as  text,  i n working  processes, be  of  as  there  are  only  memory f o r a t t e n t i o n .  t o reduce  automatic  but,  the burden  on w o r k i n g  limited  Thus  be  the  lack  of automated processes.  of text  poor  Decoding  f o r decoding.  i s constantly  order  to  though,  read  can  and  Successful decoding  and  Slow and  demand  storage.  This  have  (1982a) coding While  for a  meaningful  Much a t t e n t i o n difficult  states  Daneman  (Samuels,  the  memory  poor  and  to  the  that such  and  that  this  poor  readers  as:  rehearsal,  Carpenter  (1983)  memory  imagery  found  less  and  thus  t o have r e l e v a n t  memory.  functions  the poor  Poor and  readers  and  meaningful  commit  t h e r e f o r e do  less  too  readers  Stanovich phonological elaboration.  efficient  readers  information s t i l l  much  higher  capacity  level  reader recognizes smaller units of p r i n t  for  capacity  f o r poor  deficient  in  readers  capacity  conclusion.  have  poor  processes  more  readers's working  support  Good  two  leaving  The  comprehension  1987) .  by  decoding  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  working  is,  decoding  More 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  identified  likely  lower  meaning  working  makes  processes  devote less  on  smaller. been  get  form  s i m u l t a n e o u s l y s w i t c h between  reducing  appear  shifting  appear are  by 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. reader  must  encoding  i n w o r k i n g memory a r e n e c e s s a r y  i s required  readers  and  r e p r e s e n t a t i o n of p r o p o s i t i o n s i n a " t e x t base." the reader  other  possible.  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 . encoding  many  memory, a t t e n t i o n  Many o f t h e d i f f e r e n c e s between good and to  like  resources  are in  to  these  coding.  That  like  letters  11 or  d i g r a p h s and not l a r g e r  places  a  heavy  demand  larger  or smaller  units  like  whole  on w o r k i n g  memory.  dependent  on need  units  words. Good  Again,  readers  (Samuels,  this  process  1987).  They  a r e a l s o more adept a t d e t e c t i n g c o n t e x t and 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 as  letter  matching,  readers  respond  readers  also  than  good  of text.  and  slower  identifying  (Mann,  these  readers differ  after  i t i s encoded.  synonyms  a n d homonyms  spoken  Cowin  words  and l i n g u i s t i c  & Schoenheimer,  i n ability  to store  text  such poor  (Daneman & C a r p e n t e r , 1 9 8 0 , 1 9 8 3 ) .  remember l e s s  readers  On s e m a n t i c m a t c h i n g t a s k s  Poor  material  1989).  As  i n working  well, memory  D i f f e r e n c e s among g o o d a n d 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 process  of  maintaining  information  i n c o r p o r a t e new p r o p o s i t i o n s  who  processing t o employ  u s e much  o f w o r k i n g memory  r e a d e r s have  less  sensitive  (Stanovich,  capacity  result  been  to text  1982b).  f o r poor  Poor readers a r e a l s o  less  found  On t h e t o p i c t o be l e s s  structure  Deficits  and  of syntactic  1983).  level prone  adept  lack  ability,  at text  scanning,  linguistic  awareness  i n comprehension  of poor  readers  and r e t r i e v e  I f t o o much t i m e i s t a k e n b y p o o r r e a d e r s i t c o u l d  i n some d e c a y  Carpenter,  relate  f o r lower  a p p e a r t o b e 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 meaning."  To  p l a n f u l memorization s t r a t e g i e s and p h o n o l o g i c a l  processes t o help themselves. poor  memory.  T h i s p r o v e s more d i f f i c u l t  and not f o r storage. active,  working  i n t o t h e " t e x t base" t h e y must  to previously stored material. readers  i n  of information  i n w o r k i n g memory  also  (Daneman &  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  with  prior  text.  the  more  likely  The more c a p a c i t y you  can  Samuels  (1987)  lexical  information.  argues  text  critical  and  retrieval.  f o r new  i t t o previous poor  readers  states  have  that  process  information  text  propositions.  limited  inefficient  interfere with the a b i l i t y  f o rskilled  Another  that He  sequential processing decode  relate  you have  f o r meaning,  two  to  access naming  and  simultaneously  processes  that  are  reading.  area  of  differences  Effective retrieval  among  readers  i s recall  i s dependent on t h e i n i t i a l  or  coding  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. also  leaves  retrieval  1983).  Recht  content  domain  information Iff  text  c u e s i n w o r k i n g memory  and L e s l i e  (1988)  i s a powerful  recall,  i s familiar  t o good  poor  during  instruction;  include defects  prior  readers  i n memory.  of  t o quote Samuels  reading  and poor  To t h e a u t h o r s ,  compensate f o r i n e f f i c i e n c y  for  that  Carpenter,  knowledge  of  enough t o compensate f o r l o w a b i l i t y .  a scaffolding f o rinformation  short  found  (Daneman &  I t  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  powerful  s i m i l a r short term r e c a l l .  In  to  both  will  p r i o r knowledge I n poor readers  have  creates i t helps  processing. ( 1 9 8 7 , p . 20) f a c t o r s t h a t  "failure  t o maintain  i n arousal,  overt  account  attention  a l e r t n e s s , v i g i l a n c e , and  s e l e c t i v e a t t e n t i o n ; l a c k o f accuracy and a u t o m a t i c i t y i n decoding; inability  to  recognition; on  to visual  use  both  large  and  small  visual  l a c k o f accuracy and a u t o m a t i c i t y units  and f i n a l l y ,  difficulty  units  i n  i n mapping  i n accessing  word  sounds lexical  13 word  information."  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 of reading  comprehension and working  t o measure working non-linguistic  degrees o f success to very  memory a n d a v a r i e t y  memory h a v e b e e n u t i l i z e d .  tasks  i n t h e area  have been developed  of tasks  Both l i n g u i s t i c and  and t e s t e d w i t h  varying  and a range o f c o r r e l a t i o n s from n o n - s i g n i f i c a n t  significant.  The t a s k t h a t seems t o draw t h e most  research  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 It  was  designed  to  components  o f working  tasks  digit  like  measure  both  memory.  span  the  span  comprehension and d i dn o t access  working  memory. measures  Span  and word  of capacity.  felt  the span  Baddeley,  were  a  verification  component  component  (capacity) i n i t.  the procedures t h e authors their In al. are  of  t o be  Logie,  Nimmo-Smith  and  findings  o f Daneman  and  u s i n g a r e a d i n g span measure (and o t h e r t a s k s ) .  with  predict  believed  Carpenter  a l . ' s m e a s u r e was a v a r i a t i o n  that  aspect  (1985)  on  the research  processing  Brereton  et  supported  processing  d i d not adequately  reading  simply  and  Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r  and word  Digit  storage  (1980).  Baddeley  o f Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r ' s  task  (processing)  span  and  a  word  Even though t h e r e a r e d i f f e r e n c e s i n  used i n t h e i r t a s k s , there  i s agreement  findings. evaluating the results  pose t h e question: there  specific  of their  own r e s e a r c h ,  I s there a general working working  memory  systems  Baddeley e t  memory s y s t e m o r  (e.g.,  a  specific  14 language-based system) ? in  studies  Yuill  authors  and O a k h i l l (1988),  Engle at  by such  This  (1989).  Yuill,  a modified  processing  digit  as O a k h i l l ,  LaPointe  would  nature  they  span  appear  that  task  that  they  components  can  were  Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r Yuill,  and Engle  predict  similar  (1980,  (1990),  a  (1988),  and Turner and  (1989) r e s e a r c h  felt  would  digit  reading  i n magnitude  looked  t a x both the  memory.  span  Their  task  of the  comprehension t o those  with  found  i fthis  i s accurate  a g e n e r a l w o r k i n g memory s y s t e m  considered  The  first  concern  by t h e authors  i s that  as a processing  reading  subjects  concern  even  i s : With  traditional  a t seven young  task, y e t reading  children  years  would  o f age.  the results  A of  digit  span task?  Also  i s  digits  task f o r second using  d i g i t s p a n t a s k be any d i f f e r e n t t h a t what Y u i l l  (1989) f o u n d w i t h t h e i r their  or eight  left  out digits  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 many  and  theory.  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 were unanswered.  by  1983).  O a k h i l l and P a r k i n s t a t e t h a t  r e p l i c a b l e i t would support  and P a r k i n  of working  t o indicate that  proposed  correlations  Yuill  O a k h i l l and P a r k i n ' s  and t h e storage  results  l i n e o f i n q u i r y h a s been f o l l o w e d up  a  eta l .  of concern i s :  Can  f i n d i n g s b e 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 m o r e  intermediate  level  of reading  and mathematical a b i l i t y ?  With the  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 less  demanding  modified  digit  than  with  younger  span t a s k  i s also  predictor of reading  children  ( i n most  less likely  cases) .  t o be a much  comprehension than a r e g u l a r d i g i t span  The  better task.  15 Extensive  research  experienced psychology  with  and  digit  skilled  span  adult  tasks  already  readers  (ie.  exists  with  undergraduate  students) and c h i l d r e n with v a r y i n g r e s u l t s .  Another  area  of  recent  research  i n the  field  of  reading  comprehension and working memory has i n v o l v e d the use of a v a r i e t y of word span and r e a d i n g span type t a s k s .  Authors  l i k e Turner  Engle (1989) have i n v e s t i g a t e d Daneman and Carpenter's (1980, findings. are  1983)  Turner and Engle looked a t the p o s s i b i l i t y t h a t "people  good  readers  because  c a p a c i t y independent test  and  this  theory  background t a s k  they  have  a  l a r g e W(orking)  of the t a s k s being performed" they  used  complex  span  (pg. 129).  tasks  (processing) between mathematical  M(emory)  varying  operations  To the and  sentences and the primary t a s k (capacity) between d i g i t s and word. They a l s o results  looked a t simple d i g i t  of the s t u d i e s support  span and  word span t a s k s .  t h e i r hypothesis that a  The  "complex  span r e f l e c t i n g W(orking ) M(emory) c a p a c i t y does not have t o be 'reading* reading  related  to  generate  a  (pg.  149).  comprehension  significant Yet  correlation their  c o r r e l a t i o n s were with the complex t a s k s t h a t had the primary t a s k and not a d i g i t . finding  other  than  to  state  differences  remembered items appear t o be c r u c i a l . "  Turner  and  Engle  a word span as  (1989)  in  the  for this to-be-  In a d d i t i o n t o t h i s ,  a r e not sure of the accuracy of the r e s u l t s of the task.  significant  They can not account  "the  with  believe  they  operation-word  that  the  strong  p r e d i c t a b i l i t y of the o p e r a t i o n span task i s because the o p e r a t i o n component of the t a s k may  l e a d t o a s p u r i o u s c o r r e l a t i o n between  16 this  task  and reading  good readers (1989) . reading In (1990)  comprehension.  a l s o have good quantitative s k i l l s  Thus  the task  comprehension  re-examined  the  of reading  a reading simple  most span  They  and  LaPointe  task  looked  as  and  a  Engle  Engle  possible  at the effect of  In a series of five  experiments LaPointe  word span task  (Turner  i s that  task.  span  and complex t a s k s .  f o rthis  consistently predicts  span t a s k ,  word  comprehension.  l a i d - o u t and developed the simple  s t i l l  i s the reading  word l e n g t h on simple  that  that  addition t o using  predictor  The r e a s o n  and Engle  well  demonstrated  can p r e d i c t comprehension.  Conceptual R e l a t i o n s h i p s Between Working Memory and Reading Comprehension and P r e d i c t e d F i n d i n g s Working component. resources the  i s comprised  a v a i l a b l e t o working of information  and type  t o be  processing  memory.  and a  processing  f o rthe limited  The c a p a c i t y i s l i m i t e d  i t can maintain  a t anytime,  To b e s t u t i l i z e w o r k i n g  as automatic  component o f working and  storage  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  memory i s a l s o l i m i t e d . needs  of a  The two components c o n s t a n t l y s t r i v e  amount  amount  memory  as p o s s i b l e .  This  memory t o b e m a x i m i z e d .  are interrelated  and  while the i n working  memory, allows  processing  the  storage  I n t h i s way c a p a c i t y  interdependent.  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 to of  working  memory.  as t h e a b i l i t y  messages.  For  I t i s a complex o p e r a t i o n and c a n be t o decode  this  to  be  by  and e s t a b l i s h accomplished,  meaning decoded  vein  conceived  from  text or  and  encoded  17 information  must  integrated  be  stored.  processing  establishing  of  meaning  all  of the text  base  information  the pieces  of  w o r k i n g memory, r e a d i n g  As  words  or  i s being  i s taking  establishing  comprehension i s l i m i t e d , cannot  be  established  automated t h e processes f o r reading  a r e complex  and  that  measures  best  arises  simple  an e f f i c i e n t  measures  complex o p e r a t i o n 1976).  (processing storage) span  reading  task.  digit  processing  span  component.  comprehension  span t a s k s .  during  like  task  the digit  i s because  they  argue  Yet, since their  as c l o s e l y r e l a t e d t o reading  task  a  seriation  as w e l l  t h e backward similar  (1989)  has a  i s the case then  better than a s t r i c t  stage  component  O a k h i l l and P a r k i n  I f this  span a r e  ( P e r f e t t i & Goldman,  the reversal  This  that  memory  n o t be e x p e c t e d t o p r e d i c t  and a p r o c e s s i n g  Yuill,  at the  comprehension one  span which r e q u i r e s r e v e r s e  predict better.  has a capacity  span  modified  reading  of the digits  may  task  and would  digit  looking  of  ability?  l i k e reading comprehension.  Y e t a backward  reader  and p r o c e s s i n g  When  comprehension  n o n - l i n g u i s t i c measures  capacity  Thus  non-linguistic or linguistic  predict reading  Traditional  t h u s meaning f o r  the reader.  involve storage  i n nature.  i s : Do  Like  that  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 question  context.  a r e , t h e more i n f o r m a t i o n  u s e o f w o r k i n g memory a n d b e i n g  information  as  more  the  Both operations  such  The  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  have p a r a l l e l s .  place  a t once.  can be s t o r e d efficient  stored,  digit to a  developed a  capacity  i t should  capacity  as  and a predict  testing  digit  i s n o n - l i n g u i s t i c and thus not  comprehension  as a l i n g u i s t i c  task,  18 like  reading  task. the  i t should  When l i n g u i s t i c  literature,  discussed. to  span,  word  not  measures of working s p a n and  reading  Word s p a n i s a g a i n  But,  because  comprehension the literature,  ability  i t i s the  demands  on  1985).  component  and  is  most  working  Brereton,  reading  generally the  memory (Daneman & C a r p e n t e r , i t should  non-linguistic  predict  vary  seem  to  the  memory  i t is  reading  similar  to  span  t a s k has  linguistic,  task.  reading  (Baddeley,  Because the  d e p e n d i n g upon age play  a  part  (Best,  processing  information  and  their  experience ability  with  in  a  This  comprehension  reading In  may  storage  and  a  be  in i t s  Nimmo-Smith  i t should  both  and  processing  significantly  The  predict  ability  to process  have more c a p a c i t y f o r  may  complex  related  appears  be  the  to generate  maturation  of As  operations  and  reading  to  increase  richer  readers  readers  differences  result  of  parallels  involved  in  and  more  chunks  m a t u r e and  t e x t becomes more a u t o m a t i c storage.  comprehension  memory  memory  This  memory a b i l i t y . the  Age  working  working  1986) . the  ( C h i , 1976).  development of working more  1980,  Logie,  differences.  in  Capacity  adolescence  efficient  felt  comprehension.  comprehension. until  ones  c a p a c i t y measure.  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 may  i s not  in  t h e measure t h a t most 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  comprehension because  a  span  memory a r e m e n t i o n e d  span are  i t is linguistic  b e t t e r than  a reading  a c a p a c i t y measure and  measure p r o c e s s i n g i n working  1983).  p r e d i c t as w e l l as  of the  gain  reading, they  then  19 A  second  relationships  question between  is  span  and r e a d i n g  d i f f e r e n c e s between  true of the non-linguistic  and m o d i f i e d  basically  differences  tax  digit  the  exist  comprehension i n  span  )  storage  memory  measures  which are context  component  of  the  younger  word  span  i n w o r k i n g memory,  children.  would  With regard  and reading  span,  study,  t h e two grades.  This (digit  independent and  working  memory.  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 , more c a p a c i t y  i n the  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  show s i g n i f i c a n t  particularly  i s : Do  w o r k i n g memory  t h e two grade groups? should  posed  The  who  have  remember more d i g i t s  than  to the linguistic  d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h e word  measures,  span  scores  may n o t b e 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 . is  because  the  t h e word  children  independent reading  lists  i n both  grade  of reading  span task  i s context  at the higher  The  2 group  The  reading  does a  span  not allow  word  span  task  reading of  be f a m i l i a r  and  the  thus  comprehension  t h e two groups.  seem  with  of i t s background  task  and t h i s  t o be  (such  should  level  the best  context  p r o v e t o be more children.  the increased  span t a s k t h a n t h e word  f o r these intermediate  would  are  (RS2 a n d RS3) f o r y o u n g e r  reading  span  t o most o f  In contrast, the  and should  have more d i f f i c u l t y  because  words  ability.  f o r a s much u s e o f s t r a t e g y  or digit  more d i f f i c u l t span  task  dependent  levels  should  demands o f t h e complex  groups  comprehension  difficult Grade  involved should  This  span  and primary  task. task  as rehearsal) prove  readers. overall  as  t o make i t The  reading  predictor of  f o r both groups and i n p a r t i c u l a r  the older  Another slopes  possible  of the scores  differentially children.  with  between  ability.  i n the study  slope  also  between  and 6  regression  subjects  should  be  o f Grade  2  The u s e o f o n l y t h e s e l e c t e d Grade 2  should  also  the level  t h e grade  of  result  i n  This  subtests  shorter range  should  expected  the  This  probably  f o r Grade that  with  g r a d e a n d memory s c o r e s  a n d no being  would  2 than  be  selection reading  similarity  significant  found.  scores  results  i n a  Grade  6.  terms  significant. process  i s more  i n reading  i n the slopes of regression lines  parallel  of  the interaction  scores  restrictive  of familiarity  groups.  to result  being  be  a n d memory  because  more l i k e l y and 6  2  of the regression lines  i t would  grade  subjects,  the predicted  The c h i l d r e n t h a t were e l i m i n a t e d as s u b j e c t s h a d below  Therefore  2  o f t h e Grades  t h e bottom end t r u n c a t e d .  flatter  Yet,  i s that  a f f e c t e d by t h e e x c l u s i o n o f a number  average vocabulary children  finding  for  similar  ability i s f o r Grade  interactions  between  CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY  Subjects The  subjects  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  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. suburban  elementary schools  There were grade. 6.  13 b o y s  I n Grade  i n t h e younger  neighbourhoods.  as a factor  The  i nt h e study.  g r a d e a n d 17 b o y s  i nt h e o l d e r  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 Grade  A l l s u b j e c t s have a t l e a s t average r e a d i n g d e c o d i n g a b i l i t y a s  defined subjects grade.  by t h e Y u i l l , were  divided  The Grade  Yuill,Oakhill  Oakhill into  and Parkin  t h e two groups  (1989)  2 group was chosen t o r e p l i c a t e  andParkin  (1989)  results.  t h e elementary school  used  Comprehension  reading.  T h e W.R.M.T.  o f t h e Grade  readers while  comprehension. were  word  Test:  The r e a d i n g  comprehension  attack,  word  comprehension  identification  administered  andpassage  t o t h esubjects.  21  test  (W.R.M.T., W o o d c o c k ,  i s a norm-referenced standardized  The word  s t i l l  Materials  test of  I t consists o ffive subtests; letter identification,  identification,  subtests  of their  and extend t h e  The choice  was t h e Woodcock R e a d i n g M a s t e r y T e s t s  1973) .  The  level.  Test Reading  model.  on t h eb a s i s  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 at  2 and  The s u b j e c t s a r e i n two  i n middle class  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  i n Grade  and  word  passage  comprehenison  Reading  vocabulary  (word i d e n t i f i c a t i o n )  s c o r e s are i n c l u d e d as t h e b a s e l i n e  measure f o r a l l s u b j e c t s . were t o have a t  least  A l l s u b j e c t s t o be  average reading  of comprehension a b i l i t y . word  identification  that  d e v i a t i o n b e l o w t h e m e a n (< 16 modified  version  (1989) .  The  includes  the  passage  85  Digit  of  decoding  one  were  %ile). used  by  comprehension  Yuill,  Span  (PS):  The  digit  span  i s a  and  Both  (BDS)  task had  three  Eight  from  Digit  digit  three digits  of  the  Both  is  had  standard  and  cloze  variation  The  is a  Parkin  format  of  and  the  number o f  to  long.  forward  Span  (MPS):  i n by  Yuill,  and  eight Two  and  two  sample and  digits  digits items  t a s k was  Oakhill  (MPS2), t h r e e  and 70  for  the  samples).  the  The  backward  of each length  were  (Appendix  designed  1).  using  the  and  Parkin  (1989).  from  random  number t a b l e s .  (MPS3) a n d  four  Lists  (MPS4) g r o u p s  a p a i r of p r a c t i c e items  22  than  each.  and  of  backward  (including  two  are  parts  (FDS)  backward spans.  This  items  forward  was  task  Edition  digit  digits  task  of  numbers were g e n e r a t e d two  forward  i n the f o r both  i n the  backward  three  digits  i s given  a  questions  t o seven d i g i t s  s e t out  lists  the  ranges  f o r both  guidelines  for sample  Modified  of  58  trials  more i t e m s  section.)  two  s p a n f r o m two generated  two  were g i v e n .  and  span  number o f  SBIV has  reverse  sets  forward  equal  (The  span  forward  one  Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scales: Fourth  an  digit  selected  Oakhill  subtest  changed  digit  than  regardless  This selection process  v a r i a t i o n a r e t h a t some o f t h e  the  were not  more  (SBIV) . The  task.  skills,  study  items.  included i n the  the  included i n the  T h o s e s u b j e c t s who  skills  selection  at each  of of  the  three  groups  of  (1989). twice not  levels  were  used.  digits  were  the  Those  in a  form  (VIS)  by  LaPointe  "simple"  word  syllable  words  Engle  (1990).  Eight  lists  generated  and  span  of  76  words  lists  were  generated  Engle's  The  They  lists  , three  generated from  (WS3)  for  the  (1990) r e s e a r c h .  for  and  The  the  most  to  a  sentence  primary Sentences  (1985). and  task are  by  three  (1982) and  noun  i n nature  Daneman and  the  then  or  not  last  (five  half nonsensical.  (animal), verb  LaPointe  and  groupings. words  digit  span  words to  The  object.  the  letter LaPointe  span measure  Carpenter  i t makes  word  to  task.  for  five  used i n  were  1).  for the reading  whether  a one  (WS4)  The  task  are  in  and  Nimmo-Smith (reading  sense)  the  e i g h t words)  was  (1980)  task involves a background task  (remembering  them s e n s i b l e and was;  The  verifying  short  not  i t as  task  in their  modified  common  (Appendix task  the  four  task.  Kuchera  t h e m o d e l e s t a b l i s h e d by  Brereton  are  do  1).  m o d i f i e d s i m i l a r t o t h e method u s e d by B a d d e l e y , L o g i e , and  digits  digits  presented  s t r u c t u r e of the  (RS) :  a l .  appeared  the  referred  used  of  et  never  the  (Appendix  words  the  i n F r a n c i s and  R e a d i n g Span  Yuill,  zero,  2-3-4) and  5-9).  selection  by  digit  never  (1990) .  task.  t o match the  were  b a s e d on  Engle  (WS2)  There  and  same  are  the  used  words chosen were randomized  two  words p u b l i s h e d  in  word span t a s k i s a v a r i a t i o n of the  s e l e c t e d from  The  the  (e.g.  (e.g.,  The  those  digits  sequence  :  as  are:  final  confusable  Word Span used  the  obvious  phonologically  same  restrictions  group,  an  Restrictions  and  a  sentence) . with  s t r u c t u r e of the  half  of  sentences  Twenty-eight sentences  were  generated, three  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 (RSI) , t w o (RS2) a n d  (RS3) s e n t e n c e s .  The s e n t e n c e s  levels of basal readers Pauli,  & Phenix,  were generated  from t h e Impressions  1985).  series  using  primary  (Booth,  Booth,  (Appendix 1 ) .  Procedure In and  order  reading  t o examine t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p  comprehension  (standard d i g i t  this  research  span and m o d i f i e d d i g i t  between working  used  both  memory  non-linguistic  span) and l i n g u i s t i c  (word  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 .  Reading comprehension i s  viewed  vocabulary  i n  this  comprehension  proposal  both  measured  as by  reading  standardized  and  reading  reading  achievement  tests. As in  p r e v i o u s l y mentioned, Grade 2 and 6 s u b j e c t s were s e l e c t e d  terms o f reading  identification (W.R.M.T.).  achievement based on t h e i r  subtest  of  t h e Woodcock  Reading  To be s e l e c t e d a s s u b j e c t s ,  students  l e a s t average vocabulary able All  t o perform  o f t h e W.R.M.T.  were on t h e word  early. with  sheets) Prior  test  on t h e word  Mastery  Tests  had t o have a t  T h i s was t o e n s u r e t h e y w o u l d be  span and r e a d i n g  comprehension  t e s t e d on t h e passage comprehension  tasks. subtest  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  assignment  activity  ability.  the reading  s u b j e c t s were then  random  scores  on t h e r e a d i n g identification were  provided  t o beginning  booklets  comprehension  subtest). f o r those  the tasks  f o r recording  subtest  Study m a t e r i a l s students  who  a l l s u b j e c t s were their  (as they  responses  (i.e.,  finished presented  and  given  directions  f o r the tests  ( f o r t h e W.R.M.T.).  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 and  Mahtadi  variation written  (1980)  test  "resulting  as  opposed  scores  were  f o rthis  way.  t o an every  oral  the reading  format"  They  five  i n number)  using  found  as those  test  groups  random  sheets  were  standard sheet  was  provided  forms  obtained  task.  tables  i n any  complete,  the  (twot o to the  o f random  numbers.  Answer  use.  These, s h e e t s A  separate  were answer  (Appendix 1 ) .  were t e s t e d on t h e d i g i t seats.  span t a s k Subjects  i n small  were f a c i n g  and two a s s i s t a n t s so t h a t a l l t h e i r r e s p o n s e s c a n (The a s s i s t a n t s were used h e r e b e c a u s e o f t h e age o f  children,  t o help  were presented  forward  30 m i n u t e s .  o f t h e memory t a s k s t o b e a d m i n i s t e r e d w a s t h e d i g i t  the experimenter  requirements  other  Assignment  by t h e experimenter.  groups o f three t o s i x , a t i n d i v i d u a l  assistants  was  f o r e a c h o f t h e f o u r memory t a s k s  Subjects  be m o n i t o r e d .  by  tasks.  f o r the subjects'  developed  i s designed The f i r s t  using  the  (p. 1 0 5 ) . The m a t e r i a l s  testing  memory  as a  that  i n d i v i d u a l l y o r i n small groups  the four  e ta l .  subtest  were n o t m o d i f i e d  comprehension  s u b j e c t s were then assessed  the  one.  b i t as v a l i d  part of the research  of the  The Tuinman  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 Once  span  manual.  t h e passage comprehension  f o l l o w i n g t h e Woodcock's o r i g i n a l used  part  as o u t l i n e d i n Tuinman, K i n t z e r  and i n t h e t e s t  i s t o administer  This  reduce t h e i n s t r u c t i o n  time.)  on an overhead p r o j e c t o r , t o enable  t o check were.  that Two  and t h e reverse  the subjects  sample items digit  Sample  items  t h e examiner and  understood  what  were p r e s e n t e d  span p a r t s o f t h e t a s k  the  task  f o r both the  (see  pp.  57  &  61  ).  During  the  actual  testing,  o r a l l y by 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  the  a n s w e r s h e e t was  f a c e down.  was  presented  recorded  as  much  were turned in  the  the  were  as  answer of  the  sheet item  was  as  span and  the  instructed  they  d i g i t per  they  over  Twelve  down on  given  second  the  were  reverse  paper  as  and item  subject  Answer  items  the  c o u l d remember even i f t h e y  sheets  presented span  task.  many o f  could not  the  remember a l l  digits. A s i m i l a r procedure  ( s e e pp. the  58  & 62) .  sample  understand  and  An  was  used w i t h the modified d i g i t  o v e r h e a d p r o j e c t o r was  practise  items  previous task) .  Two  sample items were u s e d and  down  the  provided. assistants  final  Group  trials  digits  size  present.  experimental digits  at each of the  was  Each  i n the  that  to  write  done  ensure  was  were presented  be  to  three of  again group  from  was  a t a r a t e o f one  two-group t r i a l s were presented  tasks  i n the  on  three  orally  was  two  The  groups  second pause between groups of d i g i t s .  the  (as  a l l  task  present subjects  done  in  practise  s u b j e c t s were the to  answer six  presented  four-group  first,  trials.  same m a n n e r f o r t h i s  d i g i t per The  with  two eight  second w i t h a  then the three-group  a l l the  tasks  The two  i n the trials  A l l the subjects performed and  to  sheet  with  blocks of d i g i t s  the  items  a t each of the t h r e e l e v e l s of d i f f i c u l t y .  were presented  finally  task  levels.  the  span  again used t o  what  and  and  remembered.  same n u m b e r i n t h e  to put  were  A f t e r each i n d i v i d u a l  turned  f a c e down b e t w e e n i t e m s .  forward  Subjects digits  the  turned  items  presented.  the  Each o f t h e s u b j e c t s a l s o completed span t a s k . to  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  t h e p r e v i o u s two t a s k s  ( s e e p p . 59 & 6 4 ) .  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 overhead on  an i n d i v i d u a l  individually. sheet  basis.  i n the digit per The  The words  reading  i n large  tasks.  The r a t e  ( s e e pp. print  60  &  The  sentences  two  words p e r second).  were presented  or  not t h e sentence  in  t h e sentence  t h e same a s was  was.  experimenter  on data  steady  The s u b j e c t f i r s t  sample  one  and then  trials.  A l l responses  were  sentences  t o the subject. (approximately  responded  stated  on an  items  As t h e  rate  as t o whether  what t h e l a s t  The t a s k s were p r e s e n t e d  word  on one-group, two-  were r e c o r d e d  by t h e  sheets.  preliminary pilot n o t t h e same  Additional  The  read t h e sentence  p r e s e n t a t i o n methods and t a s k  were  t o subjects again  t a g cards.  a t a slow  made s e n s e  group and three-group  samples  were  designs  were decided  conducted.  s u b j e c t s as those  The  t o be  subjects this  c o n s u l t a t i o n and a d v i c e on t h e t a s k s t o be  used  d i s t r i c t ' s primary  language  development  used  upon  i n  was p r o v i d e d by a s c h o o l d i s t r i c t speech/language the  administered  o f p r e s e n t a t i o n was  66) .  on m a n i l l a  were presented, t h e experimenter  study.  examiner  f o r t h e t a s k were presented i n  s p a n t a s k was p r e s e n t e d  presented  tested  were  second.  basis  after  items  by t h e  and then four-group t r i a l s ,  span  individual  The  projector,  A l l t h e word span t a s k were  by t h e examiner.  digit  Sample  similar  Responses were r e c o r d e d f o rt h e s u b j e c t on an answer  two-group, three-group done  a word span and a r e a d i n g  pathologist  teacher.  and  28  Design and A n a l y s i s A  two age group  (seven and e i g h t  twelve  year olds)  used.  The t w e l v e measures  the  W.R.M.T.),  x t w e l v e measures  (BDS) , (4) m o d i f i e d  span  3  (MDS3),  (6) m o d i f i e d  (WS2),  (8) word  span  (RSI) ,  (RS3). set  span  3  (11) r e a d i n g model  t h e SAS s t a t i s t i c a l  four types of partitioning order  dependent;  effects other  each  i n t h e model.  effects  reading  (FDS),  2  (9) word 2  4  4  (RS2) a n d  analyses  (WS4),  were performed  package  (1985).  i s adjusted  The p r e d i c t i n g score  This  only  designs with c e l l s missing.  (10) r e a d i n g  span  and  sentence  c o r r e c t words o r d i g i t s word  span  and  as  their  analyzed.  a t each  reading  independent v a r i a b l e interaction,  verification  span  level  i s adjusted  grade  f o ra l l was  I I I i s used  to  IV i s used f o r  (independent) v a r i a b l e s  and  The  main  categorical  forthe  t h e number  of the modified  as a  uses  variable  digit  effect  (grade) and t h e p r e d i c t i n g v a r i a b l e s , with  3  f o r the preceding  Type  tasks  tasks.  span  on t h e d a t a  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 digit  2  Type I a r e model-  f o r squares and Type The p r e d i c t i n g  digit  package  (dependent)  (W.R.M.T.).  t w o t y p e s o f sums  digit  span  (12) r e a d i n g  I n Type I I , each e f f e c t  possible.  (3) b a c k w a r d  (MDS4) , ( 7 ) w o r d  span  was  f(from  (MDS2) , ( 5 ) m o d i f i e d  span  and  design  comprehension  t h e sums o f s q u a r e s .  effect  comprehension  calculate  span  span  and eleven  repeated-measures  span  digit  (WS3),  General linear  using  digit  olds  (1) r e a d i n g  (2) f o r w a r d d i g i t  span  1  were:  year  of  span,  of  the  as well  variable  were  29  Scoring A  method  of  s c o r i n g was  a l l of  recalled  or d i g i t s  were counted whether or not score).  Broadbent type  is  backward order span  recorded digit  task.  In  total  the  digit  procedure  best  each of the the  of way  word  words  entire t r i a l  scoring  forward span  2  or  digits  subtests.  is  was  correct  Each  digit  total,  Words  considered  t o m e a s u r e STM."  (e.g.,  and  The  span  scores  This  suggestion  by  t o be  on  serial  scoring of  Scales:  trial  total  etc.).  order these  Fourth  i s part tasks  Edition  as  f o r t h i s t a s k were kept  the reading  ,  Serial digit of  the  in  the  (Thorndike,  index of the sentence v e r i f i c a t i o n  task  t o c h e c k and  see  span t a s k or were responding  in  scoring  method  was  of  descriptive statistics  analyses.  validity  An  task  by  manner.  overall  calculating  f o r the  1985).  subjects focused frivolous  span  Intelligence  obtained.  The  was  "the  the  i s considered part of a c o r r e c t response because of the  Hagen & S a t t l e r ,  a  method  separately  span  Stanford-Binet  if  s u b j e c t s on  This  (1971) t o be  standardized  was  the  sum  correctly  (absolute  by  to  was  d o n e t o be  Broadbent  (Borg  (1971) and  & Gall,  the  i n keeping  i n measurement o p e r a t i o n s used  and  used  1983).  for  the  general  with  the  purpose linear  aforementioned  a l s o t o enhance the i f equal  model  weighting  sources for  of  trials  CHAPTER 4 RESULTS Four  memory  linguistic)  span  measures  comprising  11  (two l i n g u i s t i c  subtests,  were  s u b j e c t s who h a d p r e v i o u s l y been a s s e s s e d comprehension s u b t e s t . span  (FDS),  backward  a n d two  administered  span  (BDS),  t o 60  o n t h e W.R.M.T. p a s s a g e  The t e s t s a d m i n i s t e r e d w e r e : digit  non-  modified  forward digit  digit  span  2  (MDS2), m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 3 (MDS3), m o d i f i e d d i g i t s p a n 4 (MDS4), word  span  2 (WS2), word s p a n 3 (WS3), word  s p a n 4 (WS4),  reading  s p a n 1 (RSI) , r e a d i n g s p a n 2 (RDS2) , and r e a d i n g s p a n 3 (RS3) . T h e s c o r e s o f r e a d i n g c o m p r e h e n s i o n u s i n g t h e W.R.M.T. r a n g i n g to  75 were o b t a i n e d .  score of the  o f 20 w o u l d  T h e maximum t o t a l  be c o n s i d e r e d  56 i s a v e r a g e f o r a G r a d e results  measures grade  determined  6.  f o r the subtest  average f o r a Grade  f r o m 11  i s 85.  A  2 and a score  An e x a m i n a t i o n o f t h e a n a l y s i s o f  the relative  as predictors of reading  strengths  comprehension  o f each level  of  the  a c r o s s two  levels. The  o b s e r v e d means o f a l l s c o r e s  o f Grades  under t h e v a r i o u s c o n d i t i o n s i s presented  30  2 and 6 s u b j e c t s  i n t a b l e 1.  31 TABLE 1  Observed Means by Grade and 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 Differences Variables  Grade 2 n = 30 Non-linguistic  Grade 6 n = 30  F ( l , 5 8 ) p. v a l u e  M e a s u r e s o f 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  MDS3  15.77  (7.27)  23.03  (1. 71)  28. 49  <. 0001 <. 0001  MDS4  17.40  (9.24)  27.37  (5. 32)  26. 16  <•  Linguistic  0001  M e a s u r e s o f 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  <•  WS4  25.47  (7.78)  27.20  (5. 22)  1. 03  RSI  3.90  (0.30)  3.96  (0. 18)  1. 05  RS2  7.10  (1.93)  7.37  (1. 18)  0. 41  RS3  6.73  (3.77)  10.23  (2. 60)  17. 44  <. 3154 <. 3087 <. 5228 <. 0001  Comprehension  9347  Measures  Reading comprehension  35.43  (13.81)  60.63  (V. 30)  78. 03  <. 0001  Sentence verification  22.43  ( 1.94)  23.63  (0. 55)  10. 59  <•  a  -  Numbers i n p a r e n t h e s e s s t a n d  f o r standard  002  deviations.  32  A n a l y s i s of Observed Means D i f f e r e n c e s between Grade 2 and The  means o f Grade  linguistic  and  2 and 6 were compared  linguistic  comprehension measures. 1.  Grade  2 and  linguistic children, values  are  indicated  that  can  reading  difference  be  reading other  3,  view  span  3  test,  performance  highly  are also  large  seen  in  Table  well  on  i n favor  F - v a l u e s and 1.  In  found  span the the  3  was  to  be  lack  of  i s most  small  contrast,  the  Their =  difference  t o be  due  to  p-  except f o r  significant differences likely  17.44, in  the  i n the  the  floor  used.  Grade 2 and 6 c h i l d r e n performed w e l l . as  sensical  the  children  correctly  children  sentences, with  6  their  nonsignificant.  of  non-  grade  very  s i g n i f i c a n t , F(l,58)  significance  the  the  of  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 , were  as  shown i n T a b l e  differences  significant  the  measures  success,  p_<  results  as  non-  t o the index of sentence v e r i f i c a t i o n of the reading  sentences  vs.  of  of the tests  As  the  In  linguistic  effect  task,  span  i n reading  p_<.0001.  test  b y ANOVA o n t h e  o f memory s p a n  by  performance differences the  The  6 children's  measures as  measures  6  must  or  v e r i f i e d more  Grade  To c o r r e c t l y i d e n t i f y  nonsensical,  comprehend than  i t . 22  with Both out  of  any  degree  of  grade  groups  of  a  total  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  22.43) c o r r e c t l y t h a n Grade  2 children,  span  F  (1,58)  =  of  24  (22.63  10.59,  .002. Despite  sentence both  the  (as t o  grade  high  level  i t s sensical  groups,  Grade  6  of  judgemental v e r i f i c a t i o n of  or nonsenensical children's  reading  meaning  each  status)  by  comprehension,  as  measured  by  t h e W.R.M.T., w a s  f a r superior  t o grade  2  children  ( m e a n s o f 6 0 . 6 3 v s . 3 5 . 4 3 ) , F ( 1 , 5 8 ) = 7 8 . 0 3 , p_< . 0 0 0 1 .  A  question  t h a t a r i s e s from these observations this  significant  grade groups? the  the  comprehension  between t h e  of the readers.  In the pursuit  of the  relevant  i n v o l v e d , an 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  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  linguistic  measure  comprehension the in  difference i n reading  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  maturation  factors  i s : What f a c t o r s c o n t r i b u t e t o  scores.  corresponds Thus,  to  the  i ti s highly  former measures a r e t h e r e s p o n s i b l e reading  data  comprehension.  I t should  a n a l y s i s n e c e s s a r y f o ra d d r e s s i n g  than nomothetic  difference tempting  i n  reading  to infer  that  f a c t o r s f o rt h e d i f f e r e n c e  be noted,  however,  this question  that the  r e q u i r e s more  analyses.  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 between Two C l a s s e s o f Memory Measures and Reading Comprehension In order the  t o o b t a i n adequate analyses  relative  including  predictive  relations,  i n t e r a c t i o n terms  was  of t h e data  the  general  established  t o determine linear  to predict  comprehension from both t h e n o n - l i n g u i s t i c and l i n g u i s t i c o f memory s p a n .  The s t a t i s t i c a l  f r o m t h e s e t w o c l a s s e s n e e d s t o b e made f i r s t  predictors  a r e t o o numerous t o be e n t e r e d  especially  true  for  that.is,  i n view of the small the small  testing the final  measures  since a l l  i n t h e model.  This i s  sample s i z e employed  number o f d e g r e e s  hypothesis  reading  s e l e c t i o n o f s e n s i t i v e and potent  predictors  study,  model  o f freedom  of interest.  i n this  available  Therefore,  i t was  decided  t o perform  linguistic  two  measures,  linear  and  model  the other  analyses, with  the  one  significance  f o r each  Results of these From  a  two  variable  analyses  review  of  The  significant  i n the analysis  48)  forward  = 5.26,  p <  modified  digit  modified  digit  finding  4 t r i a l was word  significant is  from  trials  a and  measures levels.  these  i s  that  three  two  there  are  span  4,  the only  F ( l , 48)  =  4.05,  as w e l l .  significant  were not. but  The the  reading reading  p r e d i c t o r F ( l , 46) = 9.62,  grade.  of  the  F  Neither  values  p_ <  of  become results  not.  .050.  span  The  Of  the  was  the  The  of those  second results  t h e word  1 and  span  3  The t h i r d  the  span other  2 were  score  interactions  the l i n g u i s t i c nor  w e r e shown t o have any s i g n i f i c a n t  three.  .048, w h i l e t h e  p. < . 0 0 3 . the  and  predictor  where two  F ( l , 46) = 4.14,  level.  predictor, F ( l ,  Of t h e l i n g u i s t i c m e a s u r e s ,  predictors,  review  p_ <  .05  measures.  a significant  significant  level  two  .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 span scores  The  findings  of the non-linguistic  d i g i t s p a n s c o r e was  span t r i a l s  significant  set at the  tables,  i s from the l i n g u i s t i c t r i a l s ,  are s i g n i f i c a n t  two  of  was  non-  measures.  (1985) .  c a n be s e e n i n T a b l e s Anova  apparent.  overall  first  the  test  the  linguistic  T h e t w o a n a l y s e s w e r e m a d e u s i n g t h e SAS p r o g r a m of  with  of  was  not a  finding memory  non-linguistic  interaction  with  grade  35 TABLE 2 Summary T e s t R e s u l t s o f the General L i n e a r Model A n a l y s i s o f Reading Comprehension as t h e F u n c t i o n o f Grade and N o n - l i n g u i s t i c Memory Span Measures  Measures  ( d f 1,48)  F values  (n f o r a l l m e a s u r e s = 60)  p_ values  Intercept  0.03  0.853  Grade  0.02  0.890  5.26  0.026*  Forward d i g i t  span  Backward  digit  span  1.34  0.253  Modified  digit  span 2  2.67  0.109  Modified  digit  span  3  2.98  0.091  Modified  digit  span 4  4.05  0.050*  0.25  0.622  Interactions Forward d i g i t  span by Grade  Backward  digit  span by Grade  0.04  0.841  Modified  digit  span 2 by Grade  0.72  0.399  Modified  digit  span  3.48  0.068  Modified  digit  span 4 by Grade  0.15  0.704  * significant  3 by  Grade  a t p_ >.05  36 TABLE 3 Summary T e s t R e s u l t s o f the General L i n e a r Model A n a l y s i s o f Reading Comprehension as the F u n c t i o n o f 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) (n f o r a l l m e a s u r e s = 60)  F values  p  values  Intercept  0.31  0.582  Grade  0.36  0. 5 5 3  Word span 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*  Reading  span 1  0.01  0.935  Reading  span 2  0.00  0.949  Reading  span 3  9. 6 2  0.003*  Interactions 0.01  0.917  3 by Grade  0.08  0.778  Word s p a n 4 b y Grade  0.52  0.473  Word  span 2 by Grade  Word s p a n  Reading  span 1 by Grade  0.34  0.563  Reading  span 2 by Grade  0.83  0.367  Reading  span 3 by Grade  0.09  0.764  * significant  a t p <0.05  Another  linear  model  a n a l y s i s was c o n d u c t e d t o t e s t  s i g n i f i c a n t predictions without linguistic  measures,  separating the l i n g u i s t i c  but removing  economize  t h e degrees o f freedom  this  completed  was  measures Table 50)  continued  =  1.76,  significant  p_ <  f o ra statistical  the results  showed  that  three  .19.  The  modified  digit  = 12.55, p < .0009.  I n t h i s f i n a l model,  terms  other  found  of  When  the  span  with  4  task  was  span  3, F ( l , 5 0 )  including the interaction  memory m e a s u r e s ,  the interaction  n o n s i g n i f i c a n t as i n t h e previous  and of  p r e d i c t o r s , namely  especially  reading  the modified  span  model.  terms  This  means  digit  span  4, w o r d  They a r e s i g n i f i c a n t  from  span  4,  irrespective  grade d i f f e r e n c e s . In  order  coefficients,  to  get  unbiased  interaction  selected  span  table thus  memory  terms  measures)  was  5 the regression coefficients  of  their  l i n e a r model  between obtained.  grade  regression (without the  and  the  o f t h e F D S , MDS4,  WS4  t s ( 5 4 ) = 1.36, 2 . 7 1 , 2.56 a n d 3 . 9 4 , p s <  a n d .0002,  memory  span  respectively. appear  In general, the l i n g u i s i t c  t o predict reading  four  As c a n be seen i n a n d RS3  d e t e r m i n e d a r e 1 . 2 9 , 0 . 3 7 , 0.45 a n d 1 . 3 2 , w h i c h w e r e  significant, .014  estimates  t h e l a s t most p a r s i m o n i o u s  nonsignificant  of  3.  a  .047, a s was t h e word  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 reading comprehension a r e l a r g e l y three  four  As c a n be seen i n  s p a n 4, F ( l , 5 0 ) = 4 . 8 3 , p < . 0 3 3 a r i d t h e r e a d i n g  were  summary.  to  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 ,  p r e d i c t o r F ( l , 5 0 ) = 4 . 1 7 , p_ <  of grade  and non-  t h e n o n s i g n i f i c a n t measures  to yield significant results.  4 t h e forward  the four  comprehension  mostly  .18, .01, measures more  than  38 the  n o n - l i n g u i s t i c measures.  I t requires,  h o w e v e r , some c a u t i o 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 . effect  i s s t i l l  of  i s nonsignificant,  FDS  than  that  variance,  of  a biases  MDS4  estimate, despite  (0.37).  r e l a t i v e t o MDS4.  The e s t i m a t e o f g r a d e  and t h e r e g r e s s i o n i t sestimate  I t may  well  in  be  coefficient  (1.29) b e i n g due  to  larger  i t s larger  39 TABLE 4 Summary T e s t R e s u l t s o f the General L i n e a r Model A n a l y s i s o f Reading Comprehension as the F u n c t i o n o f Grade and FDS, MDS4, WS4 and RS3.  M e a s u r e s ( d f 1,48) (n f o r a l l measures  F values  p  values  = 60)  Intercept  0.03  0.853  Grade  0.02  0.890  1.76  0.1908  4.17  0.0465*  4.83  0.0326*  12.55  0.0009*  0.43  0.5164  0.00  0.9918  Word span 4 by Grade  0.04  0.8435  Reading  0.84  0.3641  Forward d i g i t Modified Word  span  digit  span 4  span 4  Reading  span  3 Interactions  Forward d i g i t Modified  span by Grade  digit  span  span 4 by Grade  3 by Grade  * significant  a t p > .05  40 TABLE 5 Summary T e s t R e s u l t s o f the General L i n e a r Model A n a l y s i s o f Reading Comprehension as the F u n c t i o n o f FDS, MDS4, WS4 and RS3, R e g r e s s i o n C o e f f i c i e n t s and t s c o r e s .  Measures  (n f o r a l l m e a s u r e s = 60  ( d f 1,54)  F  values  E  values  Intercept  5.80  0.0194  Grade  37.29  0.0001  1.84  0.1810  7.34  0.0090*  6.54  0.0134*  15.53  0.0002*  Forward Modified Word  digit digit  span span 4  span 4  Reading  span 3  Regression  cofficients  Interactions Forward d i g i t Modified Word  digit  1.29*  span span 4  0.45*  span 4  Reading  0.37*  1.32*  span 3  t Forward d i g i t Modified Word  digit  span span 4  span 4  Reading  span 3  * significant  a t p > .05  scores  p_ s c o r e s  1.36  0.1810  2.71  0.0090*  2.56  0.0134*  3.94  0.0002*  CHAPTER 5 DISCUSSION The purpose o f t h i s r e s e a r c h was t o examine t h e r e l a t i o n s h i p s between working memory and r e a d i n g comprehension i n b e g i n n i n g and intermediate readers. were developed. measures difference  best  A f t e r reviewing the l i t e r a t u r e two q u e s t i o n s  The questions were: predict  reading  i n relationships  1. Which  comprehension?  between  reading  o f these 2.  memory  Is there  comprehension  working memory i n Grade 2 and Grade 6 s u b j e c t s ?  These  a  and  questions  were examined i n t h e present r e s e a r c h .  Summary and C o n c l u s i o n s From t h e i n i t i a l  g e n e r a l l i n e a r model a n a l y s i s ,  f o u r memory  s u b t e s t s c o r e s were found t o produce s i g n i f i c a n t r e s u l t s .  Two of  the measures were n o n - l i n g u i s t i c (forward d i g i t span and m o d i f i e d d i g i t span 4) and two l i n g u i s t i c  (word span 4 and r e a d i n g span 3 ) .  Thus one measure from each of t h e f o u r types o f memory measures was found t o be a good p r e d i c t o r o f r e a d i n g comprehension a b i l i t y . first  o f these  measures,  forward  digit  The  span, was a s i g n i f i c a n t  p r e d i c t o r i n t h e i n i t i a l a n a l y s i s of a l l t h e n o n - l i n g u i s t i c t r i a l s . It  was n o t found  t o be a s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r  a n a l y s i s , which compared  i n t h e second  only t h e f o u r 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 c a r e o f by t h e l i n g u i s t i c measures.  The backward d i g i t span s c o r e d i d not prove  t o be a s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r d e s p i t e t h e more complex the task.  The t a s k may have proven t o be t o o d i f f i c u l t 41  nature o f f o r even  42 good  comprehenders.  support and  the  f i n d i n g s of  Lesgold  (1977).  correlated The  three  highest lower  The  at  only  significant  levels  of  of  Daneman a n d  They found  a l l or  level  results  these  Carpenter  digit  weakly  digit  measures  (1980) and  Perfetti  span t a s k s t o e i t h e r  correlated to  p r e d i c t o r s (MDS4, WS4  their  span  and  r e s p e c t i v e measures.  of these measures  reading RS3)  The  (MDS2, M D S 3 , WS2,  floor  effect.  findings,  the  were a l l the  WS3,  RSI  span  strongest predictor.  The  3  subtest  score  modified d i g i t  of and  the  reading  indicate  that  span  3  they  score.  are  good  Both  of  i s observed  span 4 and  those  p r e d i c t o r s of  RS2)  the  scores  to  be  word  the span  extent  though,  reading  of  significant  4 subtest scores, are s i g n i f i c a n t p r e d i c t o r s , but not t o the of  the  be t h e r e s u l t  From t h e second a n a l y s i s o f t h e t h r e e  reading  be  ability.  failure  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 a  not  s t i l l  comprehension  ability. The  significant  predicted Engle  by  Yuill,  (1990),  results  of  Oakhill  and  respectively.  the  MDS4 a n d  Parkin  Yuill,  the  (1989)  Oakhill  and  WS4 and  scores LaPointe  P a r k i n argue  t h e m o d i f i e d d i g i t span t a s k does tap p r o c e s s i n g a b i l i t y capacity span  and  task.  research simple  predicts reading Yet,  does  word  capacity, which they  not  span  processing.  the  evidence  support task  Since  The  in  their  both  of  these  that  the  view.  is strictly  i t i s expected do.  comprehension  they  a  measure  would  significant results  well  literature The  tests  as  appear yield  found  as and  LaPointe of  were and that  as w e l l a  reading in  and  this Engle  capacity with to  measure  similar  here,  as  no  only  results,  though,  should  be  viewed  with  influenced  caution.  This  i s because  by t h e use o f s t r a t e g i e s l i k e  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 short-term  memory"  relationship  (Turner  between  and  short-term  and  regrouping  by  t h e examiner.  numbers  Similar  memory  these measures.  During  there  auditory  strategies  1989)  and  capacity  1990).  no being  strategies  words)  were  may  regrouping  and higher  Evidence  (such  used  by  "obscure  as  any level  of rehearsal  t a s k s was  heard  rehearsing  subjects  on  key  both  of  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 span evidence  be  the capacity limitations of  s u b v o c a l i z a t i o n by s u b j e c t s on these  and r e h e a r s i n g  was  results  r e h e a r s a l and  Engle,  c o g n i t i v e t a s k s " (LaPointe and Engle,  these  of  rehearsal  or  task  regrouping  employed 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 span 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 of  reading  Daneman and  comprehension.  and Carpenter's  intermediate  This  finding  studies  readers.  (1980,  The r e a d i n g  reading comprehension i nbeginning as  i t does f o ra d u l t r e a d e r s .  supports 1983),  the results  but with  span t a s k  of  beginning  seems t o p r e d i c t  and i n t e r m e d i a t e r e a d e r s as w e l l  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 comprehension  ability  i s s t i l l  the reading  span  seem t h a t t h e b e s t measure o f a c o m p l e x o p e r a t i o n comprehension) used  i n this The  and each  i s a complex  task  (such  I t would  (such as  as t h e reading  reading  span  task  study).  second  f i n d i n g s a r e from  t h e observed  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 Grade of  task.  t h e measures.  The  findings  means d i f f e r e n c e s  2 and Grade indicate  that  6 scores there  on are  significant linguistic are  differences measures  between  (FDS,  BDS,  grades  MDS2, MDS3 a n d  i n f a v o u r of the Grade 6 s u b j e c t s .  basically  span  The  may  (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  f o u n d t o be s i g n i f i c a n t . be of  accounted the  most  (LaPointe & Engle, span  sentences  (Booth, Booth, familiar  easier  Pauli  f o r by  1990;  The  the  frequently  fact  used  Francis  were developed  found  because  of  with the  i t s high  and  & Leslie,  3 test  working  memory w o u l d  1982)  and  can  the  grade  readers thus  h a v e made i t  The  significant  be  accounted  for  I t would  seem t h a t  the  The  arduous  developing capacity since  the  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  processed.  The  comprehension  This  i s  an  r e a d i n g span and  significantly  appear  lists  English  t h e measure were more  f o r t h e Grade 2 t h a n the Grade 6 s u b j e c t s . of  significant  i n the  t h i s may  1988).  of d i f f i c u l t y .  p r o c e s s i n g demands o f  reading  the word  Primary  were  Both grade groups would  r e a d i n g span  level  that  & Kucera,  w i t h some i t e m s i n t h e t a s k s a n d  results  lack of  words  from  & Phenix, 1985).  f o r a l l s u b j e c t s (Recht  capacity  results  l i n g u i s t i c measures, w i t h the e x c e p t i o n of  comprised  reading  that  The  that i t s  3, w e r e n o t  language  MDS4).  non-  t a x t h e s t o r a g e component o f w o r k i n g memory and  differences were  a l l the  measures  expected.  Given  on  these  c a p a c i t y i n c r e a s e s w i t h age  be  the  3 finding  sentence  different,  expected  to play a part  also  result  was  expected.  verification i n favour of as  well.  It  in this,  The  means  reading  were  the  Grade  can  be  6  subjects.  accounted  because of the maturation process with respect t o reading. to  say, t h e Grade 6 s t u d e n t s have had  both  more e x p e r i e n c e and  for  That i s years  of  45 practising  the skills  involved i n reading  From t h e f i r s t g e n e r a l  comprehension.  l i n e a r model a n a l y s i s i t was f o u n d  that  o f memory m e a s u r e was t e s t e d , n o n e  were  found t o have 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 grade v a r i a b l e .  The  regardless  second  o f which  analysis using  (forward d i g i t span  type  only  the i n i t i a l  span  score  significant. modified  study. modified  (as  span  span  with of  measures.  Because  slopes  span  mentioned)  4,  was  4, w o r d  reading of  and r e a d i n g  comprehension  coefficients span  the linguistic  predictors  selection,  4, w o r d  regression  digit  significant,  i n t e r a c t i o n s and t h e  previously  predictors of reading  The  4,  and r e a d i n g  measures  majority  university children. results between  i n this  study  on working  The  of  the  previous  working  i n a similar  reviewed  psychology  research  memory  span,  3 were a l l  t o be  better  non-linguistic subject  d i f f e r e n c e s i nthe found.  Therefore  Grade  manner t o Grade 6  measures.  of the studies  undergraduate  i n this  f o r t h e two grades would be  performed  memory  3 are the  t h e study's  t h a t no s i g n i f i c a n t  C h i l d r e n were used of  found  digit  span  appearing  than  the restrictions  i t was e x p e c t e d  span  ability  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 were a n a l y z e d .  students  forward  not  of the forward  comprehension  of the regression lines  2 students  results  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 ,  digit  significant  significant  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  3) a l s o y i e l d e d n o s i g n i f i c a n t  digit  four  i n this  students  as  thesis  used  subjects  not  as s u b j e c t s t o t r yt o r e p l i c a t e t h e that  and reading  examined  the relationships  comprehension  ability.  Many  types  of linguistic  developed measures predict by  and  and n o n - l i n g u i s t i c  tested  t h e one reading  on  that  memory  groups  of  adult  appeared  to  best  subjects. and  c o m p r e h e n s i o n was t h e r e a d i n g  Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r  (1980) .  measures have  most  memory.  of  ability.  capacity  The  They argued t h a t t o t e s t  their  working  components o f  research  b y Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r  and d i d n o t p r e d i c t  results  research supported or  developed  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  word span t a s k s were c o n s i d e r e d measures  these  consistently  span task  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 working  Of  been  of  their  Daneman  claims.  have  been  and  reading  conducted  comprehension  Carpenter's  Many r e p l i c a t i o n s with  t o be o n l y  (1980,  1983)  and e x t e n t i o n s  varying  degrees  of  success. Recently, and  Brereton  researchers (1985)  and  such  as; Baddeley,  Turner  v a r i a t i o n o f t h e r e a d i n g span task  and  Engle  (still  Logie,  (1989)  Nimmo-Smith  found  that  a  comprised o f c a p a c i t y and  p r o c e s s i n g components)  p r e d i c t e d reading comprehension as w e l l as  Daneman a n d C a r p e n t e r ' s  task did.  Oakhill  and  modified simple  Parkin  digit  and  (1989)  span task.  complex  word  their word  reported  significant  LaPointe  and Engle  span  attempt t o p r e d i c t reading  Other researchers  memory  measures  such as Y u i l l ,  results  (1990)  reviewed measures  above  and reading used  comprehension.  a l l of  i n t h e same s t u d y  these  apparent  them  to  The r e s u l t s o f  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 span t a s k s  a  re-examined  and used  comprehension a b i l i t y .  using  between  None o f t h e r e s e a r c h significant  memory  with c h i l d r e n as subjects, u n l i k e  this  47 thesis.  The  Carpenter  (1980,  best  results  of  1983)  p r e d i c t o r of  this  finding  study  support  that the  the  reading  reading comprehension  Daneman  span  task  and  i s  the  ability.  Suggestions f o r Future Research Four suggestions first  one  study.  deals Since  intermediate  f o r future research are presented  with  future replications  very  little  readers  has  w o u l d seem w a r r e n t e d .  A  past  done  and  extentions  research  more  l a r g e r and  with  replication  extention  of  the  research  be  memory m e a s u r e was extended t o use The  measures.  second The  using  only  levels  developed  lowest  be  and  the  and  the  and  comes  one  removed  and  and  the  findings  from  interaction  another  and  of  d i d not  grade  RS4  of  the  grade  could  the  modified  (RSI)  level  or  also  subjects.  review  the  both  results.  group  This study  a  or the  of the  grade  a d u l t s as  r e a d i n g span  ( i . e . , MDS5, WS5  T h i s may  study.  subtests of  g r a d e two  beginning  of  memory  digit  span  prove to  s i x group. subtests  be  These  should  be  ) a t t h e h i g h e r end  of  help to better d i f f e r e n t i a t e the  abilities  subjects.  The and  10  level  (WS2)  added  the subtests. of  G r a d e 6,  for either  should  in this  suggestion  (MDS2), w o r d s p a n difficult  found  this  more r a n d o m i z e d s a m p l e i n  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 and  The  of  of  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 An  here.  third  a review  suggestion  of the  comes f r o m  literature.  word span research used both  the  Turner  results  and  r e a d i n g span and  Engle  of  the  (1989)  research in  their  o p e r a t i o n span  tasks  48 to  measure  working  a  could  beginning  inexperience sentences, Grade  found  and  of  a  that  correlation  be t e s t e d  Grade  reading  comprehension  an o p e r a t i o n with  2  with  o f memory  fourth  digit  Because  t o use t h i s  items  way  sequence  recommendation  the  operation  task  i s also  with  a  test  could  a r e mixed  t o respond of digits  "forward"  were  digits  be  changed  together.  (i.e.,  forward  was g i v e n .  o r "backward".  to recall  The word  recalled  similar  so  that  Subjects  the forward  would  o r backward)  again could  The m o d i f i e d  until  the item  be v a r i e d  until  digit  regrouping,  t o reduce by  predictabilities  was  (i.e.,  o r backward  of  could  span could  digits  subjects.  these  measures  I f may  The or  so t h a t words  order.  change,  last could  A signal  system  These  changes  be u s e d .  this  be  sequence  presented.  the use of s t r a t e g i e s , l i k e  the  told  after the  i n each  first  span t a s k c o u l d be m o d i f i e d  i n e i t h e r forward  n o t be  and  o r two f i n g e r s f o r backward o r  t o t h e one s u g g e s t above,  help  future  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  one f o r f o r w a r d  t o be r e c a l l e d  digits).  for  The d e v e l o p m e n t f o r  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  would  of  c o u l d b e 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 u b j e c t s by r a i s i n g saying  final  d i g i t span and word span t a s k s .  span  backward which  and  Changes  span, modified  be  measures  mathematical  informative  could  6 group.  research.  they  task  and  comprehension."  readers.  group  be more  span  reading  i n a future study  intermediate  i t might  The  the  They  significant  finding  with  r e l a t i o n s h i p between  memory.  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( 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 O f W o r k i n g Memory. In A. B a d d e l y (Ed.), Working Memory. New Y o r k : Oxford University Press. 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 M e m o r y . I n G. B o w e r (Ed.), The Psychology o f L e a r n i n g and M o t i v a t i o n (pp.4790). New Y o r k : A c a d e m i c P r e s s . Brady, S. (1986). S h o r t - t e r m memory, p r o c e s s 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, 138-152.  and  reading  B r a d y , S., S h a n k w e i l e r , D., & M a n n , 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 . 35, 345-367. Carr,  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 between 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 skills and r e a d i n g comprehension. C o g n i t i o n . 9, 7 3 - 1 1 3 .  Case,  R., Kurkland, D., & Goldberg, J . (1982). Operational 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 of 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.  C h e n , 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 o n rapid-sequential reading. Memory a n d C o g n i t i o n , 1 4 . 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 : T h e 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 . Trehub (Eds.), Aging and C o g n i t i v e Processes (pp. 191-211). 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 J o u r n a l o f E d u c a t i o n a l Psychology. 72, 656-669.  skill.  Daneman, M., fie G r e e n , I . (1986). Individual differences i n comprehending and producing words 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 . 2 5 , 1-18. 53  54 D e m p s t e r , F. N. ( 1 9 8 1 ) . M e m o r y developmental differences. 100.  span: Sources o f i n d i v i d u a l and Psychological Bulletin. 89, 63-  Ehri,  L. C , & W i l c e , L . S. (1979). 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 . 71, 26-40.  Gick,  M.L., C r a i k , F . I . M . , & M o r r i s , R.G. and age differences i n working C o g n i t i o n . 16, 353-361.  (1988). Task c o m p l e x i t y memory. Memory and  J o h n s o n - L a i r d , P.N. (1983). Mental Models: Science of Language. Inference. Cambridge: Harvard U n i v e r s i t y Press. Jensen,  A.  (1980).  Bias i n Mental  Towards a C o g n i t i v e and Consciousness.  T e s t i n g . New  York:  Free  Johnson, M.K. & H a s h e r , L . ( 1 9 8 7 ) . Human l e a r n i n g A n n u a l Review o f P s y c h o l o g y . 38, 631-668.  and  Press. memory.  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 : F r o m e y e f i x a t i o n s t o comprehension. P s y c h o l o g i c a l Review. 87, 329354. Katz,  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 ) . M e m o r y f o r i t e m order and phonetic recoding i n t h e beginning reader. Journal of E x p e r i m e n t a l C h i l d Psychology. 32, 474-484.  Kintsch, W., & Mross, E.F. (1985). Context effects i n word 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 , 2 4 , 3 3 6 - 3 4 9 . Lesgold, A., & P e r f e t t i , r e a d i n g comprehension.  C. (1978). Interactive D i s c o u r s e P r o c e s s e s . 1,  processes 323-336.  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 develop: P e r s p e c t i v e s from a l o n g i t u d i n a l study. R. M u l c a h y , & A.E. W a l l (Eds.), Theory and 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 .  i n  disabilities I n J . P . Das, research i n  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 m e m o r y 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 , 75, 3141-318. Perfetti, C.A., (1985). University Press.  Reading  Ability.  New  York:  Oxford  P e r f e t t i , C A . , B e c k , I . , & H u g h e s , C. ( 1 9 8 1 ) . P h o n e m i c K n o w l e d g e and L e a r n i n g t o Read. Paper p r e s e n t e d a t t h e B i a n n u a l Meeting of t h e S o c i e t y f o r Research i n C h i l d Development, Boston.  55 P e r f e t t i , C.A., G o l d m a n , S.R., & H o g a b o a m , T.W. (1979). Reading s k i l l and t h e i d e n t i f i c a t i o n o f words i n d i s c o u r s e c o n t e x t . M e m o r y a n d C o g n i t i o n . 7, 2 7 3 - 2 8 2 . P e r f e t t i , C.A., & H o g a b o a m , 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 word decoding and r e a d i n g comprehension s k i l l . Journal of E d u c a t i o n a l P s y c h o l o g y . 67, 461-469. Perfetti, C.A., & Roth, 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. Lesgold and C A . P e r f e t t i (Eds.), I n t e r a c t i v e Processes i n Reading. 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 m e m o r y 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 . Developmental Review. 10. 101-124. 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. (1979). The speech code and 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 M e m o r y . 5, 5 3 1 545. Van  D i j k , T.A., & K i n t s c h , W. (1983). S t r a t e g i e s 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 Press.  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 . MIT P r e s s .  of  Discourse  Cambridge,  MA:  APPENDIX 1  Working Memory Span Tasks Task Data Sheets  56  57 The Numbers  D i g i t Span Task  Forward  Sample  5-1  Sample 2  Items  3-8  4- 9-1 5 - 2-8 5- 2-8-3 2- 7-6-3 4-7-8-2-5 3- 5-8-1-9 7- 9 - 1 - 5 - 6 - 3  2- 8-3-9-5-4  2-8-5-1-3-6-9  3- 1-9-6-8-4-7  1-7-2-8-3-6-9-5  7- 3 - 9 - 2 - 8 - 5 - 1 - 2 Numbers B a c k w a r d Sample  1  4-2  Items 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  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 M o d i f i e d D i g i t Span Task Samples  2 s 1  Practise  a.  4 5 3 , 318  b.  189, 412  items 2's  3's  4 »s  472,  157  3 9 6 , 1 2 5 , 068  854, 367, 3 0 1 , 165  504,  496  824, 537, 261  467, 7 2 5 , 2 8 1 , 986  192,  795  7 2 6 , 0 2 1 , 304  083, 9 2 7 , 519, 246  104,  832  2 4 5 , 1 9 8 , 074  5 4 8 , 3 0 6 , 7 2 1 , 567  198,  765  364, 158, 216  218, 9 3 1 , 247, 465  638,  534  6 4 3 , 3 2 1 , 398  6 9 5 , 7 0 8 , 3 1 2 , 174  915,  728  0 6 7 , 2 9 6 , 948  0 9 2 , 7 2 8 , 637, 916  694,  927  9 3 1 , 638, 085  4 9 2 , 1 0 6 , 2 7 4 , 526  952,  754  2 3 6 , 7 9 8 , 863  6 9 3 , 7 3 5 , 9 7 2 , 046  647,  703  167, 594, 361  8 6 3 , 9 2 8 , 2 8 5 , 597  Items  59 Word Span Task Samples a.  fun, l i k e  b.  r o d , boat  Items 3's  2's  4 s 1  gas, key  need, sea, t a s t e  a i d , break, door, f o r t h  k i n g , out  small, tree,  cut, f i l e ,  s t a y , wire  camp, east, head  near, snake , add, cause  form,  lock  scene, trade, buy  far,  c l o s e , gun  mouth, t a l k , blue  f a c t , miss, sum, bomb  brown, f l y  p a l e , week, c r o s s  knee, seat, a c t ,  meet, c r y  t e s t , lock, shoe  base, farm, nod, why  deep, s o l e  lean, box,  t r a i n , d r y , r o o f , bad  bird  list  jump, own  l o g , s c o r e , type  end  READING SPAN TASK  T H E C A T RAN UP T H E T R E E . T H E MOUSE A T E T H E C A R .  (S) (NS)  T H E DOG JUMPED OVER T H E L O G .  (S)  THE  (NS)  CAT A T E THE RADIO.  THE RABBIT  SWAM UNDER  THE ROCK.  (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 HOUSE. T H E E L E P H A N T READ T H E S I G N .  (S) (NS)  A L L T H E L I O N S WENT TO T H E D A N C E . 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) (NS)  SOME OF T H E B E A R S A T E H O N E Y . T H E F I S H SWAM I N T H E O C E A N .  (S) (S)  OUR HORSE SANG I N T H E B A R N . R A T S H I D UNDER T H E S H E D .  (NS) (S)  THE CHICKEN PECKED AT THE SEEDS. T H E S H E E P WENT TO T H E P A R T Y . THE THREE PIGS BUILT A BUSH.  (S) (NS) (NS)  A DONKEY DROVE T H E B U S . ONE T U R K E Y S P O K E TO T H E W A L L . T H E P E N G U I N SWAM I N T H E W A T E R .  (NS) (NS) (S)  A COW STOOD BY T H E F E N C E . T H E OWL RAN B E S I D E T H E T R A I N . K I T T E N S P L A Y E D WITH T H E B A L L .  (S) (NS) (S)  TWO D E E R STOOD I N T H E F I E L D . T H E WOLF WAITED I N T H E C A V E . MANY DUCKS P L A Y E D T H E P I A N O .  (S) (S) (NS)  NONSENSE  SENTENCE  S  -  SENSIBLE  SENTENCE  DIGIT SPAN DATA SHEET NAME: FORWARD SAMPLES b.  DIGITS 2. 4. 6. 8. 10. 12. BACKWARDS SAMPLES b.  DIGITS _  2.  _  4.  _  6.  _  8. 10. 12.  62 MODIFIED DIGIT SPAN DATA SHEET NAME: SAMPLES a.  b. PRACTISE  a.  ITEMS b.  TWO'S  1.  2.  3.  4.  5.  6.  7.  8. PRACTISE  a.  ITEMS b.  THREE'S 1.  2.  3.  4.  5.  6.  7.  8.  PRACTISE ITEMS a.  FOURS S 1  1.  2,  3.  4,  5.  6,  7.  8.  64 WORD SPAM DATA SHEET  NAME: SAMPLES a.  b.  TWO'S 1.  2,  3.  4,  5.  6,  7.  8.  THREE'S 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.  ;  65 FOUR S 1  1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.  8.  66 READING SPAN DATA SHEET NAME: SAMPLES YES a. b.  ONE'S 1.  _  2.  _  3.  _  4.  TWO'S 1.  _  1.  _  2.  _  2.  _  3.  _  3. 4 . 4.  NO  WORDS  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 L e t t e r Parent Permission L e t t e r  68  70 (PARENT P E R M I S S I O N  July  15,  Dear  Parents,  LETTER)  1991  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 and school principal, I would like t o ask f o r your support p e r m i s s i o n i n a l l o w i n g your c h i l d t o take p a r t i n a study.  your and  This study w i l l be looking at the relationships between 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 as a c o m p o n e n t o f my thesis entitled "The R e l a t i o n s h i p s Between Reading Comprehension and Working Memory in Beginning and Intermediate Readers". The t h e s i s w i l l c o m p l e t e t h e requirements 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 ) from the U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia. 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 words and 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 and i n groups w i t h i n the classroom or i n the school learning assistance center. T h e r e w i l l b e 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 will be conducted with the classroom teachers and teaching a s s i s t a n t s p r e s e n t and 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 at 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 strictly c o n f i d e n t i a l and 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 be a s s i g n e d a number and 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 numbers. 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 take part at a l l .  

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