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Understanding Narrative Texts: Inferences Made During Reading by Children With and Without Language Impairments

Title:

Understanding Narrative Texts: Inferences Made During Reading by Children With and Without Language Impairments

McClintock, Brenna N (2011) Understanding Narrative Texts: Inferences Made During Reading by Children With and Without Language Impairments. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

Successful reading comprehension relies on a number of abilities, including decoding and using linguistic and world knowledge to link text propositions. While
difficulties with reading comprehension are well documented for children with Specific Language Impairment (SLI), only a handful of studies have investigated the inferences
children with SLI make as they read. The present study examines the inferences made by children with SLI during and after reading, with particular attention to causal inferences, considered critical to good comprehension. The common procedure for assessing inferences - asking comprehension questions after reading - was combined with the more novel approach of eliciting children's thoughts about the text as they read ("think-aloud").
Twelve children with SLI (M age = 10;2) were compared to 12 age-matched peers with typical language development (TLD). The SLI group had lower scores than the TLD group on literal comprehension questions, and inferential questions requiring informational and causal inferences. The think-aloud data were consistent with these findings, and additionally showed that the causal inferences of the SLI group were less accurate than in the TLD group. Nevertheless, both groups had higher scores on
comprehension questions after engaging in the think-aloud, with the improvement in the SLI group driven by a significant improvement in causal comprehension. The results are examined in light of children's performance on measures of oral language and working memory, and discussed in terms of reading comprehension theories. Practical
applications of the think-aloud procedure are also considered.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Education
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:McClintock, Brenna N
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Child Study
Date:20 December 2011
Thesis Supervisor(s):Pesco, Diane
Keywords:Reading, Reading Comprehension, Inferencing, Language Impairment, Specific Language Impairment
ID Code:974070
Deposited By:BRENNA MCCLINTOCK
Deposited On:19 Jun 2012 14:26
Last Modified:31 Jan 2014 01:38
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