David D. PaigeWilliam H. RupleyGrant S. SmithTimothy V. RasinskiWilliam NicholsTheresa Magpuri-Lavell

Is prosodic reading a strategy for comprehension?

Shortlink: https://www.waxmann.com/artikelART102909

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Emerging research on reading prosody, an indicator of fluent reading, is finding that it contributes to comprehension processing in students across elementary, middle, and secondary grades. In this study we measure the growth of reading prosody and comprehension of 250 first-, second-, and third-grade readers across the school year using the Multidimensional Fluency Scale (MDFS; Zutell & Rasinski, 1991). Our results show that students gradually improve their reading prosody and reach asymptote with grade-level text by the end of second-grade. We found that reading rate was not a significant predictor of comprehension while word identification accuracy and prosody accounted for 64.9% of unique variance in reading comprehension. Using both a three-step (Baron & Kenny, 1986) and bootstrap resampling approach to mediation analysis (Preacher & Hayes, 2004; Preacher & Kelly, 2011), we found that prosody exerts a significant mediating effect on the relationship between automaticity and comprehension. Additional analysis revealed that a reader’s ability to accurately read connected text with appropriate pacing emerges more quickly than does expressive reading and phrasing. Finally, we use the Implicit Prosody Hypothesis (Fodor, 2002) to advance the notion that prosodic readers may leverage reading prosody as a problem-solving tool to interpret ambiguous text, and thus increase reading comprehension.

Prosody; Fluency; Comprehension; Elementary grades; Reading comprehension