LINGUIST List 13.1134

Tue Apr 23 2002

Diss: Applied Ling: Goldfus "Reading..."

Editor for this issue: Karolina Owczarzak <>


  1. Carol Goldfus, Applied Ling: Goldfus "Reading Comprehension and EFL..."

Message 1: Applied Ling: Goldfus "Reading Comprehension and EFL..."

Date: Tue, 23 Apr 2002 09:49:48 +0200
From: Carol Goldfus <>
Subject: Applied Ling: Goldfus "Reading Comprehension and EFL..."

New Dissertation Abstract

Institution: University of Birmingham, UK
Department: Department of Linguistics, School of Humanities
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2001

Author: Caroline I. Goldfus

Dissertation Title: 
Reading Comprehension and EFL Adolescent Students with Difficulties:
Exploring a Cognitive Processing Model

Linguistic Field: Applied Ling

Dissertation Director 1: Michael Toolan
Dissertation Director 2: Deirdre Martin

Dissertation Abstract:

This thesis endeavours to present a new approach to aspects of reading
comprehension in adolescents, especially those with a learning
disability, who are reading English as a Foreign Language. A
theoretical model of reading comprehension is proposed which is
operationalized in an intervention programme, applicable both in a
one-to-one situation and in a typical classroom and the results are
reported and discussed.

In order to clarify and contextualize the research, the thesis begins
with a review of how the development of proficiency in mother tongue
literacy is currently understood. It also attempts to show the
relevance of mother tongue text comprehension issues and theories to
foreign language literacy. Relevant studies of dyslexia referring to
a specific reading disability and learning disabilities which refer to
more general comprehension difficulties, as well as those of the
theoretical construct of metacognition, are reviewed. The processes
involved in metacognition are regarded as a crucial aspect of
cognition. An integration of research perspectives from four areas -
reading comprehension in the mother tongue, in second and in foreign
language, dyslexia, and metacognition - is argued to be essential to
the proposed model of reading comprehension in regular and dyslexic
adolescent learners.

The thesis goes on to illustrate a practical application of the
proposed theory. This includes an intervention programme based on the
proposed model, included as a separately bound booklet. By way of
empirical testing of the model, a pilot study using the proposed
Intervention Programme for the Secondary School Student in a high
school classroom was conducted. The results of this study are
reported and discussed. The case for more extensive classroom
implementation of this approach is made, together with recommendations
for further elaborative research.

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