Effects of two metacognitive strategies on the reading comprehension performance of low achievers. (with Spanish text);

Delma Santiago, Fordham University


The major purpose of this study was to compare the academic effects of training in two metacognitive strategies on the Spanish reading comprehension performance of Chapter 1 ninth grade students. The study sought determine which one of these two strategies is more effective in enhancing low achievers' reading comprehension. Two instructional treatments were used: One emphasizing self-questioning strategy, and the other, summarizing. Both treatments used reciprocal teaching approach, developed by Palincsar and Brown (1982; 1984). This teaching method employs a system of modeling, for instance, while reading, the teacher asks self-questions orally or summarizes and verbalizes the cognitive processes used. Students have the opportunity to practice in pairs or in small groups as part of the teaching approach. The sample consisted of 33 students who were randomly selected from those receiving Spanish remedial reading. From the 75 students, 12 were female and 21 male ranging in age from 13 to 16 years old. La Prueba de Destrezas Basicas de Espanol-Lectura a reading comprehension test constructed by the Department of Instruction of Puerto Rico (1983) was used. An analysis of variance (ANOVA) was performed for comparison of pre and posttest scores, perception of the training, and the quality of written summaries and self-questions. A correlational analysis was performed to determine the relationships between reading comprehension and the variables of sex, age, and academic average in Spanish class. Students read nine narrative and two expository texts. Reading materials included information about the processes of reading strategies. Students in self-questioning strategy were trained in constructing relevant questions using the story schema structure and the ones in summarizing using six rules for constructing a summary. The training lasted 35 class days, for a total of 30 hours. Data analyses showed that significant gains were reached by students in both treatments on literal comprehension, inference making and main idea skills. There was no significant difference between both groups on posttest scores on these skills indicating that self-questioning and summarizing are effective metacognitive strategies in enhancing the reading comprehension performance of low achievers. The results suggest that reciprocal teaching in metacognitive strategies can function effectively in the real context of the classroom.

Subject Area

Literacy|Reading instruction|Language arts

Recommended Citation

Santiago, Delma, "Effects of two metacognitive strategies on the reading comprehension performance of low achievers. (with Spanish text);" (1991). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI9123134.