Achievement in reading and language development among English language learners: A comparative study

Linda Lee Parker, Tennessee State University

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine whether a predictable relationship existed between achievement in reading skills and the development of language skills. A study that could demonstrate a high positive correlation between reading skill levels and language skill levels might provide educators with the possibility of an approach to second language instruction that uses reading instruction to teach academic English. This issue has been the focus of some significant studies in English as a second language education. Chomsky's (1957) research in the 1950s began a half century of research into first and second language learning. Cashdan's (1979) research in the 1970s defined a developmental relationship between listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Krashen's (1982) research in the 1980s established an important connection between comprehensible input and language development. This study used simple and multiple linear regression statistics to determine how well a combination of variables could predict students' performance on the outcome or criterion measure of language learning. The population for this research was English language learners in the Metro Nashville Public Schools, Nashville, Tennessee. The English language learners in Metro Nashville Schools represent 80 languages and 138 nationalities. The students in this study were intermediate English language learners, grades five through eight. The students represented five major language groups found in Metro Nashville Schools. Four sets of analyses were considered: (1) the degree of relationship, if any, between intermediate English language learners' reading composite scores on a nationally normed achievement test, the TerraNova Assessment Series, and the students' language composite scores of the TerraNova Assessment Series; (2) the degree of difference, if any, between intermediate English language learners' composite language scores of the TerraNova Assessment Series and students' first language groups; (3) the degree of relationship, if any, between intermediate English language learners' reading composite scores on the TerraNova Assessment Series and the students' language composite scores on the Maculaitis Assessment Program, an achievement test written and normed for English language learners; and (4) the degree of relationship, if any, between intermediate English language learners' language composite scores on the TerraNova Assessment Series and the students' language composite scores on the Maculaitis Assessment Program. ^

Subject Area

Education, Language and Literature|Education, Curriculum and Instruction

Recommended Citation

Linda Lee Parker, "Achievement in reading and language development among English language learners: A comparative study" (2002). ETD Collection for Tennessee State University. Paper AAI3061769.
http://digitalscholarship.tnstate.edu/dissertations/AAI3061769

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