Thursday, April 8, 2010

Effects of Repeated Reading and Listening-While-Reading on Reading Fluency

Rasinski, T.V. (1990). Effects of Repeated Reading and Listening-While-Reading on Reading Fluency. Journal of Educational Research, 83(3), 147-150.

This article looks at the effects of repeated readings and listening-while-reading on reading fluency. The effectiveness of these two approaches was compared in a third grade classroom. In repeated readings learners practice reading the same text over and over until an expected level of fluency is achieved. Not only does this help with the passage they are reading, but also the fluency tends to transfer to previously unread text.

Another technique that can be used to increase reading fluency is repeated listening-while-reading texts. Readers read while listening to a fluent rendition of the same text. The use of both these techniques may be more effective then using one alone.

In his study 20 students were chosen from several elementary schools. They were paired with students of equal reading ability and represented high, average, and low reading abilities. Fourth grader reading passages were used and contained 100 words. A pretest was given, and then the students went through a cycle of repeated readings for four days and then listening-while-reading for four days. A posttest was given after each cycle. No difference was found for the rate of accuracy in either case. Both had a positive impact on the reader’s reading fluency and are effective in promoting reading fluency.

While there was an increase in reading fluency using these two methods of rereading and listening-while-reading, there are some limitations. Students may lose interest and motivation of previously read passages. Therefore, these are great strategies to use in the classroom, but need to be combined with other strategies and integrated into the curriculum.

“The development of reading fluency in students is considered an important goal of reading instruction.” (147)

“…gains in fluency made through the repeated readings of one text are transferred to new, previously unread texts is critical to the methods of repeated readings.” (147)

“Repeated reading and repeated listening-while-reading activities may be appropriate not only for average and above-average readers but also for those experiencing difficulty in learning to read.” (149-150)

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