Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Everybody can become a better a reader

16.11.2011
Students with cognitive impairments may learn to comprehend written texts much better than commonly thought, according to Monica Reichenberg and Ingvar Lundberg, reading researchers and professors at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

‘Traditionally, we have been hesitant to challenge these students. It’s like we haven’t dared to expose them to certain things. As a result, we haven’t given them a chance to show what they are able to do. Our research project found that their potential for development is much larger than previously believed. It is therefore important that we dare to challenge the students in their nearest development zone,’ says Professor Monica Reichenberg, Department of Education and Special Education at the University of Gothenburg.

The Swedish Schools Inspectorate, Skolinspektionen, published a report in 2010 that showed that many särskolor, which are schools that provide compulsory schooling to children with intellectual disabilities, tend to prioritise a caring climate and a good emotional environment at the expense of reading comprehension training.

A matter of participation
‘Fictional texts have typically been used in this context, but we wanted to focus on factual texts from for example newspapers. We thought this would give the kids a useful tool – well, it’s actually a matter of participation and democracy,’ says Ingvar Lundberg, Professor Emeritus in Psychology and tied to the University of Gothenburg.

The project, which included 40 students in grades 7-9 and lasted for eight weeks, focused on reading of factual texts, often from 8 SIDOR – a newspaper in easy-to-read Swedish. The reading was followed up with structured conversations about the texts where Reichenberg and the teachers focused on ‘why’ questions. The purpose of the conversations was to enable the students to understand and reflect upon the content of the articles.

Structured teaching
There were a total of 82 text talks performed in small groups to ensure that each student was included. It turned out that the students were surprisingly successful at comprehending the texts.

‘Everybody can learn how to read between the lines and make reflections, but it requires well-structured teaching,’ says Reichenberg. The more discussions the students participated in, the more active they became. They for example started to ask more questions. The reading and talking also developed their skills. The project included pre- and post-testing of the students’ reading skills, and most of them performed significantly better at the end of the period.

The project was funded by the National Agency for Special Needs Education and Schools. 

The research project is presented in detail in the new book Läsförståelse genom strukturerade textsamtal (in Swedish) published by Natur & Kultur. The book is designed to be a teaching aid, and targets special needs teachers in particular.


For more information, please contact: Monica Reichenberg
Telephone: +46 (0)31 786 24 51, +46 (0)90 786 76 35
E-mail: monica.reichenberg@ped.gu.se

Helena Aaberg | idw
Further information:
http://www.gu.se

More articles from Science Education:

nachricht Starting school boosts development
11.05.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

nachricht New Master’s programme: University of Kaiserslautern educates experts in quantum technology
15.03.2017 | Technische Universität Kaiserslautern

All articles from Science Education >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

What the world's tiniest 'monster truck' reveals

23.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Treating arthritis with algae

23.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Witnessing turbulent motion in the atmosphere of a distant star

23.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>