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The Relationship Between Decoding and Comprehension in L1 Readers of the Quran

SLHS 794

Khadra Haro

on 13 December 2012

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Transcript of The Relationship Between Decoding and Comprehension in L1 Readers of the Quran

Khadra Haro-Yusuf Literacy Instruction in a non-native language and its effects on L2 literacy. Defining Literacy Ability to read, write, and comprehend printed information.

Definition has evolved as its uses have expanded.

Technological advances have dramatically expanded what it means to be literate.

Technology literacy is described as the knowledge of computers and the ability to use it as an aid to improve learning, performance, productivity (Evans, 2005). Literacy is strongly linked to social mobility (Evans, 2005).
Cultures who do not have strong reliance on literacy as a means of social mobility are viewed as "disadvantaged" or "primitive."
Ong (1982;2002) suggests that cultures that have had contact with print yet maintain their traditions of orality are aware of the "powers forever inaccessible without literacy" and that such individuals are in "agony."
New Literacy Studies expand the notion of literacy to "capture the complexities of literacy practices in the social contexts that make them meaningful" (Snyder, 2001; Buschman, 2009). Orality/Literacy Divide For many Muslims worldwide, the primary source of literacy is obtained through the Qur'an.
The level to which such literacy skills are attained varies greatly between various Muslim cultures.
For many, this will be the only means of literacy.
For example, Somali Muslims maintain their culture through orality, many acquire the ability to read and write the Qur'an while lacking such skills in their native language (Moore, 2006). Qur'an as a Means of Literacy Qur'an as a Means of Literacy Qur’anic instruction emphasizes rote memorization and transcription (Moore, 2006).
Children are taught to increase memorization and fluency through guided instruction, utilizing modeling, imitation, and rehearsal (Moore, 2006).
Children acquire print concepts, alphabet knowledge, letter-sound correspondence, fluency, and decoding skills (Moore, 2006), specific to the Qur’an. Interestingly, both written and verbal recitations of the Qur’anic verses are taught without instruction on comprehension.
Comprehension is not only critical for reading skills, but it is also important for successful performance in academic, social, and oral language development.
Smith (1994) states that comprehension is not a result of reading rather it is the foundation. The development of reading comprehension is not autonomous it requires fluency, vocabulary instruction, and reading comprehension strategies (NRP, 2000).
Proponents of decoding suggest that meaning is only attainable through words, and as such, the ability to decode will influence comprehension.
For individuals with limited literacy skills such as readers of the Qur’an, who emphasize decoding over comprehension, it is difficult to discern the extent to which their strong reading fluency affects their reading comprehension. Examining the level to which such factors will effect literacy skills in L2 is critical since many practicing Muslims enroll their children in dual schooling (i.e., formal schooling and Qur’anic instruction). Rosowksy (2001) Examined reading strategies employed by monolingual and bilingual students enrolled in an urban secondary school.
Bilingual participants received extensive Qur'an literacy.
Administered the NFER Group Reading Test & Neale Analysis of Reading Ability to assess reading accuracy, speed, and comprehension.
Results: Bilingual participants were better able to decode text; however, monolingual participants were far superior on reading comprehension. Research Proposal Research Question:
What are the effects of learning literacy in a non-native language when learning to read in L2?
Groups: Kindergarten- 2nd grade Somali students who engage in literacy practices in the Qur'an and those who do not.
Retrospective study examining literacy skills at the end of 2nd grade
Questionnaire regarding reading practices at home.
English reading practice, Qur'an reading levels and instruction type
Records review of performance throughout
Compare 2nd grade reading benchmarks
Examining progress and final reading ability

The participants who learn to read the Qur'an will demonstrate strong fluency skills and their reading comprehension will be comparable to ELL peers.
Participants were identified as having literacy disorders.
Participants were selected due to similar reading comprehension scores.
No information regarding their levels of reading in the Qur'an or frequency of instruction.
Data was not analyzed using any statistical analysis. Thank You! Buschman, J. (2009). Information literacy, "New" literacies, and literacy. The Library Quarterly, 79(1), 95-118.
Evans, E. J. (2005). Autonomous literacy or social practice? Students' constructions of technology literacy. Journal of Literacy and Technology, 5(1), 1-40.
Moore, L. (2011). Moving across languages, literacies, and schooling traditions. Language Arts, 88(4), 288-297.
Ong, W. J. (2002). Orality and literacy: The technologizing of the word. New York, NY: Routledge.
Rosowsky, A. (2001). Decoding as a cultural practice and its effects on the reading process of bilingual pupils. Language and Education, 15, 56–70.
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