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Title: The effects of direct instruction in phonological skills on L2 reading performance of Chinese learners of English
Author: Ng, Sau-Wai Christina
ISNI:       0000 0001 3445 0657
Awarding Body: Institute of Education, University of London
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2006
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Phonological skills are found to be highly predictive of children's reading achievement in the English LI context. Chinese ESL learners are found to be weak in phonological skills because of their logographic Ll background. They often have difficulties in decoding English words, and thus affect their L2 reading development. LI training studies showed that improvement in phonological skills will lead to improvement in reading performance. But no similar training study for Chinese ESL learners is found. This thesis reports three studies which aim at (i) confirming the relationship between phonological skills and reading development in the L2 context of Chinese learners, (ii) identifying the effects of phonological skills training on reading performance, and (iii) determining the effective level or age for receiving the training. The first study compared two groups of Chinese ESL learners, one with phonological skills training in their LI literacy experience and the other without. Results indicated that better phonological skills had led to more effective L2 reading development of the former group. The second and third studies are phonological skills training experiments conducted to Hong Kong students at primary and secondary school levels. The studies found that training at primary level was effective in improving the students' phonological skills, decoding efficiency and reading performance. However, the phonological skills training at secondary level produced no significant effect. Results of the three studies together add positive evidence to research related to phonological skills and reading development, especially in the L2 context. Results of the two training studies conducted at different levels indicate that phonological skills training can be effective if given at early stage, to support L2 literacy development and to counteract interference from Ll. The participants' age and the length of the programme could be determining factors for the effectiveness of the training.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available