Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: A comparative study of UK and Chinese adolescents' perceptions of digital reading
Author: He, Xiaofen
ISNI:       0000 0004 7431 6753
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2017
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
This research examines adolescents’ perceptions of digital reading in the UK and China on the basis of their print and digital literacy practices in school and in out-of-school settings. The comparative perspective employed in this research helps to provide deep insights into the nature of reading literacy and literacy in the changing social and cultural contexts. A mixed methodological approach was employed to investigate how the students interpret digital reading. Multiple methods were chosen, including focus groups, a survey and in-depth individual interviews. Eight focus groups were conducted as a preliminary stage. The result of focus groups and the existing literature review helped to lay the foundation for the design of the subsequent questionnaire. 798 valid questionnaires in total were collected. Deeper insights into students’ perceptions were gleaned through the individual interviews. The three data collection methods therefore enabled both a breadth of evidence to be collected, in addition to an in-depth analysis of the views of a smaller number of students. The findings suggest that both the UK and Chinese students shared similar expanded notions of reading, which confirmed that reading is more than the ability to decode printed texts in relatively fixed space. All the students in this study claimed to use both printed and digital texts. However, the Chinese students were found to be in a more paper-based reading environment and they had more subject-based practices of reading. The students’ preferences for certain text formats were influenced by various factors and their choices of text formats were dependent on the nature of certain texts and reading purposes. The gender gaps of reading among the UK students were found to be larger than among their Chinese counterparts. Meanwhile, this study suggests that reading online is more complicated than print reading. A range of strategies that are unique to online reading comprehension are expected to deal with various challenges in order to have successful online reading comprehension. However, the findings suggest that the UK students might be more skilled in online reading than the Chinese students. According to the students’ claims, differences between the UK and Chinese students in terms of literacy practices, preferences for text formats, gender differences and online reading comprehension could be associated with the social and cultural situations. This research, as the first exploratory study which investigates adolescents’ perceptions of digital reading across the UK and China, has contributed substantial knowledge in an under-researched field. It enriches our understanding of the nature of literacy in different social and cultural contexts.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: University of Warwick ; China Scholarship Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: LB Theory and practice of education