Factors Associated with Reading Comprehension of Secondary School Students

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Lin Wu
Martin Valcke
Hilde Van Keer


Secondary school students, reading comprehension, reading motivation, metacognitive awareness, explanatory variables


Student’s individual, family, and teacher factors play a significant role in children’s reading development. However, the mechanisms by which these critical factors jointly contribute to children’s reading comprehension achievement are poorly understood. The present research aimed at developing a multilevel comprehensive model which shows critical correlates, involving these factors, of reading comprehension of Chinese secondary school students. A random sample of 1,322 students, nested in 27 classes, was taken from five secondary schools. The student-level variables included student’s gender, autonomous reading motivation, controlled reading motivation, metacognitive awareness of reading strategies (MARS), and household income. Class-level variables included teacher’s qualification and experience. The results indicated student’s MARS and autonomous reading motivation were the two most powerful correlates of reading comprehension among the significant variables. Furthermore, teacher’s qualification and experience moderated the strength of the relationship between MARS and reading comprehension. Implications for future research, policy making, and improvement of reading instruction are discussed.


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Abstract 442