Thesis

Writing and reading memoir

The purpose of this study was to examine the question: does writing a memoir before reading a memoir increase reading comprehension in high school students? The literature is almost silent on the impact of writing on reading comprehension. There is a preponderance of research on reading before writing as a pedagogical model. The methodology was a quantitative analysis using a quasi-experimental design with control/experimental groups. An English as Second Language (ESL) 3,4 class was the experimental group while an ESL 5, 6 class was the control group. Pre-tests were administered in both reading and writing while post-tests measured any gains that students made. Student gains in both groups were then compared in reading comprehension and writing quality. A reader response letter was used to measure both efferent and aesthetic reading comprehension of a memoir, supported by a reader response letter rubric. A six traits rubric was used to assess writing that measured, ideas, organization, voice, word choice, sentence fluency and conventions in students' own memoirs. Students in the control group made the most gains in reading comprehension. Students in both groups made gains in writing. The experimental group did not increase in reading comprehension scores. However, they read the same memoir as the control group so they made more gains than is reflected in the results of the data. Further research is recommended, with a longer period of time to conduct the study.

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