Linguistic Abilities, Individual Differences, and Sociocultural Backgrounds in English Reading Ability of Korean High School Students: Structural Equation Modeling Approach
한국 고등학교 학습자 영어 읽기 능력의 언어적 능력, 개인적 차이, 사회문화적 배경에 대한 구조방정식 모형 분석

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Ji-young Kim
사범대학 외국어교육과
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서울대학교 대학원
L2 readingL2 reading modelL2 reading componentsreading from sociocultural perspective
학위논문 (박사)-- 서울대학교 대학원 : 사범대학 외국어교육과 영어 전공, 2016. 2. 이병민.
Reading involves complicated interactions of multiple components that have been examined in the field of reading research. Most research in second or foreign language (L2) reading has focused almost exclusively on the role of linguistic abilities such as lexical and syntactic knowledge in explaining L2 reading comprehension. Recent research has recognized that sociocultural backgrounds and individual differences also influence L2 learners’ reading development and reading performance. A balanced understanding of reading components of English reading ability is needed in order to help language educators and researchers meet the reading needs of language learners. However, fewer studies have explored the role of these variables together in L2 reading comprehension in the field of L2 language research, and this warrants a call to study this field from a broader perspective. Hence, the present study aimed to investigate multiple factors such as linguistic abilities, individual differences, and sociocultural backgrounds which affect Korean-speaking English learners’ reading ability in order to establish an L2 reading model. This study also examined whether the structural relationship among these three components differs across higher and lower levels of L2 reading ability groups. A total of 896 eleventh grade Korean learners of English participated in the study and completed a battery of L2 reading component measures. With a full sample of students, structural equation modeling (SEM) was used to identify the contributing roles of linguistic abilities, individual differences, and sociocultural backgrounds in explaining L2 reading ability. Multigroup SEM analysis was conducted with two subsets of good L2 readers and poor L2 readers in order to examine differences in structural relationship across the two groups. Results from SEM analysis with the whole sample demonstrated that L2 linguistic ability was the greatest contributor to L2 reading ability, corroborating prior research. L1 reading ability left the second largest indirect effect on L2 reading ability. Of individual difference category, L2 self-study time and L2 reading engagement was the direct contributor to L2 reading ability. It was also noticeable that SES and L2 home literacy environment significantly contributed to L2 reading ability and other L2 reading components. Findings from the multigroup SEM analysis indicated that the strength of relationships among the components and L2 reading ability was relatively variant across the two groups. There was a significant effect of linguistic abilities in both L1 and L2 for L2 reading ability. Of individual differences category, L2 self-study time significantly influenced L2 reading ability in both groups. While L2 home literacy environment substantially contributed to L2 reading ability in good L2 reader model, SES exerted a strong influence on L2 reading ability in poor L2 reader model. These sociocultural background variables also affected L2 reading ability through their influences on other variables. These findings may indicate the need to consider individual differences and sociocultural backgrounds as well as linguistic abilities in explaining L2 reading performance. The present study implies the need to provide targeted reading intervention and foster a positive literacy environment in enhancing L2 reading ability with further research suggestions toward improving second language reading abilities.
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College of Education (사범대학)Dept. of Foreign Language Education (외국어교육과)English Language (영어전공)Theses (Master's Degree_영어전공)
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