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Vocabulary Knowledge and Reading Comprehension: Differences and Similarities Between L1 and L2 Subjects
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
Responsible organisation
2009 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

This essay will deal with the questions of what impact knowledge of vocabulary has on L1 readers’ and L2 readers’ reading comprehension respectively. As Koda points out "Research consistently demonstrates that vocabulary knowledge correlates more highly with reading comprehension than other factors including morphosyntactic knowledge" (Koda 2004:49) Philip Shaw and Alan McMillion at Stockholm University are doing a research project called ‘Advanced Reading Project’with in all 140 students at university level. There was a gap-filling test on vocabulary and multiple choice questions for synonyms and antonyms. They have also set up a number of other tests to check reading comprehension etc. The aim of this work is to analyze the vocabulary tests’ data provided by Shaw and McMillion. This is done by entering the data into Excel files and sorting the answers and attempts made for each subject, and by comparing the numbers of correct answers and non- attempts to different questions, patterns could be detected that can show differences or similarities between the subjects. Through this analysis and further research we may find the answers to the questions: Which vocabulary items are easy or difficult for all British and Swedish subjects? And what differences and similarities can be found in the answers given by Swedes and British respectively? Are there any patterns which might suggest reasons for the findings? The vocabulary results will further be compared with the results from the reading comprehension tests. The research reported in this essay will test the thesis expressed by Koda 2004: "Successful comprehension is heavily dependent on knowledge of individual word meaning. The widely recognized relationship between vocabulary and reading comprehension attests to the crucial role word knowledge plays in text understanding among both L1 and L2 readers---". (Koda 2004: 48) Could there be other explanations for good reading comprehension other than vocabulary knowledge?

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. , 1 p.
Keyword [en]
Vocabulary, synonyms, antonyms, similarities, differences, cognates, false friends.
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-8703OAI: diva2:175220
2009-01-13, 00:00 (English)
Available from: 2009-03-19 Created: 2004-01-01 Last updated: 2009-03-19Bibliographically approved

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