Title

Pre-Reading Instructions to Self-Explain: Facilitating Multiple Text Comprehension for Adult Readers

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

10-10-2014

Publication Title

Journal of College Reading and Learning

DOI

10.1080/10790195.2014.906269

Abstract

Two experiments tested the hypothesis that prereading instructions, including how to self-explain during reading, would enhance multiple-text comprehension for college readers. Three prereading instruction conditions included a control condition that provided only the instruction for participants to try to comprehend well; a definition-only instruction condition that required participants to self-explain during reading after they were provided a definition of self-explanation; and a definition-plus-modeling instruction condition that required participants to self-explain during reading after a researcher provided the definition and then modeled the strategy on a similar text. In both experiments, participants read three texts and then completed reading comprehension assessments. Results revealed that the definition-only instruction condition yielded better performance on comprehension assessments. Post-hoc analyses showed this to be particularly true for facts and processes described in the texts. These results provide evidence that prereading instructions to self-explain are effective for enhancing multiple-text comprehension but that instructions do not necessarily need to be modeled to benefit college readers.