A descriptive study of the effectiveness of reading strategy lessons as indicated by the Reading miscue inventory profiles of selected below average readers

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Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

The major purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of using reading strategy lessons as indicated by Reading Miscue Inventory (RMI) profiles of below average readers to increase reading proficiency. Oral reading miscues of ten below average fifth grade readers were analyzed prior to and following (a) a three month period of reading strategy lessons for the five members of the test group and (b) continuation in the regular reading instruction offered by the school for the five members of the control group.

Miscues were coded according to the procedures and categories of the RMI, written by Yetta M. Goodman and Carolyn L. Burke (1972). By comparing the pre- and post RMI scores of the test and control groups, the effectiveness of reading strategy lessons used with the test group was determined.

Questions investigated by this study included those concerned with both quantity and quality of oral reading miscues. Analysis of miscue quantity indicated that miscues per hundred words of print decreased with both groups, but more with the test group.

Analysis of miscue quality provided the following results: 1. Dialect and intonational miscues produced by both groups proved to be relatively insignificant to the study. 2. Although both groups showed gains in graphic and phonemic similarity, the test group made greater increases in both categories. 3. The test group increased, while the control group decreased, in percentage of miscues retaining the same grammatical function as expected responses. 4. The test group showed gains while the control group decreased in the effective use of correction strategies. 5. The test group produced much higher percentages of grammatically and semantically acceptable structures than the control group following the instructional period of the study. 6. Further, the test group increased in percentage of miscues producing no meaning change, while the control group decreased in this category. 7. In loss of comprehension, the test group decreased and the control group increased. 8. The test group produced greater percentages of miscues which indicated a strength in grammatical relationships than the control group. 9. For the test group, gains were made in all categories of the retelling score, while the control group showed losses in points attributable to story retellings. 10. The types of repeated miscues produced by both groups remained unchanged over the period of the study.

It was concluded from these results that reading strategy lessons, which facilitate the reader's intuitive knowledge of language and emphasize meaning, were effective in increasing the reading proficiency of below average readers.

An investigation of the effects of using initial, mid, final or all codable miscues as the basis for RMI profiles was also included in this study. The results of this investigation indicated no significant difference in the scores obtained by each of these groupings.

Specific implications for educational practices and future research were obtained from the descriptive data of this study.