1. 1 Background of study In China, English is a compulsory course, so in Chinese education system has an examination at the final end of each term in Junior or Senior high school. In the examination, it is mostly used as a way to test students’ English level, so English becomes an important course in school education. The exam will test students’ listening, reading and writing ability. Therefore teachers are paying more attention on students’ ability on reading, listening and writing.
Based on researcher understanding about teaching reading, researcher wants to do some research about investigating what types of cognitive reading strategies are used in middle school in Beijing. Aim at cognitive reading strategy researcher wants to the researching about it. And which one is the most commonly used during the reading class. Through the researcher tries to find some problems to teaching at the same time, it also referred in the research. Research paper is more focused on students learning strategy and teachers training process.
For experienced teachers, who are good at summing up experience through their teaching then using in the teaching process. Through this study researcher gets more information about how to teaching reading and reading strategies. 1. 2 Statement of the Problem Researcher finds some problem when doing the research. In the real classroom, teachers have no enough time to give exercises for different level of students when they did reading class. In Chinese secondary school, English teacher should attention on arrange time effectively.
Give enough time on teaching four basic skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing and doing exercises at the same time. Sometimes students can’t concentrate on these four skills, how to improve their ability in those four skills in the same time is the problem. As a researcher need research some teachers and related their teaching experiences they told some skills that teacher should change some basic teaching methods in their classroom . Teacher are not limited on traditional English teaching, but also created some new methods to adapt on different level of students in the classroom teaching. Effectively and improve their ability is important.
Teachers are not only teaching knowledge but also pay attention on students’ attitude and taken in strategies in the classroom. The research is search about teaching reading strategy in Chinese middle school. Researcher chooses a famous middle school to finish the questionnaires. However the defect is all of participates are coming from same school. It can not full access to information and data. It is a problem for the research. To achieve the goals researcher should considers how to choose different level students to finish the questions and consider the teacher’s experiences to complete all questions.
It is a challenge for researcher. 1. 3 Aims of the study This research is aimed to find out one useful cognitive reading strategy among the students used when they doing reading. It can enhance students reading ability when they doing exercises or in the examination. It also becomes a useful strategy when students do reading comprehension in the examination. Although there are many types of cognitive reading strategy in reading comprehension, how to choose one strategy when students doing reading is become a problem and it also can help students save time during their English examination. 1.
4 Research objectives At the end of the research, researcher will list of some reading strategies when teacher teaching reading in the class. After analyze the data, choose one strategy is used among students used. The research objectives are: 1 To investigate the cognitive reading strategies in a middle school students in Beijing 2. To investigate which type of cognitive reading strategy is most commonly used among the students. 1. 5 Research questions The research will seek answers to the following questions: 1 What are the cognitive reading strategies of middle school students in Beijing?
2 Which type is the most common used by the students? 1. 6 Rationale of the study Because the research is survey about reading strategies, so in the beginning of the research, researcher will list down what are the types of reading strategies of middle school students in the school teaching. “There are plenty of strategies for the beginner reader and many can be adapted to fit the needs of more advanced readers as well. ” (Dorit Sasson, 2007). Then researcher chooses 45 students (15 students are attended in the pilot study) based on their different grades and gender to answer the question.
Finally through analyze the data researcher chooses one common cognitive reading strategy is used in middle school students in Beijing. 7. Limitations of the study Research questionnaires are based on the No. 9 middle school students. Limited is both of the students and teachers are in the same school and numbers is the problem. Although their students’ levels are different but the whole English levels are not too low. And choose the students’ number is less than get enough data. Both the quantity and quality are not exactly.
So these are the limitation about the research. CHAPTER ? LITERATURE REVIEW 2. 1 Introduction The first part of this section deals with the definitions of reading. Secondly it will discuss about Issues relating to English in the secondary curriculum in China. Thirdly is reading strategies. The last part will focus on the types reading strategies. Both of the contents are mainly concerned in the real classroom in Beijing. 2. 2 Definitions of Reading Reading is a huge topic, potentially beset with myriad difficulties not easily addressed in a book of this length.
Brindley (1994) in her introduction to the ‘Reading’ section of Teaching English offers a helpful starting process: Reading is a complex area. We can use the term to mean the process itself, or a response to literary text. It is means reading is combine with other knowledge that used in the teaching English. Use the technical term to explain what is meaning and give the answers. Andersen et al. (1985) has shown that ‘Reading is the process of construction meaning from written texts. It is a complex skill requiring the coordination of a number of interrelated sources of information.
’ His opinions is talking about reading is a process which connected the writer’s writing skills and writing content. It needs reader has own reading skills or strategies to understand the meaning of reading materials. What the content is and writer wanted conveyed the information to reader. It is a difficult thing between the writer and reader. There is a book By Joan Brooks McLane, Gillian Dowley McNamee, in one chapter is described that “Reading can be compared to the performance of a symphony orchestra.
This analogy illustrates three points. First, like the performance of a symphony, reading is a holistic act. ” It stands for when reader reading an article, they must focus on all contents and used different reading strategies, mobilize all positive factors that you have when they reading. “Second, success in reading comes from practice over long periods of time, like skill in playing musical instrument. ” Everyone known that want to be successful man, they must persist in one thing that they choose.
Like a player play the wonderful music, they used lots of playing skills and they need long time to practice well. Reading is the same thing like player. If they want to master the reading strategies, they should study how to read and need lots of time to practice and improve their reading comprehension. “Third, as with a musical score, there may be more than one interpretation of a text. The interpretation depends on the background of the reader, the purpose for reading, and the context in which the reading occurs. ” It needs reader give their opinions after they reading the text.
Because of there are many different between everyone, so after they read the text their understanding is also different. 2. 3 Issues relating to English in the secondary curriculum in China Course Description “In describing the role of a foreign language, the 1993 syllabus emphasized its instrumental value for ‘acquiring cultural and scientific knowledge, gathering information, and conducting communication with the world’ (Ministry of Education 1993: 1). ” In the Chinese principle of curriculum, English as an important role in the secondary school teaching.
The purpose is “foreign language teaching in China was ‘to meet the needs of the Open Door Policy and to speed up the socialist modernizations’ (Ministry of Education 1993: 1). ” It stands for China should study how to become a modern country among all over the world. And welcome foreigners come China to do the business or study. The new curriculum is changed. “Using English for the acquisition of knowledge and recognizes the humanistic value of a language in the transformation of the learners’ cognitive and personal development beyond its instrumental value in knowledge acquisition.
” English is becoming a popular course in the new principle of curriculum. Students should learn more knowledge not limited in the grammar or the acquisition, but also for the human value’s benefit and personal development. “English language learning, as described in the 2003 curriculum guidelines, can help students develop ‘intelligence, affect, attitudes, values, and character’ (Ministry of Education 2003: 1). ” The Ministry of Education is more attention on students’ to built good educate environment and provide fully development space for students.
Course Objectives “The 1993 syllabus stressed two basics: basic linguistic knowledge and basic language skills. ” It is traditional and easy syllabus for students to do before 2003. However in 2003, The Ministry of Education published new syllabus objectives is ‘to help students further clarify the purpose of learning English and develop autonomous learning and cooperative learning abilities; to help students develop effective English learning strategies’ (Ministry of Education 2003: 2).
Students’ language use ability is based on ‘a mastery of knowledge, skills, affect, learning strategies, and cultural awareness’ (Ministry of Education 2003:2). Students should master one language when they learning in the classroom. According to the new curriculum, “An English course should help develop students’ ‘critical thinking ability, information gathering and analysis ability, problem solving ability, and a world vision’ (Ministry of Education 2003: 2), which are essential for a citizen in the twenty-first century (Pasch and Norsworthy 2002).
”English is become a course in the classroom teaching and popular in China. It develops students’ ability in all aspects. All these reflect a humanistic approach, which, according to Johnson and Johnson (1998: 158), “respects the integrity of learners, allowing for personal growth and responsibility, taking psychological and affective factors into account and representing whole-person learning, going significantly beyond the use of English as a conduit of knowledge acquisition. ” It needs learners has own opinion’s and some factors will change based on their experiences and reality.
Course Design The 1993 syllabus required only one compulsory module. There were no specifications for the teaching aims and demands for Grade 1. Grade 2 and Grade 3 shared one set of aims and demands in general and distinctions were made only in some aspects of listening, speaking, reading and writing for the two grades. It means there is no specific teaching aim between three grades. And how to distinguish by some aspects on four teaching skills, there are listening, speaking, reading and writing.
The new curriculum offers two modules (one compulsory and one elective) and grades the aims and demands with a four-band system according to learners’ language use ability, and describes each component at different bands in detail. From the new curriculum syllabus, it has targeted for each grades of students and the aims of teaching aid. The ability-banded framework can help solve such problems as the unbalanced development of the curriculum in different regions, the learning gaps between different stages (primary, junior secondary and senior secondary), and the waste of resources as a result of repetition in the curricula.
Based on different backgrounds and others, teacher used different methods. The ability-banded design also provides more flexibility and openness in the curriculum, making it more possible to teach students with diverse competences. Students can learn special technical skills provide the needs of social. Teaching Aims and Demands For teaching aims and demands, the 1993 syllabus emphasized the development of two basics: basic linguistic knowledge and basic language skills. It isolated linguistic knowledge into discrete items, for example, word class, sentence structures.
And confined linguistic skills to classroom application, for example, ‘students can understand classroom English and the explanation of new language points with language learned, do question and answer on the text, and retell the story orally or in writing’ (Ministry of Education 1993: 2-3). The new 2003 curriculum gives meaning to both knowledge and skills and integrates the two by engaging students in active use of the language with what they have learned as knowledge and developed as skills and by describing the language ability as what they can do with the English language.
For example, students know language forms and their functions in real communication, under- stand and master the ways to describe people and objects, to describe the development of events. For students’ all round development, the new curriculum stresses the development of their affect, learning strategy and cultural awareness along with their linguistic knowledge and linguistic skills, and defines specific teaching aims and demands for these components at different bands. Implementation Guidelines The implementation guidelines help to reach the goals set for a curriculum.
The guidelines in the new curriculum, as compared with those in the 1993 syllabus, are more concrete, hence playing a stronger guiding role. Ministry of Education (2003: 23-25): The guidelines for teaching include “focusing on all learners and helping them lay a solid foundation for lifelong development; attending students’ affect and creating a pleasant, democratic and harmonious learning atmosphere; reinforcing the guidance for students’ learning strategies and helping them develop autonomous learning ability”.
These guidelines represent the learner–centeredness philosophy in curriculum development (Nunan 1988: 2003). For teachers’ better understanding of the teaching methods, model teaching plans are provided. Ministry of Education (2003: 40- 42) “For assessment, the stress is put on the explanation of the underlying rationale. It emphasizes that ‘both formative assessment and summative assessment be used and attention be paid to the motivating and facilitating roles of assessment in students’ learning’”. 2. 4 Reading Strategies
The best definition of a reading strategy is the tactics or actions teachers implement in order to approach and make sense of a reading text. Reading is important and necessary for human especially at the present day which technology is growing rapidly. D. C Mitchell (1982:1) wrote that “reading is the way to express meaning from writer to reader. It is the way to exchange ideas of writer according to his/her styles. The ability to grasp these ideas is depending on reader’s experience, language knowledge and attitude as a fundamental basis.
” Reading is a Rebecca L. Oxford (1991:1-163) classified reading strategies into four categories: 1. Memory Strategies 2. Cognitive Strategies 3. Compensation Strategies 4. Social Strategies 1. Memory Strategies are personal strategies that depend on skills and ability of each person by using something close-by as a tool for understanding, learning and memorizing that passage. This is the definition of memory strategies. It means users use memory to remember the reading contents. 2. Cognitive Strategies are essential in learning a new language.
Cognitive strategies are typically found to be the most popular strategies with language learners. Based on the reader’s comprehension, they use their cognitive to understanding the reading materials. 3. Compensation Strategies enable learners to use the new language for either comprehension or production despite limitations in knowledge. Compensation strategies are intended to make up for an inadequate repertoire of grammar and, especially, of vocabulary. 4. Social Strategies is a term of social behavior; it is communication, and communication occurs between and among people.
Learning a language thus involves other people, and appropriate social strategies are very important in this process. 2. 5 Teaching Reading Strategies Teaching reading strategies will increase students on reading skills in the core subject areas; this will also improve the student’s level of achievement. When Student’s are lack of knowledge will affect their ability to learn, read or write in all subject areas. Furthermore, helping students learned to read and write in the core subjects-areas will increase a student’s ability to read in all core subjects.
A student’s reading comprehension skills will improve at the same time. That’s why teaching reading strategies is important in the classroom teaching. The teacher can use reading strategies that connect the students’ interest in core subject areas, this can help a student maintain their focus, improve their ability to understand and then apply what they read to the real world. . Reading is a blend of word recognition and comprehension. This involves the response of printed motivation but the growth of sense or knowledge, is the real meaning of reading.
The reading process is a mix of finding words and comprehension that involves recognition of printed incentive however, the development of meaning or understanding is the core of reading about meaning. The reader should think and talk about what they are reading and the meaning of the passages, and connect them to what makes sense. Teachers and parents should assist the student by having them begin underlining the most important words in the reading material. The process of pre-reading teaching strategies will help improve reading comprehension.
Effective language instructors show students how they can adjust their reading behavior to deal with a variety of situations, types of input, and reading purposes. They help students develop a set of reading strategies and match appropriate strategies to each reading situation. Strategies that can help students read more quickly and effectively include five different types. There are Previewing, Predicting, Skimming and Scanning, Guessing from context and Paraphrasing. Next researcher will list down some characteristics about each reading strategies.
First type is previewing: reviewing titles, section headings, and photo captions to get a sense of the structure and content of a reading selection. Second type is predicting: using knowledge of the subject matter to make predictions about content and vocabulary and check comprehension; using knowledge of the text type and purpose to make predictions about discourse structure; using knowledge about the author to make predictions about writing style, vocabulary, and content. Third type is skimming and scanning: using a quick survey of the text to get the main idea, identify text structure, confirm or question predictions.
Fourth type is guessing from context: using prior knowledge of the subject and the ideas in the text as clues to the meanings of unknown words, instead of stopping to look them up. The last type is phrasing: stopping at the end of a section to check comprehension by restating the information and ideas in the text. 2. 6 Conclusion This chapter is related some review about the definition in reading, compare between old syllabus and new syllabus in China Education system, reading strategies and how to teach reading strategies in the classroom.
These four parts provide more information about reading comprehension and it is very useful for teachers training. CHAPTER ? METHODOLOGY 3. 1 Introduction This chapter provides detailed information regarding the process of collecting the data for this research. The aspects of the research method that are being focused are the subjects, instruments, questionnaires, method of data analysis and also research procedures. 3. 2 Research Design This research is a procedure for collecting and analyzing quantitative data access the research problem. The questionnaire is for Chinese students. It is a survey in No. 9 middle school in Beijing.
This design has chosen because it really suits with how the study is carried out. 3. 3 Research Population For the pilot study and the questionnaire part, the population is all Chinese students and teachers are come from No. 9 middle school. The pilot study researcher chooses 15 students because there are totally three grades and each grade has three students to answer the pilot study. All together the questionnaires give the 30 students to answer it. Another part is the teachers’ part, there are three teachers attended in the pilot study and another six teachers are answering the teacher’s questionnaire. 3.
4 Research Sample The samples that had been taken into consideration consist of 30 different grades students of No. 9 middle school in Beijing. The samples are from same school and the school is well-known in Beijing. The samples are also from different level, their learning background also different. In the samples, it also included 6 teachers are teaching three grades of No. 9 middle school in Beijing. Their teaching experiences are different, because two of them are new teachers. Their teaching experiences are not enough. It can contrasts in different teachers and get the different data during the research.
3. 5 Research Instrument To meet the purpose of this study, the researcher looks at the types of reading strategies and which type is more common among students used and teacher teaching in the classroom. To conduct the process of this study the researcher uses questionnaires for the students and teachers. This questionnaire forms are distributed to the students. This is to gather information of the student’s background and their learning and the teachers’ teaching experiences and methods about reading strategies. The students are given answers and elicit responses regarding the research question.
Teachers answer the research question based on their teaching experiences. 3. 6 Pilot Study It is to check the reliability and validity of results. In the research paper, in order to make sure the questions and data are stable and consistent in the questionnaires. The researcher distributed the questionnaire form to 15 other Chinese students from No. 9 middle school in order to get feedback about the questions, and then revise the survey 16 based on the written comments. The researchers will analyze their answer and data which is focused on the types of reading strategies.
After they answer the questions, the researchers will discuss with the sample and analyze the questions. Will make sure each item is clear. The questions are aligned to the researcher to get the research purpose. As a result of the analysis, there are 15 items which are of the questionnaire. From my statistics the r=0. 79 3. 7 Data Collection Procedure About the questionnaire, researcher followed the procedure of searching information, constructing the questionnaire, inviting the participants, E-mailing the questionnaire, waiting for response, asking back the completed questionnaire.
3. 8 Data Analysis Procedure The researcher analyzed questionnaire data by using descriptive statistics. The procedure includes input data, summed score method to analyze data, report by using tables and summary of the major results. CHAPTER ? FINDINGS 4. 1 Introduction The main aim of this chapter is to investigate the types of cognitive reading strategies and cognitive reading strategies in the classroom among the middle school students in Beijing. In order to achieve these, data are obtained from a questionnaire that provides answers for the following research question:
1. What are the cognitive reading strategies of middle school students in Beijing? 2 Which type is more common among the students used in the classroom? 4. 2 Questionnaires Two set of questionnaires are distributed to two different groups of subject: the students and the teachers. The first set of questionnaire is distributed to the three grades students who are in No. 9 middle school. The questionnaire is distributed to gather information about student’s reading strategies and through their reading process, which type is used more widely among students in the classroom.
The second set of questionnaire is distributed to six English teachers from the same school to find out about teachers teaching reading strategies in the classroom. The information and data gather from the questionnaires are calculated using the ‘percentage’ method. 1. Set 1: Student’ s questionnaire There are three sections in the student’s questionnaire. First section is background information. Table 4. 1 shows the students background information. TABLE 4. 1 Student’s background information 1. Gender |Gender |Male |Female |Percentage | |Students |15 |15 |50% | 2. Grade.
|Grade |1 |2 |3 |Percentage | |Students |10 |10 |10 |33. 3% | The data collected shows the total students are 30. Male and Female percentage are equal in the table. And there are three grades in the No. 9 middle school, the percentage of each grade also the same reached at 33. 3%. The data is suitable to analysis. TABLE 4. 2 Types of Reading Strategies TABLE 4. 2. 1Skimming and Scanning Item NT UNT ST UT AT (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) B1: I briefly skim the 1 5 5 7 12 text before reading (3. 3%) (16. 7%) (16. 7%) (23. 3%) (40%) B2: I skim/ scan to get 3 2 6 10 9 the main idea (10%) (6.7%) (20%) (33. 3%) (30%) From the table, 60% students like skimming reading strategies before reading the text.
Only 4 students or 13. 3% never use this strategies when they reading the text. Therefore they like skimming reading strategies very much, and some would rather remain neutral attitude on this strategy. Students can get main idea through they skim/scan the reading materials. The percentage is very high in these reading strategies. Illustration 4. 2. 2 Previewing [pic] The bar chart shows the percentage of the students who use previewing reading strategies in the classroom.
The middle of blue and yellow bars means that the majority of people keep in neutral about these two questions, Section B question 3 and 4. It reflects that 9 students or 30% and 12 students or 40% not always use it in the classroom reading. Only 3 students or 10% strongly agree use previewing strategies during their reading. And 2 students or 6. 7% never use it. The data is average in this bar chart. TABLE 4. 2. 3 Predicting Item NT UNT ST UT AT (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) B5:
I usually make 4 11 11 2 2 predictions as to what (13. 3%) (36. 7%) (36. 7%) (6. 7%) (6.7%) will follow text. The table of 4. 2. 3 is about students use predicting reading strategy in the classroom. Number of each option is average. Four students or 13. 3%, they never use it during the classroom reading. Most of students are thinking it is “usually not true of me” or “Somewhat true of me”, percentage of it reach 36. 7%. Contrast it the students who choose “Usually true of me” or “Always true of me” has 4 students only. They prefer use it during their reading.
TABLE 4. 2. 4 Guessing from context Item NT UNT ST UT AT (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) B6: While I am reading, I reconsider and revise 5 8 9 5 3 my prior questions (16. 7%) (26. 7%) (30%) (16. 7%) (10%) about the text based on the text’s content. B7: While I am reading, I consider and revise my background 6 7 11 4 2 knowledge about the (20%) (23. 3%) (36. 7%) (13. 3%) (6. 7%) subject based on the text’s content. Question 6 and 7 are related with the fourth type of reading strategy: Guessing from context. The students are also keeping the neutral attitude about this strategy. For question 6, there are 13 students or 43. 4% they don’t like use it.
It takes up most of time doing reading comprehension. Only have 8 students or 26. 7% they always use it in the classroom reading. However the question 7 has some related with question 6. Already almost half of student they choose “never or usually not true of me” this option.
Another 11 students or 36. 7% choose “Somewhat true of me”. Last 6 students they like use it very much in the classroom reading. Item NT UNT ST UT AT (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) B8: While I am reading, I try to determine the 1 11 11 7 – meaning of unknown (3. 3%) (36. 7%) (36. 7%) (23.3%) – words that seem critical to the meaning of the text. B9: As I am reading, I evaluate the text to determine whether it 3 8 12 6 1 contributes to my (10%) (26. 7%) (40%) (20%) (3. 3%) knowledge/ understanding of the subject.
Two questions are also about “Guessing from text”. From the data analyses about this two questions, students who choose the same options with Question 6 and 7. There are 12 students or 40% who never use this strategy. 11 students sometimes use it, but there are only 7 students often use it. No one always use this strategy during their reading.
Some data are the same with question 9. There are 11 students or 36. 7% who never use guessing from text strategy in the classroom. 40% students use it seldom. And only 7 students or 23. 3%, the number of students who choose this options is same with question 8. TABLE 4. 2. 5 Paraphrasing Item NT UNT ST UT AT (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) B10: I summarize/ paraphrase the material that I am 3 8 7 3 9 reading in order to (10%) (26. 7%) (23. 3%) (10%) (30%) remember the text. B11: After I have read 2 8 13 4 3 a text, I review it. (6. 7%) (26. 7%) (43. 3%) (13. 3%) (10%).
B12: After I have read 5 11 7 6 1 a text, I evaluate what (16. 7%) (36. 7%) (23. 3%) (20%) (3. 3%) I have read. B13: After I have a read 1 5 12 10 2 a text I summarise it. (3. 3%) (16. 7%) (40%) (33. 3%) (6. 7%) The last type of reading strategy is Paraphrasing. These four questions are related to the paraphrasing. From the data analyse we can see that most of the students are keep neutral about this strategy. They are neither use it often nor they always use it and still maintains their neutral options through their chosen. Item NT UNT ST UT AT (%) (%) (%) (%) (%) B14:
I search out information relevant 1 10 5 10 4 to my reading goals. (3. 3%) (33. 3%) (16. 7%) (33. 3%) (13. 3%) B15: I evaluate whether what I am reading is 4 8 10 6 2 relevant to my reading (13. 3%) (26. 7%) (33. 3%) (20%) (6. 7%) goals. The last two questions also connected with paraphrasing. There is some different with last four questions. It is happened in the post-reading strategies. It is based on the reflection that readers give feedback after they did reading in the classroom 4. 2. 2 Set 2: Teacher’s questionnaire Set 2 consists of three sections.
There is section A: Background information, Section B: The time arrangement about teaching reading and Section C: Teaching reading strategies in the classroom. TABLE 4. 4 Teacher’s background information 1. Gender |Gender |Male |Female | |Teachers |1 |5 | |Percentage |16. 7% |83. 3% | There are six teachers to participate in the research questions. Five are female or 83. 3% from the table analysis. Only one male participate in the research, percentage is 16. 7%. 2. Teaching Grade |Grade |1 |2 |3 | |Teachers |2 |2 |2 | |Percentage |33. 3% |33. 3% |33. 3% |.
All of the six teachers are teaching Grade 1, Grade 2 and Grade 3. Percentage is average 33. 3%, it shows researcher consider about the data analyze stability and choose the same teacher who teaching in the same grade. The data is easier to analyze and has pertinence for teaching purpose. 3. Education Qualification |Education Qualification |Bachelor degree |Master |Doctor | |Number |4 |2 |- | |Percentage |66. 7% |33. 3% |- | There are three levels for the education qualification, Bachelor degree, Master and Doctor. Four teachers or 66. 7% their education qualification is Bachel.