Abstract/Details

Cognitive and metalinguistic precursors of emergent literacy skills: A reexamination of the specific roles played by syntactic awareness and phonological awareness in phonological decoding, decontextualized word identification, and reading comprehension


2005 2005

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Abstract (summary)

Tunmer, Nesdale, and Herriman, (1988) suggested that phonological and syntactic awareness make independent contributions to reading sub-skills. They also suggested that these relationships were mediated by phonological decoding and provided initial support for these assertions using path modeling procedures. Blackmore and Pratt (1997) questioned Tunmer's ideas about the roles played by these constructs and asserted that they were subsumed by a larger, unitary construct, metalinguistic awareness. Using hierarchical regression procedures, these investigators found that neither variable contributed unique variance to measures of reading skill when the other was controlled. Torok (2002) further evaluated results obtained by both sets of researchers while addressing certain methodological questions raised in their studies. Torok (2002) obtained support for Tunmer's assertions that phonological and syntactic awareness made independent contributions to reading sub-skills. She also found that other cognitive and linguistic factors, not controlled for in the previous studies, made significant contributions to reading sub-skills.

The current study reexamines these relationships using structural equation modeling to control for measurement error. Using the sample Torok (2002) initially used, eleven structural equation models were created to test variants of each set of the aforementioned theoretical assumptions. Comparable model fit was found for both Tunmer et al.'s and Blackmore and Pratt's theories, suggesting that Tunmer et al.'s assumptions regarding phonological and syntactic awareness as separate constructs were viable. Torok's (2002) modifications also produced acceptable model fit, suggesting again, that there are other cognitive and linguistic factors that should be considered when examining relationships between phonological and syntactic awareness and literacy skills. Relationships between metalinguistic awareness as a unitary construct and domain-general analytic ability were also validated and the results suggested that these variables may be reciprocally related. Finally, the results indicated that metalinguistic awareness might be a stronger predictor of general academic ability than previously thought.

Indexing (details)


Subject
Educational psychology;
Developmental psychology;
Language arts
Classification
0525: Educational psychology
0620: Developmental psychology
0279: Language arts
Identifier / keyword
Education; Psychology; Cognitive; Decoding; Emergent literacy; Metalinguistic; Phonological awareness; Reading comprehension; Syntactic awareness; Word identification
Title
Cognitive and metalinguistic precursors of emergent literacy skills: A reexamination of the specific roles played by syntactic awareness and phonological awareness in phonological decoding, decontextualized word identification, and reading comprehension
Author
Torok, Sarah E.
Number of pages
186
Publication year
2005
Degree date
2005
School code
0668
Source
DAI-A 66/05, Dissertation Abstracts International
Place of publication
Ann Arbor
Country of publication
United States
ISBN
0542161109, 9780542161100
Advisor
Vellutino, Frank
University/institution
State University of New York at Albany
University location
United States -- New York
Degree
Ph.D.
Source type
Dissertations & Theses
Language
English
Document type
Dissertation/Thesis
Dissertation/thesis number
3177052
ProQuest document ID
305363012
Copyright
Database copyright ProQuest LLC; ProQuest does not claim copyright in the individual underlying works.
Document URL
http://search.proquest.com/docview/305363012/abstract
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