Empirical research has provided evidence for the simple view of reading across a variety of orthographies, but the role of oral reading fluency in the model is unclear. Moreover, the relative weight of listening comprehension, oral reading fluency and word recognition in reading comprehension seems to vary across orthographies and schooling years. This study aims to examine the direct effects of these three variables on reading comprehension and to test for the existence of indirect effects of word recognition and listening comprehension on reading comprehension via oral reading fluency in European Portuguese, an orthography of intermediate depth. A sample of 264 students was assessed at the end of grades 2 and 4. Structural equation modeling analyses indicated that listening comprehension, word recognition and oral reading fluency predicted reading comprehension in both grade 2 and grade 4. Moreover, the three variables measured in grade 2 predicted later reading comprehension in grade 4. Listening comprehension was always the strongest predictor. Oral reading fluency mediated the relationship between word recognition and reading comprehension, but it was not a mediator variable in the relationship between listening comprehension and reading comprehension. These findings indicate that, similarly to what has been found for other orthographies, the simple view of reading is a valid framework to account for reading comprehension variability in European Portuguese and that interventions to increase reading comprehension levels should focus on word recognition, fluency, and, especially, listening comprehension.
Reading and Writing – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 10, 2016
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