Recherches psychologiques et educatives
Volume 10, Numéro 1, Pages 219-236

The Place Of Reading Comprehension In Second Language Acquisition

Authors : Tahraoui Said .

Abstract

The present study aims to show the importance of ESL reading ability in acquiring English as a second language. The study involves 92 college students (males and females) from the Department of foreing Languages at Tlemcen University, Algeria. They represent two groups, the foundation year students and the first year English majors. A number of tests were used to measure students’ overall proficiency in English as well as their reading ability (i.e., the ability to contribute to the main idea of the text, scanning, skimming, to derive word meanings from context, to use a dictionary to find meanings, definitions, to identify prefixes, antonyms and synonyms). Students’ ability to read was correlated to their proficiency level in the second language. It was found in the study that good readers were better users of the dictionary, derived meanings of words from the context and contributed to the main idea of the text better than poor readers did. Good readers were found to be high achievers in the second language.

Keywords

Reading ; Comprehension ; Scanning ; Skimming ; SLA