This paper will tell you the answer. 1. Definition of Title Variables 1 . Definition of Reading Comprehension Reading comprehension has been defined in many ways over the years. C. Initial suggests that the overriding purpose to reading is to get the correct message from a text—-;-the message the writer intended for the reader to receive. R. Day and J. S. Park state that the idea of reading has changed and moved from what was considered a receptive process to what is now an interactive process.

Reading can be done using a number of processes that can be divided into two main categories: bottom-up processing and top-down recessing. Bottom-up processing refers to the reader obtaining meaning from the letters and words of a text and reconstructing the intended message that way. Top-down processing refers to the readers’ ability to look at a text as a whole and to connect and relate it to his existing knowledge base. Both processes are needed to obtain a message from a text. 2.

Definition Of Schema Background prior supposed to consist of two main components: “our assimilated direct experiences of life and its manifold activities, and our assimilated verbal experiences and encounters” (J. M. Swales, 199025). Schemata are accepted as interlocking mental structures representing readers’ knowledge of ordinary events (H . Nassau, 2002:439). In the reading process, readers integrate the new information from the text into their preexisting schemata (C. M. Swales, 1 99025). Not only do schemata influence how they recognize information, but also how they store it. According to J.

Harmer, only after the schema is activated is one able to see or hear, because it fits into patterns that she already knows. The notion of schema is related with the organization of information in the long term memory that cognitive contracts allow. Schemata is the plural form that refers an individual’s background knowledge. A schema is the singular form that refers to one “chunk” of knowledge. A schema is made up of subordinate parts called nodes. R. C. Anderson and P. D. Pearson explain the basic processes Of reading comprehension and develop the notion Of schema and its relation to language reading.

Anderson and Pearson maintain that “a readers schemata, or knowledge already stored in memory, function in the process of interpreting new information and allow it to enter and become a part of the knowledge store” They stated that “a schema is an abstract knowledge structure” and that it “is structured in the sense that it represents relationships among its component parts. ” 3. Schema Theory Schema theory deals with the reading process, where readers are expected to combine their previous experiences with the text they are reading.

Since each reader has different background knowledge, it is culture specific. Schema theory was developed by the gestalt psychologist Bartlett “… Who observed how people, when asked to repeat a story from memory, filled in details which did not occur in the original but conformed to their culture norms” (G. Cook, 1987:56). P. L. Carrel formalized the role of background knowledge in language comprehension as schema theory, and claim that any text either spoken or written does not itself carry meaning.

He also claimed that “a text only provides directions for readers as to how they should retrieve or construct meaning from their own, previously acquired knowledge. ” The very important role of background knowledge on reading comprehension is noted by P. L. Carrel that a reader’s comprehension depends on her ability to relate the information that she gets from the text with her pre-existing background knowledge. . The Nature of the Reading Process 1 . Overview Reading is regarded as a major source of comprehensible input and as the skill that many serious learners most need to employ.

P. L. Carrel concluded: (1 ) Our understanding of reading is best considered as an interactive process that takes place between the reader and the text. The basic concept is that the reader reconstructs the text information based in part on the knowledge drawn from the text and in part from the prior knowledge available to the reader. (2) Reading as an interactive process refers to the interaction Of many impotent skills potentially in simultaneous operation; the interaction of these cognitive skills leads to fluent reading comprehension.

Simple stated, reading involves both an array of lower-level rapid, automatic identification skills and an array of higher-level comprehension or interpretation skills. Bernhard asserted that in this process the reader can be involved in the construction of meaning from a text, based partly on new information presented by that text and partly on whatever relevant prior knowledge, feelings and opinions that a reader brings to the task of making sense of the rented words. MA. Barnett pointed that a reading model provides an imagined representation of the reading process, namely, bottom-up and top- down approaches.

The major distinction between the approaches is the emphasis given to text-based variables such as vocabulary, syntax and grammatical Structure and reader-based variables such as the readers background knowledge, cognitive development, strategy use, interest, and purpose (C. G. Allay, 2005:25). Reading is not merely a receptive process of gathering information from the page in a word-by-word manner (W. Grabber, 2001, 187). Rather, it is a selective process and characterized as an active process of comprehending. . Reading Activities From a more pedagogical standpoint, suggestions have been made to use certain activities for activating readers’ existing schema or at least providing learners with crucial information about the top they will be reading. The use of reading activities can promote interpretation of the text through the interaction between the reader and the text and thus play a vital role in schema activation in order to comprehend and interpret the text better (W. Grabber, 2001, 203). I. H. Rotten and M.

Karakas Noted that our knowledge on the value of these activities mainly stems from pedagogical recommendations or personal personal experiences and often lacks scientific scrutiny. Only a handful of studies have investigated which is more effective than merely using brainstorming with short stories. M. Karakas also explored the effectiveness of previewing and providing background knowledge and concluded that previewing is more effective than providing background knowledge. A contrasting finding comes from Z. Sheen, who found that providing background knowledge could help learners better with their impression.

Finally, l. H. Rotten reported that some activities (e. G. , a combination of previewing keywords, scanning, skimming, clarifying asking and answering questions, and drawing conclusions) contributed to the literal comprehension, while others (e. G. , a combination of brainstorming, surveying reciprocal teaching, evaluation, inferring, re-reading, thinking aloud, and discussion), contributed better to the evaluative comprehension of short stories. 3. Research on Text Familiarity and Reading Comprehension A large amount of studies have done into how text familiarity impacts reading comprehension.

Their findings suggested that texts which contain culturally-familiar content schema are easier to process. Other studied have shown similar effects in that participants better comprehend and/or remembered passages that were more familiar to them. Further evidence from such studies also suggested that schemata for content affected comprehension and remembering more than did their former schemata for text organization. P. Johnson investigated the effects of the cultural origin of prose on reading comprehension of 46 Iranian intermediate advanced students at the university level.

Half of the subjects read the untapped English texts of two stories, one from Iranian folklore and and one American folklore, while the other half read the same stories in adapted English. After completing reading, the subjects were asked to do multiple-choice questions to text their reading comprehension. Outcome showed that the cultural origin of the story had a greater effect on comprehension than syntactic or semantic complexity Of the text. In another study conducted in 1 982, It compared students’ recall on a reading passage on Halloween.

Seventy-two students at the university level read a passage on the topic of Halloween. The passage contained both unfamiliar and familiar information based on the subjects’ recent experience for the custom. Some subjects studied the meanings for unfamiliar words in the text. Results of recall protocols suggested that prior cultural experience prepared readers for comprehension of the familiar information about Halloween on the passage. However, exposure to the unfamiliar words didn’t not seem to have a significant effect on their reading comprehension examined the effects of faulty schemata on reading comprehension.

The participants were one hundred and twenty five doing a est. of reading comprehension at the end of an advanced English reading course at Haifa University. The final examination consists of two parts: first section required students to translate five sentences containing vocabulary learned during the course. The second section required them to read two academic texts on abstract topics already read in the class. The finding showed that use of wrong schemata or prior knowledge was a significant factor influencing text scores (M. A. Salaams-Anhydrous, 2003:3) investigated proficiency on university student’s test and task performances. . Overview of he Schema Theory in Reading Comprehension Research on the theory of schema had great impact on understanding reading comprehension. Understanding the role of schema in the reading process provides insights into why readers may fail to comprehend text material. When readers are familiar with the topic they are reading( content schema ) , aware of the discourse level and structure make-up of the genre of the text( formal schema and skillful in the decoding features needed to recognize words and recognize how they fit together in a sentence( language schema they are in a better position to comprehend their assigned reading.

Deficiency in any of the above schemas will result in a reading comprehension deficit. Readers’ apparent reading problems may be problems Of insufficient background knowledge (content, formal, and linguistic). A text does not by itself carry meaning. The reader brings information, knowledge, emotion, and is schemata, to the printed word. Reading is only incidentally visual. More information is contributed by the reader than by the print on the page. This indicates that our understanding of a text depends on how much related schema we, as readers, possess while reading.

Consequently, readers failure or confusion to sake sense of a text is caused by their lack of appropriate schemata that can easily fit with the content of the text. This lack of appropriate schemata can be either formal or content based. It defines these two as follows: content schemata includes what we know about people, the world, culture, and the universe, while formal schemata consists of our knowledge about discourse structure. One of the most important schemas that pose immediate threat to readers is content, or topic schema.

Fifth topic is outside readers’ experience or base of knowledge, they are adrift to an unknown sea. In a review of schema theory, it focus on the role of the individual in the comprehension process and how background knowledge and interests influence the reader’s interpretation. Each individual has different internal representations for the subjects matter of a text. 5. Two Directions Needing to Be Initiated to Improve the Use of the Schema Theory in Reading Comprehension 6. Specification of Component Processes and Their Patterns of Co- occurrence in Less Able Readers Sometimes we get the impression that people think the main implication of schema approaches is that if a reader is avian problems with comprehension, they are caused by a deficiency of requisite knowledge. The solution, then, is merely to build in that knowledge. Clearly, availability of appropriate background is necessary for comprehension, and many reading problems may be traceable to mismatches between background knowledge presumed in a given text and that actually possessed by the reader.

However, schema may be available but not accessed appropriately or efficiently. Even when an appropriate schema is brought to bear while reading, it is not automatically the case that it will be used appropriately. More attention needs to be paid to top-down processing difficulties that go beyond schema availability. (“Top-down” may be loosely equated with “knowledge-based,” “bottom-up” with “text-based. “) We have to say more than prior knowledge matters. How is prior knowledge used? It is very possible that there are a variety of things that can go wrong in top-down processing.

However, unless we know better what should be occurring it will be difficult to precisely determine what is going wrong. Thus we need to identify and model the components of the process by which preexisting knowledge affects the comprehension of new knowledge. Toward this end, at a very general level, several aspects of the total process that may form a useful taxonomy to guide further study. 6. 1. 1 Schema acquisition Where do our knowledge structures come from in the first place? This question continues to puzzle developmental psychologists. Cognitive psychologists of the last twenty years have had little to say about learning.

However, various difficulties could result from problems of schema acquisition. If schemata are not acquired in great enough quantity, they may tend to be frequently absent, leading readers to think that their knowledge is to relevant even in those cases where it might be. Or if the schemata tend to be insufficiently general and overly tied to personal experience, they may not be readily enough applicable to a sufficiently wide range of situations. Even when an individual has a rich store of schemata, it is unreasonable to think he or she will have to be built (or at least altered) to fit the demands of a given situation.

It should be noted, however, that the demands on writers and speakers to be “cooperative” suggest that this problem may not OCCUr as often as might think; if it is expected that readers or headers will not have appropriate prior knowledge to understand a discourse, cooperative communication are expected to provide it. 6. 1. 2 Schema Selection How does one know which knowledge structure to bring to bear in a given situation (including those situations for which a directly relevant schema does not exist, so that a structurally similar one must be selected and used by analogy)?

If a schema is inaccessible, it has the same consequences as is it were nor available. If it is not readily and effortlessly accessible, the flow of other aspects of the process may be disrupted. 6. 1. 3 Schema Change and Maintenance Again, as discourse proceeds, different schemata will have to be brought to bear at different times, depending on signals from the text. What may be less obvious is that a schema which has had its relevance clearly signaled at one point in a text will often continue to be relevant long past the point of the original explicit signal.

In these cases there may be problems of schema maintenance, which in turn produce problems of information integration across segments of the text. 6. 1. 4 Schema Combination In same, perhaps most, cases, individual knowledge structures will not suffice for understanding a given part of a discourse. Rather, schemata will have to be combined. Furthermore, the result of that combination may issue in a product not inferable by an additive combination of its schema parts. Needless to say, such issues of emergence are still poorly understood in psychology.

In a sense, each of the remaining sections also deals with deficiencies in our knowledge of the specifics of the contribution of prior knowledge to comprehension. They differ from this section in that they deal with particular problems; the current situation was intended to argue for a more detailed inquiry into the components of the entire process and their interaction. 2. Individual Difference in Comprehension Style 62. 1 General Description Clearly there are differences in the component skills of individual readers that affect their performance.

However, a theoretically distinct question that can be asked is whether individuals with comparable reading skills all read the same way. Here the question is not so much concerned with differences between more and less able readers, as with difference in comprehension styles. Despite the fact that constructive processes in comprehension have been the subject of continuous investigation for several years now, there has en next to no consideration of individual differences in that vein.

If someone who accepted the constructivist premise were to ask whether anyone did it in the same way, there would be no basis for a reply. This is particularly surprising given the emphasis in constructive theories on personal contributions of the comprehended, and the use of more natural and personally relevant sorts of the stimuli that have characterized the movement away from the isolated materials of the verbal learning tradition. 6. 2. Relationships between Comparable Reading Skills and the Way They recess Text Recent work has shown, however, that all those with comparable reading skills do not process text he same way. Rather, individuals differ in the way they allocate their limited capacity processing resources. As we have repeatedly seen demonstrated, reading comprehension is an interactive process. What we already know informs in top-down fashion information from text that is being processed from the bottom-up.

At the most general level, some individuals seem to rely more on the contributions of text to understanding; others stress processes based on what they already know. This is true of adult skilled readers (Spiro&Tirre, 1980) and of children who are far maturely as readers (Spiro, Tire, Threnody, & Delicacy, 1980). For the former, the pattern is frequently one of an optional distribution of processing in a preferred direction, with little effect on success of performance. For the latter, the problem sometimes appears to be more serious, with maladaptive patterns of overbalance manifest. . 2. Solutions to the Current Problems The instructional implications of such findings, if the interpretation continues to be validated by future research, appear to be profound. Common sense would suggest that the most effective strategies for exactly the correcting the problems of individuals with one type of style would be exactly the opposite of what would most help readers with the other type Of style. For example, if a reader is overrating to the text, instruction should seek to enlighten the child as to the importance of using prior knowledge as a context for understanding.

However, the reader who is not paying enough attention to the text will find his or her problem refined by instruction that stresses using prior knowledge more! Hence a failure to consider individual preferences in reading comprehension styles in the classroom may lead either to helping some while hurting others or, if a middle road is adopted, providing optimal help for nobody. The story on discourse processing styles does not stop with the dichotomy just discussed, however.

One must also consider the etiology of an individual’s style (Spiro, 1979). A given style can result from a variety of causes, and each might imply its own preferred treatment. 7. Conclusion The ability to understand a text is based not only on the reader’s linguistic knowledge, but also on general knowledge of the world and the extent to which that knowledge is activated during processing. According to schema theory, our background knowledge (schemata) and its pertinence to the text determines the ease or complexity of understanding that text.

In other words, no matter how well a reader may know a language, he or she cannot read in that language with good comprehension if the subject matter or the content of the text is one he or she knows absolutely nothing about Activation of the knowledge structures is vital to the reader because he or she can make predictions about what is going on in a text. The reader makes predictions ND actively seeks to confirm his or her schematic sense of what is taking place in a reading passage and if what was predicted is not confirmed, the reader can refine his schema thus making it even more elaborate, more nuanced.