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Reading Attitude as a Mediator Between Contextual Factors and Reading Behavior

by Hyo Jin Lim, Mimi Bong & Yeonkyung Woo - 2015

Background: Among the factors known to influence reading development and performance, attitude toward reading is shown to be particularly critical for developing learners. Reading attitude (McKenna, 1994; McKenna et al., 1995) enhances independent reading, levels of engagement in classroom reading activities, and the amount and variety of topics in reading, which in turn influence reading skills and strategies. Reading attitude is an important element in studentsí active engagement and achievement in reading.

Purpose: The first purpose of this study was to test whether Korean studentsí home literacy resources, parental support and parentsí reading attitude, and teachersí use of instructional strategies in relation to reading could predict Korean studentsí reading attitude. The second purpose was to test a model linking family- and school-related factors, reading attitude, and reading behaviors and learning strategy use as outcomes. Specifically, we hypothesized that positive and negative attitudes toward reading would mediate the relationships between home, parent, and teacher variables and reading outcomes.

Design: Using a nationally representative sample from the PISA 2009 database, we tested two structural equation models. Because there were two categories of outcomes examined in this study, we fitted the model separately for each outcome category. The first model (Reading Behavior Model) included reading activities such as reading for enjoyment, reading diversity, and online reading as outcome variables. The second model (Learning Strategy Model) shared the same model structure with the first one except that the outcome variables were use of learning strategies such as memorization, elaboration, and control. In both models, reading attitudes were hypothesized to mediate the relationship between contextual factors (i.e. gender, home resources, parental and teacher influences) and the reading/learning outcomes.

Conclusions: Gender, books and other types of literacy resources in the home, and parentsí attitudes toward reading functioned as consistent predictors of Korean studentsí positive and negative attitudes toward reading. Among the contextual factors, parentsí reading attitude and parental support for reading directly as well as indirectly predicted studentsí reading behaviors via studentsí reading attitude. Parental support for reading and teachersí instruction and assignment strategies in reading directly predicted studentsí use of learning strategies as well. Positive attitudes toward reading also predicted studentsí use of memorization, elaboration, and control strategies. Thus, reading attitude was an important mediator between parent- and teacher-related contextual factors and reading/learning engagement of Korean adolescents.

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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 117 Number 1, 2015, p. 1-36
https://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 17715, Date Accessed: 9/23/2021 7:14:04 PM

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About the Author
  • Hyo Jin Lim
    Chonbuk National University
    E-mail Author
    HYO JIN LIM is currently an assistant professor of Educational Psychology at Chonbuk National University, South Korea. She earned a Ph. D. with an emphasis on Educational Psychology and Technology at University of Southern California, USA. She also received a Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology and a Bachelor of Arts in Education at Seoul National University, South Korea. Her research focuses on cognitive and motivational development of adolescents; sociocultural influences on learning, cognition, and motivation in relation to reading and literacy among diverse students.
  • Mimi Bong
    Korea University
    E-mail Author
    MIMI BONG is a Professor of Educational Psychology and the Associate Director of the Brain and Motivation Research Institute (bMRI) at Korea University. Her research focuses on the interaction between perceived competence, values, and goals; theoretical/empirical distinction between motivational constructs; cross-domain/cross-context generalizability of motivational processes; and the impact of learning environment and sociocultural factors on student motivation. She received the Richard E. Snow Award for Early Contributions in Educational Psychology from APA/Division 15. She is currently Associate Editor the American Educational Research Journalís Teaching, Learning, and Human Development section and serving on the editorial boards of AERA Open, Journal of Educational Psychology, Educational Psychologist, and Contemporary Educational Psychology.
  • Yeonkyung Woo
    Korea University
    E-mail Author
    YEON-KYOUNG WOO is a Research Professor of the Brain and Motivation Research Institute (bMRI) at Korea University. Her research interests focus on the interplay between student motivation and learning environments.
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