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C. Dependence of Reading Rate on Previous Reading Experience

C. Dependence of Reading Rate on Previous Reading Experience

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218



7 Results of the Research



x



T1S

T2S

T3S

T1/2S

T2/3S

T1/3S



Total sum of

reading rate

( x wpm)

RE

RE

higher lower

234.4 123.2

254.7 155.4

290.0 196.5

20.3

32.3

35.3

41.1

55.6

73.3



Efficiency

(%)

RE

higher

100

110.1

125.5

11.3

14.2

25.5



RE

lower

100

108.5

159.4

25.9

33.5

59.4



Range

(X max - X min)

RE higher



RE lower



77.2 – 40.5

78.8 – 48.2

90.7 – 58.0

7.7 – 3.7

9.8 – 6.1

17.5 – 9.8



53.2 – 18.5

57.2 – 29.2

59.5 – 40.0

15.2 – 1.7

19.2 – 2.3

34.4 – 6.3



Arithmetic

average

(n = 4)

RE

higher

58.6

63.7

72.5

5.1

8.8

13.9



RE

lower

30.8

38.9

49.1

8.0

10.3

18.3



Fig. 7.38 Comparison of the measured values of average reading rate in the subcategories of

previous reading experience variable (RE)



(including professional) before the occurrence of visual impairment and reading

was their daily activity (Probands B, D, E, I). The subcategory of less experienced

readers included those who read only certain types of texts and reading was not

their favourite activity (A, F, G, H).

Results and Discussions Concerning the Intervening Variables: Reading

Experience

Input performance: From the data listed in the table (Fig. 7.38) it is clear that the

experienced readers exhibit a significantly greater ability to adapt to the unfavourable situation without professional intervention.

In the pre-test, the experienced readers achieved almost double the speed of

reading ( x 58.6 wpm). The value is only slightly under the level of socially acceptable reading rate valid for the population without disabilities.3

In contrast, less experienced readers achieved significantly lower results ( x

30.8 wpm) in the pre-test. The difference between average values measured in both

subcategories in the pre-test was 27.8 wpm.

Part 1 of the ERP: In the subcategory of more experienced readers, the acceleration achieved through environmental adaptation was by x 5.1 wpm (11.3 %). In the

subcategory of less experienced readers, the acceleration due to adaptation was by x

8.0 wpm (25.9 %). The difference in relative values measured in both subcategories

depending on the first part of the programme is 14.6 %.

Part 2 of the ERP (educational intervention): Based on the comparison of the

results of reading experience variable, it was found that the less experienced

readers achieved higher levels of improvement also in the educational part of the

programme. In the subcategory of more experienced readers, reading acceleration

3



The boundary of socially acceptable reading rate is approximately 70–80 wpm (Matějček et al.,

1992).



7.2 Summary Results of the Measurements of Reading Performance



219



was x 8.8 wpm (14.2 %), while in the subcategory of less experienced readers x

10.3 wpm (33.4 %).

The overall effectiveness of the ERP (increase in performance between the pre-test

and post-test): The overall level of reading acceleration, related to the rehabilitation

programme in the subcategory of more experienced readers, achieved the value of

x 13.9 wpm (25.5 %); in the subcategory of less experienced readers, x 18.3 wpm

(59.4 %). The difference between the values of increase in performance based on the

implementation of entire programme is 33.9 %.

Discussion

The observed results confirm the assumption that experienced readers are, due to a

stronger need for reading, more motivated, and frequently achieve a better level of

modification of external conditions for near-distance visual tasks even without professional intervention. The data analysis of case studies shows that the original

external conditions for near-distance visual tasks were not sufficiently adapted in all

the cases of less experienced readers. On the other hand, in the subcategory of experienced readers, environmental adaptations were in one case (B) at an excellent

level and in three cases the conditions were largely adapted (D, E, I). This is also the

reason for a lower increase in reading rate due to the first part of the programme

(by x 14.6 % more in the less experienced persons).

Also the relationship of effectiveness of the educational part of the programme

to the level of reading experience showed a higher potential in the category of less

experienced. The difference of 19.3 % in the relative values of increase in performance indicates a higher educational potential in the group with lower level of

previous reading experience. These persons can especially benefit from the adoption of generally applicable techniques as well as special reading and relaxation

techniques which are used in the first group instinctively or due to self-education.

Based on the overall data concerning the efficiency of the ERP, it can be assumed

that persons, who achieved a lower reading experience in previous life, have a

higher potential to accelerate their reading through a rehabilitation programme

(by comparing the measured values, the average efficiency of the programme was

found to be 59.4 %, while for the subcategory of persons experienced in reading, the

overall efficiency was 25.5 %). Professional literature published abroad generally

agrees that the degree of difficulties in reading is limited by other factors than only

by visual acuity. One of the key factors is experience. Greer (2004) states that the

major determinants are also education, profession and lifestyle. It is clear then that

the training of visual perception and reading skills can increase reading performance even in the target group of persons with low vision. At the same time, Greer

also draws attention to the lack of research studies on this issue which would document the importance of training and specify the exact conditions of application of

rehabilitation methods and tests.

A further potential of reading acceleration was demonstrated also for the group of

persons with higher level of reading experience; a potential which is also significant

as it represents an overall increase in reading rate by more than one quarter (25.5 %).



220



7 Results of the Research



In the tested group, a moderate reading acceleration was achieved due to the educational

part of the experimental programme (by 14.2 %). Again, even here it is necessary to

take into account the possible effect of other variables, especially the degree of

motivation to self-development and activity during and after the programme, which

are closely linked with the achieved performance. ‘Pepper Visual Skills for Reading

Test’ for the evaluation of functional visual performance in persons with low vision

created a category of persons reading accurately and quickly. We believe that this

particular target group has the potential for further growth in performance through

a special training of effective work with text (Greer, 2004).



D. Dependence of Reading Rate on Activity of the Proband

To monitor the dependence between increase in reading rate and proband’s activity

during the implementation of the programme, a typology was created based on the

data analysis of case studies. The basic method of obtaining data was the observation of the proband during individual experimental training lessons, the observation

of the attitude towards independent training tasks and the analysis of the products of

homework. Based on the obtained data, a typology with two subcategories was created. The first one included persons with significant level of activity (Probands B,

C, D); the second one: persons with lower level of manifested activity (A, F, G).

When calculating the arithmetic average of performance in selected groups, n = 3

(Fig. 7.39).

Results and Discussions Concerning the Intervening Variables: Level

of Activity

Initial performance: It follows from the comparison of the average values measured

in both subcategories during the pre-test (without professional intervention) that the

group of active persons achieved in the pre-test the average reading rate of 49.0 wpm,

while the group of less active achieved 31.3 wpm. The difference between the two

subcategories in reading rate in the pre-test was 17.7 wpm.



T1A

T2A

x T3A

x T1/2A

x T2/3A

x T1/3A

x

x



Sum of

correct answers



Range

(X max - X min)



26

30

54

4

24

28



4–1

4–2

6–4

1 – | -1 |

3–1

4–2



Arithmetic

average

(n = 10)

2.6

3.0

5.4

0.4

2.4

2.8



Efficiency

(%)

100

115.4

207.7

15.4

92.3

107.7



Fig. 7.39 Comparison of the measured values of average reading rate in the subcategories of

activity level variable (AL)



7.2 Summary Results of the Measurements of Reading Performance



221



Part 1 of the ERP: The subcategory of active persons achieved, based on environmental adaptation, the acceleration of reading rate on average by 8.4 wpm (17.1 %).

The group of the less active showed the average acceleration in reading rate by

5.6 wpm (17.9 %). The percentage difference of the dependence of reading acceleration in both subcategories on demonstrated activity was only 0.8 %.

Part 2 of the ERP: According to the results achieved through the educational part

of the programme, the group of active persons increased reading rate on average by

6.8 wpm (13.8 %). In the subcategory of less active persons, the value of acceleration equalled 7.4 wpm (23.5 %). The difference of percentages suggested a higher

average efficiency of the educational part of the programme in the group of less

active persons (by 9.7 %).

The overall effectiveness of the ERP: Depending on the implementation of entire

programme, the more active subcategory achieved the average reading acceleration

by 15.2 wpm (30.9 %), the less active by 12.9 wpm (41.4 %). The percentage difference

in performance increase based on the realization of entire programme made 10.5 %

in favour of the subcategory of less active persons.

Discussion

The analysis of data of the first observed relationship provided basic information for

the evaluation of entire category, namely that the persons with higher level of personal involvement achieved during the rehabilitation programme significantly

higher levels in reading rate before the beginning of the ERP (the difference between

the results of pre-test was 17.7 wpm). It is possible to draw a conclusion that activity

exhibited during the programme has a close relationship to personal motivation for

self-development—in this case, increase in reading performance. Activity exhibited

during the implementation of the programme builds on the activity before its implementation, especially in the context of independent effort for the adaptation of

external conditions and self-education in the area of reading. This assumption is

evidenced by the case studies on environmental adaptation from which it can be

concluded that the active persons (B, C, D) showed a significantly higher level of

environmental adaptation already at the beginning of the ERP. All the less active

probands showed the complete absence of modifications for near-distance visual

tasks. The level of activity during the programme can also be related to the lifestyle

of the person and the status of reading in the hierarchy of his/her needs. All the

persons from the active group stated that reading was one of their favourite activities

and they read regularly more than 5 h a week. In contrast, the persons included in

the group of less active were not strong readers even in the past (in all the cases,

reading was used mainly to obtain basic information: letters, daily news; reading

only for a short time).

Based on the earlier given analysis, the reasons for comparable results achieved

in both subcategories through the first part of the programme can be deduced (the

difference was only 0.8 %). This result is consistent with the experience of practise,

namely that the modifications implemented during the first part of the programme

do not show significant dependence on the level of activity.



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