Putting Reading Comprehension Theories into Practice

Putting Reading Comprehension Theories into Practice




Putting Reading Comprehension Theories into Practice


The traditional view of reading posited that the ability to comprehend information in a text was a gradual process that was optimized when a particular reader accumulated all the sub skills necessary to understand said written material over time. This implied that the meaning was innate in the text; the passive reader was limited to reproducing the text to facilitate comprehension. The words and the structure helped the reader to interpret the meaning of the texts prior to engaging one’s cognition (Kintsch & Vipond, 2014). It follows that it has otherwise known as the bottom up or outside in approach. The approach lays emphasis on the significance of linguistic features in comprehending texts.

The second theory is a direct contrast to the above. It suggests a top-down model of comprehension where the reader in an active participant in the reading process. The model presupposes that there is a psycholinguistic interaction between the text and the reader’s cognition. As opposed to its predecessor, the reading process revolves around the reader. The text plays a crucial but secondary role. The said reader’s makes prediction about the meaning of the text continually improvising it in light of new information (Kintsch & Vipond, 2014). The ability to make a hypothesis on the objective of the text is made possible by the presence of schemata. The schemata help the reader utilize background information on the topic to contextualize the information. These building blocks making up cognition help in interpreting the sensory data, text visualized by the eyes, by retrieving related information from memory thus the reader can infer the goals of the author simplifying the processing of the said content.

Metacognition is the third view that brings to bear one’s consciousness into the reading processes. One becomes intently aware of his or her actions during the reading. Often termed “thinking about thinking.” Rather than infer the meaning or purpose of the reading like the second view, the reader aspires to identify the purpose of the reading prior to commencing the said process. Similarly, he identifies the type or the form of the particular text before any reading engagement begins. The view adopts the compentencies of the two earlier theories. The reader is able to organize the text; create relationships between isolated parts and the text in its entirety increasing comprehension.


The guidelines that assist a reader optimize and implement the gains from a theory can be divided into three stages, preparational, the actual reading, and post reading strategies.


The first strategy strives to familiarize the reader to the topic in question to increase retention. By being acquainted with the necessary background information, the cognitive burden of the reader lightens. The reader should research on the conceptual framework and important vocabulary associated to the text. Secondly, a facilitator present analysis the information found by the reader and adds extra cues required for optimum comprehension. The facilitator can help the reader identify the connections to prior knowledge (McNamara, 2012). The reader also ought to recognize the objective or purpose of the reading. As this may present a challenge to a novel reader, he may require guidance. Depending on the reading purpose, the reader employs different reading skills. He may skim for main points, scan for specific information, extensively read a long passage for the enjoyment concurrently to get the general meaning, or he intensively dwell on a short text to acquire detailed information.

During the reading

The main intention of this strategy is to engage the reader in the process make him an active participant. This entails evaluating, summarizing, arguing, questioning, and relating the said text to one’s experience. The reader ought to develop the ability to predict the subsequent themes. Similarly, he ought to learn to prioritize, making selection of the important information, skipping insignificant portions. Prior knowledge is not in futility; rather it should be brought to bear to enhance comprehension (Perfetti & Stafura, 2014). The reader should be capable of monitoring his reading. This will help especially in re-reading as he acknowledges that he is approaching the text from a point of ignorance or confusion. Either way he has direction of the concept he is expected to comprehend as the current portion of text is juxtaposed to the end goal. The reader ought to develop skill that ensures continuity of comprehension. Stopping to look up terms in the dictionary breaks the thought process. It follows that he should use the context to guess the meaning of the words. Alternatively, he should break down the vocabulary to its component parts and use the affixes and bases to guess the definition. Developing reading speed will only be possible if a passage is read in chunks the said active participants should be able to group similar words together. Pausing to reflect and absorb the information is inherently a technique as consuming too much information may lead to confusion. Paraphrasing the content in one’s own words aids in internalizing the meaning as the reader is forced to review the text from a different perspective.

Post Reading

This strategy strives to influence the learner and provide a better understanding of the text by prompting in-depth analysis. This entails attempting to relate the findings, or perception of the text to contemporary issues. The main intention of analyzing text is not only to add to the author’s the worldview to the reader’s wealth of knowledge but also see where it is applicable in solving day-to-day societal problems. Group discussion helps a person focus on the facts and covert meaning that he had failed to decode. Exercises such as answering questions, filling in forms or charts help build one’s analytical mind.

Techniques Incorporated to Teaching Practice

The first technique employed will be to teach the students the characteristics of a text. The essence of the said actions is to ensure that student is familiarized with the grammatical structures, vocabulary that will be instrumental in deciphering the text’s intent. The aim is to build the student’s capacity by fostering his language awareness. Similarly, as a teacher it is essential to assign a task that is equal to the reading level of student. The reading level is determined student’s cultural background, gender, age, and even hobbies. An individual passionate about the language is bound to expedite his comprehension capabilities (Perfetti & Stafura, 2014). Engaging the students from the onset of through techniques such as brainstorming the text’s meaning is critical. This gives them a platform to question both their ideals and perceptions, to assist them recognize the influence of externalities like bias in the reading process. This way he is able to identify the misconceptions or linguistic deficiency present in the students and subsequently guide the students towards a more holistic world image filling the present knowledge gaps.



Kintsch, W., & Vipond, D. (2014). Reading comprehension and readability in educational practice and psychological theory. Perspectives on memory research: essays in honor of Uppsala University’s 500th Anniversary, L. Nilsson, Editor. 1979, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 329-65.

McNamara, D. S. (Ed.). (2012). Reading comprehension strategies: Theories, interventions, and technologies. Psychology Press.

Perfetti, C., & Stafura, J. (2014). Word knowledge in a theory of reading comprehension. Scientific Studies of Reading, 18(1), 22-37.



Calculate your order
275 words
Total price: $0.00

Top-quality papers guaranteed


100% original papers

We sell only unique pieces of writing completed according to your demands.


Confidential service

We use security encryption to keep your personal data protected.


Money-back guarantee

We can give your money back if something goes wrong with your order.

Enjoy the free features we offer to everyone

  1. Title page

    Get a free title page formatted according to the specifics of your particular style.

  2. Custom formatting

    Request us to use APA, MLA, Harvard, Chicago, or any other style for your essay.

  3. Bibliography page

    Don’t pay extra for a list of references that perfectly fits your academic needs.

  4. 24/7 support assistance

    Ask us a question anytime you need to—we don’t charge extra for supporting you!

Calculate how much your essay costs

Type of paper
Academic level
550 words

How to place an order

  • Choose the number of pages, your academic level, and deadline
  • Push the orange button
  • Give instructions for your paper
  • Pay with PayPal or a credit card
  • Track the progress of your order
  • Approve and enjoy your custom paper

Ask experts to write you a cheap essay of excellent quality

Place an order