A Reading Evaluation Method for English as a Foreign Language Learners Based on Reading Performances

A Reading Evaluation Method for English as a Foreign Language Learners Based on Reading Performances

Katsunori Kotani (Kansai Gaidai University, Japan), Takehiko Yoshimi (Ryukoku University, Japan), Takeshi Kutsumi (Sharp Corporation, Japan), Ichiko Sata (Sharp Corporation, Japan) and Hitoshi Isahara (National Institute of Information and Communications Technology, Japan)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-166-7.ch003
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Abstract

In this chapter, the authors examined reading evaluation methods for foreign language learners based on learners’ reading processes. The goal of this chapter is twofold. The first is to evaluate text reading, and the other is to evaluate sentence reading. First, the authors assessed a text reading test to evaluate reading proficiency based on reading process, that is, effective reading speed, which is a complex measure of reading speed and comprehension rate. Statistical analysis confirms the adequacy of our effective reading speed test. Next, they propose a reading time model for evaluating reading proficiency at the sentence level. Their reading time model predicts sentence reading time based on the linguistic properties of a sentence and a learner’s proficiency. Linguistic properties consist of lexical, syntactic and discourse properties. Learners’ proficiency is defined using their score on the Test of English for International Communications (TOEIC). Their reading time model resulted in high prediction accuracy. From these results, they conclude that the reading process-based evaluation method is a promising test for foreign language reading proficiency.
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Reading In A Foreign Language

Reading authentic texts is one important strategy for improving foreign language proficiency. A foreign language learner has little linguistic experience of a target language in his/her daily life. Owing to the recent development of the Internet, it has become easier for foreign language learners to obtain authentic texts. Hence, we consider that reading authentic texts is essential to make up for a foreign language learner’s lack of linguistic experience.

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