Volume 25, No. 1 Special Issue: Reading in Less Commonly Taught Languages

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    From the Guest Editor
    (University of Hawaii National Foreign Language Resource Center, 2013-04) Anderson, Neil J.
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    From the Editors
    (University of Hawaii National Foreign Language Resource Center, 2013-04) RFL Staff
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    Mastering Academic English by Lawrence J. Zwier with contributions by Matthew S. Wettig
    (University of Hawaii National Foreign Language Resource Center, 2013-04) Meredith, Nancy
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    A model of motivation for extensive reading in Japanese as a foreign language
    (University of Hawaii National Foreign Language Resource Center, 2013-04) de Burgh-Hirabe, Ryoko ; Feryok, Anne
    Numerous studies have reported that extensive reading (ER) has a positive influence on affect. Recent studies suggest that motivation for ER changes. This is in line with recent developments in second language (L2) motivation research that have highlighted the complex and dynamic nature of L2 motivation. This study presents a model of complex and dynamic motivation for ER. This qualitative study examined 9 Japanese as a foreign language learners’ motivation for ER. The participants were encouraged to read as many Japanese books as possible outside class for 5 to 7 months. Data from interviews and journal entries were analyzed for factors influencing their motivation. The participants’ motivation changed as different factors interacted, leading to different patterns of engagement with ER, which fit within the model. This suggests the value of using a complex and dynamic approach to L2 extensive reading motivation. Implications concern the importance of varied materials and of making ER obligatory.
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    Word recognition subcomponents and passage level reading in a foreign language
    (University of Hawaii National Foreign Language Resource Center, 2013-04) Yamashita, Junko
    Despite the growing number of studies highlighting the complex process of acquiring second language (L2) word recognition skills, comparatively little research has examined the relationship between word recognition and passage-level reading ability in L2 learners; further, the existing results are inconclusive. This study aims to help fill the gap. Three word recognition subcomponents (decoding, sight word reading, and lexical meaning access) and general English language ability were examined in terms of their contributions to predicting the reading comprehension and reading rate of Japanese university students learning English. Multiple regression analyses revealed that, in addition to the contribution made by English language ability, lexical meaning access was a significant predictor of both reading comprehension and reading rate, and decoding was a predictor of reading rate only. These results not only supported some previous findings but also added new insight into the influence of efficiency of lexical meaning access to reading comprehension.