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Comparison of reading-writing patterns and performance of students with and without reading difficulties

Raquel Fidalgo1, Mark Torrance2, Olga Arias-Gundín1 and Begoña Martínez-Cocó1

1 Universidad de León and
2 Nottingham Trent University (United Kingdom)

Background: This paper analyses performance and the process used in carrying out a common hybrid task, such as, summarizing a text, from a developmental point of view and comparing the differences between students with and without reading difficulties. Method: 548 students typically developing and 54 students with learning difficulties for reading (grades 5 to 8, ages 11 to 14) read and summarized a text using the triple task technique and then they did a comprehension questionnaire. Attention was paid to the various activities undertaken during this task, their cognitive cost, and the organization of reading and writing activities throughout the exercise, together with performance through evaluation of the summary and the reading comprehension questionnaire. Results: There were no significant differences in performance or strategies used for the task between students of primary and secondary education. A linear reading-writing process was mostly employed by both, with greater cost and time needed by primary students. Students with reading difficulties did not show any strategies compensating for the greater difficulty and cognitive cost that the task represents for them. Conclusions: The effective and strategic use of summarizing as a learning tool seems to demand a specific training for students with or without reading difficulties.

Comparación de los patrones de lectura-escritura y el rendimiento de alumnos con y sin dificultades de lectura. Antecedentes: se analiza el rendimiento y el proceso seguido en la realización de una tarea híbrida, resumir un texto, desde un punto de vista del desarrollo y comparativamente entre alumnos con y sin dificultades en lectura. Método: 548 estudiantes de rendimiento normal y 54 con dificultades en el aprendizaje de la lectura (5º de Primaria a 2º de Secundaria, 11 a 14 años) realizaron la lectura y resumen de un texto, junto a la técnica de la triple tarea, y posteriormente un cuestionario de comprensión lectora. Se analizaron el tipo de actividades realizadas durante la tarea, su coste cognitivo, la distribución de los procesos de lectura y escritura, y el nivel de comprensión lectora. Resultados: no hubo diferencias estadísticamente significativas en el rendimiento o las estrategias usadas durante la tarea entre el alumnado de Primaria y de Secundaria; solo los primeros emplearon un mayor tiempo en la tarea, con un mayor coste cognitivo. Los alumnos con dificultades no mostraron ningún tipo de estrategia para compensar sus dificultades y el mayor coste cognitivo de este tipo de tarea. Conclusiones: el uso estratégico del resumen como herramienta de aprendizaje demanda un entrenamiento específico en alumnado con y sin dificultades.


Impact Factor JCR SSCI Clarivate 2023 = 3.2 (Q1) / CiteScore SCOPUS 2023 = 6.5 (Q1)