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Investigating the Effects of Electronic CD-ROM Storybooks and Traditional Print Storybooks on Reading Comprehension of F...

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0024076/00001

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Title: Investigating the Effects of Electronic CD-ROM Storybooks and Traditional Print Storybooks on Reading Comprehension of Fourth Grade Struggling Readers
Physical Description: 1 online resource (148 p.)
Language: english
Creator: Ertem, Ihsan
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2009

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords: animation, cd, comprehension, computer, effects, electronic, elementary, fourth, grade, interactive, literacy, print, readers, reading, retelling, rom, software, storybooks, struggling, technology, traditional
Teaching and Learning -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre: Curriculum and Instruction (ISC) thesis, Ph.D.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract: INVESTIGATING THE EFFECTS OF ELECTRONIC CD-ROM STORYBOOKS AND TRADITIONAL PRINT STORYBOOKS ON READING COMPREHENSION OF FOURTH GRADE STRUGGLING READERS This study examined the differences in struggling readers? comprehension of storybooks according to the medium of presentation. Each student was randomly assigned with one of three conditions: (1) computer presentation of storybooks with animation; (2) computer presentation of storybooks without animation; and (3) traditional print storybooks. Two different storybooks were used and 77 students participated. Participants were selected among fourth-grade students who were reading below current grade level and not meeting Sunshine State Standard as measured by Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (Reading Level one or Reading Level two). Twenty-five of these students read the electronic version of storybooks with animation, 26 students read the same but without animation and 26 students read the traditional print storybooks. Comprehension was measured by using multiple-choice comprehension test and retelling. Subjects were instructed to read electronic CD-ROM storybooks. After completion of reading, subjects answered multiple-choice comprehension test and performed an oral retelling. The oral retellings were recorded and then scored by two independent raters using Morrow?s 10-point Scale. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to test two research questions at the .05 level of significance. One dependent variable is reading comprehension as measured by the multiple-choice comprehension test, and the second dependent variable is reading comprehension as measured by the retelling. The independent variable is the type of medium of presentation. The results of statistical analysis indicated that there was significant difference in the students' comprehension scores. In other words, when comprehension was measured by using multiple-choice comprehension test and retelling, the students who read the computer presentation of storybooks with animation showed significantly higher comprehension scores than students who read the computer presentation of storybooks without animation and the traditional print version of storybooks. When the student controlled the animation functions of electronic storybooks, the animated illustrations were shown to result in significantly higher improvement of comprehension scores, both in terms of the students' ability to retrieve information and to make inferences from the stories. The results of the research also indicated that electronic CD-ROM storybooks can improve reading comprehension and can be beneficial for struggling readers.
General Note: In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note: Includes vita.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility: by Ihsan Ertem.
Thesis: Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Florida, 2009.
Local: Adviser: Ferdig, Richard E.
Electronic Access: RESTRICTED TO UF STUDENTS, STAFF, FACULTY, AND ON-CAMPUS USE UNTIL 2011-08-31

Record Information

Source Institution: UFRGP
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: lcc - LD1780 2009
System ID: UFE0024076:00001

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0024076/00001

Material Information

Title: Investigating the Effects of Electronic CD-ROM Storybooks and Traditional Print Storybooks on Reading Comprehension of Fourth Grade Struggling Readers
Physical Description: 1 online resource (148 p.)
Language: english
Creator: Ertem, Ihsan
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2009

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords: animation, cd, comprehension, computer, effects, electronic, elementary, fourth, grade, interactive, literacy, print, readers, reading, retelling, rom, software, storybooks, struggling, technology, traditional
Teaching and Learning -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre: Curriculum and Instruction (ISC) thesis, Ph.D.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract: INVESTIGATING THE EFFECTS OF ELECTRONIC CD-ROM STORYBOOKS AND TRADITIONAL PRINT STORYBOOKS ON READING COMPREHENSION OF FOURTH GRADE STRUGGLING READERS This study examined the differences in struggling readers? comprehension of storybooks according to the medium of presentation. Each student was randomly assigned with one of three conditions: (1) computer presentation of storybooks with animation; (2) computer presentation of storybooks without animation; and (3) traditional print storybooks. Two different storybooks were used and 77 students participated. Participants were selected among fourth-grade students who were reading below current grade level and not meeting Sunshine State Standard as measured by Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (Reading Level one or Reading Level two). Twenty-five of these students read the electronic version of storybooks with animation, 26 students read the same but without animation and 26 students read the traditional print storybooks. Comprehension was measured by using multiple-choice comprehension test and retelling. Subjects were instructed to read electronic CD-ROM storybooks. After completion of reading, subjects answered multiple-choice comprehension test and performed an oral retelling. The oral retellings were recorded and then scored by two independent raters using Morrow?s 10-point Scale. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to test two research questions at the .05 level of significance. One dependent variable is reading comprehension as measured by the multiple-choice comprehension test, and the second dependent variable is reading comprehension as measured by the retelling. The independent variable is the type of medium of presentation. The results of statistical analysis indicated that there was significant difference in the students' comprehension scores. In other words, when comprehension was measured by using multiple-choice comprehension test and retelling, the students who read the computer presentation of storybooks with animation showed significantly higher comprehension scores than students who read the computer presentation of storybooks without animation and the traditional print version of storybooks. When the student controlled the animation functions of electronic storybooks, the animated illustrations were shown to result in significantly higher improvement of comprehension scores, both in terms of the students' ability to retrieve information and to make inferences from the stories. The results of the research also indicated that electronic CD-ROM storybooks can improve reading comprehension and can be beneficial for struggling readers.
General Note: In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note: Includes vita.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility: by Ihsan Ertem.
Thesis: Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Florida, 2009.
Local: Adviser: Ferdig, Richard E.
Electronic Access: RESTRICTED TO UF STUDENTS, STAFF, FACULTY, AND ON-CAMPUS USE UNTIL 2011-08-31

Record Information

Source Institution: UFRGP
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: lcc - LD1780 2009
System ID: UFE0024076:00001


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1 INVESTIGATING THE EFFECTS OF ELE CTRONIC CD-ROM STORYBOOKS AND TRADITIONAL PRINT STOR YBOOKS ON READING COMPREHENSION OF FOURTH GRADE STRUGGLING READERS By IHSAN SEYIT ERTEM A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLOR IDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2009

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2 2009 Ihsan Seyit Ertem

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3 To my mom, who alwa ys believed in me

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4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I would like to acknowledge m any people for he lping my doctoral work. I extend sincere appreciation and gratitude to Dr. Richard Ferd ig, Chairperson, for all his patience, knowledge, constructive advice, encouragement, and assistan ce. He encouraged me to develop independent thinking and research skills. I am extremely grateful for having an excep tional doctoral committee. Sincere thanks to Dr. Richard Allington, Dr. David Miller, and Dr. Zhihui Fang for their professionalism, expertise, guidance, and significant time throughout my journey in completing this doctoral program. For their help and genuine interest I wish to thank Dr. Linda Lamme and Dr. Danling Fu. Gratitude is also expressed to th e director, principals, fourth gr ade coordinators, teachers, media specialists, staff and students of Alachua C ounty School Board and Elementary Schools who willingly helped, supported and participated in this study. Without their support and participation, this research would not have been complete. I thank especi ally Dr. Steven Stark, Dr. Russ Froman, Kathy Dixon, Dr. Barb ara Buys, and Dr. Barbara Henry. I want to thank Dr. Hakan Dedeoglu, and Dr. Ugur Baslanti, for sharing their valuable insights into research design and data analysis. I also thank to Christa Carter, Rena Buchan, Mohammad Hussain, Dr. Dilek Gokturk, and Ch ristopher Cary for insightful comments on the work. Your friendly attitude, willingness and enthusiasm are greatly appreciated. I would like to thank my family members; es pecially my mother, brother, sister, and brother-in-love. Without their c onstant encouragement, support, enthusiasm, and prayer I would not have made it this far in life.

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5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...............................................................................................................4 LIST OF TABLES................................................................................................................. ..........8 LIST OF TERMS/SYMBOLS/ABBREVIATIONS..................................................................... 10 ABSTRACT...................................................................................................................................12 CHAP TER 1 INTRODUCTION..................................................................................................................14 Background.............................................................................................................................14 Statement of the Problem....................................................................................................... .18 Purpose of the Study........................................................................................................... ....21 Significance of the Study........................................................................................................22 Research Questions............................................................................................................. ....25 Summary.................................................................................................................................25 2 LITERATURE REVIEW.......................................................................................................27 Introduction................................................................................................................... ..........27 Reading Comprehension.........................................................................................................27 Components of Comprehension...................................................................................... 29 Word-level processes...............................................................................................29 Prior knowledge.......................................................................................................30 Motivation and attitude............................................................................................ 31 Reader strategies...................................................................................................... 34 Measuring Reading Comprehension............................................................................... 36 Retelling...................................................................................................................37 Reading comprehension test (multiple-choice questions)........................................ 38 Comprehension Difficulties of Struggling Readers ................................................................41 Technology and Reading Comprehension.............................................................................. 44 Technologys Effects on Struggling Readers.................................................................. 44 Electronic Texts............................................................................................................... 46 CD-ROM Storybooks...................................................................................................... 47 Benefits of CD-ROM storybooks.............................................................................47 Disadvantages of CD-ROM storybooks...................................................................49 CD-ROM Storybooks and Reading Comprehension......................................................50 Role of Animation and Research..................................................................................... 59 Summary.................................................................................................................................61

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6 3 METHODOLOGY................................................................................................................. 67 Introduction................................................................................................................... ..........67 Theoretical Framework.......................................................................................................... .67 Constructivism.................................................................................................................67 Cognitive Constructivism................................................................................................ 68 Schema Theory................................................................................................................70 Interactive Theory........................................................................................................... 72 Text Difficulty and Leveling Books.......................................................................................73 Choice of Storybooks.............................................................................................................76 Restatement of Purposes and Research Questions................................................................. 78 Research Design.....................................................................................................................78 Participants.............................................................................................................................78 Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT)................................................................. 79 Measurement Procedures........................................................................................................ 80 Comprehension Tests (Multip le-choice Questions)........................................................ 81 Retellings.........................................................................................................................81 Data Collection.......................................................................................................................82 Data Analysis..........................................................................................................................84 The Student Survey Results.................................................................................................... 85 Summary.................................................................................................................................87 4 RESULTS...............................................................................................................................93 Introduction................................................................................................................... ..........93 Restatement of Research Questions........................................................................................ 93 Results.....................................................................................................................................93 Reliability Report for Comprehension Test and Retelling .............................................. 94 The First Storybook (I): Analysis of Variance for Com prehension Test and Retelling Scores...........................................................................................................94 The Second Storybook (II): Analysis of Variance for Com prehension Test and Retelling Scores...........................................................................................................95 The First Storybook (I): Post-Hoc (Bonfe rroni) T est Results for Comprehension Test Scores................................................................................................................... 96 The First Storybook (I): Post-Hoc (Bonferroni) T est Results for Retelling Scores........ 96 The Second Storybook (II): Post-Hoc (Bonferroni) Test Results for Com prehension Test Scores................................................................................................................... 96 The Second Storybook (II): Post-Hoc (Bonf erroni) Test Results for Retelling Scores ...........................................................................................................................97 The First Storybook (I): Kruskal-Wallis Te st Res ults for Comprehension Test............. 97 The First Storybook (I): Kruskal-Wallis Test Results for Retelling............................... 98 The Second Storybook (II): Kruskal-Wallis Te s t Results for Comprehension Test....... 99 The Second Storybook (II): Kruskal-Wallis Tes t Results for Retelling.......................... 99 Research Question #1.................................................................................................... 100 Research Question #2.................................................................................................... 102 Observations..................................................................................................................104 Summary...............................................................................................................................105

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7 5 DISCUSSION.......................................................................................................................114 Introduction................................................................................................................... ........114 Summary of Findings........................................................................................................... 114 Discussion.............................................................................................................................116 Implications................................................................................................................... .......119 Recommendations for Further Research.............................................................................. 120 Limitations.................................................................................................................... ........122 Conclusion............................................................................................................................122 APPENDIX A THE DATABASES AND KEYWORDS............................................................................. 124 B STUDENT SURVEY........................................................................................................... 125 C STORY RETELLING ANALAYSIS: MO RROW S 10-POINT SCALE........................... 126 D COMPREHENSION TESTS................................................................................................ 127 E STORYBOOK LIST............................................................................................................ 131 LIST OF REFERENCES.............................................................................................................132 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH.......................................................................................................148

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8 LIST OF TABLES Table page 2-1 Summaries of the studies relate d to electronic st orybooks and texts................................. 63 3-1 Participant characteristics based on gender.......................................................................89 3-2 Participant characteristics based on age.............................................................................89 3-3 Participant characteristics based on race/ethnicity............................................................ 89 3-4 Electronic storybooks experience......................................................................................89 3-6 The use of computer frequency in a week......................................................................... 90 3-7 Computer usage frequency in a week at school................................................................. 90 3-8 The use of computer for playing games............................................................................. 91 3-9 The use of computer for writing........................................................................................ 91 3-10 The use of computer for electronic mail............................................................................ 91 3-11 The use of computer for the Internet.................................................................................. 91 3-12 The use of computer for reading a book............................................................................ 91 3-13 The use of computer for lessons........................................................................................ 92 3-14 The use of computer for other activities............................................................................ 92 4-1 Analysis of Variance for comprehe nsion test and retelling scores I ................................ 106 4-2 Analysis of Variance for comprehe nsion test and retelling scores II .............................. 106 4-3 Post-Hoc (Bonferroni) test results for com prehension test scores I................................107 4-4 Post-Hoc (Bonferroni) test re sults for retelling scores I ..................................................107 4-5 Post-Hoc (Bonferroni) test results for com prehension test scores II............................... 108 4-6 Post-Hoc (Bonferroni) test re sults for retelling scores II ................................................. 108 4-8 Reliability report for compre hension test and retelling II ................................................ 109 4-9 Kruskal-Wallis test result s for com prehension test I....................................................... 110 4-10 Kruskal-Wallis means ranks for comprehension test I.................................................... 110

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9 4-11 Kruskal-Wallis test results for retelling I......................................................................... 111 4-12 Kruskal-Wallis means ranks for retelling I...................................................................... 111 4-13 Kruskal-Wallis test result s for com prehension test II...................................................... 112 4-14 Kruskal-Wallis means ranks for comprehension test II................................................... 112 4-15 Kruskal-Wallis test results for retelling II....................................................................... 113 4-16 Kruskal-Wallis means ranks for retelling II.....................................................................113

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10 LIST OF TERMS/SYMBOLS/ABBREVIATIONS CD-ROM Compact disc read-only memory is a method of stor ing large amounts of data on a small disc for use in a computer (Maddux, Johnson, & Willis, 1992). For the purpose of this study, the term refers to software programs that maintain text and pi ctures, a children storybook in its original form (Nakjan, 2002). Comprehension Process of simultaneously extracting and constructing meaning through interaction and involvement with written language (RAND Reading Study Group, 2002, p. xiii). Constructivism A learning theory that lear ning as the result of constructing meaning based on an individuals experien ce and prior knowledge (Bruner, 1966). DRA Level A leveling criteria. Measures le vel of independent r eading in a student (Pearson, 2007). Electronic Literacy Electronic li teracy refers to literacy ac tivities (e.g. in reading, writing, spelling) that are delivered, s upported and accessed digitally through computers or other electronic means rather than on paper (Topping & McKenna, 1999, p. 107). Electronic Storybook For the purpose of this study, the term refers to software which presents readers with several options for interaction. The text is usually highlighted as it is read allowing students to follow the words as they are read (Doty, 1999, p. 8). Text is statica lly displayed on a computer screen or interactive computer text, on CD-ROM, that allow readers to activate graphic animations. FCAT The Florida Comprehensive Asse ssment Test (FCAT) is the foundation of the statewide educational assessment and accountability program. The FCAT is administered to stud ents in Grades 3-11, consists of criterion-referenced tests in mathem atics, reading, science, and writing, which measure student progress towa rd meeting the Sunshine State Standards. Guided Reading Level A leve ling criteria. Guided Reading Levels are based on the works of Irene Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell and re flect a broader gradient of texts (Pearson, 2007). Leveled Books Books grouped and graded for difficulty based on specific text characteristics (Liter acy Glossary, 2007). Leveling A method of determining the gradient of difficulty of texts (Pearson, 2007).

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11 Lexile A Lexile is a unit measurement that is used to determine the difficulty of text and reading level of readers. It is an equal interval scale and can be used to measure growth (Literacy Glossary, 2007). Narrative A text genre that tell as story. Generally includes the elements of character, setting, plot and theme (Literacy Glossary, 2007). Printed Storybooks Traditional paper stor ybooks that consist of paper bound between two covers. Retelling For purpose of this study, retelling refers to pos t reading recalls in which readers tell what they rememb er of a story (Morrow, 1996). Struggling Reader For the purposes of this study, a student was considered to be a struggling reader if she/he was read ing below level his/ her current grade level and not meeting Sunshine State Standard as measured and documented by Florida Comprehensiv e Assessment Test (Reading Level one or Reading Level two). Text-explicit Questions Literal/f actual question that requires readers to use information found directly in the text (R aphael & Pearson, 1985). Text-implicit Questions Implicit/inference ques tion that requires readers to use information found in the text, but requires the read er to integrate information across sentences or paragraphs (Raphael & Pearson, 1985).

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12 Abstract of Dissertation Pres ented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy INVESTIGATING THE EFFECTS OF ELE CTRONIC CD-ROM STORYBOOKS AND TRADITIONAL PRINT STOR YBOOKS ON READING COMPREHENSION OF FOURTH GRADE STRUGGLING READERS By Ihsan Seyit Ertem August 2009 Chair: Richard Ferdig Major: Curriculum and Instruction This study examined the differences in str uggling readers comprehension of storybooks according to the medium of presentation. Each st udent was randomly assigned with one of three conditions: (1) computer presentati on of storybooks with animation; (2) computer presentation of storybooks without animation; and (3) traditional print storybooks. Two different storybooks were used and 77 st udents participated. Participants were selected among fourth-grade students who were reading below current grade level and not meeting Sunshine State Standard as measur ed by Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (Reading Level one or Reading Level two). Twenty -five of these students read the electronic version of storybooks with animation, 26 students read the same but without animation and 26 students read the traditional print storybooks. Comprehension was measured by using multiplechoice comprehension test and re telling. Subjects were instructed to read electronic CD-ROM storybooks. After completion of reading, subjects answered multiple-choice comprehension test and performed an oral retelling. The oral rete llings were recorded and then scored by two independent raters using Morrows 10-point Scale.

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13 Analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to te st two research questi ons at the .05 level of significance. One dependent variable is reading comprehension as measured by the multiplechoice comprehension test, and the second dependent variable is reading comprehension as measured by the retelling. The independent variab le is the type of me dium of presentation. The results of statistical analysis indicated that there was significant difference in the students' comprehension scores. In other words, when comprehension was measured by using multiple-choice comprehension test and retell ing, the students who read the computer presentation of storybooks with animation show ed significantly higher comprehension scores than students who read the computer presen tation of storybooks without animation and the traditional print version of storybooks. When the student controlled the animation func tions of electronic storybooks, the animated illustrations were shown to result in significantly higher improvement of comprehension scores, both in terms of the students' ability to retrieve information and to make inferences from the stories. The results of the re search also indicated that el ectronic CD-ROM storybooks can improve reading comprehension and can be beneficial for struggling readers.

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14 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION Background The m ain objective of readi ng is to understand a written message (Doty, 1999). National Center for Educational Statistics [NCES], ( 2005) defines reading as an active and complex process that involves understand ing written text, developing and interpreting meaning, and using meaning as appropriate to type of text, purpose and situation (p. 2). Reading comprehension is crucial to the development of childrens reading skills and thus to their ability to obtain an education. (Durkin, 1993; National Institute of Ch ild Health and Human Development [NICHD], 2000; Rapp, van den Broek, McMaster, Kendeou, & Espin, 2007). Without comprehension, reading words is reduced to imitating the s ounds of language, repeating text is simply memorization and oral drill (Paris, & Hamilton, 2008). There are many definitions of reading comprehension. Harris and Hodges (1995) define d comprehension as intentional thinking during which meaning is constructed through interact ions between text and reader (p. 207). Similarly, the report of National Reading Pa nel [NRP] (2000) re ported that reading comprehension is a complex and cognitive process that requires an intentional and thoughtful interaction between the reader and the text. When readers actively relate the ideas represented in print to their own knowledge, experiences and cons truct mental representations in memory, text comprehension is improved. All of these defini tions and information concluded that reading comprehension is an active cognitive process, an d involves interaction betw een reader and text to construct meaning. Also the readers schema, prior knowledge, and metacognitive skills play important roles in comprehension as well as characteristics of text s such as coherency, additional aids, and organizational hints (Doty, 1999).

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15 Even though reading comprehensio n is very important to childre ns reading skills and it is a predictor of their future academic success, ma ny students struggle with reading. For example, Kamil (2003) claims that in the United States there are 8.7 million students who are not able to read and understand their textbooks. Reading difficulty is not only a problem for younger children, older students also have similar issue. According to Catts and Hogan (2002) fourthgrade is particularly critical because about 3% of childre n begin to experience serious comprehension difficulties around fourth-grade. The reason is likely increasing demands of readings and materials in this grade. Simila rly, National Assessment of Educational Progress [NAEP] (2007) reported urgency of the pr oblem. Seven hundred and thirty schools and 191,000 fourth-graders participated in a reading assessment. The results of this assessment showed that about one third of fourth grad ers cannot read at a basic leve l (NCES, 2007). Furthermore, struggling readers read and learn le ss than their peers, resulting in the Matthew Effect, where the rich become richer and the poor get poorer (Sta novich, 1986). Therefore, reading problems often continue into adulthood; approxima tely 23% of U.S. adults meet only basic reading proficiency levels (NCES, as cited in Rapp et al., 2007). All of these issues emphasize the need for effective approaches for struggling readers. To comprehend the text, readers must be able to decode words quickly, easily, automatically and read smoothly (NICHD, 2000). Readers who lack word recognition skills and fluency often have difficulties with comprehens ion. Some educators cons ider these students low achievers, those who are lack of cognitive co mpetencies including phonological awareness, decoding, fluency, vocabulary knowledge and co mprehension strategies (Cooper, Chard, & Kiger, 2006; Rapp et al., 2007). The existing literature provides that reader characteristics, text

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16 properties, and instructional contexts are main elements of comprehension difficulties (Rapp et al., 2007). Computer technology has a role to play in the remediation of children with reading problems and successes in read ing instruction (NICHD, 2000) such as motivation, personal instruction, and interaction. The NRPs meta-analysis of the ex tant research in computer technology revealed several findings. First, all the studies report positive results, suggesting that it is possible to use computer technology for r eading instruction. Second, new computers have many multimedia presentation functions and research is needed on the use of multimedia presentations in reading instruct ion. Third, computer-presented text indicates that this may be a promising use of technology in read ing instruction. Fourt h, use of computer technology to assist reading is a relatively new field, the number of studies published in this area is small and many questions remain unanswered (NICHD, 2000). In the twenty-first century, important and ra dical changes are occurring in the area of literacy. Digital technology is changing the nature of literacy (Reinking, McKenna, Labbo, & Kieffer, 1998). Many researchers, theorists a nd applied scholars support this changing and transforming the nature of literacy, especially within and across new electronic environments (Reinking, 1998; Reinking et al., 1998; Tierney, 2008). Moreover, Electronic texts introduce new supports as well as new challeng es that can have a great impact on an individuals ability to comprehend what he or she reads (Coiro, 2003, p. 458). In the mid-1990s, literacy in new digital age, the New London Group engaged in the implications of broad social, cultural, technolog ical change for conception of literacy. The New London group expressed particular attention to multimedia, electr onic hypermedia, and the shift from print-based literacy towards digital texts, on-screen te xts and literacies (New London

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17 Group, 1996). Meaning is increasingly embedded in an image or in a non-linear combination of image and print, rather than in what can be decoded from the print alone (Carrington, 2005, p. 166). Dalton and Strangman (2006) poi nt out that technology and co mputer-mediated text have the potential to support students with reading problems in two ways: providing access to text and helping students learn how to read with understa nding (p. 75). Print is often thought of as a traditional technology that often serves as barrie r, rather than a gateway, to learning. Even though traditional print text requires interaction between reader and texts, traditional print texts is passive, non-interactive w ith non-adaptable features, static with two-dimensional images, and cannot response to individual readers, restricted by their linear composition, and relies heavily on the reader's internal strategies to activ ate prior knowledge (Doty, 1999; Pearman, 2008). Additionally, readers follow the structure or plot which is designed by the author. On the other hand, electronic texts typically ha ve different and new formats. These new formats are nonlinear, non-sequential, interactive, and can provide a literal interaction be tween the reader and the text (Coiro, 2003; Reinking, 1992; Schmar-Dobler, 2003; Sutherland-Smith, 2002). In the last decade, given the promise of the technology for student with reading problems, the technology research literatu re focused on computer-mediated texts. Progress in software development has dramatically changed the nature of software for reading. Until recently, not many software programs suitable for struggling readers were avai lable (Lewis, 2000). A valuable tool in educational se ttings, the electronic book has been wi dely used in classroom literacy learning in the early school years (Chen, Ferdig, & Wood, 2003; Matthews, 1996; Underwood, 2000). Electronic CD-ROM storybooks are readi ng software for children in illustrated storybooks that help children develop visual r ecognition. In addition, thes e interactive electronic

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18 storybooks offer more comprehens ion hints and a better backgr ound for story than traditional printed texts (Doty 1999, Reinking 1 988). Electronic storybooks are mainly designed to integrate text, graphics, animations, music and other multi media components in order to bring support to the story line (Chen et al., 2003; Glasgow, 1996-1997). CD-ROM technology has significantly improved the potential for adding animations for r eaders. Children could read the stories on their own or listen to the stories read and animate parts of illustrations. Statement of the Problem A great number of children str ugg le with reading. The latest results of a NAEP report clearly show the urgency of problem: 33 % of four th graders were not able to achieve even a basic level of proficiency on the NAEP reading test (NCES, 2007). Although data from NAEP 2007 Reading Report Card shows increased scores for low performing students in the fourth and eighth grades in 2007 as compared to previous years (f ourth-graders in 2007 scored two points higher than in 2005 and four points higher than in 1992), there is not a lot of good news on this report. On the average, there was little improveme nt in the reading skills for fourth graders across the nation since 1992. Furthermore, r eading comprehension problems have also been very stubborn. Even 46% of fourth-graders performing at the basic level were not able to demonstrate full comprehension (34% partial or surface comp rehension, 11% little or no comprehension, 1% omitted) (NCES, 2007). Anderson-Inman & Horn ey (1998) add, Unfortunately, a large percentage of students in our c ountry are not effective in thei r attempts to acquire and use information from text due to signific ant deficiencies in reading (p.15). Another problem was pointed out by Robb (2000); he claimed that childrens interest in reading for pleasure and motivation to read wa s being reduced. Electr onic storybooks can help these unmotivated and uninterested children. In addition, two-thirds of American classrooms have fewer than 50 children's books, and almost 60% of childcare centers buy less than one book

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19 per child a year (Neuman, Celano, Greco, & Sh ue, 2001). Fourth-graders who reported having 25 books or more at home had higher scores on the NAEP reading test than children who reported they didn't have that many books (NCES, 2001). Through the use of electronic CDROM storybooks, educators have a promising solution for very limited availability of children books. Weak decoding skills and lack of fluency are major barriers to comprehension for struggling readers (Ehri, 1994). Digital texts have the capabi lity to eliminate decoding and fluency problems through text-to-speech and digitized speech (Dalton & Strangman, 2006). New vocabulary and concepts, complex sentence structur e, lack of previous knowledge and new text structure are the other reasons for poor comp rehension (Lipson & Wixson, 1997). Struggling readers are also less strategic in their approach to text and they have a difficulty for monitoring understanding (Graham & Harri son, 1996, as cited in Dalton & Strangman, 2006; Swanson & Alexander, 1997). Many struggling r eaders do not view themselves as in charge of their learning and may avoid reading whenever possible (D alton & Strangman, 2006, p. 80). The problem is critical, and promise of technology apparent, th ere is continued research, focusing on students with reading problems (Mac Arthur, Feretti, Okolo, & Cavalier, 2001; Strangman & Dalton, 2005, 2006). New technologies offer great opportunity and great challenge (Dalton & Strangman, 2006, p. 88). As a scaffolded learning environment, di gital texts provide support to the students with diverse learning needs. Digital learning enviro nments, through good quality of flexibility of the medium, have the potential of sca ffold instruction in a rich variety of ways (Bus, De Jong, & Verhallen, 2006). For example, images and animated graphics can be incorporated into digital texts to supplement textual definitions, s upporting vocabulary understanding and reading

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20 comprehension (Anderson-Inman, Horney, Ch en, & Lewin, 1994; Boone & Higgins, 1993). Electronic texts also changed to offer strategic scaffolds such as self-monitoring questions (Anderson-Inman & Horney, 1998). Several stud ies reported encouraging findings using electronic storybooks. For inst ance, CD-ROM storybooks impr ove reading motivation for children with reading difficulties (Adam & Wild, 1997; Glasgow, 1996-1997), recognition of words for kindergarten children (De Jong & Bus, 2002; Lewin, 2000), story comprehension (Doty, Popplewell, & Byers, 2001) a nd story retelling (Matthew, 1996). However, the results of the few available studi es are not consistent. Some of the studies have shown that electronic storybooks elements may also potentially become distractions (De Jong & Bus, 2002; Matthew, 1996; Okolo & Hayes, 1996; Trushell & Maitland, 2005; Underwood & Underwood, 1998). De Jong and Bu s (2002) revealed that childrens understanding of a storys content was less supported by the electronic version than the traditional print book format. Additionally, the illu strations, games, attractive pictorial options included in the story motivate ch ildren but if they are not matc hing with the story, they can distract the childrens focus on the story instead of supporting the narratives comprehension and could cause passive reading, and delay childrens early literacy development (De Jong & Bus, 2002; Labbo & Kuhn, 2000; Matthew, 1996; Shamir & Korat, 2006; Underwood & Underwood, 1998). Furthermore, most of the studies are focused on younger children and early grades. Some of these studies claim that electronic books are quite effective in early literacy development, reading comprehension, and language devel opment for young children (De Jong & Bus, 2004; Grant, 2004; Grimshaw et al., 2006; Higgins, 1999; Korat, 2008; Lewin, 2000; Maynard, 2005). Korat (2008) stated that young child ren are found to especially re spond well to enhance features

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21 of electronic books. On the other hand, there is still an incomplete picture of higher grades students literacy achievement. Additionally, the studies do not tell us much about how str uggling students are reading and understanding the new multimedia texts. We ente r a new technological era where computers are readily accessible to children; questions arise as to the potential of this type of software on literacy development (Labbo, 1996). We know very little about specifically which features of electronic text work best for struggling readers, and in relation to different types of texts and reading comprehension. This should be a major ar ea of investigation. Several questions remain unanswered; do children passively vi ew screens that distract their attention away from meaning making? Do CD-ROM storybooks support stru ggling readers comprehension? Although, findings from recent studies sugge st various elements play impor tant roles in whether CD-ROM books provide proficient scaffolds for children of various literacy ability levels, Bus et al. (2006) emphasized that additional work is needed to learn more about the effects of considerate animations as scaffolds to childrens story comp rehension (p. 134). More studies are needed to test which particular features of electronic storybooks, such as an imation interactivity of texts, have potential to improve comprehension when the story is presented as st atic illustrations, and animated illustrations (De Jong & Bus, 2002; Bus et al., 2006). For all these reasons and questions mentioned above, this study investigat ed the extent to which use of medium of storybooks positively influenced str uggling readers comprehension. Purpose of the Study The objectiv e of this research was to compar e and explore the effect s of the medium of storybooks presentations on struggli ng readers reading comprehens ion. For this purpose of the study, each student was presented with one of th ree conditions: (1) comp uter presentation of storybooks with animation; (2) computer presen tation of storybooks without animation; and (3)

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22 printed version of storybooks. These three conditi ons were compared with respect to reading comprehension as measured by multiple-choice comprehension test and retelling. Significance of the Study Although infor mation technology is an essent ial element of educational reform, K-12 institutions have thus far only minimally integrated computers extensively and effectively within many aspects of the learning process. At the elem entary school level, co mputers are frequently used for teaching isolated basic skills and for playing educational games (Presidents' Committee of Advisors on Science and Technology, 1997). Results from the National Evaluation of Educational Technology study reveal th at simply none of the effect sizes, overall, as significantly different from zero for any of the commercial software products on st andardized tests of comprehension (Kamil & Chou, 2008). On the ot her hand, the NRP analysis (2000) has found the 21 studies used to assess computer technology all showed positive results and multimedia presentations promises successful applications in literature. Howe ver, there has been relatively little research in computer technol ogy and reading area and research is urgently needed to answer some questions that have not been addressed to date. For example, what are the conditions under which multimedia presentation is useful or desirable in reading te xt still has remained unanswered (NICHD, 2000, p. 6-9). Kamil and C hou (2008) agree NRPs revealing about the multimedia presentation. In general, computer so ftware has been effective in teaching a variety of skills related to comprehension. Most of thes e skills cluster around strategies or metacognitive abilities. Few of these studies used what today are cutting edge technologies, like multimedia (Kamil & Chou, 2008, p. 296). More research is necessary to determine which multimedia presentation of text has an impact on the reading comprehension. There is a growing awareness of the contributions of comprehension skills for successful reading (Rapp et al., 2007); there is also a growing awareness of the contributions of electronic

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23 texts on reading comprehension, how ever, currently, a small number of studies have examined the use of the electron ic storybooks for reading comprehensi on. Some of the studies measured sight word acquisition, and inst ructional reading levels of readers (Doty, 1999). Similarly, Pearman (2008) states there is limited research that compares reading interactive, electronic texts on CD-ROM and traditional print textsIt is necessary to determine the effects of the different presentation modes on readers' comprehension (p. 595). Findings i ndicate that some of the studies demonstrate the potential of interactiv e electronic storybooks that help students make progress in comprehension (ChanLin, 2001; Do ty, 1999; Doty et al., 2001; Greenlee-Moore & Smith, 1996; Matthew, 1997; Miller, Blackstock & Miller, 19 94; Pearman, 2003, 2008; Pearman & Lefever-Davis, 2006). However, electronic storybooks may also pot entially disrupt ra ther than support comprehension (De Jong & Bus, 2002; Matt hew, 1996; Underwood & Underwood, 1998). In addition, literature review has shown that there is little actual research on evaluating the use of animation in electronic storybooks. Some authors warn about the potentia l for distraction of animations in reading (Nibley, 1993; Scoresby, 1996). Doty (1999) recommended that future research is needed to determine what students do and what features are most beneficial when extra features and options on CD-ROM storybooks su ch as animations are available for students. More experimental evidence and more research is needed for examinations of electronic storybooks animations. The results of the studies prev iously carried out in this ar ea have been conflicting and are frequently hard to interpret. First, the anima tion effects were not controlled by the child. Second, narrated condition was integrated with animation as part of storybooks. If there is any difference, it is not clear whether it is coming from narration and/or animation features of storybooks. Third,

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24 usually there was no obvious explana tion or detail about what kind of illustrations or animations were used in the study. For this reason, in this study, the stories presented compared both static illustrations, and animated illustrations. Narrative functions, word definitions, and sound effects of storybooks were not used. Few studies have been performed examini ng the comprehension of struggling readers when reading electronic CD-R OM storybooks. Pearman (2003) recommended that future research could specifically ta rget struggling readers from diverse backgrounds (p. 86-87). Furthermore, Doty (1999) revealed that few studies have util ized retellings and comprehension questions together as measures of comprehension (p. 36). The studies often compare two groups, reading paper version texts and electronic ve rsions, as a research design, validity and reliability are a major problem, and the findings are very limited and general, thus, we need more specific and systematic investigat ions. Therefore, this study used retellings and comprehension questions together as measur es of comprehension, designed three groups comparison, and conducted data collection procedures twice with the same readability levels but different storybooks for reliability and validity concerns. Most studies to date have focused on younger children, early grades and normal readers. Some studies have done the c ontribution of technology in reading comprehension for young children, but much less is known about students in upper grades that comprehend poorly and struggle with comprehension despite exposure to reading. Catts and Hogan (2002) report that some children start to expe rience significant comprehensio n problems around fourth-grade because of changes in the demands of reading in later elementary school grades. Approximately 3% of children may show a fourth-grade slump. This represents about 20% of all poor readers in fourth-grade. A meta-analysis of twenty resear ch articles by Moran, Fe rdig, Pearson, Wardrop,

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25 and Blomeyer (2008) stated that most of the studies in th is research corpus have addressed literacy or reading acquisition in the early years of schoolingthese technologies may be equally as important for older r eader, particularly those who have not experienced great success in their school careers (p. 8). Due to a lack of evidence about what represents an effective medium of story presentation for older strugglin g readers, we often borrow from research on younger students. Some findings of effective me dium of story presentation for younger readers are appropriate to the older grades, but some are not. In summary, this research study attempts to a ddress some of the shortcomings of previous research. This study provides an empirical data, to do specific and systematic investigation that confirms which features and types of story presentations are more effective than others for older struggling readers. Research Questions The following research questions w e re addressed in this study: 1. Do fourth-grade struggling readers differ on reading comprehension as measured by multiple-choice comprehension test when they read the same storybooks presented in electronic format with and without anima tion and in a traditional print format? 2. Do fourth-grade struggling readers differ on reading comprehension as measured by retelling when they read the same storybooks presented in electronic format with and without animation and in a traditional print format? Summary The purpose of this study is to investigate the differences in fourth-grade struggling readers co mprehension of storybooks according to the medium of presentation. Although there have been some studies examining the relationshi p between interactive computer presented text and comprehension (Doty, 1999), a small number of studies have been conducted using electronic books or CD-ROM st orybooks (Doty et al., 2001) partic ularly with older struggling readers.

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26 Harris and Hodges (1995) defined comprehensi on as intentional thinking during which meaning is constructed through interactions between text and reader (p. 207) It is expected that the use of electronic CD-ROM storybooks help interaction between texts and struggling readers to construct meaning and also improve comprehension for these readers. This chapter has provided the related background for understanding this study. The purpose of the study, and the research questions were presented. Chapter 2 will discuss major parts of the study such as comprehension, co mprehension assessment, struggling readers, technology as well as previous studies that cont ributed to the work. Chapter 3 describes the theoretical framework of the study, text diffi culty and choice of storybooks, the methodology and the instruments. Chapter 4 presents the find ings of this study. Finally, Chapter 5 concludes with a discussion of findings, recommendations and implications.

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27 CHAPTER 2 LITERATURE REVIEW Introduction A review of the literature relevant to this study incl udes an overview of reading com prehension, measuring reading comprehens ion, comprehension difficulties, struggling readers, technology and reading comprehension, electronic storybooks and the role of animation. The main focus of this literature revi ew is on studies that use technology in literacy or that investigates students co mprehension when reading electr onic storybooks in compact disk read-only memory (CD-ROM) software. At the end of each part, the relevance of the literature to this study is discussed. Reading Comprehension Understanding the m eaning of words and texts is the center of the function of literacy. Without comprehension, reading words is reduced to imitating the sounds of language, repeating text and simply memorization and oral dr ill (Paris & Hamilton, 2008). Because of wide boundaries of comprehension, it is difficult to de scribe simply and measure accurately; thus, there is little consensus about definitions of comprehension (Paris, 2007; Paris & Hamilton, 2008). Cognitive perspective refers reading co mprehension as a complex cognitive ability requiring the capacity to integrat e text information with prio r knowledge of the reader and resulting in the elaboration of a mental re presentation (Anderson & Pearson, 1984). Rumelhart (1994) characterized comprehension as an interac tive process that occurs between reader and a text; during this inter action the reader conveys her or hi s experiences and proficiency which include language proficiency, c ognitive resources and world knowle dge. Recent national reports also highlight the constructive and interactive process of reading comprehension. For instance, the NRP (2000) explained that reading comprehension is a complex and cognitive process that

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28 requires an intentional and thought ful interaction between the reader and the text. When readers actively relate the ideas represented in print to their own knowledge, ex periences and construct mental representations in memory, text compre hension is improved. The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) Co mmittee describes comprehension as an active and complex process that involves understand ing written text, developing and interpreting meaning, and using meaning as appropriate to type of text, purpose and situation (NCES, 2005, p. 2). RAND Reading Study Group (2002) defines reading comprehension as t he process of simultaneously extracting and constructing mean ing through interaction and invol vement with written language (p. 11). According to the RAND report (2002), co mprehension contains three main elements: (a) The reader who is doing the comprehending. As a reader, a person brin gs all the capacities, abilities, knowledge, and experiences to the act of readi ng. (b) The text that is to be comprehended. Text broadly includes any printed te xt or electronic text. (c) The activity in which comprehension is a part. Th e activity includes the purposes, processes, and consequences associated with the act of reading. These three di mensions occurring within a larger sociocultural context interact w ith each other. Comprehension is considered a complex but single skill (Schwartz, 1984). To build meaning, readers must decode words fluently, un derstand vocabulary, draw inferences, relate the ideas in text to their prior knowledge and expe riences or find answers to questions, and follow the structure of text (Matthew, 1997; Nationa l Reading Panel, 2002; Paris & Hamilton, 2008; Snow, Burns, & Griffin, 1998; Schwartz, 1984). These skills differ with age, experience, instruction, context, and motivation so both the processes and the products of reading comprehension are the building of meaning from text using a wide variety of skills and knowledge (Paris, 2007).

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29 The models and theories of reading comp rehension specifically schema theory and interactive theory directly re lated to comprehension proce ss are reviewed under the title theoretical framework in Chapter III. Components of Comprehension Com prehension is multi-componential and developmental, and hence, comprehension entails a number of lower order and higher orde r process. Several factors are involved during comprehension with four important elements being word level process, prior knowledge, motivation and attitude, and reader strategies (Lipson & Wixson, 1997; Pressley, 2000). Word-level processes Word-level processes affects com prehension and word-level processes include recognition of words (i.e., decoding) and unde rstanding of words (Pressley, 2000). Rapid decoding is critical to fluent reading and comprehension (Coope r et al., 2006; Naslund & Samuels, 1992). NRP (2000) report also confirms this claim: students must be able to decode words quickly, simply and automatically and read effortlessly. Pressley (2000) stated that word-level decoding is a critical bottleneck in the comprehension process, that if the reader canno t decode a word, she or he cannot comprehend (p. 546). The more skille d the decoding, the less conscious effort is necessary for it and the more c onscious capacity is left over fo r comprehension of the words (Pressley, 2000). The rationale behind this idea is that informa tion stored for comprehension vanishes, while short-term memory is trying to decode the words. In order for higher level comprehension processes to occur, lower level processes, such as those used for decoding, must proceed rapidly and with little effort (Mat thew, 1997; Torgesen, 1986; Pearman, 2003). Along with decoding, extensive vocabulary knowledge promotes comprehension skill (Hirsch, 2003; Pressley, 2000). In recent years, attempts to improve reading have focused on decoding. Although decoding is a requirement for comprehension, comprehension cannot

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30 improve unless building students word and world knowledge (Hirsch, 2003). Occasionally readers know how to decode and read fluently but have comprehension difficulties because of limited meaning vocabularies (Nagy, 1988). But it does not mean that teaching vocabulary will automatically increase readers comprehension; c ontext is also important to enhance the ability of readers to recognize words (Pearman, 2003). Researchers have found vocabulary increases as a function of childrens reading of text rich in new words (Robbins & Ehri, 1994; Pressley, 2001). Most vocabulary words are gained incidental ly as a utility of encounters in context (Pressley, 2000). This is one of the many reas ons to support students extensive reading. Electronic texts rapidly and easily give stude nts word pronunciations and definitions to assist their comprehension (Matthew, 1997). Poor readers comprehension is increased with the addition of a speech part of electronic text (Hartas & Moseley, 1993). In addition, Electronic CD-ROM storybooks combine animated graphics and sound effects that give richer context than static, traditional texts that supports vocabul ary (Reinking & Chanlin, 1994; Pearman & LefeverDavis, 2006). Cued animations and sound effects give contextual support by supplying images, associated animations, and audio clips that increase readers comprehension (Pearman & Lefever-Davis, 2006; Trushell, Maitland, & Burrell, 2003). Prior knowledge Com prehension is a process of constructing an interpretation of a text that fits the readers knowledge of the world (Lipson & Wixson, 1997). Co mprehension requires readers to use their prior knowledge and experience to create new knowledge (Alexander & Jetton, 2000). Readers who possess rich prior knowledge about the topic they are reading often unders tand the reading better than classmates with low prior knowledge (Anderson & P earson, 1984). Prior knowledge contains topic and genre information about the te xt, vocabulary, ideas and concepts, related to a particular topic, personal e xperiences, and cultural expectatio ns (Morgan, 1983; Cooper et al.,

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31 2006). Before reading, students' prior knowledge must be activated if it is to be available to assist them in comprehending the text. Readers do not always relate their world knowledge to the content of a text, even when they possess knowledge relevant to the information it presents. Often, they do not make inferences based on prior knowledge unless the inferences are absolutely demanded to make sense of the text (Hirsch, 2003, Pressley, 2001). Hirsch (2003) explained that a meaningful me ntal model cannot be constructed unless we do not know have prior knowledge. Closely rela ted to schema theory, prior knowledge is recognized as one of the most considerable predictors of comprehension (Pearman, 2003). A central premise theory is that much of knowledge is stored in complex relati onal structures, schemata. From this perspective, a readers prior knowledge is continuously modified and enhanced during reading. Readers who have developed schemata for a concept are better prepared to read about that topic and to determine if new informati on fits or alters their own prior knowledge (Gambrell & Dromsky, 2000). In short, sc hema theorists specify that readers often relate their prior knowledge to id eas in the text, when the ideas in text go beyond to some extent the ideas in their long term knowledge base. Such automatic use of prior knowledge to comprehend text is particularly in contrast to the many reading process that can be consciously controlled (Pressley, 2000). Tradi tional texts do not present many op tions, except text or pictures to activate prior knowledge. The interactive, au dio, animations, graphics, and pronunciations capability of electronic storybooks might facilitate this limitation (Pearman, 2003). Motivation and attitude Motivation is crucial for reading comprehens ion. Guthrie and W igfield (2000) emphasized that A less motivated reader spends less time r eading, exerts lower cognitive effort, and is less dedicated to full comprehension than a highly motivated reader (p. 406). Moreover, children are born with the wish to learn. They are concerned about objects, people, a nd events in the world

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32 around them. When children constantly experi ence reading difficulty, they may lose their eagerness and motivation for reading. Instruct ional planning for students who find reading difficult must include systematic attention to encouraging positive attitudes toward reading (Rasinski & Padak, 2004). Attitudes influence motivation, and motivation influences our thinking about why we are successful or not. Reading failure frequently leads to negative attitudes toward reading (Rasinski & Padak, 2004). A lack of motivation to read may decrease a st udents ability to comp rehend. It is hard to tell whether lack of interest a nd poor motivation are the result of being a str uggling reader or the cause of being one (Cooper et al., 2006, p.121). They add, however, many upper-grade students are more motivated once they become successful at reading. The cognitive revolution in learning increased our insi ghts into the nature of comprehension (Anderson & Pearson, 1984). Stra tegic readers selected the most suitable cognitive strategy. To become strategic reader, students needed both skill and motivation. Motivation characterized the intent to become engaged with reading. Motivation was no longer a simple support to energize a set of predetermine d behaviors; instead, it resulted from learners expectancies, values, and beliefs. Students would not be successful if they obtained the necessary cognitive and metacognitiv e abilities; however, lacked the mo tivation to become engaged (Miller & Faircloth, 2008). Good readers have a tendency to read more; they incr ease their competence, which increases their reading ability. Increa sing proficiency is motivating, and increasing motivation leads to more reading. In this perspec tive, motivation is the initial process for reading engagement and is a major contri butor (Guthrie & Wigfield, 2000). The research provides clear evid ence that students with choice s in their reading materials are a critical factor for reading development (Allington, 2006). For example: Palmer, Codling,

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33 and Gambrell (1994) investigate th e reading preferences of 330 th ird and fifth-grade students. They found that children were most motivated when they read books they had chosen themselves. Children need effortless access to books and the freedom to choose their own reading material (Rasinski & Padak, 2004). Sw eet and Guthrie (1996) explored childrens reasons, goals, and motivations for reading, believe that childre ns motivations are multidimensional and diverse and teachers must l earn to recognize the characteristics of these motivations to foster long-ter m literacy growth. Sweet and Guth ries research (1996) informed both intrinsic-interest, experien ce, involvement, curiosity and ex trinsic motivationscompliance, recognition, competition, and work avoidance to facilitate comprehension of the text. In the research of computer use by children, the most consistently found effect is an increase in motivation, enjoyment of reading and writing. The studies reported that students exhibited a higher level of motiv ational engagement when using technological tool (Daiute, 1983 as cited in Kamil, Intrator, & Kim, 2000). Specifically, the use of electronic storybooks provides positive attitude and motivation to reading. The en joyment of the extract was enhanced by using computers. Research has shown that electr onic storybooks have the capacity to increase children's comprehension, enjoyment and may mo tivate children to read (Adam & Wild, 1997). Their research points out that interactive st orybooks increase positive attitude to reading traditional materials. As McNabb (1998) demonstr ated, third-grade struggling readers showed a high level of motivation to r ead electronic books. Lewin (2000) administrated a survey to 494 teachers; the results of survey indicated that 79% of teachers believed that interactive storybooks would motivate and increase the c onfidence of children with low-self esteem in reading (67%). Matthew (1996) found that there was no significant difference between the reading attitudes of third grade students in the experimental group (reading CD-ROM storybooks) and those of the

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34 control group (reading tr aditional storybooks) according to th e results of Elementary Reading Attitude Survey. However, she concluded that these books [CD-ROM books] have the potential to enhance students learning and have the pot ential to motivate them to read (Matthew, 1996, p. 390). Reader strategies Another elem ent that influences students co mprehension is their knowledge and ability to use strategies (Paris, Wasik, & Turner, 1991). A stra tegy is defined by Paris, et al. (1991) as a deliberately chosen plan by the re ader to achieve a particular goa l or to complete a given task. NRP report (2000) underlined that one of the most effective ways to help students improve their comprehension is to teach them strategies (NRP, 2000). Allington (2006) also points out that active thinking connected to reading comprehens ion can be developed when students are given explicit demonstration of comprehension strategi es. Research indicates that expert and less skilled readers are different in several ways. Fi rst, expert readers have purposes of reading (Gredler, 2001; Pearman, 2003). Second, they actively control their own reading comprehension, and third, they deliberately use a variety of compre hension strategies to ma ke sense of text. Less skilled readers are not strategic and often encounter difficulties in their reading (Baker & Brown, 1984; Paris, et al., 1991). The research literature on comprehension id entifies many strategies including activating prior knowledge, identifying important info rmation, predicting, monitoring, questioning, thinking aloud, imagery/visualizing, summari zing, synthesizing, a nd evaluating (Allington, 2006; Cooper et al., 2006; Paris et al., 1991). Strategies can be taught explicitly to st udents through modeling/in struction (P ressley & Harris, 1990). Cooper (1993) has several suggesti ons for teaching the strategies. First, these strategies should be taught providing that a student demonstrates a need for the strategy. Second,

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35 the strategies should be modeled within the real context. Third, use of the strategies should be interactive and collaborative instead of isolated. Pressley (2001) explaine d that teaching students to use comprehension strategies increases thei r comprehension of text. Teachers can provide modeling of the effective comprehension strategies; step by step, the use of the strategies can be transferred from the teacher modeling to the student modeling by teacher. For struggling readers, there are many cause s other than decoding and fluency problems such as lack of a repertoire of strategies, unfamiliar vocabular y and concepts, lack of prior knowledge, and unfamiliar text structure which can all slow down comprehension (Lipson & Wixson, 1997; Dalton & Strangman, 2006). Dalton and Strangman (2006) stated that there is a promising body of research investig ating the potential of digital text format to function as a scaffolded learning environment, providing supports to students with various learning needs (p.80). For instance, illustrations and animations can be integrated into electronic texts to addition textual definitions, supporting vocabul ary understanding and reading comprehension (Anderson-Inman, Horney, Chen, & Lewin, 1994; Boone & Higgins, 1993, Dalton & Strangman, 2006). Anderson-Inman and Horney (1998) express that electronic texts also offer strategic scaffolds such as self-monitoring questions, developing important metacognitive skills and graphic organizer summary. In contrast, others are very concerned about electronic text For example, Duke, SchmarDobler, and Zhang (2006) reveal that too many choices in electr onic text can distract the attention of struggling readers a nd they can cause cognitive over load and damage comprehension of readers. The reader may possibly need more cognitive energy or an extended set of thought process (Coiro, 2003).

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36 Measuring Reading Comprehension The com plex interaction of ma ny factors can influence the assessment of comprehension across texts, instruction, and response formats (Pearson & Johns on, 1978; Paris, 2007). There are many methods to assess reading comprehension so levels of performance for children of different ages and grades must be considere d. Knowledge, application, and engagement are all vital outcomes of reading with comprehension; assessments that reflect all three of these products are needed (RAND Reading St udy Group, 2002). Assessment of reading comprehension tools can include retellings, cons tructed responses, choice among multiple-choice answers, and filling in the missing words (e.g. cloze test) which can all be useful for measurement (Paris, 2007). RAND Reading St udy Group (2002) found that teachers need sensitive, reliable and valid instruments that are closely tied to their curricula so that they can improve their instruction (RAND, 2002, p. ixx). Choosing a measure of reading comprehension depends on the purpose of assessment (Paris, 2007). There is no single method that can complete ly represent comprehension (Palingo, 2003). Morrow says that comprehension questions limit comprehension assessment because the child is given only one perspective, isol ated literal responses. Simila rly, Rhodes and Shanklin (1993) claim that retellings provide far more inform ation about a student's comprehension than do answers to the more common comprehension questions" (p. 232). However, Leslie (1993) recommended using both comprehension questi ons and retellings to assess students comprehension of stories, because different met hods measure different things. Doty (1999) also support this opinion; while retel ling can give hints about the readers understand of story structure, the response to e xplicit and implicit comprehensio n questions measure readers information about the story, readers prior knowledge and their inferences based on the story. Therefore, using retellings together with comprehension questions could provide more

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37 information and insight into students comprehens ion of the story. In this study, retellings were used for the purpose of assessment of reading comprehension as well multiple-choice comprehension tests. Retelling A retelling is sim ply the stude nts post-reading reorganization of the main points of a story (Koskinen, Gambrell, Kapinus, & Heathinghton, 1988). Rather than responding to question, children transform a story into th eir own words, taking in what is only really grasped (Brown & Cambourne, 1987). Many researchers declared that rete llings are also valuable assessment tool to use in evaluating childrens true comprehens ion (Doty, 1999). According to Johnston (1983) retellings are the most straight forward assessment tool that directly reflect the readers comprehension. Retelling is not only an assessment tool to examine story comprehe nsion, but it also has potential for skill development as an instruct ional method (Pearman, 2003). Retelling helps learning of vocabulary, comprehension, language development, knowledge of story structure, and convention of written language (Brown & Cambourne, 1987; Morrow, 1989; Pearman, 2003). Reading is a meaning building process (P alingo, 2003) and meanings are negotiated between the reader and the text (Ruddell & Unrau, 1994). Even though all readers utilize information from the text for their retellings, they can vary. The dissimilarity among retellings comes from varying schemata and experiences conveyed in the reading (Palingo, 2003). The more related the story is to the reader, the more correct the retelling will be. Retellings give information about a reader's comprehension pr ocess (Palingo, 2003). Moreover, when readers do not remember literal label in th e stories, retelling provides the oppor tunity to show what readers know through explanations.

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38 Story retellings have been used to assess the comprehension of students from kindergarten through college (Baumeister, 1992; Kintsch & van Dijk, 1978; Morrow 1985, 1986). Many studies support the use of st ory retelling as a comprehension measure (Palingo, 2003). Morrow (1985, 1986, & 1989) carried out three different studies to find out specific benefits of story retelling. In all three studies, the story retelling improve d comprehension of story, and knowledge of story structure. Stor y retelling has been also proven as an effective and appropriate comprehension measurement tool. According to Morrow (1988) the child uses story structure elements (setting, theme, plot ep isodes, and resolution) to make sense of a story. Mosss study (1997) indicated that a majority of first grader s were able to compre hend expository text as measured through oral retelli ngs of an informational book. Leslie and Caldwell (2008) mentioned some conc erns about retellings. First, retellings are open-ended response formats and they are difficu lt and time consuming to listen, transcribe and score. Reliability of scoring is another concern. Scoring or analyzing retelling can involve more than just measuring literal recall (Lesli e & Caldwell, 2008, p. 414) and because students frequently present a variety of different person al comments, make infere nces besides a factual retelling or paraphrase the text, interscore reli ability for retelling is a necessity (Leslie & Caldwell, 2008). Reading comprehension test (m ultiple-choice questions) The m easurement of reading comprehension using multiple choice responses has a long research history (Leslie & Caldwell, 2008). The hi story of reading comprehension tests began as early in 1900. Since World War II, reading comp rehension measures have developed quickly. One development of these years is the rising view that reading comprehension is actually a complex skill made up a variety of subskills. This view has brought with it an attempt to measure the subskills supposedly underlying reading co mprehension (Schwartz, 1984). For example

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39 Davis (1944) conducted the study of the skills that compromise comprehension as measured by a standardized multiple-choice test and he categor ized the fundamental skills describing reading comprehension such as recalling word meanings, dr awing inferences, following the structure of a passage, formulating the main idea, finding answers to questions answered explicitly in the content, weaving together ideas in the content, identifying a writers t echniques, tone and mood, and recognizing the authors purpose (as cited in Leslie & Ca ldwell, 2008, p. 405). Comprehension questions are an essential pa rt of reading assessment and instruction (Baumeister, 1992). After the accountability re quirements of No Child Left Behind in 2002, standardized comprehension assessment measur es have become more predominant (Leslie & Caldwell, 2008). Standardized assessments such as multiple-choice question tests meet empirically-based standards of reliability a nd validity (Stahl, 2008). Comprehension question design is generally based on systems of ques tion categorization. Blooms taxonomy (knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, synthesis and evaluation) is mostly used to categorize different types of questions with sp ecific question words i ndicated for each category (Leslie & Caldwell, 2008). Typical reading tests measure comprehension skill by having examinees read passages of text that is leveled appropriately for the student, and then ask a series of explicit and inferential multiple-choice questions. These questions require ex aminees to abstract main idea, recall facts, and draw inferences from what they have read (Schwartz, 1984). Multiple -choice questions are a method of assessment that asks students to choos e one option from a given list. Multiple-choice questions are most broadly used for assessi ng knowledge, comprehensio n, and application of learning outcomes. They normally have three co mponents: a stem, right answer, and several incorrect answers, called distracters. Multiple-cho ice questions have some advantages such as

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40 these questions are highly structured, and do we ll at measure student achievement. In addition, scores are less influenced by estimating than true -false questions, scores are more trustworthy than open-ended questions, and scoring is easy and reliable. When multiple-choice question assessment is used effectively, it can raise student achievement (Black & William, 1998). On the other hand, there are some serious concerns about multiple-choice comprehension questions that decrease reliability and stability of tests. The first important problem for this type of question is that it leaves completely uncontro lled the influence of individual differences in previous knowledge (Schwartz, 1984). If students already know of the text content prior to reading, they can infer answers based upon extens ive prior knowledge. Stude nts also connect in clever guessing of selected response items (Paris, Carpenter, Paris, & Hamilton, 2005). Another issue concerning question usage is whether student s answer the questions from memory or have access to the text. Review of literature of standa rdized measures of reading comprehension also indicated that research has not adequately a ddressed construct validity (Leslie & Caldwell, 2008). According to Schwartz (1984), comprehension tests were becoming more and more sophisticated psychometrically; however, they were not making some degree of theoretical progress. Leslie & Caldwell (2008) explain that a valid assessme nt of reading comprehension needs theoretical foundations. In this study multiple-choice comprehension questions are founded on Pearson and Johnsons (1978) Taxonomy of Comprehension Questions. A textuallyexplicit question is a fact ual question and needs readers to us e information found directly in the text, frequently within a single sentence or pa ragraph (Raphael & Pearson, 1985). Text-implicit questions need readers to use information found in th e text, but also need th e reader to assimilate information across sentences or paragraphs (Baumeister, 1992; Pearson & Johnson, 1978;

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41 Raphael & Pearson, 1985). This type of questi on might require readers to make low-level inferences. The validity of Pearson and J ohnsons (1978) taxonomy is proved by Thompson, Gipe and Pitts (1985). Comprehension Difficulties of Struggling Readers Cooper et al. (2006) defines struggling reader as a student who is e xperiencing significant difficulty learning to read (p.11). M any struggli ng readers exhibit reading difficulties (Rapp et al., 2007). According to Biancarosa and Snow (2004), older struggl ing readers, who are between fourth and twelfth grade, mostly do not need help to read the words. However, their frequent problem is that they fail to comprehend what th ey read. Struggling reader s are less conscious and have less management of their comprehension process when they are reading (Baker, 2002). Background experiences, oral language, decoding phonemic awareness, fluency, oral reading, and writing vocabulary, comprehension, maintaining attention, and motivation are likely areas of difficulties exhibited by struggli ng readers. Struggling readers are not exactly the same; for instance, some may not have difficulty dec oding words or fluency but have difficulty comprehending the text (Asselin, 2002; Cooper et al., 2006; Yuill & Oakhill, 1991). In the early grades, the primary emphases are on the alphabetical principle, phonemic awareness, decoding, and word recognition (Adams, 1991; Kingham, 2003). However, once students reach upper grade levels, the primary emphasis shift towards reading comprehension and the anticipations of readi ng comprehension increase. The e xpectations are to understand more complex texts and to apply appropriate background knowledge in a variety of contexts (Gardill & Jitendra, 1999; Kingham, 2003). The existing literature provides that reader char acteristics, text propert ies, and instructional contexts are main elements of comprehensi on difficulties (Rapp et al., 2007). Kingham (2003) claims that there are three basic theories offere d to clarify reading comprehension difficulties.

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42 The first theory is that comprehension probl ems are rooted in word recognition problems. Students with good comprehension have str onger word recognition skills than poor comprehenders. Slow decoding causes a block in the working memory of the reader. Since students with poor comprehension do not use their working memory efficiently, this gives them a lower functioning capacity for comprehension pu rposes (Perfetti & Lesgold, 1979). The second theory claims that readers have difficulties in sy ntactic and semantic analysis of texts, and are incapable of making use of the structural limit of language. St udents with poor comprehension are presumed to pay no attention to the syntactic clues in texts a nd read word by word instead of processing texts in appropriate units (Cromer, 1970). The third th eory hypothesizes that readers have difficulty making inferences from texts, and combining the ideas with them. Poor comprehenders are argued to have enough word recognition and syntactic skills but experience difficulty at inference and integration levels and fall short to monitor their comprehension (Kamhi, 1997; Kingham, 2003; Yuill & Oakhill, 1991). Research in the cognitive scie nces has provided important in sights into the challenges and potential sources of reading comprehension difficulties (Gernsbacher, 1990; Graesser, Gernsbacher, & Goldman, 2003). First, one of the most consistent findings from cognitive psychological research on reading is that the construction of a cohere nt representation of text in memory is central to successful comprehensio n (Rapp et al., 2007, p. 292). Second, a coherent mental representation as a network that shows th e meaningful connections between elements of text and the reader's background knowledge (K intsch & van Dijk, 1978; Rapp et al., 2007). A lack of background knowledge or failure to activ ate background knowledge is a potential source of difficulty for struggling readers (Cooper et al., 2006). However, some researchers are concerned that struggling readers often over re ly on their background knowledge causing them to

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43 move further from the intended meaning of texts (McCormick, 1992; Trabasso & Suh, 1993; Williams, 1993, as cited in Rapp et al., 2007). Strugg ling readers schema for simple stories is not developed or as efficiently utilized as that of good readers (Rahman & Bisanz, 1986). The other major sources of comprehension difficu lties that influence a students ability to comprehend are readers' processing capacities, a lack of interest in reading, negative attitudes to reading, and motivation (Rapp et al., 2007). Most struggling readers ar e particularly uninterested. Struggling readers may perhaps have low self-conf idence in their reading skills and they believe they cannot comprehend. The educators in litera cy development suggest that the struggling reader must be expanded to recognize that this individual is disengaged from literacy (Moje, Readance, & Moore, 2000). The content and format of texts also infl uence struggling readers' comprehension. The characteristics of text a student is reading, the difficulty of the text and type of text can also limit his or her ability to comprehend (Alexandar & Jetton, 2000 Kingham, 2003). Struggling readers often have little knowledge of text structures. Using charts, graphs, and diagrams to provide visual aids are helpful for unders tanding text. For example, if a student is given a full page of text with no illustration, probably the student is overwhelmed by it. When the student is given the same material spread over more pages, with less text on each page and with some illustrations; the student could read the word s and comprehend the text (Cooper et al., 2006, p. 121). Another important variable that influen ces how well students comprehend is their knowledge and ability to use strategies (Paris et al., 1991). Many struggling readers fail to apply reading strategies such as self-questioning or explanations summarization and explicit selfmonitoring of comprehension. They are less strategic, and partic ularly lack effective memory

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44 search strategies. Because of repeated failures, struggling readers do not recognize the effective strategies they do use. Instead of learning alternative strategies from their failure, they often give up. NRP (2000) report has shown that struggling readers can increase reading comprehension skills by learning the specific st rategies such as prediction, questioning, clarifying, imagining and summarization. In summary, struggling reader s have difficulty with comprehe nsion for a variety reasons. Helping struggling readers overcome problems with comprehension is not an easy task, because they often have multiple difficulties. Every students needs and the reason for their problems must be evaluated and identified. The findings ca n be used to supply interventions that teach students how to activate their prio r knowledge and how to use vari ous strategies for constructing meaning or comprehending text (Cooper et al., 2006). Technology and Reading Comprehension Reading co mprehension is influenced by new technology and literacy. Recent literature has stated a long tradition of book and print media is insufficient, students and teachers use new and varied forms of technology. The need for changes in the way we think about reading comprehension is inevitable (Coiro, 2003). Ra nd Reading Study Group (2002) pointed out an explosion of alternative texts and electronic texts that incor porate hyperlinks and hypermedia introduce some complications in defining comprehens ion because they require skills and abilities beyond those required for the comprehension of c onventional, linear print (p. 14). These new reading environments bring out cognitive and aesth etic challenges to comprehension (Spires & Estes, 2002) and there is a need for theoretical description of th e comprehension process (p.123). Technologys Effects on Struggling Readers Review of research on technology involvem ent with struggling readers demonstrates constantly encouraging findings and studies have agreed the cont ribution of technology

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45 involvement resulted in considerable gains in reading comprehension (Denman, 2004). The NRP meta-analysis has found the 21 studies used to assess computer technology that showed promising results (NICHD, 2000). Compute r-supported environments can help our understanding of the struggling readers reading problems and "may help compensate for inadequate reading ability" (McKenna et al., 1999, p. 113). Research findings are also optimistic about the future of multimedia applications for struggling readers. For example, Higgins, Boone and Lovitt (1996) found that electronic social studies texts improved comprehensi on for students with learning disa bilities. Hegarty, Carpenter, and Just (1991) reported that animation in electronic text help to illustrate unfamiliar processes for students with low mechanical ability. Ma ny features of CD-ROM storybooks are well matched for phonemic awareness, phonics, fluenc y; vocabulary, and comprehension (Pearman & Lefever-Davis, 2006). Computer software has the exceptional capacity to bring individualized practice to students who need to enhance their reading fluency (Oakley, 2003). In addition to providing practice in developing reading fluency, CD-ROM stor ybooks can help poor readers vocabulary development (Pearman & Lefever-Da vis, 2006). The ability to recognize soundsymbol relationships is essential, but it is not enough for comprehens ion. Students must also activate their prior knowledge and use context hints to comprehend what they read. There is growing indication that computer-supported effect s such as animation and sound allow students to make these connections (Matthew, 1997). Gree nlee-Moore and Smith (1996) indicate that the use of interactive CD-ROM storybooks may help improve reading comprehension for elementary students. In addition, CD-ROM storybooks develop the story setting through animated graphics and sound effects indicati ng story mood and events and thus supporting comprehension (Lefever-Davis & Pearman, 2005) Visual aids in electronic CD-ROM

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46 storybooks are helpful for understanding text a nd building coherent me ntal representation. Multimedia presentation, which includes text, graphics, sound, and animated images, is also helpful motivation for a struggling reader who is particular ly uninterested. Electronic Texts Electronic texts possess new char acteristics that require diffe rent types of com prehension processes and a different set of instructional strategies. Elect ronic texts introduce new supports as well as new challenges that can have a great impact on an individual's ability to comprehend what he or she reads (Coiro, 2003, p. 458). Reinking et al. (1998, p.1) stated the following important features of electronic te xt that printed text does not have: (a) It is interactive in the literal sense, inviting the reader to impose organizations and compose responses; (b) it can accommodate text ual supports (electronic scaffolds) for poor or developing readers; (c) it invites and often requires nonlinear strategies; (d) it can incorporate multimedia components; and (e ) it is fluid rather than fixed. These characteristics give electronic text a dynamic quality that is changing forever the nature of what it means to be literate. In addition, special features of electronic texts provide powerful advantages like facilitating the process of constructing meaning and assisting readers difficulties (Reinking et al., 1998). Text features of traditional and electronic te xts are completely dissimilar. For example, traditional print text is passive, non-interactive w ith non-adaptable features, linear, static with two-dimensional images. Additionally, reader follo ws the structure or plot which is designed by author. On the other hand, electr onic texts typically ha ve new formats. For instance, these new formats are nonlinear, and inte ractive (Coiro, 2003; Schmar-D obler, 2003; Sutherland-Smith, 2002). Images are more lifelike th an in traditional print text s (Sutherland-Smith, 2002). Also electronic texts combine different functions such as animations, cartoons, and audio and visual video clips (Coiro, 2003). For the new text format the readers need to apply and develop new

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47 literacy skills and strategies, because text structure is di ssimilar between electronic and conventional texts. Sutherland-Smith (2002) electr onic texts necessitate high levels of visual literacy skills, comprehension strategies, and ne w ways of thinking. Elec tronic texts users must be skilled in interpreting, eval uating and synthesizing information and all graphic features in new text format (Coiro, 2003; Schmar-Dobler, 2003). CD-ROM Storybooks As valuable tool in educa tional setting, electronic books have been used in classroom literacy learning in the earl y school years (Chen, et al., 2003; Matthews, 1996; Underwood, 2000). Electronic CD-ROM storybooks are readi ng software for children in illustrated storybooks that help children develop visual recognition. Electronic storybooks are mainly designed to integrate text, graphics, animati ons, music and other multimedia components in order to bring support to the story line (Chen et al., 2003). Children could read the stories on their own or listen to the storie s read and activate dialogue or an imated part of illustration. In addition, some CDs also contain games and ot her interactive featur es based on the story (Unsworth, 2003). CD-ROM storybooks may also be known as electronic texts, talking books, or interactive books (Pearman, 2003). Benefits of CD-ROM storybooks Probably the m ost significant benefit of el ectronic CD-ROM storybooks provides reader control. The readers can make choice for them selves when and where they need help. The pronunciation, definition, hearing of the words provides minimum interruption in readers comprehension (Lefever-Davis & Pearman, 2005). Also these features help students to not spend too much mental energy to decode words nor do they have to struggle with new vocabulary. Therefore, students have more time and energy to process meaning for comprehension (LefeverDavis & Pearman, 2005; Pearman, 2008). Further, Chiappone (2003) claimed that digital books

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48 help fluency by reducing the cognitive load for the less skilled readers by freeing up short-term memory. Another benefit of reading and interacting with electronic storybook has likely to be an influential motivating force for even the mo st unwilling readers (Matthew, 1996). Multisensory features of electronic storybooks such as the sounds effects accompanying the narration, the animations, the colorful pictures and the variety of text styles provide powerful advantages like facilitating the process of constructing mean ing, expanding schemata and assisting readers difficulties (Matthew, 1996; McNabb, 1998; Pearma n, 2008; Reinking et al ., 1998). Studies also reveal that electronic CD-ROM st orybooks give immediate help to students, eliminating the need for teachers to provide students with instant attention (Chen et al., 2003; Doty et al., 2001; Pearman, 2008). Several studies indicate that CD-ROM storybooks increase reading comprehension (Doty, 1999; Doty et al., 2001; Matthew, 1997; P earman, 2003, 2008). In addition, vocabulary development is also enhanced through the use of CD-ROM storybooks (Lefever-Davis & Pearman, 2005). Horney and Anderson-Inman (1999) suggested that teachers can use electronic storybooks to build vocabulary and enhance word meaning within the context of interactive, animated stories. Electronic storybooks also prov ide students with repeat ed reading experiences that combine story narration and word pronunciation in the context of realistic animations and special effects (Reinking et al., 1998). Pearman (2008) expresses that traditional print texts are passive, static, and cannot respond to individual readers, are restricted by their linear composition, and rely heavily on the reader's internal strategies to activat e prior knowledge. However, el ectronic CD-ROM storybooks can provide a literal interaction betw een the reader and the text (Reinking, 1992). Chen et al. (2003)

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49 also investigated and characteri zed features of electronic st orybooks. They explained several benefits of electronic storybooks: (1 ) They are excellent tools for the integration of technological media and instructional design. (2 ) Electronic storybooks assist teach ers to rebuild their teaching and ideas of how to use stories in their clas sroom. (3) Electronic storybooks provide exceptional methods of instruction and they also expand the variety of them. Disadvantages of CD-ROM storybooks On the other hand, som e studies disagree with the view that characte ristics of electronic CD-ROM storybooks are useful fo r childrens literacy developm ent (DeJean, Miller, & Olson, 1997; De Jong & Bus, 2002; Labbo & Kuhn, 2000; Matthew, 1996; Nibley, 1993; Okolo & Hayes, 1996; Scoresby, 1996; Trushell & Maitland, 2005; Underwood & Underwood, 1998). Many electronic reading environments bring in a new set of cognitive barriers that can cause experienced readers of traditional print text to be cognitively overl oaded (Delaney & Landow, 1991). De Jong and Bus (2002) revealed that chil drens understanding of a storys content was less supported by the electronic version than the traditional print book format. Interactive features of electronic storybooks can offer too many choices and t oo many animations that may distract and confuse struggling readers (Coiro, 2003). Furthermore, if the illustrations, games, attractive pictorial options incl uded in the electronic storybooks do not support the story, they can distract and draw attention away the childrens focus on the story rather than support the narratives comprehension, could cause passive reading, and delay childrens early literacy development (De Jong & Bus, 2002; Labbo & Kuhn, 2000; Matthew, 1996; Shamir & Korat, 2006; Underwood & Underwood, 1998). The electronic text features that improve context and activate background knowledge may be disadvantageous to students (Pearman, 2008) Over time, dependence on electronic text features may delay literacy development of younge r readers because the use of reading strategies

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50 does not become an integral part of the read ing process (McKenna, 1998). Also, the computer does not offer help or provide inst ruction in reading strategies as long as the reader does not ask for help (Pearman, 2008). Many of the software programs contain some features such as animations, reading aloud words, sentences pages, or the whole book. Lewin (1996) and Pearman (2008) expressed concern th at with these features readers could rely on the computer to decode words or to read the story instead of developing their own abili ties. Moreover, the CDROM books, dissimilarly, using hyperlinks to the Internets resources, exist in a closed environment, which engages the learner in the simulated situation completely on the CD. The CD-ROM is more object-orien ted and focused on knowledge delivery or guidance in some specified topic (Chen et al., 2003). CD-ROM Storybooks and Reading Comprehension Pearm an and Lefever-Davis (2006) reported that as one of five cr itical components of reading instruction, comprehension can be supported by CD-ROM storybooks. They claim comprehension skills mainly appropriated to being developed through an electronic CD-ROM storybooks format include construction backgr ound knowledge, story schema and metacognition. For example, sound effects and animation f unctions of CD-ROM storybooks rapidly and effectively place the reader dir ectly in the setting thus contri buting to reading comprehension. Additionally, metacognition can be supported through CD-ROM storybooks because CD-ROM storybooks provide opportunities to prompt the computer to a ssist their reading such as pronouncing or defining vocabulary, and contributing reader cont rol (Pearman & Lefever-Davis, 2006). As seen in Table 2.1, there are three groups of studies. The first group has supported and favored Pearman and Lefever-Davis claim that comprehension can be supported and developed by CD-ROM storybooks (Greenlee-More & Sm ith, 1994; Grimshaw, Dungworth, McKnight, &

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51 Morris, 2006; Matthew, 1997; Mi ller, Blackstock, & Miller, 1994; Pearman, 2003, 2008; Shamir, Korat & Barbi, 2008). The second group found detrimental effects on comprehension (Labbo & Kuhn, 2000; Maitland & Trushell, 2005; Okolo & Hayes, 1996; Scoresby, 1996; Trushell, Burrell, & Maitland, 2001; Trus hell, Maitland, & Burrell, 2 003; Underwood, 2000). The third group of studies found mixed results with in crease in comprehension depending on the assessment tool or no evidence that storybooks support or distract comprehension (De Jong & Bus, 2004; Doty, 1999; Doty et al., 2001; Ki m, Yoon, Whang, Tvers ky, & Morrison, 2007; Lefever-Davis & Pearman, 2005; Matthew, 1996). A limited number of researchers have investig ated comprehension comparing the use of electronic CD-ROM storybooks to a traditional print text. Miller et al. (1 994) observed that a small sample of third-graders repeatedly reading interactive CD -ROM storybooks committed fewer meaning related errors than when repeatedly reading the equivalent traditional paper storybooks. A study conducted by Greenlee-Moore & Smith (1996) to explore the effects of interactive CD-ROM software on childrens reading comp rehension when reading shorter and easier narrative text against longer and more difficult na rrative texts on printed pages as compared to reading the same narrative texts using interactiv e CD-ROM software presented by the computer. Thirty-one fourth-grade child ren were involved in her study. Comprehension was measured by six multiple-choice comprehension questions, two literal, one vocabulary, and three inferential questions. The results of study revealed significan tly higher comprehension scores when students were reading the longer and more difficult narratives from the in teractive software. There was no difference when two treatment groups were r eading the shorter and easier narratives. The

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52 interactive CD-ROM software caused higher scor es on comprehension questions related to the story on more difficult and longer narratives. There has been other research on how interactive computer software and CD-ROM books influence childrens reading achievement. Ka thryn Matthew conducted a study comparing the reading comprehension of third-grade student s who read CD-ROM storybooks with those who read traditional printed books The students' story retelli ng scores on the two CD-ROM storybooks were compared to traditional print storybooks. Thirty third-grade students were participated in the Matthews study (1997). Matthew (1997) explains that the comprehension of students may be more accurately reflected in rete llings than in the answers to comprehension questions. A statistically significant difference was found between students' story retellings of print stories and their retelli ngs of CD-ROM storybooks. Student s scored significantly higher on retellings when reading the CD -ROM stories. Matthew (1997) al so declared that additional research is necessary to corroborate these findings. McNabb (1998) did a qualitativ e study of four subjects rang ing in age from 7-12 years old. These subjects were under one or two grade le vels their expected grade reading level. The purpose of this study was to understand comprehension strategies used by struggling readers when reading interactive CD-ROM storybooks differed from those strategies used when reading paper storybooks. Struggling reader s were allowed to use animations to help them in words analysis, recognition and fluency. The results of the study showed that multisensory and interactive features and the context expansion features of CD-ROM storybooks assisted struggling readers to read wit hout difficulty and comprehend be tter than static paper books. Another result was that struggli ng readers were able to apply reading strategies individually

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53 when support from teacher, tutor, or parent was not available during reading electronic CD-ROM books. Pearman conducted two studies (2003, 2008) on second grades students with oral retellings. The purpose of first study was to investigate whether second grade students with varying degrees of reading proficiency scored higher on an oral retelling assessment of comprehension when text was presented in an inte ractive, electronic format than when text was presented in a traditional print format (Pear man, 2003). Participants were 54 second-grade students from a rural elementary school in the Mi d-South. A repeated measures design was used with each student reading both an electronic and a traditional print text at their developmental level of Low, Medium, or High as designated by teacher. The results of the study indicate that interactive, electronic text may facilitate read ing comprehension for students that are reading below grade level or are struggling with devel oping reading skills and strategies. In the second study by Pearman (2008) 69 second-grade students were participated. In teractive, CD-ROM storybooks and the traditional print texts were used in this study. Evidence from the study indicates that interactive, CD-ROM storybooks group scor ed significantly higher in comprehension than traditional paper group. Theref ore, the use of CD-ROM storybooks could be beneficial for young readers. Shamir et al. (2008) explored the effects of electronic storybooks for kindergarteners emergent literacy skills within the context of paired peer versus individu al use of the electronic books. The sample of 110 kindergar teners had a mean age of 5.64 years in a low social economic status. No one had been diagnosed with lear ning disabilities. Participants were randomly assigned to four groups: 30 tutors, 30 tutees, and 30 individual learners, all of whom used the electronic book and 20 children in a control group who were only exposed to their regular

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54 kindergarten program. Preand post-intervention emergent literacy measures included story comprehension, phonological awareness, and word recognition. The overall improvement of the children in the three experimental groups was hi gher than that of the children in the control group. In addition, electronic book activity in creased story comprehension, phonological awareness, and emergent reading, over those wh o worked with it individually (Shamir et al., 2008). Grimshaw et al. (2006) investigated the di fferences in children's comprehension and enjoyment of storybooks according to the medium of presentation. Participants in Grimshaws study included 132 children aged 9-11. The type of medium did not sign ificantly affect the children's enjoyment of storybook, bu t it took the children longer to read the electronic versions. For the electronic versions of storybooks, comprehension scores were higher for retrieval-type questions than for inference ones. The use of the online dictionary in the electronic condition was significantly greater than that for the printe d dictionary. The provision of narration in the electronic version led to signifi cantly higher comprehension scor es than when narration was absent. However, several studies reported that the same interactive nature of the electronic storybooks can sometimes serve as a distracti on from the storyline (De Jong & Bus 2002; Labbo & Kuhn, 2000; Maitland & Trushell, 2005; Okol o & Hayes 1996; Scoresby, 1996; Trushell, Burrell, & Maitland, 2001; Tr ushell, Maitland, & Burrell, 2003; Underwood, 2000). For example, Okolo and Hayes (1996) evaluated the use of childrens literature presented via one of three conditions: an adult reading a book to the child; the child reading a CD-ROM version of a book on the computer but without animation; and the child reading the book on computer with high level animation. The study, in one primary grade classroom, involved 10 students with

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55 learning disabilities and 10 student s without disabilities. Studen ts preferred the high animation condition, spending almost four times as mu ch time reading the book but Okolo and Hayes (1996) found that the high animation misled stud ents into drawing wrong conclusion about the text. Labbo and Kuhn (2000) distinguished between considerate and inc onsiderate CD-ROM talking books. Considerate CD-ROM talking books contain multimedia effects that are congruent with and integral to the story. Inconsiderate CD-ROM talking books contain multimedia effects that are incongruent with or incidental to the story. They found that while considerate CD-ROM talking books supported the children s understanding and retelling of the story and involved in meaning making process, inconsiderate talking books fostered children s passive viewing and did not support their story understanding. Scoresby (1996) assessed the effects of animation and reading ability on recall of illustrated and non-illustrated text information. Eighty-four second graders were included in the study and twenty four open-ended questions were used to test student recall of story details. The results of the study indicate that readers who viewed animations being able to recall fewer story details once the story was complete. Underwood (2000) compared both electronic (talking book software) and paper format designed to provide supplement ary reading practice. A mixed empirical methodology combining both quantitative and qualitativ e techniques was employed. Lear ning gains were measured by story writing, observations and interviews. Sixt y-two 8-year old children took part in study. Underwood (2000) reported that pupils' recall of the story of an interactive talking book was poor. In addition, children found the talking books highly motivating.

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56 De Jong and Bus (2002) observed 4-year-old children exploring electronic books that included games and other activities. They found that the childrens understanding of the content of the story was less well supported by the el ectronic version compared to the regular book format. They concluded that the many attractive options of electronic books seem to distract childrens attention from text, and number of readings of the text in favor of iconic and pictorial explorations (p. 154). Trushell, Burrell, and Maitland (2001) study examined Year 5 primary pupils' behaviors when reading and their recall of an interactive storybook. Pupils from three Year 5 classes participated in the study. Data were collect ed by observations and multiple-choice questions. This study found that pupils' recall of the storyline of an interactiv e storybook was poor and interactive storybook may provide mere entertainment. Trushell, Maitland, and Burrel (2003) administered a study on year 4 primary school pupils (8-9 years-old). Data collected by multiple-choice questions, verbal recollections and opinions, and observations. They found that graphic animations and so und effects provide contextual support for readers. However, those do not support the storyline or story ev ents and detriment to readers ability to recall story events. Another study, Maitland and Trushell ( 2005) included Year 5 and Year 4 pupils participating and two interactive storybooks on CD -ROM were used in this study. Pupils' recall of the interactive stor ybooks was gauged by two measures, colla borative verbal story retelling and short multiple choice quizzes. The outcomes of the study indicate that access to cued animations and sound effects did have adverse e ffects on pupils' story r ecall. The story grammar recall of Year 5 and Year 4 pupils who had r ead an interactive st orybook was found to have deteriorated throughout th e event structure.

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57 The following studies had mixed results w ith increase comprehension depending on the assessment instrument. Doty et al. (2001) inve stigated interactive CD-ROM storybooks and young readers' reading comprehension. First grad e children students read a conventional print storybook or an interactive CD-ROM version offering word pronunciations, definitions, and labels for illustrations; narration was turned o ff. Children reading the CD-ROM version of CDROM storybooks significantly scor ed higher than conventional print group on comprehension questions but oral retelling scores were not different. Matthew (1996) investigated the impact of interactive CD-ROM st orybooks on the reading comprehension and attitudes toward reading of 37 matched pairs of third grade students. The students were assessed through story retellings and 10 open-ende d comprehension questions. The results pointed out that when comprehension was assessed th rough open-ended questions, there was no statistically significant difference in r eading comprehension. When comprehension was assessed by story retelling, stude nts who read the in teractive CD-ROM storybooks obtained significantly higher scores than students who read the print version of the storybooks. There was no significant difference between the readi ng attitudes of the students in the groups. Another study of interactive CD-ROM st orybooks and reading comprehension was presented by Doty (1999). The purpose of her stu dy was to determine if there was a difference in the level of young readers reading comprehension when one group of students read an interactive CD-ROM storybook and one group of students read the same story from a conventionally printed book (Doty, 1999, p.1). The participants were 39 second-grade children. The study used oral retellings and comprehens ion questions for data collection. Study findings differed from Mathews studies (1996, 1997). Dotys study found th at there was no significant difference in mean scores on the retellings be tween the scores but th ere was a significant

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58 difference in mean scores on the comprehensi on questions between the two groups (Doty, 1999). Doty (1999) concluded that evidence from this study, as well as others indicates that reading comprehension can be enhanced through the use of interactive CD -ROM storybooks (p.6). De Jong and Bus (2004) studied the efficacy of electronic books in fostering kindergarten children's emergent story understanding. The study compared effects of children's independent reading of stories electronically with effects of printed books r ead aloud by adults. Participants were 18 fourto five-year-old Dutch kindergarte n children in the initia l stages of developing story comprehension. Electronic reading produced e xperiences and effects similar to adult-read printed books. Children frequently interacted w ith the animations ofte n embedded in electronic stories, but there was no evidence that the anima tions distracted children from listening to the text presented by electronic books, nor that the animations interfered with story understanding. Findings suggested that children at this stage of development profited from electronic books. Lefever-Davis & Pearman (2005) conducted a study on 11 first-grade students. Five girls and six boys representing a wide range of reading levels took part in the study. Each child read two CD-ROM talking books. During each reading, a running record was administered to assess student reading accuracy rate. Results from this study indicate CD-ROM storybooks have the potential to support readers and promote reading skill. In contrast, this study also found that features of CD-ROM storybooks may prove to be distractions for students. The length of time it takes for pages to turn disrupts the reading proc ess, delays the opportunity for students to begin reading, and increases their frustration level. This frustr ation seemed particularly evident for the more proficient readers. Recent advances in multimedia, CD-ROM technologies offer new possibilities for introducing children to the worl d of reading through computer (Bus et al., 2006). Digital

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59 environment supporters in education believe that CD-ROM storybooks have the potential to change reading comprehension. Unfortunately, thes e claims have yet to be supported by the very limited research. The results of the studies previously carried out in this area have been conflicting and often hard to interpret. Additiona lly, mixed results have been found for variables readers prior knowledge, experi ence with electronic storybooks cognitive style, reading strategies, reader opportun ities for control and choi ce, novelty effects, and separate functions of electronic storybooks such as an imation (Dalton & Strangman, 2006) Also, there are very few experimental studies that investigate the eff ects of electronic CD-ROM storybooks on struggling readers comprehension. Most participants have been regular younger children and below thirdgrade. And these studies usually used methodically two group co mparisons. The researcher has found only four experimental st udies related to struggling re aders (McNabb, 1998) or students with learning disabilities (Okolo & Hayes, 1996) or low reading ability students (Pearman, 2003, 2008). Therefore, more work is needed to better understand about the effects of electronic storybooks on struggling r eaders comprehension. Role of Animation and Research As com puter technology highl y developed and authoring syst em become more friendly and powerful, computer special e ffects like animation are now becoming a reality (Braden, 1996). Animation refers to the use of a se ries of graphics that change ove r time and or space. The use of computer animations is relatively new in educa tion. Computer animation offers many potential benefits that improve learning (Okolo & Ha yes, 1996; Rieber, 1990; 1994). In multimedia technology, animation provides two different visual elements; images and motion which are both essential for understanding and memoriza tion (ChanLin, 2001; Rieber, 1994). With the fast expansion of multimedia tec hnology, animation research is becoming more significant. Although there ha s been a common belief that animati on is superior to still graphics,

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60 studies reveal contradictory findings (ChanLin, 2001; Rieber 1990; Rieber, Boyce, & Asad, 1990). Rieber, et al. (1990) found that animation he lped decrease the time necessary to retrieve information from long-term memory and then subs equently reconstruct it in short-term memory (p. 50). Rieber (1991), in an experiment with fourth-graders, showed that students successfully extracted incidental information from animated graphics without risk to intentional learning, but were also more prone to devel oping a scientific misconception (p. 318). Rieber (1994) stated: (1) Although animation can be a remarkable visual effect, research point outs that animations effects on learning are relatively restrained. (2) Children seem able to take out information incidentally from animated displays, although they may for misconceptions without suitable guidance. (3) Visually based im itation is motivating to children. The current study is focused on animation in electronic CD-ROM st orybooks. Literature review shows that there is little actual research evaluating the use of animation in electronic storybooks. Scoresby (1996) report that there may be little research which directly relates to the study of animations and narrative text literatu re implies a potential problem but fails to empirically establish that problem indeed exist, the need for actual research in this area is clear (p. 31). Some authors caution about the potenti al distraction of animations in reading comprehension (Nibley, 1993; Okolo & Hayes, 1996; Scoresby, 1996). If animations do not support the text, they may draw st udents attention away from the main points of the text; and may even hinder comprehension. DeJean et al. (1997) and Scoresby (1996) found that animation in CD-ROM books diverted from reading rather than improved it and the animation slowed down recall of textual information. Scoresby (19 96) also revealed that animation-available groups spent the most time engaged in readi ng CD-ROM books. However, this extra time on

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61 task did not cause higher reca ll scores; the animation-availabl e groups had significantly lower recall scores than other groups who spe nd much less time within the storybook. However, many studies have shown that illu strations and animations that support or amplify accompanying text improve students comprehension. For example, Matthew (1996), and Miller et al. (1994) demonstrate CD-ROM storybooks in stimulating children in reading development. Trushell et al. (2003) found that graphic animations could offer background support for readers by providing supplemental information. Electronic CD-ROM storybooks combine sound effects and animations to provide rich context that support vocabulary and concepts (ChanLin, 2001; Pearman & Lefeve r-Davis, 2006). Electronic CD-ROM technology contains extensive sequences of animation that are not found in traditional texts (Ocolo & Hayes, 1996; Scoresby, 1996). Summary Understanding the m eaning of words and texts is the center of the function of literacy. Without comprehension, reading words is reduced to imitating the sounds of language, repeating text is simply memorization and oral drill (Paris & Hamilton, 2008). Seve ral factors are involved in comprehension with four important elem ents being word recognition, prior knowledge, motivation and attitude, and reader strategies (Lipson & Wixson, 1997; Pressley, 2000). Assessment of comprehension is complex because comprehension is measured indirectly (Pearson & Johnson, 1978; Paris, 20 07). There is no single method th at can completely represent comprehension (Palingo, 2003). Leslie (1993) recommended using both comprehension questions and retellings to asse ss students comprehension of stories, because using retellings together with comprehension questions could provide more information and insight into students comprehension of the story.

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62 Many struggling readers exhibit reading difficulties for a variety reasons (Rapp et al., 2007). According to Biancarosa and Snow ( 2004) a common problem of older struggling readers, who are between fourth and twelfth grad e, is that they fail to comprehend what they read. Reading comprehension is influenced by new technology and literacy. Re cent literature has stated that a long tradition of book and print me dia is insufficient; students and teachers use new and varied forms of technology (Coiro, 2003). As a valuable tool in educational settings electronic books have been used in classroom literacy learning (Chen, et al., 2003; Matthews, 1996; Underwood, 2000). Pearman and Lefever-Davis (2006) claimed that comprehension skills can be developed through electronic CD-ROM storybooks. However, a review of the literature has shown that a limited number of studies have investigated comp rehension comparing the use of electronic CDROM storybooks to a traditional print text. Basically, there are three groups of studies related to electronic story books and comprehension. The fi rst group early works claimed comprehension can be supported and developed by CD-ROM storybooks. The second group research on CDROM storybooks found detrimental effects on comp rehension. The third group of studies found mixed results with increase in comprehensi on depending on the assessment instrument or found no evidence that storybooks support or distract comprehension. The next chapter describes the theoretical framework, text difficulty, and the me thodology used to collect and analyze the data presented.

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63 Table 2-1. Summaries of the studies related to electronic storybooks and texts Author & Year Participants Materials Assessment Results Miller, Blackstock, & Miller (1994) Third-graders CD-ROM storybooks Discis Books Miscue analysis Electronic CDROM storybooks increased decoding ability and fluency and decreased meaning related errors Greenlee-More & Smith (1994) Fourth-graders Interactive CDROM software Multiplechoice questions CD-ROM storybooks increased comprehension when reading longer and difficult narratives. No differences the shorter and easier narratives Matthew (1996) Third-graders CD-ROM stories Open-ended questions There were no significant differences in reading comprehension Okolo & Hayes (1996) Second-graders with learning disabilities and without disabilities CD-ROM version of a book Living books Discis books Retellings and comprehension questions There were no statistical differences between students Scoresby (1996) Third-graders Electronic storybooks Open-ended questions Animations within electronic storybooks were detrimental on story recall Matthew (1997) Third-graders CD-ROM format stories Story retellings Students scored significantly higher on retellings when reading the CDROM stories

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64 Table 2-1. Continued Author & Year Participants Materials Assessment Results McNabb (1998) Struggling readers 7-12year old CD-ROM storybooks Qualitative Multisensory features of CDROM storybooks made them easier for struggling readers to read and comprehend than paper books Doty (1999) Second-grad ers Interactive CDROM storybooks Oral retellings and comprehension questions Students who read the CDROM storybook scored higher on comprehension questions. No significant difference in the retelling scores Underwood (2000) 8-year old children Talking book software Story writing, observations and interviews Childrens recall of the story of an interactive talking book was poor Trushell, Burrell, & Maitland (2001) Year 5 primary school pupils Interactive CDROM storybooks Multiplechoice questions and observations Pupils recall of the storyline of an interactive storybook was found to be poor Doty, Popplewell, & Byers (2001) Second-graders Interactive CDROM storybooks Retellings and comprehension questions Children who read the CDROM scored higher on test, but no difference in mean scores on the retellings Pearman (2003) Second-graders Interactive electronic texts Oral retellings Electronic texts facilitate comprehension for kids that are reading below grade level

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65 Table 2-1. Continued Author & Year Participants Materials Assessment Results Trushell, Maitland, & Burrell (2003) Year 4 primary school pupils (8-9 year-old) Interactive storybooks on CD-ROM Multiplechoice questions, verbal recollections and opinions, and observations Animations and sound effects could provide contextual support for readers but they negatively affect readers ability to recall story events De Jong & Bus (2004) Kindergarteners (4-5 year-old) Electronic books Orally presented short comments and questions There was no evidence that the animations distracted children, or that the animations interfered with story understanding Lefever-Davis & Pearman (2005) First-graders (6-7 year-old) Interactive CDROM talking books Running record The digital pronunciations were a predominant feature of the CD-ROM storybooks were interpreted as a support and a distraction for developing beginning readers skills Maitland & Trushell (2005) Year 5 and Year 4 primary school pupils Interactive storybooks on CD-ROM Verbal story retelling and short multiple choice quizzes Access to cued animations and sound effect did have unhelpful effects on pupils story recall. Storybook was found to have deteriorated throughout the event structure

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66 Table 2-1. Continued Author & Year Participants Materials Assessment Results Grimshaw, Dungworth, McKnight, & Morris (2006) 9-11 years children Electronic version of storybooks with an online dictionary. The comprehension tests (Standard Attainment Tests) The type of medium did not significantly affect the childrens enjoyment. Comprehension scores were higher for retrieval-type questions. The narration in the electronic version led to significantly higher comprehension scores than when narration was absent Kim, Yoon, Whang, Tversky, & Morrison (2007) Fourth and sixth graders Animated computer presentation True-false comprehension test questions and attitude questionnaire Animated computer presentation increased enjoyment and motivation, but not comprehension test score Shamir, Korat & Barbi (2008) Kindergarteners (5-6 year-old) Electronic CDROM storybooks Preand postintervention. Comprehension test, six questions about the electronic book Electronic book CD-ROM provided an advantage in comprehension, phonological awareness, and emergent reading Pearman (2008) Second-graders Interactive CDROM storybooks Discis Books Oral retellings Interactive, CDROM storybooks are beneficial for young readers comprehension

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67 CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY Introduction The aim of this research was to compare and explore the effects of the medium of storybooks presentations on strugg ling readers comprehension. To accomplish this, each student twice read one of three types of presentation of storybooks. Then, comprehension was measured by using multiple-choice comprehension test and retelling to understand differences among the groups. Specifically, this chapte r describes theoretical framewor k of the study, text difficulty, leveling books, choice of storybooks, and met hodology: research de sign, participants, measurement procedures, data collection, and analysis. Theoretical Framework This section will dis cuss the theoretical founda tion of this research. This study is based on cognitive theory, mainly from schema and me ntal model theories. Th erefore, theoretical framework will begin with reviewing constructivism. This section will be followed by cognitive constructivism, schema theory, interactive theory and function of these theories in this research and the connections to technology specifically electronic storybooks. Constructivism Constructivism a student-centered learning approach, is a main trend today in literacy education (Willis, Stephens, & Matthew, 1996). The constructivist theorys basic idea is that knowledge is constructed by each person individuall y. Constructivism refers to a broad term for a wide diversity of views. However, construc tivism has two common views that (1) learning is an active process of construc tion rather than acquiring knowle dge, and (2) instruction is a process of supporting that c onstruction rather than comm unicating knowledge (Duffy & Cunningham, 1997, p.171). Learners construct ne w knowledge upon the foundation of previous

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68 experience and prior knowledge. C onstructivist theory is against the passive transmission of information from one individual to another or from a text to another. Lear ners are active rather than passive. They engage in their own knowle dge building by assimilating new information into their schema in a meaningful way. Constructivis m has two major trends: individual cognitive and sociocultural (Willis et al., 1996). The individua l cognitive constructivism originates from Piagetian theory. This view emphasizes the constr uctive activity of individuals as the learner tries to make sense of the world. Learning is seen to happen when the learners expectations are not met, and the learner must resolve the inco nsistency between what was expected and what was actually encountered. Thus, the learning is in the individuals constructions as the learner tries to resolve the conflict, or construct themselves and their world by accommodating to experiences. Within this framework, the focu s is on the individual within the group, and cognition happens in the head of the i ndividual (Duffy & Cunningham, 1997). In the contrast to Piaget focus on individual constructions, the sociocultural constructivism highlights the socially an d culturally situated context of c ognition. This approach stresses the social origins of cognition, for example, the impa ct of an individuals appropriation of language as a mediating tool to construct meaning (D uffy & Cunningham, 1997; Willis et al., 1996). As with the multimedia presentations implemen ted in this study, the theoretical foundation is obtained from constructivist theory. Constructi vism provides many of the basic principles of this study; the study is also base d on cognitive constructivism. Cognitive Constructivism Cognitive constructiv ism is based on the work of educational philosopher John Dewey, Lev Vygotsky, Jean Piaget, and Jerome Brunner. They offer that children actively construct knowledge and this construction of knowledge oc curs in a social context (Conway, 1997). Cognitive constructivism views learners as agents of their own learning. Bruner (1966) revealed

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69 that cognitive structure such as schema and mental model supplied meaning and organization to experiences and allowed the individual to go beyond the information given. Another constructivist re searcher Vygotsky mentioned that all learning occurs in the zone of proximal development. This zone is the difference between what a child can do alone and what he/she can do with assi stance. By constructing on the child's experiences and giving moderately challenging tasks, teachers can provid e the intellectual scaffolding to help children learn and progress through the different stages of developm ent (Conway, 1997). Interactive electronic books like the Living Books series, which are used in this study, supply scaffolding to help students advance within their zone of proximal development (Willis et al., 1996). Cognitive constructivism adopts Piagets thoug hts as a foundation for practice (Conway, 1997). Three key Piagetian principles can guide teachers as they make a technology-rich environment: learning is an activ e process, learning is a social process, and learning is a developmental process (Willis et al., 1996). Piaget (1972) also claimed that people are born with schemes helping them to organize their thi nking processes that shows a way do mentally represent the object and events of the worl d. He explained construction of meaning: Its easy to assimilate information as we read provided that it fits within our existing schemata. When there is a conflict between what we think we know and what we are learning, then accommodation must occur to rebuild those schemata. Readers must be capable of learning through reading in the sense of assimilating new knowledge to established schemata and also of accomm odating existing schemata to new knowledge. But the ability of a reader to comprehend a given text is very much limited by the conceptual and experiential background of th e reader, and there are strong limitations on how much new knowledge can be gained fr om a reading of a given text (p. 1127). Cognitive constructivist researchers are also inte rested in the cognitive process of reading and writing. For example, Goodma n (1994) views reading as a pr ocess of sense making rather than simply attempting to accurate ly decode and pronounce symbols.

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70 Literacy is not restricted to ink on paper. Various forms of technology can encourage and challenge the students natural pr ocesses as they engage in liter acy activities. The most exciting of these is multimedia. Cognitive constructivist researchers found th at multimedia tools allow to students explore the environment for a new type of literacy that adds visual images, sound, moving images such as animation, vide o, and hypertexts (Willis et al., 1996). Technology, particularly multimedia, offers many opportunities. Beginning in the 1990s many innovative educational computer programs we re based on constructivi st theories (Conway, 1997). Teachers can supply a learning environm ent that helps increase the conceptual and experiential background of the r eader, however, CD-ROM programs that can provide the visual support and informative text to increase the r eaders background are pl entiful and relatively inexpensive. This is mainly important for st udents who lack the background relevant to the content and the texts (Willis et al., 1996). In sum, technology supplies are fundamental tools to achieve the goals of a constructivist classroom: 1. Through their exploration of multimedia packag es, students learn to connect images with text and to follow their own interests. Therefor e, they can engage in activities that will increase their schemata as they naturally seek new information. 2. Interactive electronic books for students that associate animation, images and explanations help to build conceptual a nd experiential background and construct meaning (Willis et al., 1996). Further, this study used principles of schema and interactive theories. Schema Theory The conception of schem a is fundamental to cognitive theories of representation (Winn & Snyder, 1996). There are a number of descriptions of schema. For instance, Rumelhart (1984) describes schema as the organized knowledge netw orks that one has about people, places, things, and events. According to Bartlett (1932) schema is a mental framework for understanding,

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71 organizing and remembering information. Gr aesser (1981) stated the following common functions of schema: (1) Schema provides b ackground knowledge to interpret a specific event. (2) It provides background knowledge to infe r beyond the information given. (3) It produces predictions of information. (4) It facilitates a persons to recogniti on of regularities so that more attention can be allocated to accommodating new information. Reading theorists such as Anderson (1984) vi ews comprehension as constructing a schema that is related the elements in a text. A sche ma provides a framework for comprehending a story. A schema also helps maintenance, as students use it to organize their reconstruction of the events. Schema theory principally is a theory of how knowledge is mentally represented in the mind and used (Rumelhart, 1980). Schema theory al so represents interactive view of reading comprehension rather than merely text-based activity (Anderson & Pearson, 1984; Doty, 1999). In this view, there is an interconnected relati onship between text comprehension and a readers prior knowledge (Doty, 1999). Reading comprehens ion does not occur in a vacuum; however, it is connected to the readers experiences of prior knowledge or schemata (Tierney & Pearson, 1994). Reading is perceived as an active pro cess of constructing meaning by relating old knowledge with new information in text. Readers construct meaning by engaging in a series of interactions. In each inte raction readers create a m odel that presents the best possible fit with the data perceived to be in the text. New text data gives an invitation to review the adequacy of the model; new information either is made to conform to the existing model or assist a modification of the model. Readers build their own meaning. That meaning probably looks like what the author had in mind, but the reader does not de velop the same model as the author, nor do any two readers build up exactly the same model. When readers of different degrees of capability

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72 read the same passage, they inte ract with the text in dissimila r ways (Pearson, Roehler, Dole, & Duffy, 1992). Activating schemata is vital in reading. Building schemata for the reader is not simply filling slots. Active readers are c onstantly connecting what they ar e reading to other experiences they have had, other in formation in the text th ey have read, and texts previously read (Gunning, 2004). Over all this information, reading cannot be narrowed to print al one; interpretation of other elements such as storybook illustrations, animations might also be considered parts of reading (Scoresby, 1996). The schema theory based on the interactive vi ew of comprehension is the appropriate use of electronic CD-ROM storybooks. CD-ROM storybooks provide the opportunity to the reader to interact and control the text in manners not capable with printed text (Doty, 1999). An interactive exchange of information between the reader and text might be created by technological features of the computer (Reink ing & Schreiner, 1985, as cited in Pearman, 2003). Interactive Theory There are several m odels and theories of reading comprehension. The bottom-up model highlights decoding and word meaning. This model explains reading as a linear, detailed, letter by letter, word by word analysis of text to gain meaning (Bruning, Schraw, & Ronning, 1999). Comprehension occurs when the reader recognize s the words (Doty, 1999). In contrast with the bottom-up model, the top-down model of readin g comprehension is based on the idea that readers expectations about the text and their backgr ound knowledge establish the comprehension process. The bottom-up model of r eading comprehension pays no attention to the effects of readers knowledge and the effects of context. On th e other hand, the top-down model focus directly on the role of knowledge but te nd to overlook the value of the bottom-up process

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73 such as phonemic knowledge and word decoding in reading comprehension (Bruning et al., 1999). The interactive model was a response of these obvious limitations of the bottom-up and the top-down models and it is a combination theory of both the bottom-up and the top-down processes. Reading comprehension is a product of their interaction. Th e interactive reading model recognizes the interaction of bottomup and top-down processes at the same time throughout the reading process. In other words, th e interactive theory gives the same importance to the role of prior knowledge a nd obtaining meaning from text. Wh en a reader has limited prior knowledge about the topic, she or he is likely to rely on information in the text. Otherwise, the reader more likely applies prior knowledge instea d of the text information. According to this theory, reading is an active process to comp rehend text, readers appl y strategies and prior knowledge to build meaning; readers make connectio ns to a number of f actors associated with themselves, the selection being read, and the context (Rumelhart, 1994; Bruning et al., 1999; Doty, 1999). Text Difficulty and Leveling Books Leveling reading m aterials is an old con cept and a complex task (Rog, & Burton, 2002). Leveled texts were generally considered a central component of elementa ry reading instruction for years (Hoffman, Roser, Salas, Patters on, & Pennington, 2001). Reading materials are categorized according to "character istics that are related to the s upports and challenges in the text for young readers" (Fountas & Pi nnell, 1999, p. 15). Clay (1991) st ated that students require texts that give a balance between support and challenge. Namely, story text should be easy enough to help comprehension, but complex e nough to provide a challenge. One of the advantages of leveling reading materials according to difficulty is to provide teachers a guideline to rapidly and simply select appropriate r eading materials for each student (Rog & Burton,

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74 2002). There are some disagreements on how texts ar e to be leveled and wh at factors should be considered when leveling texts. Several differe nt publishers (Scholastic, Wright Group, Pearson Education), and researchers (Clay, 1991; Fountas & Pinne ll, 1999; Peterson, 1991) have attempted to develop leveling system for books based on difficulty (Rog & Burton, 2002; Pearman, 2003). Rog and Burton (2002) have critic ized that the publishers explicitly have not defined the criteria and the characterist ics by which their materials are leveled. Leveling and readability are related in their focus on text difficulty when determining proper texts for readers (Dzaldov & Peterson, 2005) Allington (2006) declares that the most common approach for estimating text difficulty of texts has been use of structural readability formulas (p. 63). There are different existing fo rmulas to estimate text difficulty, but each mainly applies procedures that measures sent ence difficulty and word difficulty (Allington 2006; Rasinski, 2003). Allington (2006) warns that any of these procedures is just an estimate and all formulas have some error in measurement (p. 63). Also, these formulas fail to take into account the many additional factors such as picture support, the length of the book, the appearance and placement of print on the page, the complexity of concepts, the degree of predictability of the text, leve l of interest, or a students pr ior knowledge about the topic that influence the difficulty of texts for students (Klare, 1984, as cited in Allington 2006; Rog & Burton, 2002; Weaver, 2000). Despite their limitati ons, the use of conventional structural readability formulas can be helpful if only for providing an approximate text difficulty, since even a ballpark estimate is better than none at all (Alllington, 2006, p.64). In the mid-1980s, basal readers were marked by th e lack of "any systematic attention to the decoding demands of the texts" (Hoffman, Sailors, & Patterson, 2002, p. 272). Basal programs focused on teaching children only a core of sight words and used controlled vocabulary as well

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75 repeating particular patterns (Rog & Burton, 2002). The leveled books were initially developed for the Reading Recovery program (Fry, 2002). Rapidly, reading educators from different viewpoints showed concern over th e appropriate text difficulty. Th e basic principle of Reading Recovery program is gradually increasing te xt difficulty from the beginning (Clay, 1991; Peterson, 1991). In this study several structural readability procedures we re used for matching storybooks to struggling readers. Used readab ility formulas are explained in the following paragraphs. Guided Reading is focused on comprehension. Children learn to predict what might happen or what they might learn. They learn abou t the story elements of characters, setting, and plot, and they learn how to or ganize and compare information l earned from informational text. The basic principle is when the proper books ar e selected; students ar e able to read with approximately 90% accuracy (Cunningham & Cunningham, 2001). Guided Reading Level developed and introduced to educators by Irene C. Fountas and Gay Su Pinnell. The levels identified by the letters A Z and organized al ong a continuum of increasing difficulty. Levels are assigned based on different factors including, book length, layout, illustrations, internal text structure, content, and theme (Pearson, 2007; Fountas & Pinnell, 1996). DRA (Developmental Reading Assessment ) leveling criteria was developed and introduced to educators by Joetta Beaver through her various assessment tools. DRA determines the level of independent reading in a student and it utilizes a numeric code that reveals the broader need for guided reading sessions to change over time (Pearson, 2007). The Lexile Framework provides a free tool to evaluate text difficulty using the Lexile method (Allington 2006). Lexile measures are based on two predictors of how difficult a text is to comprehend: word frequency and sentence length. The Lexile measure is the numeric

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76 representation of a texts difficulty. The Lexile s cale is a developmental scale for reading ranging from 200L for beginning readers to above 1700L for advanced text. This process is referred to as measuring, and the result is a text measure that re presents the difficulty of analyzed text (Lexile Framework for reading, 2005; Pearson, 2007). With the choice for estimating text difficult y, all have a potentia l function in making it possible that children will have access to books they can actually read. When teachers recognize their students well and are more proficient about estimating the complexity of text, they usually do not require readability estimates to find suita ble books for the children in their classrooms (Allington, 2006). Choice of Storybooks For this study, it was decided to use two diffe rent storybooks, Sheila Rae, the Brave, and Arthurs Teacher Trouble which were availabl e in printed paper book fo rm and CD-ROM with an inte ractive mode (with anim ation) and passive mode (without animation). Both electronic versions of storybooks are Living Books series from Broderbund. Living Books are similar in concept to paper texts in that the reader progresses from one pa ge to the next in a linear way. Living Books include animations, a range of s ounds, music and opportunities for interaction. In addition most Living Books allow the reader to click on individual words to hear them read aloud but these functions were not used in this study. There are options to select the language (English or Spanish) at the top of the control panel page. After choosi ng a language, the reader can begin by selecting let me play to play with in the story (interactive mode) or selecting read to me to read the story (passive mode). Both storybooks were approved by experts, th e teachers and fourth-grade coordinator as being suitable for the age group being tested. The books are approximately the same length and have a third-grade readability level (Matthew, 1996). The CD-ROM storybooks, which are part

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77 of the Living book series, were selected based on th eir appropriateness for this age of reader with regard to content and reading level. First storybook was Art hurs Teacher Trouble by Marc Brown, Developmental Assessment Level (DRA): 18-20. Second storybook was Sheila Rae, the Brave by Kevin Henkes: Devel opmental Assessment Level (D RA): 18-20. Those interactive storybooks offered both a read to me option, providing linear pr ogression through the text screen by screen, and a let me play opti on which, while encourag ing linear progression, permitted linear regression and screen selec tion. During electronic CD-ROM storybooks word pronunciations, definitions, narration functions were turned off so as not to provide extra help to students. These two electronic storybooks were chosen for several reasons. First, the subjects are struggling readers (Reading Level one and Level two) at least one or two years below their current grade level. OConnor, Bell, Harty, La rkin, Sackor, & Zigmond (2002) found that the reading-level matched texts are more beneficial than grade-level matched texts. It is also essential that struggling readers be given materials on their level. They should know that at least 90-95 percent of the words in a text, that text is at the appropriate level of difficulty to read with no assistance (Leslie & Caldwell, 2001). More difficult text is not a ppropriate for reading instruction. If given materials on higher level, they are unable to appl y reading strategies (Kletzien, 1991). Therefore, th ese two storybooks, which are lo w difficulty level for regular fourth-graders, were chosen by the research er. The second reason these storybooks both CDROM and paper versions were used in previous studies. For example, Arthurs Teacher Trouble by Marc Brown used by Matthew (1996) for regu lar third-graders, Scoresby (1996) for thirdgraders. Sheila Rae, the Brave by Kevin Henke s used by Trushell et al. (2003, 2005) for year 4 and year 5 primary school children in United Kingdo m. It was an evident to the researcher was

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78 using these storybooks were valid and reliable for this study. Third, two storybooks from living book series are approximately equal in length, readability level, and function such as animation. Restatement of Purposes and Research Questions The purpose of this research was to com par e and explore the effects of medium in storybooks presentations on strugg ling readers reading comprehension. The following research questions were addressed in this study: 1) Do fourth-grade struggling readers differ on reading comprehension as measured by multiple-choice comprehension test when they read the same storybooks presented in electronic format with a nd without animation and in a traditional print format? 2) Do fourth-grade st ruggling readers differ on reading comprehension as measured by retelling when they read the same storybooks pr esented in electronic format with and without animation and in a traditional print format? Research Design There are tw o dependent variables and one i ndependent variable in this study. First dependent variable is reading comprehension as measured by the multiple-choice comprehension test, and the second dependent variable is reading comprehensi on as measured by the retelling. The independent variable is the type of medi um of presentation. Thr ee conditions: (1) CD-ROM with animation, (2) CD-ROM without animation, and (3) printed version of storybooks were tested two times through the use storybooks: Art hurs Teacher Trouble, and Sheila Rae, the Brave. Participants The subjects were 77 students ( N =77 ) enrolled in a fourth -grade classroom and from economically and culturally diverse elementary sc hools in the United States. The subjects ages ranged from 9-11, with a mean of 9.96 years. Fort y-eight participants were female, and 29 were male. The subjects were selected among fourth-gra de students who were reading below at least

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79 one or two years from current grade level and not meeting Sunshine St ate Standard [SSS] as measured by Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test [FCAT] in 2007 (Reading Level one, ( n=27); Reading Level two, ( n=50). Floridas retention polic y requires students to reach a minimum threshold on the reading portion of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) to be promoted to the fourth grade. For instance, third-graders must pass the reading test to be promoted to fourth grade. In other words, by State of Florida law, third-grade students who scored at Level one of the FCAT were required to spend at least one extra year in third grade. Therefore, some of the subjects of the study held back and repeated the th ird grade. There were three treatment groups. The subj ects were randomly assigned to read the electronic storybooks under the program's read to me option, or called without animation or passive mode ( n=26), the second group of students were assigned to read under the pr ogram's let me play option, called with animation or active mode ( n=25) and the last group of students were assigned to read print based story, or called traditional storybook ( n =26). Each treatment groups consists of equal number ( n=9) of reading level one students. Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) The subjects selection was ba sed on FCAT. In this section, som e essential information about FCAT is explained. The FCAT is the f oundation of the statewid e educational assessment and accountability program. The FCAT consists of criterion-referenced tests in mathematics, reading, science, and writing, which measure stude nt progress toward meeting the Sunshine State Standards. The reading area is assessed by FCAT for students in grades 3 through 10 (Florida Department of Education, 2005). The score ranges for achievement levels 1 through 5 and the minimum score necessary for the student to be on Grade Level (Level 3). A level two score means student has had limited success with the challenging content of the Sunshine State

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80 Standard. A level one score mean s little success with the challenging content of the Sunshine State Standard (Florida De partment of Education, 2004). According to Florida Department of Educati on (2004) the FCAT is a highly reliable test. On fourth-grade reading test co rrelation between the FCAT and S unshine State Standard in year 2001, 2002, and 2003 were .90. Correlation between FCAT, Sunshine State Standard and Norm Referenced Test (Stanford 9) confirmed that the FCAT demonstrates concurrent validity. For fourth-grade reading test in 2001, correlation was .80, and following two years .83, and .82. The evidence of reliability and valid ity support the claim that FCAT is technically sound and meets or exceeds the professional standards for standardized achievement tests (Florida Department of Education, 2004, p. 24). Measurement Procedures In this study there are two common response formats: multip le-choice and retelling used in this study to assess students reading co mprehension performance because an average of scores across these two tests may give a more accurate indicator of reading comprehension performance. If only one measure of reading is given, the results can poten tially be misleading in this case. Leslie (1993) recommended using bot h comprehension questions and retellings to assess students comprehension of stories, because they measure different things. Doty (1999) also supported this opinion; while retelling can give hints about the r eaders understanding of story structure, the response to explicit and im plicit comprehension questions measure readers information about the story, readers prior knowledge and their inferences based on the story. Therefore, using retellings together with comprehension questions could provide more information and insight into students comprehension of the story.

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81 Comprehension Tests (Multiple-choice Questions) The m ultiple-choice questions were written by the researcher according to Pearson and Johnson's (1978) taxonomy of comprehension ques tions. Textually explicit (factual questions), and textually implicit (inferential questions) were used to examine whether the students understood the elements of the story (Leslie, 199 3). The questions for Arthurs Teacher Trouble are based on a modified version of the "Recal l Questions" originally developed by Scoresby (1996). Content validity was used for validity evaluation of comprehension tests. Content validity is a subjective form of validity evaluation. It consists of opinion and judgment as the method to derive valid test. In more sophisticat ed situations, a test designer may begin with original instrument, and then re ceive additional test item assessm ents from experts in the field. Items may be added, modified, or dropped, relati ve the experts opinion. This method is the strongest form of content validity (Balian, 1994 ). The American Psychological Association (1985) also declared that: Conten t-related evidence of validity is a central concern during test developmentExpert professional judgment should play an integr al part in developing the definition of what is to be measured ( p. 11). For content validity, the multiple-choice comprehension questions (Appendix D) were re viewed and approved by experts; the teachers and fourth-grade coordinators, as appropriate for the students being st udied. Originally there were 20 comprehension questions to answer but seven questions were eliminated by teachers as not appropriate for the students. 13 questions re mained and used for the comprehension test (Appendix D). Retellings Com prehension is truly reflected by story re telling, and the use of retellings provides readers with an opportunity to tr ansform the story into their own words, and also to share their individual understanding of text (Doty, 1999).

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82 One of the dependent variab le of the study was comprehension as measured by oral retelling. Morrows 10-Point Scale (Appendix C) was used for analysis and evaluation story retellings. Morrows 10-Point Scal e is a reliable assessment inst rument for retelling. According to Morrows study (1986), to verify the reliabilit y of the scale, six evaluators independently analyzed for inclusion of structural elements (s etting, theme, plot episode s, resolution) and they scored the same 12 story retellings. Morrow (1986) reported that mean correlation among evaluators was .93 for setting scores, .88 for them e scores, .90 for plot episodes scores, .90 for resolution scores, .86 for sequence scores, a nd .90 for total retell ing scores (p. 144). Additionally, the literature revi ew has shown that previous studies applied retelling as assessment of comprehension widely used Morrow s 10-Point Scale. For example, Doty (1999), Doty et al. (2001), Matthew (1996, 1997), and Pearman (2003, 2008) used this scale with retellings. Data Collection The study consisted of h aving each child r ead two storybooks. The study was conducted by three researchers with the cooperation of elementary schools in Alachua County (FL). Each school provided access to a Personal Computer w ith a CD-ROM drive. The researchers provided electronic storybooks. Data collection took about 8 weeks. Duri ng the study, using computers skill was not a problem. The students were generally very skilled at using computers. A ccording to the student survey results, 92.2% of students, either they ha ve a computer at home or get to use a computer outside of school. And also, all schools that were visited had computer labs and allocated regular computer time to students in the computer labs. Two Ph.D. students majoring in education trained about data collection process helped the main res earcher during data collection.

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83 The participants were first asked to fill in a short survey requesting basic demographic characteristics such as age, gender, and information about their computer experience as well as whether they have previously read or s een these storybooks on TV/DVD/Video/ CD-ROM. Students who have previously read and/or seen the storybooks were eliminated from the study. It is important that the storybooks were previously unknown to subjects. The first group of students ( n=25) read electronic CD-ROM with animation of storybooks on the computer. The second group ( n=26) read electronic CD-ROM without an imation of storybooks on the computer. The third group of students ( n=26) read the same stories on print version. Prior to data collection, all students had b een trained with Just Grandma and Me (by Mercer Mayer) from Living Books series to fa miliarize themselves with the comprehension measures, story retellings, and multiple-choice qu estions. Additionally, students in the electronic CD-ROM storybooks groups were given directions for using the computer. For the purposes of data collection, the students r ead the following two storybooks, a ll of which were published in both print and electroni c CD-ROM formats: (1) Arthur's Teacher Trouble by Marc Brown (1992), and (2) Sheila Rae, the Brave by Kevin Henkes (1987). After reading, the students answered on paper 13 multiple-choice questions. The time limit was 20 minutes. They were not allowed access to the stories during testing. The comprehension tests contained multiple-choice questions that requ ired the student to select the one correct answer. Students received one point for correct responses, and zero points for an incorrect or missing response. The highest total possible sc ore was 13 points for this assessment. The students' responses were scored by the researcher. All students gave an oral retell ing after reading the story. Stud ent retellings were recorded for later scoring by independent raters. For the rete llings, students were told to tell the story to

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84 share with a friend who had never read the story. They were reminded to tell as many details as they could remember. The time limit was 15 minutes. The retellings were scored in accordance with Morrow's (1986) 10-point scale (Appendix C). Students received two points, one point for pa rtially correct responses, and zero points for an incorrect or missing response each of following items in the retelling: a) setting b) theme c) plot episodes d) resolution (Matthew, 1996). The highes t total possible score was 10 points for this assessment. The students responses were scored by the researcher and then by an independent rater who is native English speaker. The independ ent rater was trained in the general use of Morrow's (1986) 10-Point Scale. The correlatio n between raters was .81. Scoring differences greater one point were discussed and resolved. The researcher made observation during readi ng the stories process and took field notes about time, and the other deta ils. In addition, shor t interviews were conducted by several students to get some feedback about using electronic storybooks. The students received pencils at the end of data collection. Th e researcher sent appreciation letters to school principals and administrators. Data Analysis One-way analysis of varian ce (ANOVA) was perfor med to compare the groups on the basis of outcome measures at the .05 level of significance. Separate analyses were carried out for the two stories, Arthurs Teacher Trouble and She ila Rae, the Brave. The Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) used fo r the purpose of data entry, mani pulation, and analysis. According to Balian (1994), ANOVA is the most traditionally and widely accepted form of statistical analysis. ANOVA can test three or more group means utilizing a single statisti cal operation. ANOVA accomplishes its statistical testing by co mparing variance between the groups to the variance within each group. A significant statis tical finding would indicate that group means

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85 were significantly different from each other. In case of a significant statistical finding, there is a need to use a Post-Hoc test (T ukey, Scheffe, Bonferroni or others) to find exactly which groups differed from which other groups (Balian, 1994). In this study, because of a significant finding from ANOVA, Bonferroni test was used to find exactly which groups differed from each other. In addition, Kruskal-Wallis one-way analysis of va riance was used to decide whether or not the average differences between the groups are due chance. Kruskal-Wallis one-way analysis of variance is the nonparametric statis tical test for analyzing data from two or more independent samples of subjects (Shavelson, 1996). The Student Survey Results A student survey was conducted with student s prior to the reading of the storybooks. Seventy-seven respondents com pleted the survey in strument. An analysis of the student survey showed that males represented a sma ller proportion of the sample (37.7%; n=29) than females (62.3%; n=48) (Table 3-1). The respondents ages ra nged from 9-11, with a mean of 9.96 years. Seventeen participants were nine years old (22.1%), forty-seven participants were ten years old (61%), and thirteen participants were eleven years old (16.9%) (Table 3-2). The largest group of respondents were African-Americans (40.3%; n=31), followed by White (Anglo-American) (33.8%; n=26), others (10.4%; n=8), Hispanic-Americans, Asian-Pacific Islanders, and NativeAmericans each (5.2%; n =4). The results of this category are presented in Table 3-3. Students who had previously read and/or s een the storybooks were eliminated from the study. Therefore, the storybooks were previously unknown to subjects. All of the respondents reported that they have not read the storybooks prior to the study. Table (3-4) reports the percentages and freque ncies of participants who read or had not read a storybook on a computer. Thirty-nine pa rticipants (50.6%) ha d previously read a storybook on a computer before while thirty-e ight of them (49.4%) had not. Seventy-one

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86 students (92.2%) either have a computer at home or get to use a computer outside of school but six students stated that they do not have acces s computer outside of school (Table 3-5). Respondents described their computer usage in a week at home as follows; twenty one of them (27.3%) stated every day in a week, four of them (5.2%) stated six days in a week, five of them (6.5%) stated five days in a week, eleven of them (14.3%) stated four days in a week, five of them (6.5%) stated three days in a week, nine of them (11.7%) stated two days in a week, and seven of them (9.1%) stated one day a week, of computer use at home. Fifteen of the respondents (19.5%) stated that they do not use computer at home. The results are shown in the Table 3-6. Respondents described their computer usage in a week at school as fo llows; three of them (3.9%) stated every day in a week, two of them ( 2.6%) stated six days in a week, eight of them (10.4%) stated five days in a wee k, thirteen of them (16.9%) stated four days in a week, six of them (7.8%) stated three days in a week, nineteen of them (24. 7%) stated two days in a week, and fifteen of them (19.5%) stated one day in a week, of computer use at school. Eleven of the respondents (14.3%) stated that they do not use computer at school (Table 3-7). Participants can select more than one choice for the last survey question (question #8). When the students responses for survey question #8 were analyzed, it was found that fifty-six of the participants (72.7%) use a comp uter to play games (Table 3-8) Of those participating in the study, twenty-five of them (32.5%) stated that they use a computer for writing purposes while fifty-two of them (67.5%) stated that they do no t use a computer for writing purposes outside of school (Table 3-9). Of those participating in the study, thirty-two of them (41.6% ) answered that they use a computer to access e-mails while forty-five of them (58.4%) answered that they do not use a computer to access e-mails outside of school (Table 3-10). Forty-five participants (58.5%) were

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87 allowed to access the Inte rnet at home (Table 3-11). Eleven participants (14.3 %) reported that they use a computer to read books while sixty-si x students (85.7%) reported that they do not use a computer for reading purposes outside of school (Table 3-12). Fifteen of them (19.5%) stated that they use a computer to study lessons while si xty-two of them (80.5%) stated that they do not use a computer to study lessons out side of school (Table 3-13). Of those participating in the study, twenty-two of them (28.6%) answered that they use a computer for activities other than those listed in the survey while fifty-five partic ipants (71.4%) stated they do not use a computer other than for activities listed in the survey (Table 3-14). The nu mber of students responses to each category is presented at the end of this chapter. Summary This study was designed to com pare fourth-g rade struggling readers comprehension across three types of storybooks presentations: (1) computer pr esentation of storybooks with animation; (2) computer presentation of storybooks without animation; and (3) printed version of storybooks. This chapter presented the research design, the instruments, the procedures, and the methods used to collect, analyze and score the da ta as well as the theoretical framework to the study. Seventy-seven fourth-grade struggling read ers participated in th is study. Two different storybooks were used. To measure students co mprehension, data were collected using two instruments: (1) multiple-choice comprehension test, and (2) retelling. All students responded survey questions. Morrows 10-Point Scale was used to score retellings. One-way ANOVA was used to determine whether there was a significa nt difference in scores among the groups. The Bonferroni test was used to find exactly which groups differed from each other. Kruskal-Wallis one-way analysis of variance test was used to decide whether or not the average differences

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88 between the groups are due chance or to treatment effect. Chapter 4 presents the results of the research.

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89 Table 3-1. Participant charac teristics based on gender Frequency Percent female 48 62.3 male 29 37.7 Total 77 100.0 Table 3-2. Participant char acteristics based on age Frequency Percent 9.00 17 22.1 10.00 47 61.0 11.00 13 16.9 Total 77 100.0 Table 3-3. Participant characteristics based on race/ethnicity Frequency Percent White 26 33.8 African American 31 40.3 Hispanic 4 5.2 Asian-pacific islander 4 5.2 Native American 4 5.2 Other 8 10.4 Total 77 100.0 Table 3-4. Electronic storybooks experience Frequency Percent No 38 49.4 Yes 39 50.6 Total 77 100.0

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90 Table 3-5. The use of computer outside of school Frequency Percent Yes 71 92.2 No 6 7.8 Total 77 100.0 Table 3-6. The use of computer frequency in a week Frequency Percent none 15 19.5 1day 7 9.1 2days 9 11.7 3days 5 6.5 4days 11 14.3 5days 5 6.5 6days 4 5.2 7days 21 27.3 Total 77 100.0 Table 3-7. Computer usage frequenc y in a week at school Frequency Percent none 11 14.3 1day 15 19.5 2days 19 24.7 3days 6 7.8 4days 13 16.9 5days 8 10.4 6days 2 2.6 7days 3 3.9 Total 77 100.0

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91 Table 3-8. The use of computer for playing games Frequency Percent No 21 27.3 Yes 56 72.7 Total 77 100.0 Table 3-9. The use of computer for writing Frequency Percent No 52 67.5 Yes 25 32.5 Total 77 100.0 Table 3-10. The use of computer for electronic mail Frequency Percent No 45 58.4 Yes 32 41.6 Total 77 100.0 Table 3-11. The use of computer for the Internet Frequency Percent No 32 41.5 Yes 45 58.5 77 100.0 Table 3-12. The use of com puter for reading a book Frequency Percent No 66 85.7 Yes 11 14.3 Total 77 100.0

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92 Table 3-13. The use of computer for lessons Frequency Percent No 62 80.5 Yes 15 19.5 Total 77 100.0 Table 3-14. The use of com puter for other activities Frequency Percent No 55 71.4 Yes 22 28.6 Total 77 100.0

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93 CHAPTER 4 RESULTS Introduction This chapter presents the research findings of the study. The purpos e of the study was to com pare and explore the effects of medium of storybooks presentations on struggling readers reading comprehension. For the purpose of this study, each student was presented with one of three conditions: (1) computer presentation of storybooks with animation; (2) computer presentation of storybooks without animation; and (3) traditional print ve rsion of storybooks and these were compared with respect to readi ng comprehension as measured by multiple-choice comprehension test and retelling. Th e findings are presented in the ta bles that are included at the end of this chapter. Restatement of Research Questions This study investigated the effects of electronic CD-ROM storybooks on the reading com prehension of fourth-grade struggling reader s. Specifically, the follo wing research questions were addressed in this study: 1. Do fourth-grade struggling readers differ on reading comprehension as measured by multiple-choice comprehension test when they read the same storybooks presented in electronic format with and without animation and in a print format? 2. Do fourth-grade struggling readers differ on reading comprehension as measured by retelling when they read the same storybooks presented in electronic format with and without animation and in a print format? Results The researcher conducted the study using two di fferent storybooks. This section reports the results from those two different storybooks. Th e first storybook (I) is Arthur's Teacher Trouble by Marc Brown (1992). The second storybook (II) is Sheila Rae, the Brave by Kevin Henkes (1987).

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94 Reliability Report for Comprehension Test and Retelling Reliability r efers to the cons istency of a measuring instrument. Reliability is combination of true score and measurement error (Shavels on, 1996). The researcher analyzed the data along with the comprehension test, re telling and using both retellin g and comprehension test to determine the reliability of the instruments. Two different storybooks were used in this study and the same measurement process repeated for these storybooks. Therefore, the researcher separately analyzed the reliab ility of the instruments for the first storybook (I) and the second storybook (II). Table (4-7) includes each group s reliability scores with the number of participants and means for the first storybooks (I) instruments. Alpha value was .66 for the first comprehension test and .70 for the first retelli ng items (Table 4-7). On the other hand, Table (48) includes each groups reliabi lity scores with the number of participants and means for the second storybooks (II) instruments. Alpha value was .55 for the second comprehension test and .65 for the second retelling items (Table 4-8). In addition, Morrow (1986) f ound that the retelling measuring instruments (Morrows 10 -point scale) alpha value was .90. The First Storybook (I): Analysis of Variance for Comprehension Test and Retelling Scores To assess th e difference in reading comprehension scores on a multiple-choice comprehension test and reading comprehension scores on retellings for students reading the electronic storybooks with animation, the electronic storybooks without animation, and the traditional print storybooks, one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) was conducted. The findings are summarized in Table 4-1. A one-way ANOVA indicated significant differences in reading comprehension scores on a multiple-choice comprehension test (F =12.529, df =2/74, p<.05) and reading comprehension scores on retellings (F =7.879, df =2/74, p<.05) between students reading electronic stor ybooks with animation, electroni c storybooks without animation and traditional print storybooks.

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95 For the reading comprehension scores on a multiple-choice comprehension test, a higher level of comprehension score was reported in reading electronic storybooks with animation condition ( M =9.60, SD =3.15), followed by traditional print storybooks condition ( M =7.62, SD =2.37), and electronic storybooks without animation condition ( M =6.19, SD =1.58). For the reading comprehension scores on rete lling, a higher level of comprehension score was reported in the reading electronic storybooks with animation condition (M =6.76, SD =2.03), followed by electronic storybooks without animation condition ( M =5.12, SD =2.57) and traditional print storybooks condition ( M =4.15, SD =2.46). The Second Storybook (II): An alysis of Varian ce for Comprehension Test and Retelling Scores To assess the difference in reading comprehension scores on a multiple choice comprehension test and reading comprehensi on scores on retellings for students reading electronic storybooks with animation, electroni c storybooks without animation and traditional printed storybooks, an analysis of variance ( ANOVA) was conducted. The findings are presented in Table 4-2. A one-way ANOVA indicated significant differen ces in reading comprehension scores on a multiple-choice comprehension test ( F =9.642, df =2/74, p<.05), and reading comprehension scores on retelling ( F =5.475, df =2/74, p<.05) between students reading electronic storybooks with animation, electroni c storybooks without animation and traditional print storybooks. For the reading comprehension scores on a multiple-choice comprehension test, a higher level of comprehension score was reported in reading electronic storybooks with animation condition ( M =9.44, SD =2.66), followed by traditional print storybooks condition ( M =9.27, SD =1.66), and electronic storybooks without animation condition ( M =7.00, SD =2.26) (Table 42).

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96 For the reading comprehension scores on rete lling, a higher level of comprehension score was reported in the reading electronic storybooks with animation condition (M =6.88, SD =2.00), followed by electronic storybooks without animation condition ( M =5.46, SD =2.16) and traditionally print storybooks condition ( M =4.81, SD =2.62) (Table 4-2). The First Storybook (I): Post-Hoc (Bonferro ni) Test Results for Comp rehension Test Scores In this study, a Bonferroni test was applied to the alpha levels to control for the possibility of a Type 1 error because of the number of tests used (Morgan, Reichert, & Harrison, 2002). Employing the Bonferroni Post-Hoc test, signi ficant differences were found between the electronic storybooks with animation group and the electronic storybooks without animation group ( p< 0.05), and between the electronic storybook with animation, and traditional print storybook ( p < 0.05). There was no significant differen ce between the electronic storybook without animation and the traditional prin t storybooks (p=0.116). These findings are summarized in Table 4-3. The First Storybook (I): Post-Hoc (Bonferro ni) Test Results for Retelling Scores Em ploying the Bonferroni Post-Hoc test, signi ficant differences were found between the electronic storybooks with animation, and el ectronic storybooks without animation ( p<0.05), and between the electronic storybooks with animation, and the traditional print storybook ( p<0.05). There was no significant difference between the electronic storybook w ithout animation and traditional printed storybook (p=0.442). These results are displayed in Table 4-4. The Second Storybook (II): Po st-Hoc (Bonferroni) Test R e sults for Comprehension Test Scores Employing the Bonferroni Post-Hoc test, signi ficant differences were found between the electronic storybooks with animation, and the electronic storybooks without animation ( p< 0.05), between the electronic stor ybooks without animation, and traditional print storybooks ( p< 0.05).

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97 Table 4-5 shows that there was no significant diffe rence between the electronic storybooks with animation and the traditional print storybooks ( p =1.000). The Second Storybook (II): Post-Hoc (Bonf erroni) Test R esults for Retelling Scores Employing the Bonferroni Post-Hoc test, signi ficant differences were found between the electronic storybooks with animation, and the traditionally printed storybooks ( p<0.05). There were no significant differences between the electronic storybook with animation and the electronic storybook without animation ( p=.089), and the electronic storybook without animation, and the traditional print storybook ( p=.914) (Table 4-6). The First Storybook (I): Kruskal-Wallis Te st Results for Comprehension Test Differences in reading comprehension scores on the multiple-choice comprehension test on the story Arthurs Teacher Trouble between the electronic storybooks with animation group, the electronic storybooks without animation group, and the traditional print storybook groups were analyzed through Kruskal-Wallis tests. Th e findings are presented in Table 4-9. KruskalWallis analysis of variance (ANOVA) revealed that accuracy varied significantly across storybooks presentation condi tions (electronic with animation or electronic without animation or printed) on the question #1 H (2, N =77)=9.065, p <.05, question #4 H (2, N =77)=16.974, p <.05, question #6 H (2, N =77)=15.079, p<.05, and question #10 H (2, N =77)=6.279, p<.05 (Table 4-9). The comprehension questions #1 and #10 are text-explicit (literal) ques tions, questions #4, and #6 are text-implicit (inferenti al) questions (Appendix D). The Kruskal-Wallis mean ranks revealed that the electronic storybooks with animation group ( n=25) ranked highest, the traditional print storybook group ( n= 26) ranked second, and the electronic storybooks w ithout animation group ( n=26) ranked lowest on the multiple-choice comprehension questions #1, #4, #6, and #10. Other questions did not reveal significant

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98 statistical differences between the electronic storybooks with animation group, the electronic storybooks without animation group, and the trad itional print storybook group (Table 4-10). The First Storybook (I): Kruskal-Wallis Test Results for Retelling Differences in reading com prehension scores on retellings for the story Arthurs Teacher Trouble between students reading electronic storybooks with animation, the electronic storybook without animation and the traditiona lly printed storybook groups were analyzed through Kruskal-Wallis tests. The findings are sh own in Table 4-11. Kruskal-Wallis analysis of variance (ANOVA) revealed that accuracy vari ed significantly across storybooks presentation conditions (electronic with animation or electronic without animation or printed) on the retelling item #2 H (2, N =77)=7.168, p<.05, item #3 H (2, N =77)=7.492, p<.05, item #6 H (2, N =77)=9.261, p<.05, item #7 H (2, N =77)=12.749, p<.05, item #8 H (2, N =77)=6.702, p <.05, and item #9 H (2, N =77)=7.449, p<.05 (Table 4-11). The Kruskal-Wallis mean ranks revealed that the electronic storybooks with animation group ( n=25) ranked highest, the electronic storybooks without animation group ( n=26) ranked second, and the traditional print storybook group ( n=26) the lowest on the retelling items #3, #6, #7, and #9 (Table 4-12). The Kruskal-Wallis mean ranks revealed that traditional print storybook group ( n=26) ranked highest, electronic stor ybooks without animation group ( n=26) ranked second, and electronic storybooks with animation group ( n=25) lowest on the retelling item #2. And the Kruskal-Wallis mean ranks revealed that in teractive storybooks with animation group ( n=25) ranked highest, the tradi tional print storybook group ( n=26) ranked second, and electronic storybooks without animation group ( n=26) the lowest on the retelling item #8 (Table 4-12).

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99 Other questions did not reveal statistical differences between th e electronic storybooks with animation, the storybooks without anima tion group, and the traditional print storybook group. The Second Storybook (II): Kruskal-Wallis T est Results for Comprehension Test Difference in reading comprehension scores on the multiple-choice comprehension test on the second story Sheila Rae, the Brave betw een the electronic stor ybooks with animation group, the electronic storybooks without animatio n group, and the traditional print storybook groups were analyzed through Kruskal-Wallis tests. The findings are presented in Table 4-13. Kruskal-Wallis analysis of variance (ANOVA) showed that accuracy varied significantly across storybooks presentation condi tions (electronic with animation or electronic without animation or printed) on question #1 H (2, N =77)=7.949, p<.05, question #4 H (2, N =77)=6.178, p<.05, and question #10 H (2, N =77)=7.429, p<.05 (Table 4-13). The Kruskal-Wallis mean ranks revealed that the electronic storybooks with animation group ( n=25) ranked the highest, the traditional print storybook group ( n = 26) ranked second, and the electronic storybooks without animation group ( n=26) ranked the lowest on the multiplechoice comprehension question #4. However, mean ranks were changed for questions #1 and #10. The printed storybook group ( n =26) ranked the highest, the animation group ( n=25) ranked second and without animation group ( n=25) ranked the lowest for questions #1 and #10. Other questions did not revealed significant statistic al differences between the electronic storybook with animation group, the elec tronic storybook without anim ation group, and the printed storybook group (Table 4-14). The Second Storybook (II): KruskalWallis T est Results for Retelling Differences in reading comprehension scores on retellings for the story Sheila Rae, the Brave between students reading the electroni c storybooks with animation, the electronic

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100 storybook without animation and the traditiona lly printed storybook groups were analyzed through Kruskal-Wallis tests. The findings are displayed in Table 4-15. Kruskal-Wallis analysis of variance (ANOVA) revealed that accuracy varied significantly across storybooks presentation conditions (electronic with animation or electronic without animation or printed) on the retelling item #6, H (2, N =77)=9.079, p<.05, and item #8, H (2, N =77)=10.362, p<.05 (Table 4-15). The Kruskal-Wallis mean ranks revealed that the electronic storybooks with animation group ( n=25) ranked highest, the electronic storybooks without animation group ( n=26) ranked second, and the traditional print storybook group ( n=26) lowest on the retelling items #6, and #8 (Table 4-16). Other questions did not reveal statistical differences between the electronic storybooks with animation, the storybooks withou t animation group, and the traditional print storybook group. Research Question #1 Do fourth-grade struggling readers differ on reading com prehension as measured by multiple-choice comprehension test when they r ead the same storybooks presented in electronic format with and without animation and in a traditional print format? The first storybook: ANOVA indicated that there was a significant differences in reading comprehension scores on a multiple-choice comprehension test ( F =12.529; p<.05) between students reading electronic stor ybooks with animation, electroni c storybooks without animation and traditional print storybooks. For the reading comprehension scores on a multiple-choice comprehension test a higher level of comprehension score was reported in the reading electronic storybooks with animation condition ( M =9.60, SD =3.15), followed by traditional print storybooks condition ( M =7.62, SD =2.37) and electronic storybooks without animation condition ( M =6.19, SD =1.58). The results are di splayed in Table 4-1.

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101 According to the Bonferroni Post-Hoc test results, significant differences were found between the electronic storybooks with animation group and the electronic storybooks without animation group (p< 0.05), and between the electronic storybook with animation, and traditional print storybook (p< 0.05).There was no significant diffe rence between the electronic storybook without animation and the traditional prin t storybooks (p=0.116) (Table 4-3). In Table 4-9, Kruskal-Wallis tests revealed a significant difference between storybooks presentation conditions (electronic with animation or electronic without animation or printed) for both the text-explicit (#1 and #10) an d text-implicit questions (#4, and #6). The Kruskal-Wallis mean ranks revealed th at the electronic storybooks with animation group ranked highest, the traditional print storybook group ra nked second, and the electronic storybooks without animation group ranked lowe st on the multiple-choice comprehension questions (Table 4-10). Second storybook: ANOVA indicated there was a significant difference in reading comprehension scores on a multiple-choice comprehension test ( F =9.642; p<.05), between students reading electronic stor ybooks with animation, electroni c storybooks without animation and traditional print storybooks. For the reading comprehension scores on a multiple-choice comprehension test a higher level of comprehension score was reported in the reading electronic storybooks with animation condition ( M =9.44, SD =2.66), followed by the traditional print storybooks condition ( M =9.27, SD =1.66), and the electronic storybooks without animation condition ( M =7.00, SD =2.26) (Table 4-2). Using the Bonferroni Post-H oc test, significant differen ces were found between the electronic storybooks with animation, and the electronic storybooks without animation ( p< 0.05), and between the electronic storybooks without animation, and traditional print storybooks

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102 ( p< 0.05). Table 4-5 shows that there was no significant difference between the electronic storybooks with animation and the traditional print storybooks ( p=1.000). Kruskal-Wallis analysis showed that accura cy varied significantly across storybooks presentation conditions (electronic with animation or electronic without animation or printed) for text-explicit questions (#1 and #4) text-implicit question (#10). (Table 4-13).The Kruskal-Wallis mean ranks revealed that the electronic stor ybooks with animation group ranked the highest, the traditional print storybook group ranked second, and the electronic storybooks without animation group ranked the lowest on the multiple-choice comprehension question #4. However, mean ranks were changed for questions #1 and #10. While the printed storybook group ranked the highest, the electronic stor ybook with animation group (n=25) ranked second and the electronic storybook without animation group ranked the lowest for questi ons #1 and #10. Other questions did not reveal significan t statistical differences between w ith animation group, without animation group, and printed storybook group (Table 4-14). Research Question #2 Do fourth-grade struggling readers differ on reading com prehension as measured by retelling when they read the same storybooks pr esented in electronic format with and without animation and in a traditional print format? First storybook: ANOVA indicat ed there was a significan t difference in reading comprehension scores on reading co mprehension scores on retellings ( F =7.879; p<.05) between students reading electronic stor ybooks with animation, electroni c storybooks without animation and traditional print storybooks. Fo r the reading comprehension scor es on retelling a higher level of comprehension score was reported in the reading electronic storybooks with animation condition ( M =6.76, SD =2.03), followed by electronic storyb ooks without animation condition

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103 ( M =5.12, SD =2.57) and traditional print storybooks condition (M =4.15, SD =2.46). The results are shown in Table 4-1. Employing the Bonferroni Post-Hoc test, signi ficant differences were found between the electronic storybooks with animation, and el ectronic storybooks without animation ( p<0.05), between the electronic storybooks with animation, and the traditional print storybook ( p<0.05). There was no significant difference between the electronic storybook w ithout animation and traditional printed storybook (p=0.442). These results are displayed in Table 4-4. Kruskal-Wallis analysis of variance (ANOVA) revealed that accuracy varied significantly across storybook presentation conditions (electronic with animation or electronic without animation or printed) on the story characters (item #2, #3) plot episode (item #6), resolution (item #7, #8), and sequence (item #9) (Table 4-11). The second storybook: ANOVA indi cated there is a significant difference in reading comprehension scores on retelling ( F =5.475; p<.05) between students reading electronic storybooks with animation, elec tronic storybooks without anima tion and traditional print storybooks. For the reading comprehension scores on retelling, a higher le vel of comprehension score was reported in the reading electr onic storybooks with animation condition ( M =6.88, SD =2.00), followed by electronic storybooks without animation condition ( M =5.46, SD =2.16) and traditional print storybooks condition ( M =4.81, SD =2.62) (Table 4-2). Employing the Bonferroni Post-Hoc test, si gnificant differences was found between the electronic storybooks with animation, and the traditionally printed storybooks ( p<0.05). There were no significant differences between the electronic storybook with animation and the electronic storybook without animation ( p=.089), or the electronic st orybook without animation and the traditional print storybook ( p =.914) (Table 4-6).

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104 Kruskal-Wallis analysis of variance (ANOVA) revealed that accuracy varied significantly across storybook presentation conditions (electronic with animation or electronic without animation or printed) on the retel ling item #6, and item #8 (Table 4-15). The Kruskal-Wallis mean ranks revealed that the electronic storybooks with animation group ranked highest, the electr onic storybooks without anima tion group ranked second, and the traditional print storybook group ranked lowest on plot episodes of the story (items #6), and resolution of the story (item #8) (Table 4-16). Observations The observations were conducted while each st udent was reading and retelling the stories to the researcher. Field notes from observations of students while they read indicated that their reading of the electronic version of stories took longer tim e than printed version of stories. Specifically, animated groups spent significantly longer time overall when comparing to the other groups. Pearman and Lefever-Davis (2006) explained that motivational factors were the reason behind spending longer time on reading of the animated CD-ROM storybooks. They also reported that animated CD-ROM storybooks can ex tend students interest and engagement with texts. The use of animation contributes to stud ents motivation to read. Storybooks in electronic format are likely to be more engaging, intere sting and thereby more motivating for readers (Pearman & Lefever-Davis, 2006). Spending more time in reading can be an indication of engagement, enjoyment, and attention to the text. Guthrie (2001) says that engaged reading is a combination of motivation and thoughtfulness. A dditionally, engagement is an important literacy outcome for reading in digital environments (Dalton & Strangman, 2006). It was obvious that the retellings of student group who read animated versions of stories were lo nger related or unrelated to the stories than the other groups. Another obs ervation was that the el ectronic storybooks were

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105 more demanding in skill and strategy for students to read. It may be a result of the medium or unfamiliarity. After the students read electronic storybooks the researcher interviewed with them. The researcher asked the students what they liked and did not like. The majority of the students mentioned that they like and enjoy animations, and illustrations of the electronic storybooks. In addition, students generally wanted to read another animated storybook. However, several students stated that the electronic st orybooks are simple, slow and boring. Summary This chapter presented the findings of the study. A nalysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to test two research questions at the .05 level of significance. The Bonfe rroni test was used to find exactly which groups differed from each other. Kruskal-Wallis one-way analysis of variance was used to decide whether or not the average differe nces between the groups are due to chance. The results of statistical analysis indicated that there was signif icant difference in the students' comprehension scores. In other words, when comprehension was measured by using multiplechoice comprehension test and re telling, the students who read the computer presentation of storybooks with animation showed significantly hi gher comprehension scores than students who read either the computer presentation of the storybooks without animation or the traditional print version of storybooks.

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106 Table 4-1. Analysis of Variance for comp rehension test and retelling scores I df F Sig. N Mean Std. Deviation Comprehension Test Total Between Groups 2 12.529.000 with animation 25 9.6000 3.1491 Within Groups 74 without animation 26 6.1923 1.5753 Total 76 Printed 26 7.6154 2.3677 Retelling Total Between Groups 2 7.879 .001 with animation 25 6.7600 2.0265 Within Groups 74 without animation 26 5.1154 2.5664 Total 76 Printed 26 4.1538 2.4608 Table 4-2. Analysis of Variance for comp rehension test and retelling scores II df F Sig. N Mean Std. Deviation Comprehension Test Total Between Groups 2 9.642 .000 with animation 25 9.4400 2.6627 Within Groups 74 without animation 26 7.0000 2.2627 Total 76 Printed 26 9.2692 1.6627 Retelling Total Between Groups 2 5.475 .006 with animation 25 6.8800 2.0067 Within Groups 74 without animation 26 5.4615 2.1583 Total 76 Printed 26 4.8077 2.6233

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107 Table 4-3. Post-Hoc (Bonferroni) test results for comprehension test scores I The mean difference is si gnificant at the .05 level. Table 4-4. Post-Hoc (Bonferroni) test results for retelling scores I Mean Difference (IJ) Std. Error Sig. (I) condition (J) condition with animation N =25, M =6.7600, SD =2.0265 without animation 1.6446 .6630 .046* p rinte d 2.6062 .6630 .001* without animation N =26, M =5.1154, SD =2.5664 with animation -1.6446 .6630 .046* p rinte d .9615 .6565 .442 p rinte d N =26, M =4.1538, SD =2.4608 with animation -2.6062 .6630 .001* without animation -.9615 .6565 .442 The mean difference is si gnificant at the .05 level. Mean Difference (I-J) Std. Error Sig. (I) condition (J) condition with animation N =25, M =9.6000, SD =3.1491 without animation 3.4077 .6832 .000* p rinte d 1.9846 .6832 .015* without animation N =26, M =6.1923, SD =1.5753 with animation -3.4077 .6832 .000* p rinte d -1.4231 .6764 .116 p rinte d N =26, M =7.6154, SD =2.3677 with animation -1.9846 .6832 .015* without animation 1.4231 .6764 .116

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108 Table 4-5. Post-Hoc (Bonferroni) test results for comprehension test scores II Mean Difference (I-J) Std. Error Sig. (I) condition (J) condition with animation N =25, M =9.4400 SD =2.6627 without animation 2.4400 .6240 .001* p rinte d .1708 .6240 1.000 without animation N =26, M =7.0000 SD =2.2627 with animation -2.4400 .6240 .001* p rinte d -2.2692 .6179 .001* p rinte d N =26, M = 9.2692 SD = 1.6627 with animation -.1708 .6240 1.000 without animation 2.2692 .6179 .001* (2) The mean difference is significant at the .05 level. Table 4-6. Post-Hoc (Bonferroni) test results for retelling scores II Mean Difference (I-J) Std. Error Sig. (I) condition (J) condition with animation N =25, M =6.8800 SD =2.0067 without animation 1.4185 .6390 .089 p rinte d 2.0723 .6390 .005* without animation N =26, M=5.4615 SD =2.1583 with animation -1.4185 .6390 .089 p rinte d .6538 .6327 .914 p rinted N =26, M=4.8077 SD =2.6233 with animation -2.0723 .6390 .005* without animation -.6538 .6327 .914 The mean difference is significant at the .05 level.

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109 Table 4-7. Reliability report for comprehension test and retelling I The First Storybook (I): Arthurs Teacher Trouble Comprehension Test (13 Items) Retelling (9 Items) Comprehension Test & Retelling (22 Items) N 77 77 77 Alpha .6594 .7040 .7617 Mean 7.7532 5.2987 13.0519 Table 4-8. Reliability report for comprehension test and retelling II The Second Storybook (II): Sheila Rae, the Brave Comprehension Test (13 Items) Retelling (9 Items) Comprehension Test and Retelling (22 Items) N 77 77 77 Alpha .5484 .6484 .7047 Mean 8.5844 5.6753 14.2597

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110 Table 4-9. Kruskal-Wallis test results for comprehension test I Question #1 Question #4 Question #6 Question #10 Chi-Square 9.065 16.974 15.079 6.279 df 2 2 2 2 Asymp. Sig. .011 .000 .001 .043 a. Kruskal Wallis Test b. Grouping Variable: Condition Table 4-10. Kruskal-Wallis means ranks for comprehension test I Comprehension Test Condition N Mean Rank question #1 with animation 25 46.92 without animation 26 32.23 p rinted 26 38.15 questions #4 with animation 25 50.38 without animation 26 28.35 p rinted 26 38.71 question #6 with animation 25 49.38 without animation 26 28.83 p rinted 26 39.19 question #10 with animation 25 45.30 without animation 26 32.27 p rinted 26 39.67

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111 Table 4-11. Kruskal-Wallis test results for retelling I retelling #2 retelling #3 retelling #6 retelling #7 retelling #8 retelling #9 Chi-Square 7.168 7.492 9.261 12.749 6.702 7.449 df 2 2 2 2 2 2 Asymp. Sig. .028 .024 .010 .002 .035 .024 a. Kruskal Wallis Test b. Grouping Variable: Condition Table 4-12. Kruskal-Wallis means ranks for retelling I Retelling Condition N Mean Rank item #2 with animation 25 33.18 without animation 26 39.58 Printed 26 44.02 item #3 with animation 25 45.10 without animation 26 41.25 Printed 26 30.88 item #6 with animation 25 45.68 without animation 26 41.71 Printed 26 29.87 item #7 with animation 25 50.22 without animation 26 34.35 Printed 26 32.87 item #8 with animation 25 47.18 without animation 26 34.33 Printed 26 35.81 item #9 with animation 25 45.14 without animation 26 41.23 Printed 26 30.87

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112 Table 4-13. Kruskal-Wallis test re sults for comprehension test II Question #1 Question #4 Question #10 Chi-Square 7.949 6.178 7.429 df 2 2 2 Asymp. Sig. .019 .046 .024 a. Kruskal Wallis Test b. Grouping Variable: Condition Table 4-14. Kruskal-Wallis means ra nks for comprehension test II Comprehension Test Condition N Mean Rank question #1 with animation 25 40.26 without animation 26 31.73 p rinted 26 45.06 Total 77 question #4 with animation 25 43.84 without animation 26 32.23 p rinted 26 41.12 Total 77 question #10 with animation 25 42.18 without animation 26 30.81 p rinted 26 44.13 Total 77

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113 Table 4-15. Kruskal-Wallis test results for retelling II Retelling #6 Retelling #8 Chi-Square 9.079 10.362 df 2 2 Asymp. Sig. .011 .006 a. Kruskal Wallis Test b. Grouping Variable: Condition Table 4-16. Kruskal-Wallis means ranks for retelling II Retelling Condition N Mean Rank item #6 with animation 25 48.22 without animation 26 36.79 p rinted 26 32.35 Total 77 item #8 with animation 25 47.18 without animation 26 40.25 p rinted 26 29.88 Total 77

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114 CHAPTER 5 DISCUSSION Introduction A synthesis of the study presented in this chapter includes a su mm ary of the studys findings, discussion, implications recommendations, limitations, and conclusion of the present study. The purpose of this study was to compare and explore the effect s of the medium of storybooks presentations on struggli ng readers reading comprehension. For the purpose of this study, each student was presented with one of th ree conditions: (1) comp uter presentation of storybooks with animation; (2) computer presen tation of storybooks without animation; and (3) printed version of storybooks. These three conditi ons were compared with respect to reading comprehension as measured by multiple-choice co mprehension test and retelling. One dependent variable was reading comprehension as measured by the multiple-choice comprehension test, and the second dependent variable was reading comp rehension as measured by the retelling. The independent variable is the type of medium of presentation. Summary of Findings In this section, findings of relate d questions are reviewed together. Research Q uestion I. Do fourth-grade struggling readers differ on reading comprehension as measured by multiple-choice comprehension test when they read the same storybooks presented in electronic format with a nd without animation and in a traditional paper based format? When fourth-grade struggling readers res ponded to multiple-choice comprehension tests for two different storybooks, there was a sign ificant difference in reading comprehension scores among fourth-grade struggling read ers who read electronic storybooks with animation, the electronic storybooks without animation and the traditional print storybook (Table 4-1, Table 4-2). Specifically, significant differe nces were found between th e electronic storybooks with animation group and the electronic storybooks without animation group; and between the

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115 electronic storybook with animation group a nd traditional print storybook group. There was no significant difference between the el ectronic storybook wit hout animation group and the traditional print storybooks group (Table 4-3). There was a significant difference between st orybook presentation conditions (electronic with animation or electronic without anima tion or printed) for both multiple-choice, the text-explicit (#1 and #10) and multiple choice, text-implicit questions (#4, and #6). (Table 4-9 and Table 4-13). The studen ts reading the elect ronic storybooks with animation received higher scores on both text-e xplicit and text-implicit questions than the other two groups of students. The results of study showed that struggling readers who read the electronic books with animation had the highest scores as measured by multiple-choice comprehension tests, followed by the struggling readers who read th e printed storybooks and struggling readers who read the electronic storybooks without animation had th e lowest scores as measured by multiple-choice comprehension tests (Table 4-10 and Table 4-14). Research Question II. Do fourth-grade struggling readers differ on reading comprehension as measured by retelling when they read the same storybooks presented in electronic format with and without animati on and in a traditional paper based format? When fourth-grade struggling readers were compared by the retellings scores for two different storybooks, there was a significant difference in retellings scores among three groups (Table 4-1, Table 4-2). Statistically significant differences were found between the elect ronic storybooks with animation group, and electronic storybooks without animation group; between the electronic storybooks with animation and th e traditional print storybook (Table 4-4). Analysis of retelling data revealed that electronic storybooks with animation helped struggling readers to better comprehend the st ory characters (item #2, #3) plot episode (item #6), resolution (item #7, #8), and sequence (item #9) (Table 4-11). Another finding of the study is that ther e was a significant difference between the electronic storybooks with animation, and th e traditionally printed storybooks (Table 46). According to the second storybooks retell ing scores, the electronic storybook with animation group ranked highest, the elec tronic storybooks without animation group ranked second, and the traditional print stor ybook group ranked lowest on plot episodes of the story (items #6), and resolution of the story (item #8) (Table 4-16). Additional data analysis such as field not es from observations of struggling readers showed that their reading of electronic versions of stories took longe r time than the printed

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116 version of stories. Scoresby (1996) also found th at animation-available groups spent the most time engaged in reading CD-ROM books. In add ition, with the struggling readers, who read electronic storybooks, the retellings were longer than with the other groups of students. The results of the student surv ey showed that computer technology is widely available for struggling readers. Seventy-one st udents (92.2%) either have a comput er at home or get to use a computer outside of school. However, only elev en students (14.3%) report ed they use computer for reading purposes outside of school (Table 4-28). About half of th e participants (50.6%) reported having read a storybook on computer before the beginning of study. A total of sixty-two of the respondents (80.5 %) stated that they use a computer at home. Discussion This study found that electronic storybooks on CD-ROM can im prove and support reading comprehension of struggling reader s. These finding are consistent with earlier research by Doty (1999, 2001), Greenlee-Moore and Smith (1996), Grimshaw et al. (2006), Matthew (1997), McNabb (1998), Miller et al (1994), Pearman (2003, 2008), Pear man and Lefever-Davis (2006), and Shamir et al. (2008). However, some previous research on CD-R OM storybooks is inconsistent with the findings of this study (De Jong & Bus 2002; Labbo & Kuhn, 2000; Maitland & Trushell, 2005; Okolo & Hayes, 1996; Scoresby, 1996; Trushell, Burrell, & Maitland, 2001; Trushell, Maitland, & Burrell, 2003; Underwood, 2000). Those claime d that the electronic environment has detrimental effects on comprehension. Characteristic of kids are different th ese days. In a digital age, today's kids have exposure to multiple alternatives of the stories and multimedia texts. For example, they may have experience with vide o games, hypertext, online texts, the Web, and other interactive media that they might not have been able to do in th e past. Therefore, the influence of interactive media can be a factor that the findings of this study are inconsistent with

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117 the results of some previous studies. In addition, it should be considered that most of those studies subjects were younger children and also these subjects did not have any reading problems. In addition to improving comprehension, anim ation may be beneficial when struggling readers read narrative texts. Therefore, having animation and playing options on electronic storybooks can be helpful for struggling readers to construct meaning from narrative reading materials. This result is supported by Chan Lin (2001), and Pearman & Lefever-Davis (2006); however, it is inconsistent with studies by DeJean et al. (1997), Nibley (1993), Okolo and Hayes (1996), and Scoresby (1996). These authors were concerned about the potential distraction of animations in reading comprehe nsion. If animations do not s upport the text, they may draw students attention away from the main points of the text; and may even hinder comprehension. Scoresby (1996) found that animation in CD-ROM books diverted from reading rather than improved it and the animation slowed down recall of textual information. Another result of this study wa s that struggling readers co mprehension is more improved when the story is presented as animated illustrati ons instead of static illustrations. The retelling results showed that struggling readers understand theme, plot episodes an d resolution in stories better with animations available in elect ronic CD-ROM storybooks than with static visualizations available in electronic storybook and printed st orybooks. The result of the study found that the advantages of animation in improving story comprehe nsion and in supporting struggling readers ability to make inferences about story events. The subjects reading electronic storybooks with animation received higher sc ores on both text-explic it and text-implicit questions than the other two gr oups. These advantages emerge re lative to the capacity of the

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118 multimedia version of the story increase and enrich representation of texts that are necessary to understanding deeper layers of the story. This study does not include any quantitative da ta whether electronic storybooks increase student motivation, and enjoyment, however, the inte rview results show that the students usually were enthusiastic about r eading electronic storybooks. Electronic storybooks can help struggling read ers to build or activate more complete schemas of stories. According to the present study struggling readers reached more complex levels of story understanding with multimedia st orybooks. Additionally, it is clear that the CDROM books offer interactive features that may serve as electronic scaffolds for struggling readers (Bus, De Jong & Verhallen, 2006). A possible explanation of higher comprehensi on scores for electronic storybooks with animation group lies in the interac tivity that electronic storybooks allow. The rich visual support and animation in the electronic storybooks used in this study may be a reason that influenced the amount of comprehension. Sutherland-Smith (2002) stated that images in electronic texts are more lifelike than in traditional print texts. It has been shown that animation on the electronic storybooks, the design quality of on-sc reen elements can bring in grea ter interest from the reader, a more effective activation background knowledge and deeper processing of information (Alvarez, 2006). Comprehension can be supported by interaction and self-direction which both are available in electronic storybooks with an imation. In other words, the in teractive features of storybooks can contribute to the readers comprehension. Dalton and Strangman (2006) stated that the novelty effect and student opportunities for contro l and choice might be potential sources of students positive responses to electronic storybooks.

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119 CD-ROM technologies present new promise for introducing children to reading through computers. For instance, in the Netherlands and other parts of the world, young children can independently practice electronic versions of t hose books on a computer screen (Bus, De Jong, & Verhallen, 2006). Teachers and families can us e electronic storybooks, as less dependent on adult scaffolding, for supporting struggling readers. Implications Quantita tive results from the present investig ation show that the use of electronic CDROM storybooks improved comprehension of strugg ling readers. The use of animation features of electronic storybooks could be be neficial for struggling readers. Doty (1999) suggests that the use of CD-ROM books in classroom, particularly for students reading below grade level (p.63). The study findings might be usef ul for teachers and educators. New literacy technologies bring new approach es into the classroom (Leu, 2000). Many states, policy makers, na tional educational initiatives have supported technology reform efforts in many schools and have urged the importance of technology (Chiappone, 2003). Teachers play an important role these technology reform effort s because finally they decide and use technology in the classroom. Teachers may add and use elec tronic storybooks in their instruction. However, first of all, teachers must gain knowledge and about effective use of electronic technology for literacy instruction (Coiro, 2003; Labbo et al., 2003). They need to help students overcome their challenges and problems with the technology. It al so requires that teacher education programs instruct teachers on how to e ffectively integrate technologies into their classrooms (Leu, 2000), and how to use these technologies to introduce students to the strategies and skills necessary for interacting with the ne w literacy (Coiro, 2003). In today, many storybooks are available in educational markets. The teachers must evaluate and make choices about which CD-ROM are appropriate for children (Shamir & Korat,

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120 2006) as the CD-ROM storybooks design characteri stics are important for a childs literacy development. Labbo et al. (2003) believed that using CD-ROM storybooks for instruction will provide opportunities to develop higher-level reasoning and problem solving skills. Teachers must also model effective use strategies to so lve various comprehension tasks (Coiro, 2003), in addition to assisting students with new digital text reading strategies. Very few contemporary, well-established authors of children l iterature publish in electronic formats. A small number of successful picture books appeared in CD-ROM format (Unsworth, 2001). There is a need to extend variab ility of these stories and more sophisticated designed software to provide a rich resource of childrens narratives. Recommendations for Further Research The goal of this study was to com pare and e xplore the effects of the medium of storybook presentations on struggling readers reading co mprehension. Three different presentations of electronic storybooks, with animation, without animation format, and traditional paper based format were compared with respect to reading comprehension as measured by multiple-choice comprehension test and retelling assessment. The results of this study provide some encourag ing results relevant to those interested in the use of new digital technology to improve stru ggling readers reading comprehension at the elementary school level but also lead to new questions. Based on limitations and findings for this study, the following are suggestions for future research. There is need for further research in this area. It would be bene ficial to further study motivational value of electronic storybooks, issu es of engagement, comprehension strategies, and metacognitive performances (Dalton & Strangman, 2006, Moran et al., 2008). Multiple-choice test and retelling formats were used in this study to assess students reading comprehension performance. The resear cher developed comprehension measures, and

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121 additional comprehension measures such as ope n-ended questions, miscue analysis, response logs, written retellings and observations might provide more information on student comprehension (Pearman, 2003). Literature review for this study found that most of the studies have been focused on younger readers. Future research needs to be done for upper grades, older readers, and even adult readers. In the present study, narrative storybooks we re used for reading comprehension. The results may have been different if expository text available on CD-ROM and web based online reading texts had been used. Hence, future resear ch is needed also on the effects of electronic storybooks on comprehension of expository texts. Future studies should concentr ate on understanding of elect ronic storybooks use in the classroom, relating their use with other instruc tional resources, and applying them to learning settings, evaluating limitations and managing thes e limitations of electronic storybooks (Chen et al., 2003). Future researchers may want to look at the effects of multimedia storybooks on disadvantaged children from immigrant families or English as second language learners who might have reading comprehension difficulties. Th e electronic storybooks could be beneficial for them. This study electronic CD-ROM storybooks softwa re were used. Future researchers may want to use online storybooks because the Intern et has become more popular day after day and provides more choice in stories. Dalton and Stra ngman (2006) pointed out that there is very little research on struggling r eaders comprehension on the In ternet (p. 89). Conducting the

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122 research on online storybooks and analyses of thes e results might assist in determining the most appropriate instructional pract ices and strategies to use with struggling readers. Limitations 1. Participants were fourth-grade students from the same school district in the Northern Florida. As a result, genera lizations of the findings are limited with this population. 2. In the study, subjects range of ages represents fourth-grade students in Florida. Some of the subjects of the study might hold back and re peat the third grade because of Floridas retention policy. Fourth-grade students range of ages and the retention policy can vary from state to state. 3. Another limitation for this study was that two identical storyb ooks were available in this study. The researcher was concerned about matching reading difficulty level of stories and matching paper based stories and electronic version of stories as closely as possible. This was accomplished by using the same texts and illustrations in th e electronic versions and paper versions. 4. Each group of students read two different st orybooks either electr onic or print based. A study of more storybook titles could pr ovide more definitive results. 5. Multiple-choice questions and retelling were used to assess students reading comprehension. Additional qualitative and quan titative measure of comprehension could be used to provide tr iangulation of data. 6. The reliability of the instruments (retelli ng and comprehension test) was not as high because of low numbers of items. Conclusion This study investigated the effects of electronic CD-ROM storybooks on reading com prehension of fourth-grade struggling read ers. Many struggling r eaders exhibit reading difficulties for a variety reasons (Rapp et al., 2007). According to Biancarosa and Snow (2004) a common problem of older struggling readers, who ar e between fourth and twelfth grade, is that they fail to comprehend what they read. Coiro (2003) says that print media is insufficient. As a valuable tool in educationa l settings electronic storybooks an d the features of electronic storybooks may help the reader in building cont ext and activate student s background knowledge (Doty, 1999; Pearman, 2008).

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123 The results showed that comprehension scores of the fourth-grade st ruggling readers were significantly higher than those of students reading printed stor ybooks and electronic storybooks without animation. Both retelling and comprehe nsion test scores were higher for struggling readers reading the electronic storybooks with animation than struggling readers reading the electronic storybooks without animation (static illustration) and str uggling readers reading printed storybooks. There could be a variet y of causes for these higher retelling and comprehension test scores of struggling r eaders reading the elect ronic storybooks with animation. The most obvious cause is animations that give contextual support and increase readers understanding of a text (Trushell, Maitland, & Burrell, 2003). Pearman and LefeverDavis (2006) stated that when book characters visually react to an event via animations, it is easier for readers to infer word meanings (p. 306). Another cause can be the connections between multimedia and time (the dual coding) on task, student interest and engagement with the texts, animation and student motivation result in superior memory of story. Multimedia features can support processing, memory, or motivation, whic h may cause better comprehension (Zucker, Moody, & McKenna, 2009). The group of struggling f ourth-grade students reading electronic storybooks with animation spent a longer amount of time readi ng storybooks. Interactive CDROM storybooks caused this result because thei r formats are more engaging, interesting, and thus, more motivating to readers (Pearman & Lefever-Davis, 2006). There are some concerns about electronic text that can distract the attention of struggling readers, and they can also cause cognitive overload or damage comprehension of these readers (Duke et al., 2006). However, this study found that electronic storybooks mi ght be beneficial in helping struggling readers better understand the narratives and an imation feature of electronic CD-ROM storybooks which has the potential to improve struggling reader comprehension.

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124 APPENDIX A THE DATABASES AND KEYWORDS The key databases used in collecting suppor ting literature for this study included: Academ ic Search Premier (EBSCO) Dissertations and Theses: Full Text (ProQuest) University of Florida Electronic Theses & Dissertations WorldCat Dissertations and Theses Education Full Text (1983 to date) ERIC JSTOR NetLibrary Professional Development Collection (EBSCO) Key words used for searches included: #1 Electronic storybooks or #2 CD-ROM storybooks or #3 Electronic texts #4 Digital literacy #5 Electronic books #6 (#1 or #2 or #3) And #7 Reading or #8 Comprehension or #9 Effects #10 Influence #11 Impact #12 Interactive #13 Animation #14 Struggling reader or #15 Low reading ability #16 Reading difficulty #17 Retelling #18 (#7 or #8 or #9) #19 (#14 or #15 or 16)

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125 APPENDIX B STUDENT SURVEY Na me : Group Number: 1. Are you Male or Female? ____ Male ___ Female 2. What is your age? _____ 9 ____ 10 _____ 11 _____ 12 _____ other 3. What is your race? _____ White ____ White. Non-Hispanic ____ African-American _____ Hispanic _____ Asian-Pacific Islander ____ Native American _____ other 4. Have you ever read and/or seen on Vide o/TV/DVD/CD Arthurs Teacher Trouble and/or Sheila Rae, The Brave? ____ Yes ____ No 5. Have you read a storybook on computer? ____ Yes ____ No 6. Do you have a computer at home or get to use a computer outside of school? ____ Yes ____ No 7. How many days of the week do you use a computer? Home _____ 1 _____ 2_____ 3_____ 4_____ 5_____ 6_____ 7 _____ None School _____ 1 _____ 2_____ 3_____ 4_____ 5_____ 6_____ 7 _____ None 8. What do you do on the computer outside of school? _____ play games _____ write _____ email _____ Internet _____ read books _____ lessons _____ other Explain: _____________________________ (Survey questions #6, #7, and #8 are based on a m odified version of the "Computer Use Survey" originally developed by Cathy J. Pearman). Pearman, C. (2003). Effects of electronic text s on the independent reading comprehension of second grade students. Unpublished doctoral dissertati on, University of Arkansas.

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126 APPENDIX C STORY RETELLING ANALAYSIS: MORROW S 10-POINT SCALE Name: ______________________________________________________Date:_______ Title of Story: ____________________________________________________________ General Directions: Place a 1 next to each elem ent if the student includes it in his or her presentation. Credit gist as well as obvious recall. Characters and Setting (4 points) a. Begins the story with an introduction ____ b. Names the main character(s) ____ c. Number of other characters named ____ d. Actual number of other characters ____ e. Score for other characters (c/d) ____ f. Includes statement about time or place ____ Theme (1 point) Refers to main character's primary goal Or problem to be solved ____ Plot episodes (1 point) a. Number of episodes recalled ____ b. Number of episodes in story ____ c. Score for plot episodes (a/b) ____ Resolution (2 points) a .Names the problem solution/goal attainment ____ b. Ends story ____ Sequence (2 points) Retells story in structural order: setting, theme ____ Plot episodes, resolution. (Score 2 for proper, 1 for partial, 0 for no response) Highest score possible: (10) Child's score : _______ Comments: Morrow, L.M. (1986). Effects of structural guidance in story retelling on children's dictation of original stories. Journal of Reading Behavior, 18 (2), 135-152.

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127 APPENDIX D COMPREHENSION TESTS Questions for Arthurs Teacher Trouble Name : Group Number : Now Im going to ask you some questions about the story you read. Each question is a multiplechoice question with four answer choices. Please read each question carefully and choose the ONE best answer. Just do your best, a nd dont worry if you dont know an answer. 1) What was the name of Arthurs teacher? ( ) Ratburn ( ) Fink ( ) Sweetwater ( ) Prunella 2) What did Arthurs mother thi nk his map of Africa looked like? ( ) Canada ( ) Pizza ( ) Hawaii ( ) Florida 3) When was the spelling bee? ( ) At the end of the school year ( ) The first week of school ( ) The day before spring break ( ) About a month after the first day of school 4) When Mr. Ratburn announced a spelli ng test, why did Buster look pale? ( ) He loves spelling test ( ) He is white rabbit ( ) He was afraid ( ) He had a bad lunch 5) Where did Mrs. Finks class go du ring Mr. Ratburns spelling test? ( ) Auditorium ( ) Gym ( ) Aquarium ( ) Fishing 6) Arthurs family asked him if he had finish ed his chores and made his bed by spelling out the words because; ( ) They were animation a trick on Arthur ( ) They wanted to help him spell ( ) They were making fun of Arthur ( ) They did not think Arthur could hear them

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128 7) During Mr. Ratburns sp elling test, what was Miss Sweetwaters class doing? ( ) Popping corn ( ) Reading ( ) Taking exam ( ) Taking a field trip 8) Who wears a good-luck charm? ( ) Brain ( ) D.W. ( ) Arthur ( ) Buster 9) What did they call the building where the Spellathon was held? ( ) Fraser Hall ( ) Auditorium ( ) Library ( ) Main office 10) What word did The Brain miss at the Spellathon? ( ) Preparation ( ) Convince ( ) Fear ( ) Chores 11) Who had first turn at the Spellathon? ( ) Buster ( ) Arthur ( ) Brain ( ) Prunella 12) Who was in charge at the Spellathon? ( ) Mrs. Fink ( ) Mr. Ratburn ( ) Ms. Meeker ( ) Principal 13) At the end of spelling bee D.W. has a surprising bad news ( ) Ms. Meeker will be teaching kindergarten ( ) Mr. Ratburn will NOT be teaching third grade ( ) Arthur lost spelling bee ( ) There will NOT ever be another spelling bee The questions for Arthurs Teacher Tro uble are based on a modified version of the "Recall Questions" originally developed by Scoresby, Kevin J.). Scoresby, K. J. (1996). The effects of electronic storybook animations on third graders' story recall. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Brigham Young University.

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129 Questions for Sheila Rae, the Brave Name : Group Number : Now Im going to ask you some questions about the story you read. Each question is a multiplechoice question with four answer choices. Please read each question carefully and choose the ONE best answer. Just do your best, a nd dont worry if you dont know an answer. 1) Sheila Rae was afraid of______________. ( ) The dark ( ) Thunder and lightning ( ) The big black dog ( ) Nothing 2) Sheila Rae thought __________ looked like the eyes of dead bears at dinner. ( ) Olives ( ) Beans ( ) Cherries ( ) Raisins 3) Sheila Rae grabbed Louise and dashed up the street. What does the word dashed mean on the sentence? ( ) Move quickly ( ) Rescue ( ) Disappear ( ) Fighting 4) When her classmate stole her jump rope during recess, _____________. ( ) Sheila Rae attacked him ( ) Sheila Rae tied him up ( ) Sheila Rae giggled ( ) Sheila Rae yelled angrily 5) What did she call Louise? ( ) Scaredy-cat ( ) Fearless ( ) Coward ( ) Brave 6) Why did Sheila Rae cry? ( ) Because she suffered an arm injury ( ) Because she lost ( ) Because she was sad ( ) Because she missed her parents

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130 7) When Sheila Rae was afraid, where was Louis? ( ) At home ( ) At school ( ) Following Sheila Rae ( ) Riding her bicycle 8) Sheila Rae can BEST be described as______? ( ) Busy ( ) Angry ( ) Fair ( ) Fearless 9) What is the thing Sheila Rae does in the story? ( ) She goes to outside to play ( ) She collects rocks ( ) She decides to walk home from school a new way ( ) She goes to soccer practice 10) Sheila Rae became afraid because nothing looke d familiar. What does familiar mean in the sentence? ( ) Recognizable ( ) Unknown ( ) Strange ( ) Foreign 11) Sheila Rae pretended th at the trees were________? ( ) Cars ( ) Her friends ( ) Houses ( ) Evil creatures 12) When Louise and Sheila Rae walked home at the end of the story, who was fearless? ( ) Sheila Rae ( ) Laura ( ) Louise ( ) Wendell 13) What do the sisters learn in this story? ( ) Having to share is good in some ways ( ) Its good to have different toys ( ) Do not be too brave ( ) When you make a mess, you have to clean it up

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131 APPENDIX E STORYBOOK LIST TRADITIONAL: Brown, M. (1986). Arthur's Teacher Trouble Boston: Little, Brown, and Com pany. Henkes, K. (1987). Sheila Rae, the Brave. New York: Greenwillow Books. ELECTRONIC: Brown, M. (1994). Arthur's Teacher Trouble [CD-ROM]. Novato, CA: Living Books. Henkes, K. (1996). Sheila Rae, the Brave [CD-ROM]. Novato, CA: Living Books.

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132 LIST OF REFERENCES Ada m, N., & Wild, M. (1997). Applying CD-ROM in teractive storybooks to learning to read. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 13 (2), 119. Adams, M. (1990). Beginning to read: Thinking and learning about print. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Alexander, P.A., & Jetton, T.L. (2000). L earning from text: A multidimensional and developmental perspective. In M.L. Kamil, P.B. Mosenthal, P.D. Pearson, & R. Barr (Eds.), Handbook of reading, Volume III (pp. 285). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum. Allington, R.L. (2006). What really matters for struggling readers: Designing research-based programs (2nd ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson Education, Inc. Alvarez, O.H., (2006). Developing digital literacies: Educational initiatives and research in Colombia. In M. C. McKenna, L. D. Labbo, R. D. Kieffer, & D. Reinking (Eds.), International handbook of li teracy and technology, Volume II (pp. 29-40). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum. American Psychological Association. (1985). Standards for educational and psychological testing. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association Anderson-Inman, L., & Horney, M. A. (1998). Tran sforming text for at-risk readers. In D. Reinking, M. C. McKenna, L. D. Labbo, & R. D. Kieffer (Eds.), Handbook of literacy and technology: Transformations in a post-typographic world (pp. 15-43). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum. Anderson-Inman, L., Horney, M. A., Chen, D. T., & Lewin, L. (1994). Hypertext literacy: Observations from the electro text project. Language Arts 7(4), 279-287. Anderson, R. C. (1984). Role of the reader's schema in comprehension, learning, and memory. In R. C. Anderson, J. Osborn, & R. J. Tierney (Eds.), Learning to read in American schools: Basal readers and content texts. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Anderson, R. C. & Pearson P. D. (1984). A schema-theoretic view of basic processes in reading comprehension. In P.D. Pearson, R. Barr, M. L. Kamil, & P. Mosenthal (Eds.), Handbook of reading research (pp. 225-253). New York: Longman. Asselin, M. (2002). Comprehension inst ruction: Directi ons from research. Teacher Librarian, 29(4), 55-57. Baker, L. (2002). Metacognition in Comprehension Instruction. In Block, C.C., & M. Pressley (Eds.). Comprehension instruction: Re search-Based best practices (pp. 77-95). New York: The Guilford Press.

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135 Dejean, J., Miller, L., & Ols on, J. (1997). CD-ROM talking books: What do they promise? Education and Information Technologies 2 (2), 121-130. De Jong, M. T., & Bus, A. G. (2002). Quality of book-reading matters for emergent readers: An experiment with the same book in a regular or electronic format. Journal of Educational Psychology, 94, 145-155. De Jong, M. T., & Bus, A. G. (2004). The efficacy of electronic books in fostering kindergarten children's emergent story understanding. Reading Research Quarterly, 39 (4), 378-393. Delany, P., & Landow, G.P. (Eds.). (1991). Hypermedia and literary studies. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. Denman, J.S. (2004). Integrating technology into the reading cu rriculum: Acquisition, implementation, and evaluation of a reading program with a technology component (READ 180) for struggling readers. Unpublished doctoral diss ertation, University of Delaware. Doty, D.E. (1999). CD-ROM storybooks and reading co mprehension of young readers. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Ball State University, Muncie. Doty, D.E., Popplewell, S. R., & Byers, G. O. (2001). Interactive CD-ROM storybooks and young readers' reading comprehension. Journal of Research on Computing in Education, 33(4) 374-384. Duffy, T.M., & Cunningham, D. J. (1997). Constr uctivism: Implications for the design and delivery of instruction. In David Jonassen (Ed.). Handbook of research in education, communication, and technology (pp. 170-198). New York: Macmillan. Duke, N. K., Schmar-Dobler, E., & Zhang, S. (2006). Comprehension a nd technology. In M. C. McKenna, L. D. Labbo, R. D. Kieffer, & D. Reinking (Eds.), International handbook of literacy and technology, Volume II (pp. 317-326). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum. Durkin, D. (1993). Teaching them to read. Boston, MA: Allyn & Bacon. Dzaldov, B.S., & Peterson, S. (2005). Book leveling and readers. The Reading Teacher, 59 (3), 222-229. Ehri, L.C. (1994). Development of the ability to read words: Update. In R. Ruddell and H. Singer (Eds.), Theoretical models and processes of reading (4th ed., pp. 323-358). Newark, DE: International Reading Association. Florida Department of Education. (2004). Assessment and Accountability Briefing Book. Retrieved on April 27, 2008 from http://f cat.fldoe.org/pdf/fcataabb.pdf Florida Department of Education. (2005). Reading First Retrieved on April 27, 2008 from http://www.justreadflorida.com/reading_first.asp.

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148 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Ihsan Seyit Ertem was born in Yesilhisar, Turkey. The youngest of th ree children, he grew up mostly in Yesilhisar, graduating from Yesilh isar High School in 1988. He earned his two-year college degree from Ankara University Kiri kkale Technical Vocatio nal School of Higher Education in 1990, with a major in Business. He also received his B.A. degree in curriculum and instruction at Ankara University in July, 1994. Ih san worked for several years as an elementary school teacher in Turkey. During his teaching career he has taught the span of second graders to fifth graders, as well as couns eling students. In 1997, he started to work as a Curriculum Development Specialist at the National Ministry of Education of Turkey, in Ankara/Turkey. In 1999, he was awarded a scholarship from Ministry of Education of Turkey to pursue his Master and Ph.D. degrees in the United States of Amer ica. Ihsan received his M.Ed. degree in May, 2002 from University of Missouri-Columbia with major in Elementary Education and his Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree from College of Educa tion, at the University of Florida. His current research interests include the in tegration of technology and literac y, personalizati on of electronic texts and using assistive technology to support struggling readers. After graduation, Ihsan Seyit Ertem will start teaching in the College of Education, Ankara, Turkey.