Understanding reading and learning from multi-representational texts in a second language

Binti Mohd Jaafar, Nurjanah (2020) Understanding reading and learning from multi-representational texts in a second language. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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This thesis explores how learners read and learn from text and pictures in a second language. Although research into multi-representational materials has developed substantially in recent years, there is a tendency to focus mainly on first language (L1) learners. Less is known about how the growing population of second language (L2) learners engage and learn from these materials. To address this, an investigation into the reading behaviour of English as a second language speakers (or L2 readers) as well as its outcomes was conducted.

Three studies were carried out. The first study explored the reading behaviour of the L2 readers and its relationships with individual characteristics of interest, as well as outcomes of learning. The eye movements of 50 L2 university students were collected as they read a multi-representational science text and then took an outcome test. In the second study, 42 native speaking English university students (or L1 readers) read the same textbook and took the same test. The third study compared the reading behaviour and outcomes of learning from this multi-representational material in L1 and L2 and so the two datasets from Studies 1 and 2 were combined and analysed.

The findings, in general, demonstrated that multi-representational reading and learning in the L2 was similar to reading L1. Like the L1 readers, the L2 readers paid much more attention to text than pictures, and their learning was positively linked with integrating the two types of representations. Study 3 found that the L1 and the L2 readers learned equally well from the material but the L2 readers took more time and adopted more effortful strategies when reading by displaying greater text-picture integration. Hence, although the role of text-picture integration in multi-representational learning has been emphasised and reiterated, it appears that it plays an even more crucial role in multi-representational learning in L2.

This thesis offers important insights into multi-representational learning in the L2 and demonstrates that the models of multi-representational learning that have been widely observed and promoted in L1 apply to L2 and should therefore similarly be encouraged. Understandably, reading and learning in L2 is a harder task compared to reading and learning in L1. This thesis offers some reassurance to the L2 learners that the extra time and effort exerted are not in vain and can lead them towards successful learning from multiple representations.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (PhD)
Supervisors: Ainsworth, Shaaron
van Heuven, Walter
Keywords: multiple representations; second language; eye-tracking; ESL; EFL; multi-representational learning
Subjects: L Education > L Education (General)
Faculties/Schools: UK Campuses > Faculty of Social Sciences, Law and Education > School of Education
Item ID: 60301
Depositing User: Binti Mohd Jaafar, Nurjanah
Date Deposited: 06 Dec 2023 12:09
Last Modified: 06 Dec 2023 12:09
URI: https://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/60301

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