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Developing Reading Comprehension

ISBN: 978-1-118-60675-9
210 pages
December 2013, Wiley-Blackwell
Developing Reading Comprehension (1118606752) cover image


Presents cutting-edge, evidence-based interventions for dealing with specific difficulties of reading comprehension in children aged 7-11.

  • An in-depth introduction to the ‘poor comprehender profile’, which describes children who  despite being fluent readers have difficulty extracting meaning from text.
  • Sets out a range of practical interventions for improving reading skills in this group - along with comprehensive guidance on assessment and monitoring, and insightful accounts of professionals’ experience in delivering the techniques described.
  • Includes an overview of psychological theories of reading comprehension, evaluating their practical applicability.


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Table of Contents

List of Figures vii

List of Boxes xi

Foreword by Jean Gross CBE xiii

Acknowledgements xv

Chapter 1 What is Reading Comprehension? 1

Chapter 2 The Poor Comprehender Profile 13

Chapter 3 The York Reading for Meaning Project: An Overview 27

Chapter 4 Teaching Principles 47

Chapter 5 Intervention Materials: Oral Language Programme 59

Chapter 6 Intervention Materials: Text Level Programme 99

Chapter 7 Intervention Materials: Combined Programme 135

Chapter 8 Feedback and Evaluation 141

Chapter 9 Theoretical and Practical Implications 157


Appendix 1. Consent Procedures 165

Appendix 2. Training of Teaching Assistants 166

Appendix 3. Teaching Assistant Feedback on Training 166

Appendix 4. Manual Production 168

Appendix 5. Additional Preparation 168

Appendix 6. Fortnightly Tutorial Groups 169

Appendix 7. Record Sheets 169

Appendix 8. Observations and On-site Feedback 170

Appendix 9. Newsletters 172

Appendix 10. Sharing Data 172

Glossary 175

References 187

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Author Information

Paula Clarke is a Lecturer in Psychological Approaches to Childhood and Inclusive Education at the University of Leeds.

Emma Truelove is training to be a Doctor of Educational and Child Psychology with the University of Sheffield.

Charles Hulme is Professor of Psychology at University College London.

Margaret J. Snowling is President of St. John’s College, Oxford and Professor in the Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford.

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“This book is a very enjoyable read with an appealing cover of a painting of a young reader. . . It is a well-written, and reader friendly book.”  (Patoss, 1 October 2014)

"This book makes a very valuable contribution to the field of reading comprehension intervention and will be greatly appreciated by educationalists and speech and language therapists working with school age children." (Child & Adolescent Mental Health, 4 April 2014)

In recent years the debate about teaching young children to read has tended to focus upon equipping them with the crucially important knowledge and skills they need to read words accurately in and out of context, that is to say, teaching them how the alphabet works for reading and spelling. While such knowledge and skills are essential, more is required for children to become literate, fluent readers who understand what they read. In short, the goal of reading is comprehension. This book scrupulously examines the obstacles to reading comprehension and exemplifies what can be done to help children overcome them. It is an  important and  timely contribution to securing high quality teaching of the range of attributes children need to become fully-fledged readers.
Sir Jim Rose, CBE

The studies by Professors Margaret Snowling and Charles Hulme and their team over two decades based around the Reading Intervention programme are the most sustained, comprehensive and rigorous research series on reading yet conducted in the UK. Their increasing focus on children who experience the most difficulty in reading is exactly where attention should be directed. This volume summarises the team’s achievements to date, and is most eagerly awaited.
Greg Brooks, Emeritus Professor of Education, University of Sheffield, Member of European High Level Group of Experts on Literacy

Developing Reading Comprehension'  presents a landmark study from the top research team in the UK on how to improve reading comprehension . It's an exemplary masters-level textbook written with undergraduate-level lucidity and approachability.
Colin Harrison, Emeritus Professor of Literacy Studies in Education, University of Nottingham

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