What is reading?
understanding the context and uses it to
recognise the words and its meaning with the
use of prior knowledge to interpret what one
reads. Below is a quotation by (Nuttall,
1980, pg.21) about reading.
students to read with enjoyment, without
help unfamiliar authentic texts, at
appropriate speed, silently and with
points out features of developing reading
This list is
cited from (Chitravelu, Sithamparam & Teh
Simplified form of
Literal recognition or recall
This involves understanding of
information that is explicitly
stated in the text. Such questions
ensure that the views and
information overtly expressed in the
text are understood.
involves drawing conclusions not
stated in the text but implied by
the facts given. The reader uses
knowledge of linguistic
implications, logic or previous
knowledge of related situations in
arriving at his conclusions. For
example like inferring of main
ideas, supporting details, sequence,
cause-effect relationships and
Judgments about whether something is
real or imaginary, whether it is
appropriate, worthwhile, acceptable
and desirable. Evaluation involves
values and therefore is usually no
“correct” answer to questions
involving evaluation. Such questions
provide good opportunities for
exchange of views and
interpretations. They can be
are like an emotional response to a
plot or theme or reactions to the
author’s usage of language.
Appreciation involves the taste.
Again, there are no “correct”
answers. Opportunities for exchange
of views and interpretations again
make these questions very enjoyable.
Three basic phases of
reading are pre-reading, while-reading and
According to Lewis (2004)
reading skills can be divided into three phases
Preparation for the reading task.
purpose in advance what to read.
whether more linguistic or background
knowledge is needed.
text using top down method (overall
meaning) or bottom up (concentrate on
certain words or phrases).
This is done
to stimulate interest and to predict
about the content.
Examine comprehension passage.
Validate guesses and verify inaccuracies.
important points to further comprehend the
answer questions, stimulus for
discussion, and source of information or
Post-reading phase: Assess
comprehension and approach used.
comprehension based on the given task or
the passage on the whole.
whether approach used was relevant.
questions that are available in a comprehension
As students read the
list of comprehension questions attached
together in a comprehension passage, literal
(direct) questions like What, Who, When and
inferential (indirect) questions like Why, What,
What if and How would be visible on the list of
According to Raphael
& Au ( 2004) highlights that there are four
different levels questions that are available
which are “Right There”, “Think and Search”,
“Author and You” and “on Your Own”.
The answer is direct
and easily found.
The similar words are
used to make up the question and the
Which year did
Malaysia gained independence?
independence in 1957.
The answer is in the
passage but the reader is required to
combine two or more paragraphs in order
to answer the question.
Choice of words for
the question and the answer are
What are the primary
organs for the respiratory system?
The lung and heart
make up the respiratory system.
The answer is not
directly mentioned but it is implied in
Link the background
knowledge of the reader together with
the information in the text.
Using a pie-chart,
give reasons for the fall in sales of
imported cars in 2008?
I think in 2008, the
economy crisis hit most of the nations
across the globe.
On my own.
Prior knowledge and
experiences are required because the
answers are not given in the text?
The answer for this
question can be answer without having to
read the text.
Why is it a good idea
to use a hybrid car?
It is environmentally
friendly and consumes lesser fuel.
Ways to read quickly and effectively.
Following list was
cited from (Chitravelu, Sithamparam & Teh,
1995,pgs. 92,93 and 109)
structures and words from the paragraph.
outcomes, guessing meaning using contextual
strategy like whether to skim some parts of
the text or to or to read the whole text
with the text like being able to recognize
conjunction words like this, that one and
relation between the words and logical
connectors like as a result, because, after
that and finally.
reading: ask questions, classify, deduce,
form impression and predict.
affective reaction towards the text.
familiarity with many different kinds of
texts the students is likely to need to read
English which are road signs,
advertisements, textbooks and travel
Teh, S.C.( 1995).ELT Methodology, Principles
Practice. Malaysia: Penerbit Fajar Bakti.
pgs.92,93 and 109.
Monitoring Comprehension: Teaching Comprehension
Studenrs.US Department of Education.
Retrieved on 27th February, 2006.
Nutall, C. (1982).
Teaching Reading Skills in a Foreign
Heinemann Education Books: pg.21.
Raphael, T.E. & Au,
H.K. (2004).Question- Answer Relationships:
What’s New? IRA
featured session. Retrieved on 18th
May, 2009 from
Click on the following
link for more related links.