Arab World English Journal
AWEJ Vol.2 No. 4 December 2011                                                                                                 pp.219-256

Full Paper PDF

The Role of Pleasure Reading in Enhancing Reading Speed and Reading Comprehension:
A Case Study

Dr. Choudhry Zahid Javid
Taif University, Saudi Arabia

Dr. Muhammad Hannan Al-Khairi
Taif University, Saudi Arabia

Abstract
Effective reading is mandatory for the students to keep abreast themselves of the vast knowledge around them. Venkateswaran (1995) defines reading as a psycholinguistic process by which the reader reconstructs a message, which has been encoded by a writer. He views reading as an interaction among three essential factors: background knowledge, conceptual abilities and learning strategies. Slow reading is a widely recognized problem, in the realm of ESL/EFL, which hinders effective learning (Hamp-Lyon, 1983; Cooper, 1984). And keeping in view the same scenario, this study investigated 74 Saudi medical undergraduates studying at College of Medicine and Medical Sciences (CMMS), Taif University to determine the positive overbearing of an extensive pleasure reading project on reading speed, reading comprehension and their attitude towards reading in their leisure time. The reading speed and reading comprehension of the participants were calculated by using graded readers in the beginning and at the end of this project. The data were scientifically analyzed and the results reported that the gains in the reading speed and reading comprehension of the experimental group were significantly higher than the control group. Furthermore, the questionnaire data revealed that the pleasure reading had a positive change in their behavior and majority of the samples declared that they would continue reading in their leisure time in the future as well.

Key Words: Pleasure reading, top-down, bottom-up, loud reading, and silent reading

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Dr. Choudhry Zahid Javid has eighteen year teaching experience in reputed organizations and presently serving Department of Foreign Languages, Taif University in the capacity of Assistant professor of Applied Linguistics. Throughout his professional career he has been actively involved in professional development activities as a resource person and discharged several administrative responsibilities as well. He has authored two ESP textbooks and published several research projects in different fields of ESP/EFL and presented and participated in many international conferences and symposia.

Dr. Muhammad Al-Khairi is presently working as the Dean of University Development, Taif University and his area of specialization is Linguistics-acoustic phonetics. He is also serving as the supervisor computer and information technology center and member of the university council, Taif University. He completed his PhD from the University of Florida, USA. He published several research articles and participated and organized several international conferences on various aspects of ELT and higher education.