Reading for Automaticity
– Bryan Hahn, Akita International University
Summary: Many Japanese students learning English do not develop language skills naturally. This includes reading. Students often focus on too many reading tasks at the same time so they do not comprehend what they read. As a result, it’s important that they reach automaticity in order to read at full comprehension. Dubin and Bycina (1991) state that reading at a rate of 200 words per minute is necessary for full comprehension. Not only will students begin to understand what they read, it makes the task of reading much more enjoyable. This might explain why the vast majority of my students self-admit to never having read a book written in English from cover to cover. The act of reading becomes too laborious making them want to give up. Students can be taught to read faster by reading in “chunks”, or having the ability to see multiple words at the same time. This quantitative study will examine if teaching students to read in “chunks” will significantly improve their reading rate over the course of one semester. Participants are students at Akita International University enrolled in advanced level Reading. Students will be given a pre-test, followed by weekly practice of reading in chunks and timing their reading rate to determine progression, and conclude with a post-test at the end of the term. It is hypothesized students’ reading rates will be significantly higher during post-test results compared to pre-test results. Understanding the concept of automaticity will assist teachers in orchestrating a successful reading class.
Bio: Bryan Hahn is a Lecturer at Akita International University. He works in the English for Academic Purpose (EAP) department and has been with the university since 2013. He also teaches part-time at Akita Terrsa in Goshono to both children and adults. Bryan has also taught English at universities in Korea. He comes from Los Angeles and worked for both the public and private sectors. It’s in Los Angeles where Bryan taught ESL to students from more than 30 different countries. He holds a B.A. in Journalism and an M.A. in TESL.
Outside the venue, the moat around the now vanished Akita Castle was filled with Lotus Blossoms.