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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Commun Sci Disord. 2012;17(4): 565-581.
Published online December 31, 2012.
Reading Skills and Phonological Processing Abilities of Korean Elementary School Children with/without Poor Reading
Mibae Kima , and Soyeong Paeb
aDepartment of Speech and Hearing Therapy, Catholic university of Pusan, Busan, Korea
bDivision of Speech Pathology & Audiology, Hallym University, Chuncheon, Korea
Corresponding Author: Soyeong Pae ,Tel: +82 51 510 0845, Email: mbkim@cup.ac.kr
Received October 23, 2012   Accepted December 10, 2012
Copyright ©2012 The Korean Academy of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology
This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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ABSTRACT

Background & Objectives
This study aimed at providing basic data that aids the assessment and intervention of early and high elementary school poor readers by examining characteristics including reading comprehension, decoding, reading fluency, listening comprehension non-word repetition, rapid automatic naming, phonological awareness and vocabulary.
Methods
The study subjects included 83 poor readers, 45 children in early elementary school (grade 1-3) and 38 children in high elementary school (grade 4-6), as well as 83 normal children in the same grade and residential area.
Results
Poor readers had lower performance than normal children in decoding and text reading fluency. However, decoding ability did not reveal a significant difference in poor readers in the high elementary school grades compared to normal children, whereas the problem of reading fluency persisted into the high elementary school grades. Poor readers displayed difficulty in reading comprehension in both early and high elementary school grades. Poor readers showed significantly lower performance than normal children in all criteria including listening comprehension, vocabulary, non-word repetition, rapid automatic naming and phonological awareness. In particular, only the poor readers in early elementary school displayed significantly lower skills in non-word repetition than normal children.
Discussion & Conclusion
Poor readers in both early and high elementary school displayed difficulty in reading comprehension. They showed lower abilities than normal children in decoding, reading fluency, and listening comprehension, which are necessary for reading comprehension. Decoding did not show any difference in poor readers in high elementary school compared to normal children, thus apparently the stage of learning to read is extended to the high elementary school grades. Because poor readers develop decoding skills, they do not show differences as compared to normal children in high elementary school, but since they face difficulties in reading fluency, listening and reading comprehension until high elementary school, indicates that poor readers experience difficulty in developing the comprehension stage into the high elementary school grades. Additionally, because poor readers display difficulty in vocabulary, non-word repetition, rapid automatic naming, and phonological awareness, which are related to word and text reading and also listening and reading comprehension, these abilities should be included in reading evaluation and intervention. The results from the present study can be used as basic data which could aid in the assessment and intervention of poor readers. (Korean Journal of Communication Disorders 2012;17:565-581)
Keywords: Korean poor readers | decoding | reading fluency | listening comprehension | reading comprehension | non-word repetition | rapid automatic naming
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