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Reading skill

 

Introduction
 

Reading is the receptive skill in the written mode. It can develop independently of listening and speaking skills, but often develops along with them, especially in societies with a highly-developed literary tradition. Reading can help build vocabulary that helps listening comprehension at the later stages, particularly.

Micro-skills
 

Here are some of the micro-skills involved in reading. The reader has to:

 
  • decipher the script. In an alphabetic system or a syllabary, this means establishing a relationship between sounds and symbols. In a pictograph system, it means associating the meaning of the words with written symbols.
  • recognize vocabulary.
  • pick out key words, such as those identifying topics and main ideas.
  • figure out the meaning of the words, including unfamiliar vocabulary, from the (written) context.
  • recognize grammatical word classes: noun, adjective, etc.
  • detect sentence constituents, such as subject, verb, object, prepositions, etc.
  • recognize basic syntactic patterns.
  • reconstruct and infer situations, goals and participants.
  • use both knowledge of the world and lexical and grammatical cohesive devices to make the foregoing inferences, predict outcomes, and infer links and connections among the parts of the text.
  • get the main point or the most important information.
  • distinguish the main idea from supporting details.
  • adjust reading strategies to different reading purposes, such as skimming for main ideas or studying in-depth.

Context for this page:

Go to SIL home page This page is an extract from the LinguaLinks Library, Version 3.5, published on CD-ROM by SIL International, 1999. [Ordering information.]

Page content last modified: 15 September 1998

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