Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Communication Sciences and Disorders

Document Type



The purpose of this study was to examine the dually implicated processes of language and self-regulation in reading comprehension and to determine if self-regulation contributes unique variance to reading comprehension beyond word recognition/decoding and oral language comprehension. The study also sought to determine if the unique contribution of self-regulation to reading comprehension differs for students with language/learning difficulties and students with typical language/learning histories. Thirty-two 6th, 7th, and 8th graders participated in this study. Of these participants, 17 students had language/learning difficulties and 15 students had typical language/learning histories. All participants attended a low performing public middle school located in a rural school district. Each participant was administered a battery of assessments that elicited measures of reading comprehension, oral language comprehension, word recognition/decoding, and self-regulation. The dependent variable in the analyses was the performance score on the reading comprehension measure. Independent variables included the measures of oral language ability, word recognition/decoding, and self-regulation. Hierarchical multiple regression and correlation analyses were used to explore the relationship among these variables and to determine their contribution to reading comprehension. The results of this investigation indicated that self-regulation contributed significant variance to reading comprehension in addition to the variance accounted for by oral language comprehension and word recognition/decoding in adolescent learners. Further, the investigation found that self-regulation was moderately correlated with word recognition/decoding and highly correlated with oral language comprehension. Findings also revealed that self-regulation contributed a greater proportion of variance to reading comprehension for students with typical language/learning histories than for students with language/learning difficulties, supporting earlier research showing poor readers fail to use active comprehension strategies when reading.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Norris, Janet