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Reading Comprehension

Reading comprehension generally refers to the intellectual, socioculturally embedded process of making meaning from printed texts. This meaning-making process involves three important factors: the texts to be interpreted; the readers who engage in interpreting; and the contexts of interpreting a particular text, including the historical background, purposes, cultural values, and the linguistic demands of a particular readership. Since the mid-1960s, each of these factors has been emphasized over others in terms of its relative importance to this meaning-making process. Currently, literacy educators and researchers adopt a more balanced model of reading comprehension, viewing all three factors as equally important for successfully comprehending texts. After providing a historical overview of reading comprehension, this entry discusses reading comprehension in the digital age, including implications for schools and ...

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