Graduate Research Papers


Open Access Graduate Research Paper


In Webster's Third New International Dictionary, Unabridged the term read is defined: "...To understand the meaning and grasp the full sense of...''; In this paper reading comprehension is the term used to describe this process. In the book Why Johnny Still Can't Read, by Rudolf Flesch, the author proposes that the only way to learn to read is by using phonics, a method used since the beginning of time. He states "The child learns the mechanics of reading, and when he's through he can read" (p.3). The method of look-and-say works differently. "The child is taught to read before he has learned the mechanics-the sounds of the letters" (Flesch, 1981, P.3). The question is, which came first, The Chicken or The Egg? The controversy over the best method to teach reading will probably be decided just as easily as the above question. The low reading comprehension scores on the Iowa Tests of Basic Skills, low showing of comprehension in content area subjects, and poor work on comprehension pages in the reading workbooks, children's difficulty in comprehending written material, and a desire to help them become better readers are concerns in my school district. Conversations with other elementary teachers indicate these are common concerns. More emphasis is being placed on getting meaning from and bringing 2. meaning to the written word in subjects other than reading. Social Studies and Science teachers are using research techniques to gain information at earlier ages. More time is being freed by modern technology for leisure activities and reading can be a most enjoyable experience, if you understand what you read. To take full advantage of these situations, methods for improving comprehension are needed in the elementary schools.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education


Department of Educational Psychology and Foundations

First Advisor

Len Froyen


If you are the rightful copyright holder of this graduate research paper and wish to have it removed from the Open Access Collection, please submit a request to and include clear identification of the work, preferably with the URL.

Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (66 leaves)



File Format


Included in

Education Commons