Metacognitive and cognitive factors underlying the understanding of the text

Risultato della ricerca: Otherpeer review


Reading comprehension, the construction of meaning from text is generally considered one of the most central cognitive skills children acquire during their school career. (Carreiras & Clifton, 2004; Mason, 2004; Ritchey, 2011; van den Broek, 2010). The research reported was designed to investigate the critical role played by certain factors implicated in the mental representation of text and to establish how their role varies as a function of developmental age. It would thus seem that inferential processing is powerfully influenced both by metacognitive and structural factors which can play a role during text comprehension. This research has focused in particular on two specific aspects of metacognitive control: 1) the ability to identify and focus attention on the central points in a text; and 2) the capacity to evaluate the coherence of the text and detect incongruence.Specifically, it was decided to analyse in a sample of 180 subjects selected from three different age groups (7, 10 and 18 years of age respectively), the role of those factors in mediating and influencing the generation of the inferences needed to understand a text characterised by a sequence of information which flows in a logical order but leads to a conclusion which is contrary to the expectations evoked by the text. In line with this aim, it was decided to take into account factors related to encoding (added information about the key object – a title), those involved in recovery (inferential tests regarding the object and action of change), as well as purely metacognitive factors, such as evaluation of one’s own comprehension and awareness of textual incongruence, whose presence, according to our assumptions, should facilitate the formulation of inferential hypotheses. The results tend to confirm the hypothesis that this is in fact a significant developmental trend in the role played by those factors involved in the coherent text representation and in the inferential processing. These findings suggest that comprehension involves not only cognitive processes related to the elaboration of information, but also metacognitive factors to do with awareness and control of such elaboration.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Numero di pagine2
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2013


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