Exploring the Relationship between Summary Writing Ability and Reading Comprehension: Toward an EFL Writing-to-Read Instruction
AbstractSummary writing both boosts and measures reading comprehension. When learners write a summary of a reading, they are supposed to demonstrate their comprehension of the target text through writing; they are required to attend more closely to what they are reading to be able to communicate it in their own words. Summary writers are therefore involved in an active process where reading and writing are closely interrelated, and readers’ inability to summarize a reading is an indicator of inappropriate comprehension. Based on the strong connection between reading and writing, the current research work is an attempt to examine the extent to which EFL learners’ summary writing ability correlates with their comprehension of the original reading material. In order to carry on the study, sixty EFL university students at intermediate level of language proficiency were involved. The participants taught by the teacher researcher in the English Language Department of the Faculty of Letters, Languages and Arts, at Djillali Liabes University of Sidi Bel Abbes, first received an explicit instruction on summarizing, then were subject to a text summarizing assignment, then to a post-summarizing reading comprehension test involving the same text used in the summarizing assignment. Students’ written summaries as well as their written answers to the comprehension questions were collected to be scored. The findings revealed that there existed a positive correlation between summary writing ability and reading comprehension.
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