Chinese reading literacy in atayal and han junior high school students in a remote area of Taiwan

Shu Hsuan Kung, Yun Ling Pai, Yi Fcn Su, Chao Jung Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Literacy lypxally involves the ability (o comprehend and manage text language. This study investigated Chinese reading literacy in Ala>al and Han students from a single remote area in Taiwan by analyzing possible factors (i.e.. ethnicity. socioeconomic status, gender, and daily reading experiences) associated with reading comprehension. A total of 66 Atayal and 76 Han seventh grade students, from the same remote, low socioeconomic status area of northern Taiwan. The results rc\calcd thai the listening comprehension performance of the Atayal students was significantly worse than both the national norm and the performance of Han students who participated in this study. Regarding reading comprehension. Ataval students performed significantly worse than the national norm but at ihc same level as their Han peers. However, Atayal students remained highly similar to both the national norm and their Han peers in terms of the performance of Chinese character size. A further analysis showed that compared to Han students, the main difficulty of Atayal students was advanced reading tasks such as integrating and inferring. Moreover. regression anahsis revealed that Chinese character si/c and listening comprehension were significant!) associated with student performance in reading comprehension. After controlling for socioeconomic status by examining the performance of students from adjacent areas, no association was found between literacy and ethnicity, family background, and daily reading experience. 'Hie findings suggest that the difference in literacy abilities between ethnicities may be related to socioeconomic status; yet, listening comprehension also plays a vital role in Atayal students' literacy learning. Consequently, literacy teaching of junior high school students in remote areas should emphasize higher-level abilities, for example, integration and inference.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-169
Number of pages33
JournalContemporary Educational Research Quarterly
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Jun
Externally publishedYes


  • Atayal students
  • Chinese character size
  • Listening comprehension
  • Reading comprehension
  • Socioeconomic status

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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