Noncompound and compound Chinese character reading: Are they the same for second-grade Hong Kong Chinese children?

Yingyi LIU, Duo LIU

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Previous studies have not distinguished different types of characters when examining how phonological and semantic-related skills are related to Chinese reading. In this study, Chinese characters were categorized into semantic-phonetic compound and noncompound characters. In the category of semantic-phonetic compound characters, two subtypes were subdivided into regular and irregular compound characters according to the reliability of phonetic radicals. Hong Kong second graders were tested on character reading, phonological awareness and three levels of semantic-related skills (semantic radical awareness, morphological awareness and vocabulary knowledge). Students' age and nonverbal IQ were controlled. The results revealed that all of the three levels of semantic-related skills were significant predictors of reading all types of characters. In contrast, phonological awareness was important only for reading two types of characters, i.e., noncompound characters and regular compound characters. The results have implications for theories of reading concerning the relative roles of phonological and semantic-related skills. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)62-68
JournalLearning and Individual Differences
Volume62
Early online dateFeb 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

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Hong Kong
Semantics
Reading
semantics
Phonetics
phonetics
Vocabulary
vocabulary
Students
student

Citation

Liu, Y., & Liu, D. (2018). Noncompound and compound Chinese character reading: Are they the same for second-grade Hong Kong Chinese children? Learning and Individual Differences, 62, 62-68. doi: 10.1016/j.lindif.2018.01.009

Keywords

  • Chinese character reading
  • Phonological awareness
  • Semantic-related skills
  • Character type