While research has indicated that college students may benefit from collaboratively reading academic texts, little is known about how they co-construct comprehension through text-based discussions. This case study focused on two groups of undergraduate students with different degrees of participation in discussions – one active group and one silent group – in a course on English for academic purposes (EAP) at a Chinese university. Drawing upon classroom observation and semi-structured interviews, the study investigated the spontaneous use of reading strategies in 10 post-reading group discussions and probed into the key processes for comprehension building shared by the two groups. The findings suggest that the students utilized a series of reading strategies and drew on the ideational and linguistic resources shared within the group to build comprehension. Three key processes for comprehension co-construction were found: (1) paraphrasing to contribute personal understanding, (2) elaborating to clarify meanings, and (3) summarizing to build consensus. Pedagogical implications concerning the instruction and task design for collaborative academic reading are discussed. Copyright © 2021 The Author(s).
CitationLiu, X., Gu, M. M., & Jin, T. (2021). Strategy use in collaborative academic reading: Understanding how undergraduate students co-construct comprehension of academic texts. Language Teaching Research. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1177/13621688211025688
- Case study
- Collaborative academic reading
- Strategy use
- Summarization task