Spelling development : a comparative study of adult learners and grade seven children

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Boras, Julie
University of Lethbridge. Faculty of Education
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Lethbridge, Alta. : University of Lethbridge, Faculty of Education, 2003
This study examines the spelling development of adult learners and Grade 7 children. The study investigates this central question: Does the spelling development of adult learners differ from that of Grade 7 children? It also addresses sub questions about spelling development and its association with age, gender differences, and first language experiences. The study explores other factors affecting a student's perception of spelling ability. The participants for this research were drawn from two groups. The first group consisted of a cluster sample of 18 students registered in a reading or English class in the Upgrading program at a southern Alberta community college. Students registered in this course were over age eighteen and had been assessed by the Assessment Centre as having a scale score of 541-560 in the writing skills section of the Canadian Achievement Test (CAT). The other participants in the study were 14 classroom children from two Grade 7 rural schools in southern Alberta. These children were approximately twelve or thirteen years of age. The performance of adult learners and Grade 7 children on the Wide Range Achievement Test (WRAT3) was compared according to Henderson's five stages of spelling development. Participants' responses, using the Likert scale, to 20 statements derived from the literature were also compared. The results ofthe study reveal that the spelling development of the adult learners did not differ from that of Grade 7 children; however, there were differences in gender and perception. This information helps to suggest causes of and reasons for the differences between adult learners and children in Grade 7 and explores implications for teaching.
viii, 69 leaves ; 29 cm. --
English language -- Orthography and spelling -- Study and teaching , Spelling ability , Adult education