An experimental study of cloze and retelling for measuring reading comprehension of EFL students
Stalker, James C.
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Reading comprehension has traditionally been measured by multiple-choice tests. This study was done to find out whether it is possible to supplement this familiar and most popular reading comprehension test technique with other varieties. The effectiveness of the cloze procedure and retelling as measures of reading comprehension is investigated in this study. A correlational analysis between these two types of tests and two external criteria, teachers' rating of students' reading comprehension abilities and the results of the BUSEL reading test, was carried out to determine to what extent these two measures correlated with the two outside criteria and revealed students' reading comprehension abilities. The findings showed that students' performance on each measure differed from one another. The results obtained on the cloze task and the retelling procedure showed a low correlation with each other and with the two external criteria implying that each test is unique in what it measures and there is no significant similarity in the ability they indicate. Since the low correlations do not help us to arrive at solid conclusions about whether all the three tests measure the same ability, it is not possible to say that one testing technique can replace the other. Further research should be done to find out the effectiveness of these measures by taking into consideration students' learning and test taking strategies, their needs and goals.