Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Styck, Kara M.

Degree Name

Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy)

Legacy Department

Department of Psychology


A reader’s ability to go beyond their surface-level understanding of words and to build a deeper representation of the text in their mind (i.e., reading comprehension) is predicated on a range of reader- and text-level variables that indicate how well a certain reader can read a certain text. The following study evaluates the extent to which the interaction between the reader characteristics of fifty first graders (e.g., decoding and oral reading fluency skill and demographic characteristics) and the textual characteristics of commonly administered, first grade oral reading fluency passages (e.g., text complexity) may impact the participants’ reading comprehension of the oral reading fluency passages. It was hypothesized that accounting for superfluous variation in text complexity of oral reading fluency passages (i.e., text complexity effects) would recalibrate participants’ oral reading fluency scores, allowing for more valid interpretations student reading skill. Results were mixed and indicated limitations with the study’s comprehension recall measure. Conclusions underlined the importance of including basic reading measures such as decodable and sight word fluency particularly for students with low oral reading fluency skills.


50 pages




Northern Illinois University

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