FACTORS RELATED TO COMPREHENSION OF CLOZE PASSAGES BY SEVENTH GRADERS
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This study investigated five hypotheses in order to examine the relationship among several variables related to comprehension of cloze passages by 7th-grade students. It examined the effects and interaction effects of the following variables: the readability level of the cloze passages, the effects of the order in which the passages were presented, the content area of the passages, the deletion frequency used to mutilate the passages, and the subjects' reading ability.;The sample consisted of 184 middle-class 7th-grade students drawn from three suburban New York State schools. The Degrees of Reading Power (DRP) Test was used to determine the subjects' instructional levels. All subjects were given both a social studies and a science cloze passage written at or below their instructional level which was mutilated according to either a 1:5 or a 1:10 word deletion frequency and administered in counterbalanced order. Responses were scored correct only if they matched the deleted words exactly. Synonyms were not accepted. Recognizable, but misspelled, words were considered correct as long as they otherwise matched the deleted words.;No significant differences in mean cloze social studies or science scores were found between the lower level passages and the higher level passages due to passage level when reading ability was not used as a covariate. However, when the data were reexamined using reading ability as a covariate, the subjects tested with the lower level passages achieved significantly higher mean cloze scores than did the subjects tested with the higher level passages. Despite the use of counter-balancing, significant order effects were found for subjects administered the social studies 1:5 passages first.;Generally, subjects obtained higher mean cloze scores when tested with passages mutilated according to the 1:10, rather than the 1:5 deletion frequency. A significant relationship was found between the subjects' reading ability, as evaluated by the DRP test, and their performance on cloze passages for both content areas of social studies and science. Finally, subjects obtained higher mean cloze scores on the two science passages than on the two social studies passages.