Research output: Contribution to journal › Journal article
|<mark>Journal publication date</mark>||05/2011|
|<mark>Journal</mark>||Journal of Educational Psychology|
|Number of pages||13|
Connectives are cohesive devices that signal the relations between clauses and are critical to the construction of a coherent representation of a text's meaning. The authors investigated young readers' knowledge, processing, and comprehension of temporal, causal, and adversative connectives using offline and online tasks. In a doze task, 10-year-olds were more accurate than 8-year-olds on temporal and adversative connectives, but both age groups differed from adult levels of performance (Experiment 1). When required to rate the "sense" of 2-clause sentences linked by connectives, 10-year-olds and adults were better at discriminating between clauses linked by appropriate and inappropriate connectives than were 8-year-olds. The 10-year-olds differed from adults only on the temporal connectives (Experiment 2). In contrast, online reading time measures indicated that 8-year-olds' processing of text is influenced by connectives as they read, in much the same way as 10-year-olds'. Both age groups read text more quickly when target 2-clause sentences were linked by an appropriate connective compared with texts in which a connective was neutral (and), inappropriate to the meaning conveyed by the 2 clauses, or not present (Experiments 3 and 4). These findings indicate that although knowledge and comprehension of connectives is still developing in young readers, connectives aid text processing in typically developing readers.