Negotiated Strategic Awareness-raising at Postgraduate Level: Contributions to Reading Comprehension and Content Retention

Document Type: Original Article

Author

Islamic Azad University, Tabriz Branch, Iran

Abstract

A formidable challenge facing many Iranian postgraduate English students is critically negotiating their course content which entails a well-developed strategic competence. This quasi-experimental study examined the effect of negotiated strategic awareness-raising (NSA-raising) on English Language Teaching (ELT) and English Literature (EL) postgraduate students’ general reading comprehension (GRC) and content retention (CR). To serve the purpose, a sample of 39 ELT and 32 EL students was selected through convenience sampling from a pool of 130 postgraduates at Islamic Azad University of Tabriz based on their pre-test scores. The sample was then randomly assigned to two control groups, with no strategic orientation, and two experimental groups receiving content-integrated NSA-raising during a ten-session treatment and based on identical teaching materials for each pair of ELT and EL groups. ANOVA and Kruskal-Wallis analyses of the research data obtained from a standardized reading test tapping the participants’ GRC and syllabus-based achievement tests, along with quarterly administered progress tests, measuring their CR showed significantly higher levels of achievement in both experimental groups. The findings underscore the effectiveness of content-integrated NSA-raising for postgraduate English students.

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