REDUCING COMPREHENSION BLOCKS THROUGH ACADEMIC ENGLISH LITERACY: RETHINKING USE OF ENGLISH READING INSTRUCTION
Gabriel B. Egbe
Department of English and Literary Studies. Veritas University. Abuja
Abiodun Ayeni-Daniyan
Department oi English and Literary Studies. Velitas University Abuja

Abstract

Reading is one of the core skills in any use of English instruction. However, the reading performance of students, especially when considered that reading is essentially a meaning making process, sometimes calls for great concern. The difficulty which students face increases as students discover that the language of academic texts is different from the everyday kind of English which they use. This paper examines the core features which typify academic discourse and points out how targeted instruction in academic literacy can support students in making meaning of what they read for academic purposes. The paper analyses some academic texts drawn from the humanities, social sciences, and the sciences against these features to determine their frequency and distribution. The analysis demonstrates that knowledge of academic literacy discourse would first remove and reduce comprehension obstacles which normally frustrate students as they struggle with the meaningmaking process. Secondly, it justifies the need to build the academic literacy of students to empower them to take more responsibility for their learning, and thirdly makes a call on language teachers to redirect academic reading instruction to what matters, that is, academic English literacy, which is considered more beneficial to Nigerian English learners.

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