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Acta Psychologica Sinica
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Effect of family environment on reading ability: The mediating effects of reading engagement and reading interest among junior high school students
WEN Hongbo; LIANG Kaili; LIU Xianwei
(Institute of education statistics and measurement, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China)
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Abstract  

 

Several studies found that family factors were important to students’ reading ability. However, there are few studies discussing the internal mechanism. As students’ individual characteristic, reading interest is one of the mediating factors between family environment and reading ability. Nowadays, investigators have paid more attention to the reading engagement, and some studies show that it is reasonable to believe the mediating effect of reading engagement. Therefore, it’s important to discuss the mediating effect of reading interest and reading engagement on reading ability. The first study we explored was whether reading interest and reading engagement were the single-step multiple mediating variables between family environment and reading ability. The hypothese1: reading interest and reading engagement were single-step multiple mediators between family environment and reading ability. Furthermore, studies show that reading interest had significant influence on reading engagement. The second study was whether reading interest and reading engagement were the multiple-step multiple mediating variables between family environment and reading ability. The hypothese2: the relationship between family environment and reading ability via the influence of reading interest on reading engagement. However, some researchers suggest that there is the interaction between reading interest and reading engagement so the third study was whether the interaction between reading interest and reading engagement could be the mediating effect between family environment and reading ability. The hypothese3: The relationship between family environment and reading ability was in nature through the interaction between reading interest and reading engagement.
Participants were 574 8th students from two medium counties. In each county, there were 3 common junior high schools selected which were categorized as better, general, poor on the basis of school conditions respectively. And two classes were selected randomly from each school. All students Participated in the reading ability test and reading questionnaire test. After testing, 15 students were excluded from the analyses because of incomplete data in reading ability test and same answers in reading questionnaire test. The final samples included 273 (48.84%) male students and 286 (51.16%) female students. The population was distributed widely. There were 301 (53.85%) students from towns, and 258 (46.15%) students from villages. Participants completed two measures: reading questionnaire (32 items) and reading ability test (24 items). Reading questionnaire included personal information, family environment questionnaire, reading interest questionnaire, reading engagement questionnaire. Reading ability test included four passages which were categorized as narrative (2 passages) and expository (2 passages).
Preliminary and descriptive analyses showed: The internal consistency for reading questionnaire (family environment, reading interest, reading engagement) was measured by Cronbach’s alpha,they were 0.720, 0.836, 0.792. The internal consistency for reading ability test was.870. In study 1, reading engagement could be a mediator of the relationship between family environment and reading ability. Model fit indices in SEM were χ2 = 575.951, df = 128, χ2/df = 4.500 (p < 0.001), TLI = 0.816, CFI = 0.846, RMSEA = 0.079. In study 2, the relationship between family environment and reading ability was through the effect of reading interest on reading engagement. Model fit indices in SEM were χ2 = 334.698, df = 128, χ2/df = 2.615 (p < 0.001), TLI = 0.915, CFI = 0.929, RMSEA = 0.054. In study 3, The relationship between family environment and reading ability was in nature through the interactive cycle between reading interest and reading engagement. Model fit indices in SEM were χ2 = 334.751, df = 129, χ2/df = 2.595 (p < 0.001), TLI = 0.916, CFI = 0.929, RMSEA = 0.053.

SEM results are different from previous studies: (1) reading engagement is the mediating variable between family environment and reading interest, reading engagement is the mediating variable between family reading interest and reading performance; (2) The relationship between family environment and reading ability is in nature through the interactive cycle between reading interest and reading engagement. Reading engagement plays a critical role in internal mechanism between family environment and reading ability.

Keywords family environment      reading interest      reading engagement      reading ability      mediating effect      structural equational modeling     
Corresponding Authors: WEN Hongbo,Email: whb@bnu.edu.cn   
Issue Date: 25 March 2016
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WEN Hongbo,LIANG Kaili,LIU Xianwei. Effect of family environment on reading ability: The mediating effects of reading engagement and reading interest among junior high school students[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2016.00248
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http://journal.psych.ac.cn/xlxb/EN/10.3724/SP.J.1041.2016.00248     OR     http://journal.psych.ac.cn/xlxb/EN/Y2016/V48/I3/248
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