Do second and third grade children make causal inferences when reading expository texts?
Quirk, Matthew Pierce
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Prior studies have suggested that children as young as the second grade are able to draw inferences when reading narrative texts (Casteel, 1993; Casteel & Simpson, 1991). The purpose of the present study was to investigate whether students were making inferences while reading expository texts at various age and skill levels. Participants were 64 second graders and 78 third graders from urban schools in Georgia and New Jersey. Participants were presented six-sentence expository passages. The children read pairs of sentences aloud, after which an unrelated word, an associated word, or an inference word were presented and the child read the word as quickly and accurately as possible. Results indicated that no inferences were being generated regardless of age or skill level.