Does passage context and word type impact accuracy in maze tasks?
Baxter, Stacy-Ann A.
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Despite evidence that the maze is a reliable measure of reading comprehension, research suggests great potential for improvement. Specifically, distracters are susceptible to guessing and the syntactic structure of words (i.e., function or content) may affect accurate completion of a maze. The purpose of the current study was to examine variation in student performance as a function of context and the syntactic structure of missing words. Following the administration of an intact maze probe, 225 elementary students were administered, in counterbalanced order, a second intact maze, and a probe with sentences drawn randomly from 3 mazes. Results indicated that students performed significantly better on intact versus randomized sentences, but performance did not differ based upon the syntactic structure of word choices. Findings of this study further question the extent to which mazes measure students’ passage comprehension.