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The Effect of Text Familiarity on EFL Students' Reading Comprehension: Focus on Senior Secondary School, Oromia, Ethiopia
Teshome Guteta Kitessa1*, Sherif Ali1, Tamene Kitila2
1Wollega University, Institute of Languages Study and Journalism, Department of English Language and Literature, Ethiopia
2Addis Ababa University, Institute of Languages Study and Literature, Department of English Language and Literature, Ethiopia

Int. J. Grad. Res. Rev. Vol 8(1-2): 29-39.
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Prior knowledge (PK) is a schematic knowledge belonging to constructivist learning theory and contributing to reading comprehension.  Hence, the purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of PK in terms of text familiarity on EFL learners' reading comprehension at senior secondary school. To this end, pragmatic paradigm with concurrent embedded QUAN-qual mixed method design was employed. The QUAN approach encompassed quasi-experimental method and the embedded qual approach was considered for its qualitative data. The participants were 80 grade 11 students selected purposively and their corresponding EFL teachers selected by comprehensive sampling. The data collection instruments were post-test, questionnaire, and group interview. The data analysis methods included descriptive and inferential statistics involving item analysis, KR-21 formula, Kolmogorov-Smirnov and Friedman's repeated samples test. The findings revealed that there was the effect of PK in terms of text familiarity. Specifically, the three differently familiar texts' test scores indicated significant difference at ?2(2, n = 80) = 109.507, p < .001 rank order with familiar texts ranking top. In addition, there was test score mean significant difference between the three aspects of PK at ?2(2, n = 80) = 23.77, p < .001 with cultural PK and content Pk showing better contribution to the reading comprehension. Further, the researchers have recommended that the hierarchical executors need to incorporate the target learners' Prior knowledge activating mechanisms in reading comprehension lesson texts to enhance understanding.

cultural schemata; prior knowledge; reading comprehension;text familiarity