Reading Preferences and Strategies Employed by Primary School Students: Gender, Socio-Cognitive and Citizenship Issues

  •  Eleni Griva    
  •  Anastasia Alevriadou    
  •  Klio Semoglou    


The purpose of the present study was to identify the correlation between gender and reading preferences and reading strategies employed by 5th and 6th Grade students of primary school in Greece. The main objectives of the present study were (1) to identify possible differences between male and female students in employing cognitive and metacognitive strategies, (2) to record the difficulties encountered by males and females when reading and (3) to highlight possible differences between male and female students in reading preferences. 405 Greek students (206 boys and 199 girls, M=11.21 years old, SD.=0.47) participated in the study and were asked to fill in a questionnaire including questions related to reading preferences and attitudes. In addition, 32 students from the total sample were asked to choose their favourite text to read and think aloud about the processes they followed and the strategies they used. The questionnaire results indicated significant differences between male and female students in reading preferences, since the female students showed a greater preference for ‘human-interest’ stories and male ones preferred to read comics and action-stories. The verbal data revealed the female students’ flexibility in strategy use and their higher metacognitive awareness compared to male students. Reading, gender and social factors are discussed in the light of citizenship education.

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