This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Pre-Service Teachers’ Use of Instructional Strategies when Comprehending and Instructing using Contextually Challenging Text




Szatkowski, Hannah

Type of Degree

PhD Dissertation


Curriculum and Teaching


This qualitative case study explores the processes that occurred when pre-service teachers in an undergraduate elementary education literacy methods course were asked to interact with contextually challenging texts in a comprehension module and implement comprehension instruction in a tutoring field experience placement. The goal was to understand the participants’ metacognition and cognitive load as they explored the texts in the comprehension module. Findings indicate that pre-service teachers were more inclined to consult with other individuals, rather than relying on their own interpretations, when they needed help clarifying and determining meaning within the texts. Additionally, pre-service teachers metacognitively reflected on the strategic use of multiple reading comprehension strategies when exploring texts based on in-class discussion, journal entries, comprehension question responses, and a pre- and post-Metacognitive Awareness of Reading Strategies Inventory. During tutoring sessions, the pre-service teachers implemented instructional strategies using multiple comprehension strategies. When they were asked to reflect on how best to teach K-6 readers to use instructional strategies with contextually challenging texts, they recommended providing guidance (by peers and teachers) and purposefully selecting texts. Overall, findings reveal how pre-service teachers strategically planned, applied, and reflected on instructional and comprehension strategies through tutoring sessions and the comprehension module.