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Effects of Higher-order Cognitive Strategy Training on Gist Reasoning and Fact-Learning in Adolescents

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Frontiers in Psychology

Jacquelyn F. Gamino, Sandra B. Chapman, Elizabeth L. Hull and G. Reid Lyon

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We found that the students who had cognitive strategy instruction that entailed abstraction of meaning significantly improved their gist-reasoning and fact-learning ability. The students who learned rote memory strategies significantly improved their fact learning scores from a text but not gist-reasoning ability. The control group showed no significant change in either gist-reasoning or fact learning ability. A trend toward significant improvement in overall reading scores for the group that learned to abstract meaning as well as a significant correlation between gist-reasoning ability and the critical thinking on a state-mandated standardized reading test was also found. There were no significant differences between English and Spanish performance of gist-reasoning and fact learning. Our findings suggest that teaching higher-order cognitive strategies facilitates gist-reasoning ability and student learning.

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Jacquelyn Gamino, PhD

Director of Adolescent Reasoning Initiative Assistant Research Professor

Sandra Bond Chapman, PhD

Chief Director Dee Wyly Distinguished Professor, School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences Co-Leader, The BrainHealth Project


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