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Factors affecting academic reading among students
Conference Paper · November 2015
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FACTORS AFFECTING THE ACADEMIC READING HABITS OF HOSPITALITY MANAGEMENT
STUDENTS
Maria Cecilia Eijansantos-Remanente
ABSTRACT
The reading habits and interests of 95 hospitality management students were examined, with amount
of time spent reading materials related to their courses and time spent reading different content as
proxies for measuring reading habits and reading interests, respectively.
Mann-Whitney tests showed that the differences in the responses of males and females in terms of
reading habits, perceptions of the benefits of reading, and the encouragement they receive from
family and peers were not significant. Online materials were preferred over print materials. Male
students generally spend more time reading print and online news articles than female students, and
this finding is significant at a 95% confidence level.
Bivariate associations between academic reading and factors affecting reading habits were tested
using Spearman rank correlation. Among the factors tested, the students’ perception that reading
improves one’s grades and their having close friends in school were negatively correlated with the
amount of time they spend in academic reading. Although these correlations were all weak and not
significant, the results still suggest that not all students study merely for the grade and that they tend
to assess their peer’s propensity to read relative to their own.
Ordinal regression of these factors showed that having parents and siblings who encourage one to
read and having close friends in school who regularly read have significant contributions to predicting
the amount of time that students spend in academic reading, implying the importance of social
relationships in motivating the youth.
KEYWORDS: academic reading, reading habits, reading interests, hospitality management students
INTRODUCTION
Reading is an essential life skill as it not only “increase(s) knowledge but also builds maturity and
character, sharpens thinking, and widens awareness in social, economic, political, and environmental
issues” (Abidin, Pour-Mohammadi, & Jesmin, 2011). Reading is particularly important among ESL
students or those for whom English is a second language (Le Thanh, 2010; Constantino, as cited in
Kelly & Kneipp, 2009). A skilled reader has strong comprehension of printed text (Anonat, 2011)
owing to a strong vocabulary developed from earlier years of reading.
However, despite the many benefits of reading, not many regularly read for either leisure or academic
purposes.
College is seen as the last stage of formal education for many individuals (Lemanski, 2011, citing the
1994 study by Brown and Knight), and thus, the responsibility of training students to become
independent and lifelong learners rests on college institutions. As an educator, this researcher has
observed that students appear to rely only on their lecture notes and hardly refer to textbooks and
prescribed reading lists. Such reluctance to read could explain students’ difficulty in engaging in
meaningful classroom discussion, as they prefer to listen passively to their teachers. Their written
submissions lack insight and, at times, closely resemble material found online. Bilbao et al., (2008)
describe learning as “a social process where interactions with other learners and the teacher” are
needed. Inside the classroom, students can maximize their learning by actively sharing their ideas,
and reading materials can be an ideal source of such ideas for sharing.
1|Page
Previous studies that examined the effect of different demographic variables on frequency of reading
yielded conflicting findings. Summers (2013) reported that males preferred online materials on
“informational topics, hobbies, and careers” whereas women chose online materials on “parenting,
crafting, family life, celebrity gossip, shopping, and cooking.” In Johnsson-Smaragdi and Jo¨nsson
(2006), social background notwithstanding, girls were found to be more avid readers than men were.
By contrast, no remarkable difference was found in the amount of time that female and male college
students in Taiwan spent on extracurricular reading (Su-Yen Chen, 2007); the study concluded by
suggesting the active role played by cross-cultural differences in shaping college students’ reading
interests and habits.
A report by Dana Gioia (2004), Chairman of the US National Endowment for the Arts, showed that
literary reading has declined among Americans across age and educational levels. Furthermore,
people tended to read less frequently as they grew older.
Scales and Rhee (2001) proved that race and education were strong predictors of reading habits:
White Americans were more inclined to reading than their Asian counterparts, whereas graduatelevel respondents read more often than those who attained lower education. In the study by Su-Yen
Chen (2007), students majoring in arts and architecture were found to spend the largest amount of
time in reading than students of other majors.
Lemanski (2011) showed that access to reading materials and reading assessment were main factors
affecting undergraduate students’ inclination to read. He examined student attitudes toward several
teacher strategies: administering random tests and Q&As during lectures, requiring the submission
of reading summaries, posting all the readings online, photocopying all readings in one pack, limiting
textbooks/references to 2 to 3, and providing discussion questions as a guide. Of these strategies,
access to online readings (96%) and submission of reading summaries (76%) were most favored by
majority of the students. Some students believed that assessment strategies like quizzes and Q&As
only promote surface learning (e.g., memorization of facts) whereas receiving a set of photocopied
readings “spoon fed” learners, thus defeating the purpose of encouraging independent study.
In the USA, the Sustained Silent Reading Handbook by Pilgreen (as cited in Lee, 2011), which was
published in 2000, discussed access to reading materials, appeal to learners, an environment
conducive to reading, encouragement, training for reading coaches, and devoting time to reading as
among the factors common to effective silent reading programs.
Online resources are also an effective tool for increasing independent reading (Abidin et al. 2011;
Grimshaw, S., Dungworth, N., & Morris, A., 2007). Abidin et al. (2011) showed that more than half of
their group of young respondents spent one to three hours on the Internet, although a substantial
amount of this time was spent reading emails, movie reviews, and comic strips. More than a third
rarely read online magazines, online news, and online e-books. A related study by Grimshaw et al.
(2007) showed no significant differences in young children’s comprehension when reading e-books
than when reading printed text, yet the narration, animated pictures and sound effects, and access to
an online dictionary available when reading e-books enhanced the children’s enjoyment of reading.
Individuals can be trained and encouraged to become avid readers. Motivation to read is a predictor
of reading success (Manning, Aliefendic, Chiarelli, Haas, and Williams, 2011-2012). Anonat (2011)
terms the “exposure to literacy artifacts and events” as “literacy socialization.” She suggests three
stages of reading literacy: emergent reading is when individuals recognize and interpret symbols and
pictures, the beginners’ stage is when readers gain the confidence to read, and finally, the skilled
readers’ stage is when individuals can read fast or grasp ideas simply by skimming. Additionally, she
cites three factors influencing reading comprehension: the reader’s background knowledge, the
authors’ presentation of ideas, and the reader’s intention for reading or “purpose.”
2|Page
Johnsson-Smaragdi and Jo¨nsson (2006) best summarized the many benefits of reading:
Reading is also supposed to enhance the communication potential by developing our
language and vocabulary, by affecting the ability of logical reasoning, the capacity of
expressing oneself and by affecting the level of comprehension and understanding. Other
arguments, that may concern the cognitive as well as the emotional realm, are that reading
stimulates the imagination, creates images in the mind and gives the power of insight. Further
arguments along these lines are that reading may enhance emotional intelligence, evoke
empathy and provide characters for identification. Practical reasons that speak in favour of
reading mainly pertain to the area of worklife and studies and also to the ability to act as a
citizen in the democratic process. These reasons underscore the importance of
understanding texts and the ability to produce texts, and the ability to formulate arguments in
discussions.
The present study focuses on independent reading among college students, or reading without being
prompted to do so, as one recognizes its many benefits. Correlations between gender and reading
habits, perception of the benefits of reading, and parental and peer influence were likewise tested.
RESEARCH METHODS
First, students’ reading habits and interests were examined vis-à-vis their gender. Their reading habits
and interests were measured in terms of the amount of time they spend in reading, their usual sources
of reading materials, and their preferred reading content.
Second, correlations were measured between the amount of time that students spend in academic
reading and different factors: school requirements such as quizzes and class recitation; parents,
siblings, and peers who influence one to read; having an environment at home that is conducive to
study; and the perceived benefits of reading (i.e., better grades, wider vocabulary, keeping abreast
with current issues). Finally, ordinal regression was run to examine the contributions of these factors,
relative to each other, in predicting the amount of time that students spend in academic reading.
1. How much time do male and female students spend reading materials related and nonrelated
to their schoolwork?
2. How often do these students read different types of content (academic, literary, self-help or
inspirational, news, and entertainment) during school season?
3. What are these students’ common sources of reading material: bookstores, libraries, friends,
or the Internet?
4. What are the perceptions of male and female students with regard to school-related reading,
reading influences, and the benefits of reading?
5. Is there a relationship between the amount of time that students spend in academic reading
(ACAD_READING) and each of the variables below?
Schoolwork-related
 Searching for materials in reading lists (READING_LIST)
 Reading in preparation for class discussion (CLASS_DISCUSSION)
 Reading in preparation for quizzes/exams (QUIZZES_EXAMS)
Reading influences
 Parents and siblings (FAMILY)
 Peers (PEERS)
3|Page
 Home environment (HOME_ENVIRONMENT)
Benefits of reading
 Improved vocabulary (VOCABULARY)
 Updated with current issues (CURRENT_ISSUES)
 Higher grades in school (GRADES)
6. Are the variables READING_LIST, CLASS_DISCUSSION, QUIZZES_EXAMS, FAMILY,
PEERS, HOME_ENVIRONMENT, VOCABULARY, CURRENT_ISSUES, and GRADES
significant in predicting ACAD_READING?
In answering the research questions above, the following null hypotheses were tested:
H01a: There is no significant difference in the amount of time that male and female students spend
in reading materials related and nonrelated to their schoolwork. (Question #1)
H01b:
There is no significant difference in the preferred reading content of male and female
students. (Question #2)
H01c:
There is no significant difference in the perceptions of male and female students with regard
to school-related reading, reading influences, and the benefits of reading. (Question #4)
H02a:
H02b:
H02c:
There is no correlation between ACAD_READING and school requirements. (Question #5)
There is no correlation between ACAD_READING and reading influences. (Question #5)
There is no correlation between ACAD_READING and the perceived benefits of reading.
(Question #5)
H03:
READING_LIST = CLASS_DISCUSSION = QUIZZES_EXAMS = FAMILY = PEERS =
HOME_ENVIRONMENT = VOCABULARY = CURRENT ISSUES = GRADES = 0 (Question #6)
The survey period was from September 9 to 25. Random sampling was conducted, and 99 hospitality
management students served as respondents, representing 16.5% of the target population
(confidence level: 95%, margin of error: +9). Questionnaires that were incompletely filled were
discarded, leaving only 95 usable forms or a response rate of 95.9%.
A three-part questionnaire was used. Part A assesses students’ reading habits, that is, how much
time they spend reading materials related and nonrelated to their schoolwork and their common
sources of reading materials (bookstores, libraries, friends, or the Internet). Part B assesses students’
reading interests using a Likert scale, that is, how often (Always, Often, Sometimes, Rarely, or Never)
they read different types of content (academic, literary, self-help, news, and entertainment) during
and outside school season. In part C, students are asked to indicate whether they considered a set
of statements to be Always, Often, Sometimes, Rarely, or Never true. These statements are designed
to assess students’ academic reading habits, perception of the benefits of reading, and the influences
they receive from family, peers, and their home environment. Statement# 4 was added to examine
students’ preference for print over online reading materials.
In developing the questionnaire, the researcher referred to Lemanski (2011), Abidin et al. (2011),
Scales and Rhee (2001), and Chen (2007). The scale for measuring the factors affecting reading
habits (questions 1-3, 5-10) used in the present study has a high level of internal consistency, as
indicated by the Cronbach’s alpha of 0.783.
Mann-Whitney test was used in analyzing the differences in the responses of two independent,
categorical groups, i.e., male and female, with regard to time spent in academic reading and reading
interests.
4|Page
Spearman’s rank correlation coefficients were calculated to determine the significance of the
associations between time spent in academic reading and student perceptions of school-related
reading, the benefits of reading, and the influences they receive from family and peers.
As the correlations between variables were mostly not statistically significant, which is further
discussed in the next section, ordinal regression was conducted to determine whether the study
variables, relative to each other, are significant in predicting the amount of time that students spend
in reading materials related to their schoolwork.
RESULTS
Students’ reading habits and interests were measured as (a) the amount of time spent in reading
materials related and non-related to schoolwork and (b) the amount of time spent in reading different
types of content: academic, literary, self-help, news, and entertainment.
Other factors affecting students’ propensity to read were also reported: their source of reading
materials; their perception of the benefits of reading; family and peers influencing them to read; and
having an environment conducive to reading.
1. How much time do students spend reading materials related and nonrelated to their schoolwork?
As shown in Figure 1, majority of the male (64.5%) and female (68.8%) students engaged in schoolrelated reading less than five hours each week. Nearly a third (31%) of the respondents spent more
than five hours each week reading; the percentage is slightly lower (26%) for reading materials not
related to schoolwork. Only one respondent, a female student, read at least 24 hours a week for her
studies but a few female students reported spending close to 24 hours each week reading materials
non-related to their studies.
5|Page
Figure 1. Time spent in reading materials (a) related to schoolwork and (b) not related to
schoolwork
Levels of significance were obtained using SPSS 22.0. The differences in academic reading (U =
909.5, p =.497) and in reading materials non-related to schoolwork (U = 844.5, p =.226) between
males and females were not statistically significant at α =.05. Therefore, H01a could not be rejected.
2. How often do students read different types of content (academic, literary, self-help or inspirational,
news, and entertainment) during school season?
Tables 1 and 2 show how often students read different types of content, in both print and electronic
format. Entertainment articles, both in print and electronic format, were popular among the students
(35% and 38%, respectively). Male students read printed and electronic news articles more often than
female students did. Literary pieces such as novels were the least preferred by males. The
percentage of students who always or often read different types of content online was generally higher
than for print materials: 44%, 52%, 48%, 52%, and 70% versus 40%, 47%, 45%, 40%, and 66% for
academic, literary, self-help, news, and entertainment materials online and in print, respectively.
Table 1. Frequency of reading different types of content (in print)
6|Page
Table 2. Frequency of reading different types of content (online)
Test Statisticsa
Acad_print
Mann-Whitney U
Wilcoxon W
Literary_
Selfhelp_
News_
Entertainment
print
print
Print
_print
Acad_online
Literary_
Selfhelp_
News_
Entertainment
online
online
online
_online
859.000
779.500
927.500
726.000
880.000
988.000
886.500
877.500
783.500
978.000
1355.000
1275.500
3007.500
2806.000
2960.000
3068.000
1382.500
2957.500
2863.500
3058.000
-1.126
-1.751
-.543
-2.194
-.930
-.034
-.876
-.950
-1.712
-.117
.260
.080
.587
.028
.353
.973
.381
.342
.087
.907
Z
Asymp. Sig. (2tailed)
a. Grouping Variable: Sex
Figure 2. SPSS Output showing Mann-Whitney U values and their significance
All asymptotic p values for different types of content, except for printed news articles (U = 726, p =
.028) were less than α = 0.05, as shown in Figure 2. Thus, there are no significant differences in male
and female students’ preferences for different types of content except for printed news articles, and
the null hypothesis H01b cannot be fully rejected.
Majority or 33% of the respondents considered the statement “I prefer print over online reading
materials” to be sometimes true, but a considerable percentage—25% and 27% of them—viewed the
statement to be always and often true, respectively (see Table 3). The distribution of responses
differed between males and females, yet these differences are not statistically significant (U = 865, p
= .295) at a confidence level of α = .05. The nonsignificance of findings after using a Mann-Whitney
test indicates that the nominal characteristic of the sample does not make a statistically significant
7|Page
difference on the variable measured (Cohen et al., 2011), that is, being male or female made no
difference on the reported reading habits and interests of the respondents.
Table 3. Male and female students’ preference for print over online materials
3. What are the students’ common sources of reading material: bookstores, libraries, friends, or the
Internet?
Fig. 3a
8|Page
Fig. 3b
Fig. 3c
Fig. 3d
Fig.3. Common sources of reading materials of male and female students:
(a) bookstores, (b) libraries, (c) friends), and (d) the Internet
Majority of the respondents downloaded from the Internet or borrowed materials from friends for their
schoolwork. Borrowing from libraries and buying from bookstores were ranked as third and fourth,
respectively, most common ways of obtaining reading materials for schoolwork.
4. What are the perceptions of male and female students with regard to school-related reading,
reading influences, and the benefits of reading?
9|Page
As shown in Table 4, majority of both female and male students (41% and 45%, respectively) only
sometimes search for the textbooks prescribed by their instructors, but frequency of searching for
textbooks is still higher among females than males (28% versus 13%, respectively).
By contrast, the percentage of students who “always” and “often” read in preparation for class
discussion is higher in males than in females (19% and 26%, respectively, for males, and 13% and
19%, respectively, for females). More female than male respondents rarely read books when
reviewing for quizzes and periodical exams.
10 | P a g e
Table 5 shows students’ perceptions of the benefits of reading. Table 6 shows their reaction to the
statements “My parents and siblings influence me to read,” “I have close friends in school who read,”
and “There is a quiet area at home where I can read.” As shown in Table 6, 64% of the males and
53% of the females disclosed that their parents and siblings always and often encouraged them to
read. Furthermore, 68% of the males and 52% of the females said that they have close friends in
school who regularly read. The higher percentages for male students imply that they receive more
encouragement to read from family and peers than the female students. Conversely, more females
(64%) than males (55%) reported that they always and often have a quiet place at home that is
conducive to study.
However, the results of the Mann-Whitney test (Figure 4) show that the differences in the perceptions
of male and female students with regard to schoolwork-related reading, the benefits of reading, and
influences from family and peers are not statistically significant at α = 0.05: READING_LIST U = 940,
p = 0.663; CLASS DISCUSSION U = 896, p = 0.401; QUIZZES_EXAMS U = 939.5, p = 0.664;
VOCABULARY U = 858, p = 0.264; CURRENT_ISSUES U = 813, p = 0.139; GRADES U = 802.5, p
= 0.111, FAMILY U = 914, p = 0.521; PEERS U = 869, p = 0.311; and HOME_ENVIRONMENT U =
859.9, p = 0.272. Asymptotic p values for these variables were all above .05 and thus, the null
hypothesis H01c cannot be rejected.
11 | P a g e
Figure 4. SPSS Output: Mann Whitney test on gender and factors affecting reading
5. Is the amount of time that male and female students spend in reading (ACAD_READING) related
to schoolwork (READING_LIST, CLASS_DISCUSSION, QUIZZES_EXAMS), the benefits of
reading (VOCABULARY, CURRENT_ISSUES, GRADES), and reading influences (FAMILY,
PEERS, HOME_ENVIRONMENT)?
Bivariate correlations were calculated using Spearman’s rho in SPSS 22.0.
Table 7. Correlation with ACAD_reading
Spearman's rho
READING_LIST
CLASS_DISCUSSION
QUIZZES_EXAMS
VOCABULARY
CURRENT_ISSUES
GRADES
FAMILY
PEERS
HOME_ENVIRONMENT
0.038
0.092
0.155
0.089
0.047
-.005
0.077
-.109
0.146
Sig (2-tailed)
0.718
0.375
0.134
0.392
0.652
0.962
0.459
0.293
0.159
As shown in Table 7 above, having peers or close friends in school who regularly read is negatively
correlated with academic reading. This negative correlation implies that students who do not read
much perceive that their peers read “often.” It could also mean that when a student reads often,
he/she perceives that his/her peers in school do not read very often, indicating a tendency to assess
other individuals’ frequency of reading relative to one’s own. Similarly, the perception that reading
results in higher grades is negatively correlated with time spent in academic reading. That is, students
recognize that their grades would improve if they read yet they still do not spend much time reading
materials related to their schoolwork.
The rest of the variables (READING_LIST, CLASS_DISCUSSION, QUIZZES_EXAMS,
VOCABULARY, CURRENT_ISSUES, GRADES, FAMILY, PEERS, and HOME_ENVIRONMENT)
are positively correlated with time spent in academic reading. An increase in these variables
corresponds to an increase in the time spent in academic reading. However, the correlations above
are all very weak and almost negligible. These correlations are not statistically significant, as the
correlation coefficients or rho are less than the critical value for n = 95, df = 93, at α = 0.05 level of
12 | P a g e
confidence (see Appendix B). Table 7 also reports the ρ values obtained for these variables, which
all exceed 0.05 and hence not significant.
6. Are the variables READING_LIST, CLASS_DISCUSSION, QUIZZES_EXAMS, VOCABULARY,
CURRENT_ISSUES, GRADES, FAMILY, PEERS, and HOME_ENVIRONMENT significant in
determining ACAD_READING?
In Table 8, “estimate” refers to the likelihood of an event happening. The table shows a direct
relationship between QUIZZES_EXAMS and ACAD_READING; the increasing estimates means
that students who were more likely to read books when reviewing for quizzes and exams were also
more likely to spend more time in reading. By contrast, an inverse relationship was observed
between CURRENT_ISSUES and ACAD_READING, which means that students who perceived
that reading makes one well-informed on current issues were more likely to spend less time in
reading. However, both relationships are not statistically significant at α = 0.05.
Of the variables included in the regression, only READING_LIST, FAMILY, and PEERS were
shown to have statistically significant contributions to predicting ACAD_READING.
QUIZZES_EXAMS was almost significant (p = 0.052). The Wald statistics can be an indicator of
the relative weights of these variables in predicting time spent in reading; therefore, referring to
reading lists contribute the most to predicting time spent in academic reading.
Table 8. Parameter estimates
Estimate
Wald
Sig.
Time spent in
academic reading
1 hour or less
1.5 to 3 hours
3.5 to 5 hours
-3.126
-1.158
.289
10.425
1.634
.104
.001*
.201
.747
READING_
LIST
Never
Rarely
Sometimes
Often
Always
-38.964
0.702
-0.641
-0.818
0a
210.908
0.329
0.868
1.439
.
0.000*
0.566
0.351
0.230
.
CLASS_
DISCUSSION
Never
Rarely
Sometimes
Often
Always
-3.69
0.308
-0.878
-0.183
0a
1.417
0.037
1.304
0.047
.
0.234
0.848
0.253
0.828
.
QUIZZES_
EXAMS
Never
Rarely
Sometimes
Often
Always
-4.359
-0.33
0.674
1.429
0a
3.767
0.146
0.859
3.176
.
0.052
0.703
0.354
0.075
.
VOCABULARY
Never
Rarely
Sometimes
Often
-25.965
0.835
-1.488
0.152
0
0.247
2.677
0.042
0.997
0.619
0.102
0.839
13 | P a g e
Always
0a
.
.
CURRENT_
ISSUES
Never
Rarely
Sometimes
Often
Always
47.855
-0.517
-0.616
-1.096
0a
0
0.168
0.493
2.196
.
0.996
0.682
0.482
0.138
.
GRADES
Never
Rarely
Sometimes
Often
Always
6.684
41.144
0.584
0.34
0a
.
.
0.518
0.219
.
1.000
1.000
0.472
0.640
.
FAMILY
Never
Rarely
Sometimes
Often
Always
-2.166
-0.404
-1.526
-0.039
0a
1.445
0.181
4.522
0.004
.
0.229
0.670
0.033*
0.947
.
PEERS
Never
Rarely
Sometimes
Often
Always
-0.639
1.917
1.828
1.319
0a
0.083
3.843
4.878
3.553
.
0.773
0.050*
0.027*
0.059
.
HOME_
ENVIRONMENT
Never
Rarely
Sometimes
Often
Always
3.021
-2.519
-0.525
-0.284
0a
1.102
3.292
0.571
0.19
.
0.294
0.070
0.450
0.663
.
*Statistically significant at α = 0.05
Pearson
Deviance
Chi-Square
Df
Sig.
269.233
234
.057
195.118
234
.970
Figure 5. SPSS Output on goodness of fit
In Figure 5, the Pearson (χ2 269.233, p = 0.057) and Deviance (χ2 = 195.118, p = 0.970) statistics (df
= 234, p = 0.057) indicate that the model is a good fit to the data. Unlike most statistics wherein values
lower than α are considered significant, in measuring goodness of fit, p values above 0.05 indicate
goodness of fit because the assumption is that the model is a poor fit compared with the ideal model,
i.e., one that perfectly fits the data.
Model fit can also be measured by reporting the difference between the intercept-only and the final
model, as shown in Figure 6. This difference is χ2 = 52.579 (df = 36), which is significant (p = 0.037
< 0.05). Such significance means that the independent variables contribute significantly to predicting
14 | P a g e
the amount of time that students spend in reading. A larger difference would mean that the
independent variables are better at predicting time spent in academic reading (Ordinal regression).
-2 Log
Model
Likelihood
Chi-Square
Df
Sig.
Intercept Only
252.432
Final
199.853
52.579
36
.037
Figure 6. SPSS Output showing Model Fit Information
Ordinal regression requires an assumption of proportional odds, that is, the independent variables
should have an identical effect at all levels or categories of the dependent variable (Ordinal
regression).
In this study, responses to the dependent variable (ACAD_READING) were grouped into four
categories, namely, < 1, 1.5 to 3, 3.5 to 5, and > 5 hours. Three dichotomous dependent variables
were created based on these categories: category 1 sets the value of “1” as < 1 hour of reading and
“0” if otherwise; category 2 sets the value of “2” as < 1 and 1.5 to 3 hours, “0” if otherwise; and
category “3” sets the value of “3” as “< 1, 1.5 to 3, and 3.5 to 5 hours, “0” if otherwise. Separate
binomial logistic regressions were run for each of these categories; however, the results are not
discussed in depth in this paper; only the variables that were found to be statistically significant are
included in the analysis in Table 9. It would suffice to say that the assumption of proportional odds
was not met, as shown by results of the Test of Parallel Lines (Figure 7) where χ2 103.297, p = 0.009
(at α = 0.05). In this table, the null hypothesis model assumes proportional odds whereas the general
model does not.
Model
Null Hypothesis
General
Figure 7. Test of Parallel Linesa
-2 Log
Likelihood
Chi-Square
Df
199.853
96.556b
103.297c
72
Table 9. Results of binomial logistic regression
B (parameter estimates)
Categor Categor Categor
y1
y2
y3
Sig.
.009
Exp(B) (odds ratio, OR)
Categor Categor Categor
y1
y2
y3
READING_LIST(1)
43.304
18.756
11.216
6.4E+18
1.4E+08
QUIZZES_EXAMS(1)
1.555
23.934
25.832
4.735
2.528
-9.031
-11.734
1.167
-2.97
-2.618
4.587
-3.016
-2.212
12.534
0
0
2.48E+1
0
3.214
0.051
0.073
FAMILY(3)
PEERS(2)
PEERS(3)
74281.7
7
1.65E+1
1
98.223
0.049
0.11
In Table 9, the huge differences among the slopes of the variables for each level or category of the
dependent variable were very apparent. Thus, earlier results showing their statistical significance
should be viewed with caution.
15 | P a g e
The null hypothesis H03 which is “READING_LIST = CLASS_DISCUSSION = QUIZZES_EXAMS =
FAMILY = PEERS = HOME_ENVIRONMENT = VOCABULARY = CURRENT ISSUES = GRADES
= 0” means that the removal of any of these variables will not significantly affect the prediction of the
amount of time spent in academic reading. H03 cannot be rejected because these variables
contribute to predicting the amount of time spent in reading.
DISCUSSION
In this study, the reading habits and interests (measured as time spent in reading and preferred
reading content) of 95 hospitality management students were examined in relation to their gender.
Differences between groups were measured using Mann-Whitney test.
The differences in the amount of time that male and female students spent in reading materials related
and nonrelated to their schoolwork were not statistically significant at a confidence level of α = 0.05.
Likewise, except for news articles, no statistical significance was found in male and female students’
preferred reading content.
Bivariate correlations were measured between time spent in academic reading and several factors:
referring to reading lists, reading to prepare for examinations, reading to prepare for class discussion;
perceptions of the benefits of reading, such as improved vocabulary, higher grades, and keeping
abreast with current issues; receiving encouragement from parents and siblings, having close friends
in school who regularly read, and having a quiet place at home that is conducive to reading. The
Spearman rank-order correlation coefficients were all not significant at α = 0.05.
These findings should be viewed with caution to avoid a Type 2 error or supporting the null hypothesis
when it is in fact false (Cohen et al., 2011) and when the alternate hypothesis is of practical
significance. “[A] non-significant p-value does not necessarily mean that there is no association;
rather, the non-significant result could be due to a lack of power to detect an association” (Elite
Research). Thus, replication of the present study is recommended.
Ordinal regression was used to test the relative weights of the following factors in predicting time
spent in academic reading: referring to reading lists, encouragement from family, and having close
friends in school who read were shown to contribute significantly to predicting academic reading.
Reading to prepare for quizzes and examinations was also considered significant, with its p value
lying close to the α-level of significance. As the assumption of proportional odds was not met, an
equation for predicting time spent in academic reading was not produced, but the slopes of these
variables—computed using binomial logistic regression—were reported.
A direct relationship was found between students’ referring to reading lists and the likelihood of their
engaging in academic reading. Therefore, teachers should regularly provide students with reading
lists that contain not only the textbooks, but also, other references, especially those found online
because, as reported earlier, students refer to online sources more often than they refer to print
materials. In cases where copies of a reference are limited or too costly to obtain, teachers should
consider providing one copy for the class to reproduce. Giving students the original materials to be
used as references for class discussion is preferred over providing them with lecture handouts or
printouts of presentation slides used in class. Among younger students, devoting time to silent reading
inside the classroom is another strategy that teachers can adopt; for more mature learners, a class
period can be devoted to research or a library visit.
Teachers can also help in checking the recency and relevance of the library collection. The school
can support students by subscribing to online journals (e.g., EBSCOhost, Emerald) and magazines
(e.g., National Geographic Traveler), particularly because students ranked the Internet as their top
source of reading material (consistent with the findings of Lemanski, 2011). Some read-worthy
16 | P a g e
references can be downloaded from the Internet at no cost, but students may need guidance on
where to look.
To encourage students to read on the course topics in advance, they can be asked to read an entire
chapter, for example, and their instructors can give them a quiz at the start of the class or before
discussion.
Pre-, during, and post-reading strategies can motivate students to become active learners (Pardede,
2006). Among the pre-reading strategies that teachers can use are orienting students on what they
are about to read, connecting prior lessons with the reading material, and providing guide questions
for reflection. Post-reading activities include summaries, discussion, and reading logs. When asking
students to write their reflection on a topic, a better alternative to assigning homework would be to
allot 30 minutes of the class session to a writing activity to keep students from submitting plagiarized
work.
Students tend to read more often when they are encouraged by parents or siblings and when they
see that their close friends in school read. This finding implies the importance of social relationships
in motivating the youth. Teachers can initiate online forums where students can discuss their
readings, and they can assign reading buddies. Libraries can draw inspiration from bookshop cafés
such as those found in London, and consider offering café-like experiences for library users, without
causing damage to their book collection.
At home, quiet nooks can be designated as reading areas where students can engage either in oldfashioned book reading or connect to the Internet to find interesting material to read. Membership in
book clubs where members regularly meet to discuss assigned readings can also make the reading
experience more enjoyable for students.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
The researcher wishes to thank her family, especially her five-year old daughter Ingrid, for the
inspiration to continuously upgrade her understanding of the world that she may have more insights
to share, especially with young minds.
17 | P a g e
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