« Ed Department Seeks More Public Input on Assessments | Main | A New Year, a New Curriculum Team »

Is Reading Comprehension a Skill? The Debate Goes On

Happy New Year! As you ease into the post-holiday workweek, you might want to check out an interesting conversation about reading that's going on over at the Core Knowledge blog.

It started with a column by University of Virginia professor Daniel T. Willingham. He argued that reading comprehension isn't a skill, and isn't necessarily improved by simply reading more.

Core Knowledge's Robert Pondiscio noted Willingham's column and predicted that the folks over at the National Council of Teachers of English would jump to disagree with him. Pondiscio asked NCTE President Carol Jago to share her thoughts, and was surprised by her response.

Willingham made a similar argument about reading comprehension back in September, when the draft of the common standards came out. Sean Cavanagh wrote about that column for this blog, and I also wrote about it for our High School Connections blog.

As the common standards move toward full development—a draft of the K-12 standards is expected out this month—I'd guess that lots of folks will be paying pretty close attention to the assumptions about reading skills that underlie those standards.

Notice: We recently upgraded our comments. (Learn more here.) If you are logged in as a subscriber or registered user and already have a Display Name on edweek.org, you can post comments. If you do not already have a Display Name, please create one here.
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.


Most Viewed on Education Week



Recent Comments