The Effect of Cooperative Learning on Reading Comprehension and Reading Anxiety of Pre-University Students

Sheyda Ghorbani Nejad, Abdollah Keshavarzi


This study aimed to investigate the effect of cooperative learning on L2 reading comprehension ability for pre-university students by comparing the cooperative learning instruction and traditional lecture instruction. Another objective was to discover the effect of cooperative learning on reading anxiety of students. It also tried to figure out the students’ attitudes after providing cooperative learning intervention. In addition, the study intended to find the relationship among students’ reading anxiety, attitudes and their reading performance. Seventy pre-university students majoring in experimental sciences in Shiraz (35 subjects in experimental group, 35 subjects in control group) participated in this study. The cooperative learning technique 'Ask together – learn together' model was used in the experimental group and the usual method, which is traditional lecture instruction, was used in the control group to teach four reading comprehension lessons from pre-university  textbook for a period of eight  weeks. The required data for the study were collected through three instruments: two reading comprehension achievement tests and an attitude questionnaire. The findings of the present study showed that cooperative learning method had a higher effect on L2 reading comprehension skills when compared with the effects of traditional teaching methods. The results also revealed that control group was more anxious in reading than experimental group. In the case of students’ attitudes, the average mean of attitude score for students in the cooperative learning group showed a strong relationship with this learning approach. Finally, it was found that the correlation between reading performance, attitude and reading anxiety was significant.


cooperative learning, English reading comprehension, foreign language reading anxiety, attitude

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