An analysis of Thai students' EFL reading performance and ability development


  • Malee Nitsaisook


English language, Reading, Study and teaching, Reading skill


            The study aimed to investigate the EFL reading performance of four groups of Thai secondary and tertiary students, the increase in their EFL reading ability and their developmental scale of EFL reading ability as compared to the scale developed by IEA Reading Literacy Study. Both skill-based and text type-based approaches were used for assessing reading performance. The mother-tongue Grade 9 English test developed by the IEA Reading Literacy Study was used. The findings revealed that these Thai students’ overall EFL reading achievement was unsatisfactory in spite of the statistically significant growth of the Grade 12 and the tertiary high achievers EFL reading ability. All groups performed more poorly on making inferences, narrative and the expository task domains, and the highest on document text reading and following directions. Their text type oriented reading ability was considered to lag at least one scale behind the international developmental scale of reading literacy. Further research on EFL reading instruction in Thailand is definitely required so as to boost Thai students’ EFL reading ability.