The Role of Gender in the Use of Metacognitive Awareness Reading Strategies among Biology Students

  •  Arsaythamby Veloo    
  •  Mariam Rani    
  •  K. Hariharan    


Metacognitive Awareness Reading Strategies used by students while reading academic material is one of thefactors that lead to students’ future academic achievement. This study aims to determine the association betweengender and gender differences in the perceived use of Metacognitive Awareness Reading Strategies (Global,Problem-Solving & Support Reading strategies) among Biology students in a Matriculation College situated inState of Kedah, Malaysia. In this study, 318 Matriculation College students participated, in which 97 malestudents and 221 female students studied Biology as one of the subjects. They rated their own perceived uselevel of Metacognitive Awareness Reading Strategies using Metacognitive Awareness of Reading StrategiesInventory (MARSI) adapted from Mokhtari and Reichard (2002). The findings show that female students useMetacognitive Awareness Reading Strategies more frequently compared to male students while readingacademic materials. The findings show that students apply problem-solving strategies the most compared to theother metacognitive reading strategies, while the least used strategy is the global reading strategy. However,there are no significant difference between males and females for both these strategies. In comparison, male andfemale students differ in the application of Support Reading Strategies, where more females use the strategiescompared to males. Students themselves should learn Metacognitive Awareness Reading Strategies and applythem in their Biology reading. Global reading strategies, too, should be given more attention as this is the leastused strategy. A more balanced use of all the metacognitive strategies would help students to improve their levelof achievement as each strategy has its own strengths. Future research should investigate the ways to nurturemetacognitive skills in reading as one of the strategies to improve reading comprehension and futureperformance in Biology.

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