Bidirectional cross-linguistic relations of first and second language skills in reading comprehension of Spanish-speaking English learners
This study examines the bidirectional, cross-linguistic associations between language and word-level reading skills and reading comprehension for 51 students in grades 4 to 6 who speak Spanish as first language (L1) and English as second language (L2). Within-language predictors of reading comprehension were consistent with the simple view of reading. We found unidirectional cross-linguistic associations between Spanish word reading and English reading comprehension. However, the results do not support a cross-linguistic association between English word reading and Spanish reading comprehension. Specifically, results indicate that although L1 and L2 language and reading constructs correlate, L2 skills do not strongly contribute to L1 reading comprehension. Findings are discussed in terms of possible factors that might influence potential cross-language relations among Spanish and English measures.