An Analysis of Reading Strategies Used by Ethiopian Higher Education Students: Evidence from Ambo University, Oromia, Ethiopia
Concerned by increased problems about the students’ reading quality, this study was carried out to investigate the reading approach of English major students of Ambo University. To achieve this objective, all 52(31 male and 21 female) English major students of the University were purposely selected for the study because the number of the students is small to manage. Both quantitative and qualitative data were obtained from the respondents through Reading Achievement Tests, Questionnaire and Structured Interview and analyzed accordingly. The study mainly focused on the students’ approach to reading (adapted top-down or bottom-up) and the students’ ability to identify the main ideas and details, explicitly stated and implied information, the purpose and the tone of authors in five different reading genres: dialogues, directions, article, essays, and poems. The overall result of the study showed that 89.7% of the University students were exclusively limited to bottom-up approaches to reading and frustrated to determine the main ideas and implied information in the texts. In other words, no student answered more than 78% in reading comprehension items correctly in the tests. Moreover, half of the students could not answer above 50% in the comprehension questions. Therefore, the prescriptions for the solution to the problem lies in bringing about improvement in the students’ interactive approach to reading and thereby, improve students’ ability to identify the main ideas and details, explicitly stated and implied information, the purpose and the tone of authors in different reading genres: dialogues, articles, essays, directions and poem.