Master's Theses


Advanced Education Programs

Degree Name

Education Specialist (Ed.S)


The purpose of this study was to compare the relationship of self-concept to reading achievement. The study was designed to test the following hypotheses: (1) that children with positive self-concepts are more likely to achieve higher degrees of success in reading than children with negative self-concepts. (2) That successful experiences in reading are positive factors in maintaining and building positive self-concepts. The population for this experiment consisted of 68 pupils from grades one, two and four, who were enrolled in Washington School, at Hays, Kansas during the fall term of 1967. Self-perception data were obtained by use of the California Test of Personality. A specially prepared instrument was also used by the classroom teacher to rate each child’s personality adjustment. Reading achievement data were obtained by administering the California Reading Readiness Test in the first grade, the California Reading Test: Primary in the second grade, and the California Reading Test: Elementary, in the fourth grade. The Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test was used as the measure of intelligence. A reading index, which reflects reading achievement in relation to potential ability was derived for each individual as an estimate of reading expectancy. Coefficients of correlation were computed between the following variables: (1) reading achievement and personality adjustment, (2) reading expectancy and personality adjustment, and (3) for purpose of comparison, reading achievement and intelligence quotients. Correlations were consistently positive. Statistically significant coefficients were obtained between the reading achievement and personality adjustment test scores of first grade pupils (P< .01) and between the reading expectancy and personality adjustment scores of fourth grade pupils (P<.05). Teacher ratings of personal worth showed highest relationships to reading achievement on all three levels (P<.02 and P<.01) Relationships between reading achievement and intelligence were positive but not statistically significant. The findings in this research seem to indicate a relationship between the child’s self-perception and his reading achievement, especially in the early reading program. While the relationship is not high it is significant in considering the total factors in a child’s learning to read. The evidence suggests that a child’s self-concept is not only related to, but may be a contributing factor in, his subsequent reading achievement. Correlations form the reading readiness test seem to indicate that children’s reading achievement may be predicted from the perceptions children hold of themselves, even before they receive beginning reading instruction. This suggests that an important preparation for reading lies in the kinds of experience for children which will create perceptions of personal adequacy.


Hilda Groesbeck

Date of Award

Spring 1968

Document Type

Thesis - campus only access


© 1968 Sarah Binder


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