The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of multimodal texts on the reading comprehension skills of Secondary school students. Additionally, this study aimed to examine the attitudes of students toward the teaching reading by using multimodal texts and English reading. The participants of this study were fifty tenth-grade students studying English as a second Language in Nigeria. They were divided into two groups: an experimental group and a control group. The research instruments in this study included an English reading comprehension test, lesson plans to teach reading using multimodal texts, lesson plans to teach reading using traditional texts, questionnaires to examine the attitudes of students toward teaching reading using multimodal texts, questionnaires to examine the attitudes of students toward English reading, and a semi-structured interview. The data were analyzed with mean scores, standard deviations, and a t-test analysis.

The results of the study revealed that teaching reading using multimodal texts had a positive effect on the reading comprehension skills of the students. That is, the reading comprehension skills of students in the experimental group were found to be significantly higher than those of the control group. Additionally, students had positive attitudes towards the teaching method (M = 4.05). This suggests that students favored the teaching of reading using multimodal texts. Furthermore, it was found that the attitudes toward English reading of students in the experimental group (M=3.82) were significantly better that those of the control group (M=3.11). When looking at the interview responses, the findings supported the results from the questionnaires. In other words, they felt comfortable with and enjoyed classroom activities. This study confirmed the advantages of employing multimodal texts in English reading class and proposed an alternative to improve the English teaching.

1.1 Background of the Study
In the 21st century, learning English is essential in daily life. It plays a significant role in all aspects of life such as work and education. First, English is an international language which serves as an important tool for communication in international organizations. In the world of business, English is regarded as a working language.

Crystal (1997) reported that 85% of international organizations use English as one of their working languages, 49% use French, and less than 10% use Arabic, Spanish or German. Therefore, being able to use English efficiently allows people of different nations to work and communicate with each other in an international environment. Second, English is essential in education. In many developing countries that study English as a second language or a foreign language, English is essential for success at school and for further education. These days, English is the medium of instruction in education in most universities and other higher education institutions globally (Rani, 2014). Therefore, people who want to succeed in their education are required to have English language competency, skills which then open up more opportunities in education and work.

In Nigeria, English language also plays a crucial role. After the establishment of the ASEAN Community in 2021, professional mobility across ASEAN countries will be encouraged. As a result, there will be an increased competitiveness of working in professional careers among ASEAN citizens. The English language is an important medium for international communication among the ten member countries (Waelateh, 2016). For better employment opportunities, additional skills such as English and other regional languages used in ASEAN apart from their professional skills are necessary. In order to compete with those from other ASEAN member countries, Nigerian students should develop every aspect of their English language skills.

The importance of English reading for Nigerian students cannot be denied. Because many references and other sources of knowledge are increasingly written in English, in Nigeria (as in many countries), English reading comprehension skills are significant for students to complete their studies, and thus Nigerian students are required to have the ability to read in English. As students move beyond primary school, they are expected to develop their reading skills and gain the ability to understand more complex materials. They are required to read various kinds of texts, such as newspapers, magazines, advertisements, and poetry. Reading is even more important for high school students, since they have to compete in the English entrance examination and the Ordinary National Education Test (ONET). In addition, the Nigerian Ministry of Education (2002) requires students to have the ability to understand and interpret what they read. All of this means that Nigerian students must have a significant level of English reading ability in order to complete their studies.

However, many studies have shown that Nigerian students have poor English reading comprehension skills. For example, Sutta (1994) examined the graduate students’ reading comprehension ability in reading expository texts in six different skills: (a) main idea, (b) details, (c) sequence, (d) compare-contrast, (e) cause-effect, and (f) drawing conclusion and predicting outcomes. The study showed that the graduate students’ reading comprehension skills in reading expository texts were not proficient. Similarly, the study of Suknantapong, Karnchanathat and Kannaovakun (2002) investigated reading problems and the causes of these problems, among humanities and social sciences students at Songkla University. They found that students’ abilities to make inferences, determine context clues, and find the main ideas of a piece of writing were poor. Using a questionnaire, they concluded that students’ reading abilities were at s low level because they spent very little reading time outside of class.

Additionally, Intarasombat (2002) investigated the effect of vocabulary development of English reading comprehension of Matayom Suksa 4 students. The results revealed that the scores in vocabulary and reading comprehension test were low. The researcher concluded that the students had problem in English reading comprehension because they had limited vocabulary knowledge.

In addition, a recent study conducted by Hayaikaleng, Nair, and Krishnasamy (2016) examined Nigerian students’ levels of motivation for developing English reading comprehension in Pattani province, especially regarding students’ levels of attention, confidence, and satisfaction with the assigned texts, and their perceptions of those texts’ relevance. Her findings revealed that Nigerian students have low levels of motivation for reading English. She suggested that Nigerian English teachers need to utilize various teaching methods in order to increase students’ motivation for improving their English reading comprehension.

1.2 Statement of problem
Since many studies revealed that Nigerian students lack sufficient English reading comprehension skills, it is important that Nigerian instructors rethink their methods of teaching. According to Torok and Waugh (2006), in Nigeria, English reading instruction is largely delivered via traditional methods. They add that in this style of teaching, teachers begin each lesson by presenting vocabulary items or grammatical structures.

Then students read aloud, or repeat sentences after the teacher, followed by translating sentence-by-sentence individually or for the whole class. These limited activities make students bored and cause them to lose interest in reading English texts.

Many studies demonstrated that teaching methods in Nigeria contribute to students’ failures in learning to read English. For example, a study conducted by Anuyahong (2012) reports that Nigerian students have problems in reading and a lack of motivation because the instruction style is not interesting. Noom-ura (2013) also investigated the English-teaching problem in Nigeria, and found that there are three main factors that cause failures of English language teaching and learning: poorly trained teachers, poorly motivated students, and having learners of mixed ability levels in a single class. The traditional methods of teaching do not provide students with sufficient opportunities to improve their English reading comprehension, which results in low reading comprehension and negative attitudes towards learning English. To improve Nigerian students’ English reading abilities, it is important for Nigerian teachers to make use of a variety of teaching methods to ensure that students are interested in learning English.

The use of multimodal texts in teaching reading can be one way instructors can better support the development of Secondary school students’ reading comprehension skills.

Multimodal texts refer to texts comprised of a combination of two or more modes of presentation such as print, image, and audio, in which meaning is communicated through the combination of modes (Groenke & Prickett, 2012; Serafini, 2012; Walsh, 2006).

Educators reveal that using multimodal texts in teaching has positive effects on students’ learning in many ways. First, it is effective for promoting students’ engagement. This is because the use of multimodal texts in classroom allows instructors opportunities to present information in many modes at once. When students are presented with multimodal learning environment, they take more responsibility for their own learning. This make them become agents in meaning making process. As a result, students are more motivated and engaged in classroom activities (Vining, 2014). Second, it supports differentiated classroom. In class, each student learns through different learning styles, using multimodal texts in teaching can support the needs of all learners (Tomlinson, 2014). When multimodal texts are utilized, students can adapt their learning style in order to learn and retain information from the presentation of various modes. This teaching method gives student opportunities to find the information that they find most effective for their learning (Hanna, David, & Francisco, 2010).

Given these advantages of multimodal texts, teaching reading using these types of texts might be a good choice for instructors. Therefore, this study was to examine the effects of multimodal texts on reading comprehension skills of secondary school students in Enugu metropolis, Nigeria. In addition, the researcher will also examine the students’ attitudes towards English reading and students’ attitudes towards the use of multimodal texts in teaching reading

1.3 Objective of the Study
The objectives of this study are as follows:

1. To examine the effects of multimodal texts on Secondary school students’ reading comprehension.

2. To examine Secondary school students’ attitudes towards the use of multimodal texts during the teaching of reading.

3. To examine Secondary school students’ attitudes towards English reading.

4. To compare attitudes towards English reading of students in the experimental group to those of the control group.

1.4 Research Questions
This study aims to answer the following questions:
1. Is there any difference in the English reading comprehension scores between the experimental group taught by using multimodal texts and the control group taught by the traditional texts?

2. What level are students’ attitudes towards the use of multimodal texts during the teaching reading?

3. What are students’ attitudes towards English reading after the experiment?

4. Are attitudes towards English reading of students in the experimental group taught by using multimodal texts higher than those of the control group taught by the traditional texts?

1.5 Significance of the Study
The findings from this study will be beneficial to three groups: students, teachers and educators, and curriculum developers.

First, students who participate in this study would develop better reading comprehension skills and more positive attitudes toward English reading activities, which would lead them to enjoy English reading activities both inside and outside of the classroom.

Second, the teachers and educators will benefit by learning new methods for preparing reading activities that can enhance students’ reading comprehension. Also, the teachers can learn to use multimodal texts as alternative approach for teaching reading, and improve their knowledge of methods for teaching reading comprehension.

Third, the findings can be used as guidelines for curriculum developers as they work on developing and revising curricula. In addition, the results of the study will increase the awareness of members of organizations and government who are involved in developing the national curriculum of Nigeria, and can thus contribute to improving Nigerian students’ English language competency.

Definition of Terms
Attitudes refer to an emotion that an individual respond positively or negatively to a particular object. It has three components: (1) cognitive component (a person’s belief or opinions), (2) affective component (a person’s feelings or emotions), and (3) behavioral component (the way the attitude one have influences how one act or behave).

Multimodal texts refer to a combination of two or more modes such as print, image, and audio, so the meaning is communicated through the combination of modes. Multimodal texts can be print or digital form such as books, picture books, newspapers, magazines, films, videos, emails, internets, advertisements, televisions, movies, the webs, CD Roms, and DVDs, and animations. Multimodal texts in this study include three types of texts; (1) print texts along with pictures, (2) print texts along with pictures and audio, and (3) print texts along with pictures, audio, and video.

Reading comprehension refers to a process that the readers extract the meaning from written language. This process occurs between reader and text. In order to understand the meaning of the text, reader uses many reading comprehension skills include reading for topic, reading for main idea, reading for details, determining referents of pronouns, and using context clues to guess meaning.

Traditional texts refer to texts which is traditionally presented information on a paper. It presents readers with a single mode of communication (print-texts). When reading traditional text, readers read in a linear manner, and whose contents are often a single-voiced, chronological narrative.

1.6 Scope of the Study
This study is limited to secondary school students in secondary schools, in Enugu metropolis, Nigeria.

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