The writers in this article are trying to distinguish the words ‘skills’ and ‘strategies’ which are often confounded nowadays. A lot of people, according to the authors, either use both terms as synonyms of each other or connect them together which ruins the actual meaning of the words and the way they should be used in the vocabulary. The researchers have brought it up as a responsibility to differentiate the concepts of both the words so that both the words ‘reading skills and reading strategies’ can be effortlessly clarified by the educators .
According to the research, the term ‘reading skill’ has been used for more than fifty years while the term ‘reading strategies’ abruptly got popular in the seventies in order to signify the information processing aspects of cognition. The researchers and educators also stand at fault since they do not formulate the distinction between the words before using them in front of their students. They find it more convenient rather than principled since both the words are normally used informally and formally.
A research was conducted by the authors of the article in which they questioned their colleagues to know what understanding they had of both the words. A lot of different scenarios came up in which some thought that both the words had similar meanings; some thought one followed the other; some thought one had more weight than the other; and some thought that one gave birth to the other one on a later stage. The answers resulted in a lot of meanings one of which was that people sounded very confident while defining both the terms even though their concepts were unclear regarding the words.
The conclusion that the authors got to was that after searching a lot of places like different dictionaries and even the internet, they got mixed results which did not clarify the distinction between the two terms at all. Both the words are being used imprecisely and inconsistently even though they are the two main concepts that are important to develop reading .
Afflerbach, P., Pearson, D., & Paris, S. (2008). Clarifying Differences Between Reading Skills and Reading Strategies. US: The Reading Teacher.