The result of the present study demonstrated that there is no
relationship between comprehending general and academic passages. The low
correlation between these two variables indicated no relationship between
comprehending general and academic passages among Iranian EFL learners.
Depending on the size of the
correlation and the size of the sample the
statistical significance of the correlation coefficient was .132, the
significance level of correlations
indicated that the null hypothesis is not rejected in this study, in other
words, with correlation value of 95 percent of confidence,while r=.26
(n=37,p<0.5), it can be assumed that there is no relationship between comprehending general passages and academic passages. In order to answer the second question of the research ,the predictive power of comprehending general passages, the simple linear regression was applied to analyze whether success in comprehending general passages could lead in success in comprehending academic passages; the regression analysis also revealed that the outcomes of general reading comprehension test cannot be a legitimate predictor for comprehending the academic results, in other words, if there was a relationship (correlation) between two variables, we would be able to predict a learner`s success in a given situation from performance on some other measures, therefore, it can be concluded that, the second null hypotheses is approved too and success in comprehending the general passages cannot be a predictor in comprehending academic passages. The prominent role of reading in acquiring the substantial portion of knowledge in an academic setting is not deniable; moreover, the ability to process a text or texts effectively with sufficient comprehension is needed. The findings of the present study suggest that differentiating between academic passages and general passages as everyday language skill, seems to be essential and thus differentiating could clarify the gap between academic texts and everyday language skill. Since there is usually a taxonomies between the type of reading that require quick and strategic reading for the purpose of searching as expeditious reading, and reading that involved for purpose of assessment and learning from text as careful reading.(Wier & Urquhart, 1998). Broadly speaking the content of what is currently practiced in universities is different from what real academic context expects students to do. Referring to the first chapter of this study as Messick (1994), believed on the high degree of task dependency in performance, moreover he argues that language teaching and testing needs to take into account the importance of performance in real world situation in the design of an assessment program. Considering the aim of this study at bringing significant differences between the "text based" schedules and "intertext" performance in real academic world, the findings of the research corroborate the Wineburg`s,1991 claims that ; with deficit approaches to language teaching, generally, the focus is on a single text, and students tend to take what they read in the classroom as the only version of a particular topics, he believes that learners are not trained to consider the fact that what they read is just one author`s perspective, it`s a single text.. As Seixas,1993;Wineburg,1991 and Hynd,1999 sited in S. L. N. Armstrong, M (2011), the learners only read one source, one version of the text which cannot consider adequate to comprehend and reflect the type of reading, writing, studying and thinking which is required in college level course book. S. L. N. Armstrong, M (2011), believes that it is challenging, in fact, to think a single academic discipline without intertextual materials and cross cultural synthesis on some level. Based on the findings of this research, the predictive validity and content of the test is violated, regarding the "text based" schedule in language teaching and "intertext" performance; of the studies that probed the predictive validity of language tests suggest that "English proficiency is only one among many factors that affect academic success"(Graham, 1987). A study by Light, Xu, and Mossop (1987), who investigated the value of the TOEFL score as a predictor of academic success for 376 graduates at the State University of New York at Albany, support this. They found a statistically significant but weak correlation r=. 14 between TOFEL scores and grades point average. Moore and Morton (2005) in an article as "Dimensions of differences: a comparison of university writing and IELTS writing, claimed that; the type of IELTS writings test may have more in common with certain public nonacademic genres, and thus should not be thought of as an appropriate for university writings. In a study Schoepp and Garinger (2016), investigated the relationship between IELTS entrance scores and academic success as defined by GPA for students in UAE. Based on their findings, this relationship is not as consistent or straightforward as many language teaching practitioners expect. They reported that while there were statistically correlations found in this study, they are mainly weak relationship. The lack of relatedness between comprehending the general passages and academic passages in the present study can be explained in many ways. First, it could have been caused by the nature of general passages as it is "intra-text", an author`s perspective, in contrast to academic passages which is" intertext" and a combination of authoress's perspectives. Second, the language of general passages comes from everyday language, but the academic passages have their own discursive language, and comprehending the academic texts stems in knowing its discourse. The third reason could be due to the differences between phonological and orthographic of general and academic passages, which are the basis of decoding a text. Birch (2014), considered acquiring phonological and orthographic knowledge as an essential requirement for reading for meaning. Finally, since our L2 learners 'proficiency in comprehending the passages is based on knowledge of vocabulary and grammar and also deficit approaches of focusing on a single text, comprehending academic passages seems to be difficult. As (Taillefer, 1996) reported in Kim and Cho (2015), the knowledge of vocabulary and grammar along with L1 reading comprehension did not predict reading scores of French college students with low L2 proficiency.Hoover and Gough (1990), stated that there is simple view of reading which is consisted of two components, decoding and linguistic competence. Therefore, the difficulty of comprehending academic passages of the present study`s participants could have stemmed in decoding skills.