The present study evaluated the extent to which literacy skills (reading fluency, written spelling, and reading comprehension), together with nonverbal reasoning, prior knowledge, and gender, are related to students’ online research and comprehension (ORC) performance. The ORC skills of 426 sixth graders were measured using a Finnish adaptation of the Online Research and Comprehension Assessment. Results of a structural equation model showed that these ORC skills were divided into six highly correlated factors, and that they formed a common factor in ORC. Altogether, these predictor variables explained 57% of the variance in ORC. Reading comprehension, along with gender, was the strongest predictor for ORC performance. In addition, reading fluency and written spelling explained ORC variance over and above reading comprehension. These findings suggest that struggling readers probably face difficulties online.
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