Disentangling the contribution of direct instruction and practice on the remediation of the word recognition deficits of children with dyslexia

Disentangling the contribution of direct instruction and practice on the remediation of the word recognition deficits of children with dyslexia

First Author: Jennifer Flipse -- Middle Tennessee State University
Additional authors/chairs: 
Jeremiah Ring; Timothy N. Odegard
Keywords: Dyslexia, Intervention, Word reading
Abstract / Summary: 

Purpose
The study explored transfer of learning associated with directly teaching word recognition concepts and the provision of practice applying the concepts to read words in isolation, phrases, and text passages in children with dyslexia.

Method
The design conformed to a cross sectional study of reading development intended to characterize the contribution of different aspects of a reading intervention on word reading accuracy observed in children with dyslexia relative to typical readers. Three samples of children with dyslexia (8 – 15 years of age) who had completed varying amounts of an intervention participated. Word reading accuracy was assessed using a 200-item word recognition measure that included multiple items for word recognition concepts directly taught during the intervention.

Results
The current analysis focused on vowel patterns targeted during the first year of instruction and monosyllabic base word probes. Prior to intervention, children with dyslexia had lower accuracy relative to typical readers. Directly teaching reading concepts equated accuracy between children with dyslexia and typical readers for probe words containing short vowel and vowel- consonant-e patterns. However, for probe words that contained vowel digraphs and r-control vowel patterns, it was only after the children had distributed practiced reading words that contained these vowel patterns during the second-year of intervention that word reading accuracy was equated to that of typical readers. The variability of the vowel pronunciation did not mediate the result.

Conclusions
These results highlight the need to consider the nature of the word being probed when monitoring response to instruction and the nature of intervention efforts.