Fourteenth Annual Meeting Abstracts

SSSR 2007 Conference Abstracts

Click on the name of the first author and see the abstract, click on Top to go back.

Aaron - Al - Allen-Tamai - Andreassen - Anthony - Aram - Babayigit - Baciu - Balass - Bar On - Barth - Bates - Berdan - Berninger - Betjemann - Binks-Cantrell - Blau - Blomert - Borzone - Bosse - Boulware-Gooden - Bourassa - Bouton - Bowyer - Breadmore - Breznitz - Bridges - Bryant - Bryant - Buch-Iversen - Bus - Byrne - Cain - Calhoon - Cameron - Caravolas - Cardoso-Martins - Carroll - Casalis - Castles - Chang - Chen - Chen - Chen - Cheung - Chow - Chung - Clin - Cocksey - Coleman - Compton - Connell - Connor - Conod - Conrad - Cormier - Coyne - Crane - Critten - Cronin - Das - David - Davis - Davis - de Jong - Deacon - Defior - Denton - Desrochers - Dion - Diuk - Drouin - Duncan - Durgunoglu - Duursma - Elbro - Elleman - Evans - Fagan Rogers - Faria - Farnia - Farver - Feng - Fielding-Barnsley - Filippini - Foley - Friend - Frost - Froyen - Fuchs - Fussenegger - Gao - García - Georgiou - Gersten - Geva - Godard - González-Trujillo - Gooch - Goodman - Goswami - Goswami - Gottardo - Graham - Grant - Grieve - Gunn - Gutierrez-Palma - Hagtvet - Hansen - Harlaar - Harrison - Hart - Hartfeld - Hawelka - Hayiou-Thomas - Heggie - Hilte - Hindman - Hintikka - Ho - Hogan - Holmes - Hood - Horner - Horowitz - Hung - Hutzler - Jean - Jenkins - Jiménez-Fernández - Johnson - Johnston - Johnston - Johnston - Jones - Jordan - Joshi - Juul - Kasisopa - Keenan - Kemp - Kendeou - Kevan - Kipffer-Piquard - Kirby - Knivsberg - Ko - Korat - Korinth - Koyama - Kruk - Kuo - Kwon - Kyle - Lafrance - Lallier - Landi - Landry - Largy - Lassus - Lebovitz - Lee - Lee - Lemons - Lervag - Leung - Levie - Levin - Lindo - Lonigan - Lord - Luo - Lyster - Macaruso - Mancilla-Martinez - Manis - Manis - Manolitsis - Marinus - Martin - Martin-Chang - Mason - Mayseless - McArthur - McBride-Chang - McQuarrie - Melby-Lervag - Moll - Mouzaki - Nation - Nelson - Nicolson - Nune - Oakhill - Oi - Olofsson - Olson - Ouellette - Pacton - Padakannaya - Pammer - Papadopoulos - Parrila - Patterson - Perdijk - Perfetti - Phillips - Phillips - Pittman - Plaza - Poelmans - Pollard-Durodola - Pollini - Poole - Poulsen - Powell - Protopapas - Puranik - Quemart - Ramesh - Ramirez - Ravid - Ribeiro - Rickard Liow - Ricketts - Roberts - Robins - Roehrig - Sabatini - Sabourin - Sainz - Saito - Salmi - Samuelsson - Santi - Savage - Schabmann - Schiff - Schwartz - Segal-Seiden - Serrano - Shany - Shaul - Shimron - Shu - Snellings - Snow - Soden - Sohn - Solari - Sommer - Son - Sonnenschein - Spanoudis - Stainthorp - Steenbeek-Planting - Stringer - Sun-Alperin - Taibah - Taylor - Tilstra - Tong - Treiman - Tsesmeli - Ugen - Vaessen - Vaid - Vaknin - van Bon - van Daal - Van den Broeck - Vellutino - Verhoeven - Wade-Woolley - Wagensveld - Wagner - Wang - Welcome - Whalley - White - Willburger - Willems - Willy - Wimmer - Winskel - Wise - Wong - Wood - Wydell - XiaoYun - Yeung - Zaretsky - Zelnick - Zevin - Zipke

P. G. Aaron (Indiana State University); Ruu, Shin - A Simple Procedure to diagnose poor Reading Performance caused by Decoding Deficit from poor Performance caused by Attention Deficit

Poor reading performance could be due to poor decoding skills (RD), or due to inconsistent attention (ADHD). Often it is difficult to identify the source of reading difficulty. One way to make a differential diagnosis is to administer reading-related tasks that differ in the degree of decoding skill and the degree of attention they demand. Tests of listening comprehension require no decoding but are high on attention; tests of reading comprehension require decoding, but relatively less attention. The validity of this proposition was tested on 57 children. The difference score (reading comprehension minus listening comprehension) can statistically separate RD from ADHD.

Top

Stephanie Al (Florida State University and the Florida Center for Reading Research); Connor, Carol; Meadows, Jane; Logan, Jessica; Greulich, Luana - Examining the Interactions among Student Characteristics, Reading Instruction, and Student Outcomes in Kindergarten Classrooms in Reading First Schools

This study describes kindergarten Reading First (RF) literacy instruction (n=17 teachers), exploring the relation between amount of instruction, how this instruction is implemented, and student outcomes (n=286 students), including child X instruction interactions. Results of classroom observations conducted three times per year during the 90 minute literacy block revealed widely varying amounts and types of classroom literacy instruction, as well as differences in the quality with which instruction was implemented. When teachers provided more vocabulary and comprehension instruction, their students showed more growth in phonological awareness. Higher quality meaningful interactions around text were associated with stronger word reading growth and, in classrooms rated more highly for explicit instruction, children with stronger vocabulary achieved higher phonological awareness scores.

Top

Mitsue Allen-Tamai (Aoyama Gakuin University) - The role of mora and phoneme awareness in English orthographic knowledge

The aim of this study is to examine the effects of phonological awareness on developing word recognition in foreign language learning. Young children, ages eight to twelve (N=1422), in the study showed that phonological awareness, including both mora and phoneme awareness, predicted the word recognition, along with age, gender, and English instruction outside school. Structural equation modeling was used to analyze the influence of those variables on word recognition. The model suggests that Japanese young learners of English develop their phonological awareness in English from their Japanese mora knowledge and foster their phoneme awareness.

Top

Anne Brit Andreassen (Lesesenteret); Knivsberg, Ann-Mari; Niemi, Pekka - Results of targeted counselling in severe dyslexia

A subgroup of poor readers seems to be treatment resistant. The aim of the present study was to evaluate effects of counselling with proposals for remediation for a clinical sample of 65 students with severe dyslexia, due to phonological deficits. They had been assessed at our national centre. Students', parents', and teachers' evaluation of the students' reading abilities 8 months later was retrieved for 75% of cases. Out of these, 80% reported clear progress in the students' reading abilities. This could not be related to age, cognitive level, place of residence, or previous special education received, but to improved motivation

Top

Jason Lon Anthony (University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston); Williams, Jeffrey; Dunkelberger, Martha; Aghara, Rachel; Novak, Barbra; Barth, Amy - How distinct is phonological distinctiveness?

Distinctiveness of phonological representations may play important roles in acquiring literacy, both by aiding phonological recoding and by supporting phonological awareness. However, few studies have operationalized the construct and none have systematically studied its construct validity. We examined if phonological distinctiveness can be distinguished from other phonological and general cognitive abilities. 175 3- to 5-year-old children completed multiple measures of phonological awareness, RAN, phonological memory, phonological distinctiveness, verbal IQ, nonverbal IQ, letter names, letter sounds, and text discrimination. Confirmatory factor analysis will test convergent and discriminant validity of phonological distinctiveness relative to phonological abilities and IQ. Structural equation modeling will test whether phonological distinctiveness is directly related to emergent literacy skills or serves as a mediator of literacy acquisition.

Top

Dorit Aram (Tel Aviv University, Israel) - Socio-cultural measures that predict early literacy

We examined the predictive value of four socio-cultural measures (literacy tools available at home; maternal pedagogical beliefs; maternal attributions of her child's literacy knowledge, and the nature of maternal writing mediation) with relation to children's early literacy (phonological awareness, letter knowledge and early writing). Participants were 62 preschoolers (mean age 60 months) and their mothers. Hierarchical regression analyses indicated that maternal attributions of her child's literacy knowledge contributed to all literacy skills beyond the contribution of literacy tools and maternal pedagogical beliefs. Also, the quality of the mother's writing mediation predicted her child's early literacy beyond all the other socio-cultural measures.

Top

Selma Babayigit (University of the West of England, Bristol) - Understanding the Correlates of Reading Comprehension in Turkish

This study examined the role of a range of reading and linguistic-cognitive skills in reading comprehension in Turkish. A sample of 103 children was tested at grades 3 and 5. Listening comprehension and vocabulary emerged as powerful and consistent predictors of reading comprehension. The effects of reading speed, morphological and syntactic awareness tended to vary across the two age groups. Reading accuracy, verbal memory, phonological awareness and naming speed failed to make any unique contributions to text comprehension. The findings highlighted the role of orthographic characteristics in reading comprehension. Theoretical and pedagogical implications of the findings are discussed.

Top

Iuliana Elena Baciu (Wilfrid Laurier University); Gottardo, Alexandra - Measurement of reading progress in young at risk children

What is a good measure of reading progress for 3 ½ to 4 ½ year old children? An intervention was conducted with 61 preschoolers that belonged to ESL or native English speaking families, of either low or middle socio-economic status (SES). Two structural equation models, that assessed reading as a measure of sound reading or as a measure of sound reading and Dolch word (May & Rizzardi, 2002) reading, were compared. The results show that sound reading in posttest versus pretest is a sensitive measure of reading progress in such a young sample of at risk children, for both the training and the control group.

Top

Michal Balass (Hobart and William Smith Colleges); Bolger, Donald, J.; Perfetti, Charles A. - Definition Availability and Context Effects in Vocabulary Learning

This study examined the effects of single sentence contexts and dictionary definitions on learning new word meanings. In a single learning session, participants learned a set of low frequency English words in which definitional availability (before first context sentence or after the last context sentence) and contextual variety (the same context presented four times or four different contexts) were manipulated over the course of five randomly presented learning trials. Post-learning session measures indicated greater meaning knowledge gains in comparison to baseline measures when varied contexts were available to the learner, and that these contexts are later followed by definitional information.

Top

Amalia Bar On (Amalia Bar On, Tel-Aviv University) - Learning to read non-vocalized Hebrew: Garden Path Sentences

Homographs pervade non-vocalized Hebrew. The aim of the current study is to see how Hebrew-speaking novice, experienced and proficient readers use linguistic processes while decoding homographic words in sentences. 150 participants in grades 2-4, 7, 11 and adults were administered a reading task. The same target homographic word was presented in two sentences, one with a facilitating linguistic context, and another with a misleading context (garden path sentence). Successful reading of target words in the facilitating context in all age groups, compared with erroneous reading of the same words in a misleading context, points to the involvement of linguistic processing while reading.

Top

Amy Barth (University of Missouri-Columbia); Anthony, Jason; Denton, Carolyn; Francis, David; Fletcher, Jack - Stability and Overlap of Response to Intervention Criteria

Response to Intervention (RTI) approaches can assist in the identification of students with reading disabilities. To address issues of RTI criteria and their stability, data from 414 children were analyzed at the end of intervention and in a one year follow-up. Individual growth trajectories were used as a reference point to classify at risk individuals post intervention as either responding or not responding based on cut scores of .5, 1.0, and 1.5 standard deviations below typically developing children in slope, intercept, or both. End of year norm reference tests were also compared. Results indicated strong overlap with indices based on growth with more variability within end of year measures. Variability reflected differences in cut points.

Top

Timothy Bates (University of Edinburgh); Luciano, Michelle; Castles, Anne; Wright, Margie; Coltheart, Max; Martin, Nick - Genetic correlations between markers of Language Impairment and measures of single word reading

The relationship of language impairment and reading impairment is poorly understood, though both disorders are strongly familial. To address this relationship, we assessed nonword repetition and measures of vocabulary and executive or working memory function in over 400 families of twins previously characterised for spelling and reading function using tests of nonword, regular and irregular-word reading. An analysis of the heritability of nonword repetition, and also a test of the genetic and environmental relationships between verbal and written performances is presented.

Top

Robert Berdan (CSULB) - Eye Movements at Reader-Determined Sentence Boundaries in Oral Reading

We used continuous synchronized streams of eye movement data and audio recordings of oral reading to study how non-fluent children establish sentence boundaries in text. Oral reading prosody shows that non-fluent children construct sentence boundaries that are not cued by print. We compared the fixations from these episodes with print-cued sentence boundaries from the same readers and with sentence boundaries from fluent readers. Eye movements for non-fluent readers at these novel sentence boundaries are quite like their eye movements for conventional boundaries and unlike the eye movements of fluent readers. Non-fluent readers show alternating regressive and progressive fixations across the boundary. Fluent readers tend to use continuous and progressive fixations across sentence boundaries.

Top

Virginia W. Berninger (University of Washington); Stock, Patricia; Abbott, Robert D.; Breznitz, Zvia - Working Memory Enhancement through Accelerated Reading Training

Children with dyslexia (ages 10 to 14) were randomly assigned to one of three treatments: (a) computerized training of eye-ear-mouth decoding connections and ear-hand-eye spelling connections followed by computerized silent reading fluency (Breznitz accelerated reading) and oral reading fluency training; (b) control group with non-computerized version of treatment (a) ; or (c) wait listed control receiving treatment b. Response to intervention is assessed in this study in progress with instructional probes in each lesson and a battery of norm-referenced fluency measures administered periodically. This hypothesis will be tested: Breznitz acceleration program results in greater fluency gains than traditional repeated readings.

Top

Rebecca Betjemann (Regis University); Keenan, Janice M.; DeFries, John C.; Wadsworth, Sally J.; Willcutt, Erik G.; Olson, Richard K. - Processing Speed and the Simple View of Reading: A Genetic Analysis

We investigated the components of the Simple View of Reading in a genetic framework by including processing speed in addition to decoding ability and listening as components of reading comprehension. Cholesky decomposition analysis revealed a common genetic factor for all measures, a genetic factor specific to comprehension, and a genetic factor specific to speed. Single shared and nonshared environmental factors were also found. We did not find evidence that speed contributes independent genetic, shared environmental, or nonshared environmental variance to reading comprehension after decoding and listening comprehension, arguing against adding speed to the Simple View model.

Top

Emily Binks-Cantrell (Texas A&M University); Joshi, R. Malatesha - Research-based Reading Instruction: What About No Teacher Left Behind?

Expanding on previous studies and recent reports that explore the causes and effects of poor reading instruction, this study further explores the reasons for teachers' lack of preparation to teach reading skills. This three part study addresses the questions: 1. What do the most effective teachers of reading know about research based reading instruction (RBRI)? 2. Are teacher candidates equipped with this knowledge at the conclusion of their teacher education program? and 3. Are university reading education instructors knowledgable about RBRI?

Top

Vera Blau (Maastricht University, The Netherlands); van Atteveldt, Nienke; Formisano, Elia; Goebel, Rainer; Blomert, Leo - Brain correlates of anomalous letter/speech sound integration in dyslexia

Learning to associate letters and speech sounds [LS] is an important milestone in literacy acquisition. The present study investigated whether brain activation patterns related to the integration of LS differ for dyslexic and fluent readers. Congruent versus incongruent LS combinations activated an extensive region of early auditory cortex (HS) in fluent readers, but only a small subset of voxels on the upper bank of HS in dyslexic readers. This result suggests a reduced sensitivity to matching letters and speech sounds in dyslexia, supporting the hypothesis that LS associations are insufficiently integrated and/or automatized in dyslexia during reading acquisition.

Top

Leo Blomert (Maastricht University, The Netherlands); Bonte, Milene - Anomalous brain correlates of implicit phonological processing in dyslexia

The evidence indicating that dyslexia results from a phonological deficit is largely based on phonological awareness studies, leaving on-line phonological processing virtually unexplored. Two ERP approaches were employed to investigate implicit phonological processing. An auditory lexical decision task combined with phonological onset priming showed that dyslexics exhibit anomalies at an early phonetic/phonological level, but not at a later phonological/lexical level. An oddball MMN study investigating these anomalies revealed a striking insensitivity to phonotactic probabilities in dyslexics. These findings render an auditory deficit implausible and point to fundamental anomalies at the 'hardwired' phonetic/phonological processing level during speech perception.

Top

Ana María Borzone (CIIPME - CONICET); Sanchez, Verónica; Diuk, Beatriz; Ferroni, Marina - Spelling acquisition in a transparent orthography

The present study aims to explore the role played by two basic spelling procedures - lexical and phonological - in second grade, Spanish-speaking children. Words with consistent and inconsistent correspondences were contrasted. The effect of word frequency on item spelling was also considered. Results suggest that there are complex modes of interaction between the lexical and non-lexical procedures. The fact that children´s performance was better in the consistent than in the inconsistent conditions points to the use of spelling rules. However, the effect of frequency on context-dependent correspondences implies lexical involvement. These results are somewhat different from data obtained in deeper orthographies.

Top

Marie-line Bosse (France, LPNC Grenoble) - Orthographic learning during self-teaching: the role of simultaneous visual processing of letters

This study investigates word orthographic learning after reading on third grade children. In a classic self-teaching paradigm, participants had to read complex pseudo-words for which they can see, or not, all the letters of the pseudo-word simultaneously. They read the pseudo-words with the same accuracy in both conditions (all the letters simultaneously or not). The pseudo-word orthographic knowledge was tested immediately after reading or one week after. Results showed that seeing simultaneously all the letters of a word when reading it, permits to better memorise its orthography. Impact of these results for the self-teaching hypothesis will be discussed.

Top

Regina Boulware-Gooden (University of St. Thomas); Carreker, Suzanne; Joshi, Malatesha R. - Will an Orton Gillingham reading program prove effective for "treatment resisters in a predominantly minority urban school where most students first language is not English?

With the reauthorization of IDEA and the application of TIER Reading models being promoted in many school districts, the focus of intervention studies are on the second tier. It may behoove us to look more closely at TIER Three students or those considered the "treatment resisters. There is an assumption being made that this group of students will be close to 2-5% of the student population. This number may be underestimated; therefore focus on the third tier students is also needed. This study investigates the tier three students and the efficacy of an explicit, systematic reading intervention.

Top

Derrick Bourassa (University of Winnipeg); Treiman, Rebecca - Use of Morphology in Spelling: A Comparison of Children with Dyslexia and Typically Developing Children

The spellings of many English words follow a principle of morphological constancy. For example, musician includes the c of music, even though the pronunciation of this letter changes. In other cases, as with explanation and explain, morphological constancy does not apply. We examined whether children with dyslexia use root morphemes when spelling complex words. If so, they should produce errors such as including the ai of explain when spelling explanation. Our results suggest that children with dyslexia adhere to the principle of morphological constancy to the same extent as typically developing younger children of the same spelling level.

Top

Sophie Bouton (University of Savoie, LPNC (UMR 5105), France); Leuwers, Christel; Colé, Pascale; Casalis, Séverine - Morphological processing by French beginning readers

Morphological processing by French children learning to read in grades 1 to 3 was investigated with a pseudo-word naming task. Results showed that as early as first grade, children read pseudo-words composed of a real stem and a real suffix in an illegal combination (example : chateur) faster and more accurately than matched pseudo-words composed of a pseudo-stem and a real suffix (example : choteur) or a pseudo-stem and a pseudo-suffix (example : chitine). These results suggest that French beginning readers are able to use morphological units to help them decode new words, and that this morphological processing is sensitive to morpheme combinations.

Top

Samantha Bowyer (Coventry University) - Factors affecting the development of phonological awareness: exploring the impact of visual and auditory sensitivity

This study considers the extent to which phonological awareness may be explained by children's attention to either visual or auditory information when attending to speech. Five and six-year-old children were categorised into either 'visual', 'auditory' or 'neutral' groups based on their perception of speech stimuli in which the lip movements and speech of the speaker are mismatched. It is anticipated that children who pay attention to auditory information will have better phonological awareness than children who attend more to visual information. The phonological awareness of children who are able to successfully integrate both sources ('neutral' children) will also be considered.

Top

Helen Breadmore (University of Birmingham); Olson, Andrew; Krott, Andrea - Deaf adolescents' sensitivity to number agreement during sentence processing.

The present study examines deaf adolescents' sensitivity to morpho-syntactic processing, utilising a self-paced reading paradigm. Deaf adolescents, reading-age matched hearing children and hearing adults read sentences with agreeing and disagreeing subject-verb combinations (the apple grows / grow on a tree). All participants slowed for disagreeing sentences but they differed in time course. Hearing adults slowed on the verb and subsequent word, suggesting that they were processing multiple words concurrently. Hearing children also showed the agreement effect immediately but reading times returned to normal on the subsequent word, suggesting they were fully processing words before moving on to the next. Deaf adolescents did not begin to slow until the word after the verb. Therefore, although deaf adolescents did notice the agreement error, they were slower to do so than both reading-age matched hearing children and hearing adults.

Top

Zvia Breznitz (University of Haifa, Israel) - The enhancement of reading fluency among dyslexics: Evidence of the reading acceleration manipulation in different languages: The Hebrew Sample

The "acceleration phenomenon" (Breznitz, 1997; 2006) maintains that young and adult Hebrew readers at various levels including impaired readers can increase their decoding accuracy and better comprehend written materials if forced to read faster than their routine reading rate by means of external manipulation. Based on the idea that a gap exists between the human brain's ability and its actual performance when processing cognitive tasks, the accelerated reading training program was written for a number of languages. Results concerning the beneficial effect of acceleration training in terms of enhanced reading behavior and brain signature of dyslexic readers will be presented.

Top

Mindy Bridges (University of Kansas); Catts, Hugh; Little, Todd - Reading growth in children with developmental language impairments

In this longitudinal study, we examined the reading outcomes of children with developmental language impairments (LI). Children with and without LI were identified in kindergarten, and their reading achievement was measured in 2nd, 4th, 8th, and 10th grades. A multiple group latent growth curve analysis showed that groups differed in their initial level of both word recognition and reading comprehension. Growth in both constructs, however, was essentially the same for both groups. These results are consistent with a deficit rather than a delayed model of impairment. Additionally, factors related to growth are also considered.

Top

Peter Bryant (Oxford Brookes University); Mitchell, Paul - There are different ways of learning how to spell "education": morphemic knowledge versus word specific learning.

Our aim was to measure knowledge of the connection between morphemes and spelling We asked adults and schoolchildren to decide on the correct spelling for pseudowords embedded in sentences that made their morphemic structure clear.. We found that the majority of the participants in the adult as well as in the school samples was unable to make the right choices, while a minority was clearly and significantly above chance level. The developmental changes with age were weak. We conclude that many people rely on word specific knowledge in spelling rather than on morphemically based spelling rules.

Top

Peter Bryant (Oxford Brookes University, UK) - [untitled]

 

Top

Ida Buch-Iversen () - Effects of inference training programs on inference making and reading comprehension.

A meta-study was conducted on published reports of the effects of inference training on inference making and reading comprehension. Questions in focus were: which types of inferences are the easier to train, and which activities are the more effective in promoting inference making during reading. The average effect sizes indicate an overall positive effect of inference training, but there are large variations with near, far and delayed tests on inference making and reading comprehension.

Top

Adriana G. Bus (Leiden University, The Netherlands) - An Up-date and Expansion of a Meta-analysis of Parent-child Book Reading

Bus et al.'s (1995) meta-analysis revealed an effect size of d = .59, indicating that book reading explains about 8% of the variance in reading and language measures. Since 1995 the number of studies testing effects of book reading grew exponentially. Besides, animated stories on DVD, the internet or television have their share in children's literary canon and we wonder whether these new forms of story encounters have similar effects on language and literacy measures. The meta-analysis takes these new studies into account and expands the review by adding new variables such as qualitative aspects of book reading (e.g. interactive reading) and new forms of story encounters.

Top

Brian Byrne (University of New England, Armidale NSW, Australia); Olson, Richard K.; Hulslander, Jacqueline; Samuelsson, Stefan - Exploring environmental influences on literacy development within a genetically sensitive research design: The case of teacher effects.

In our ongoing international twin study of literacy development, we have documented substantial genetic influences on reading and writing growth. In this paper, we examine the degree to which individual teachers determine differences in the ability levels of children within a grade during the first two years of school. We do this by analyzing twin data separately for those twins who share the same teacher and those who do not. Substantial teacher effects would manifest as increased shared environment and decreased unique environment effects for same-class twins. The data indicate no consistent effect of same teacher; confidence intervals for point estimates overlap, and some results run nonsignificantly in the "wrong" direction (greater shared environment for different teacher situations). Thus our data do not support strong teacher effects as determinants of within-grade literacy differences in our samples. We discuss limitations to the conclusions that are appropriate.

Top

Kate Cain (Lancaster University); Guillaume, Stephanie - Vocabulary learning from print: relations with memory, language and literacy

Success in literacy is strongly associated with vocabulary skills. We report a study of 7-8 and 9-10 year-olds' ability to learn novel vocabulary through direct instruction and inference from context. Measures of vocabulary learning included immediate and delayed memory for the orthographic and phonological forms of the words and their definitions. Independent measures of short-term and working memory, language (vocabulary knowledge) and literacy (word reading, reading comprehension) were taken. Our analyses examine how different memory skills predict vocabulary learning from print, and the relations between reading ability, vocabulary knowledge and vocabulary learning.

Top

Mary Beth Calhoon (Lehigh University); Al Otaiba, Stephanie - Improving Reading Skills of Hispanic Beginning Readers Attending High Poverty First-Grade Classrooms: The Promise of Peer-Assisted Learning Strategies

Spanish is the first language for 70% of a rapidly growing number of students. Understanding how to prevent reading difficulties for this group of children is vital. The purpose of this study was to examine the efficacy of a supplemental peer-tutoring reading program on the phonological and reading fluency skills of 78 first graders attending schools in a US-Mexican border town. Six classrooms were randomly assigned to either the peer-assisted learning strategies (PALS) program or a control condition. Reading fluency measures showed statistically significant differences favoring PALS on phoneme segmentation and nonsense word fluency. Additionally, results analyzed by ethnic subgroups (Hispanic and non-Hispanic) revealed a differential pattern of response to PALS intervention. Social validity questionnaires reported teachers and students viewed PALS in a positive light.

Top

Claire Cameron (University of Michigan); Morrison, Frederick - Growth of Self-regulation in Preschool: Interactions among Child, Classroom Organization and Individual Context

Behavioral self-regulation involves paying attention, remembering directions, and controlling behavior, and is critical for academic learning. This study examined classroom (N = 43) predictors of fall-spring growth in preschoolers' (N = 211) behavioral regulation, including organization (teachers' explanations about upcoming activities); and interactions between gender, fall behavioral regulation, and individual contexts. HLM revealed greater behavioral regulation gains in classrooms practicing more organization. There was also a gender-by-skill interaction. Boys with high (above the median) fall behavioral regulation did not make similar gains compared with peers. Boys with high initial skills also spent relatively less time working independently and more time in adult-guided tasks. Findings reiterate the importance of considering interactions between child characteristics and skills within early learning contexts.

Top

Marketa Caravolas (Bangor University); Mikulajova, Dr. Marina; Vencelova, Mgr. Lidia - Effects of letter-sound consistency and letter-spelling complexity in learning default and contextually conditioned letter spellings in Slovak.

Two cross-sectional experiments were carried out with Slovak children in grades 1(n-52), 2 (n=66), 3 (n=63), and 4 (n=58) to investigate how learners of a transparent orthography learn rules governing orthographic inconsistency in spelling, which are explicitly taught in grade 2. We found, contrary to expectations, that all children spelled words containing the canonical forms of inconsistent letters (e.g., ť, ď, ň), less well than their simpler but contextually conditioned counterparts (t, d, n). We conclude that even in relatively transparent writing systems, inconsistency adversely affects spelling development, and it interacts in counterintuitive ways with the variable of letter complexity.

Top

Claudia Cardoso-Martins (Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Brazil); Assunção Rodrigues, Larissa - The spelling skills of non-literate adults: The role of letter-name knowledge

The present study investigates the spelling skills of non-literate adults. Participants were 20 low SES adults ranging in age from 20 to 74 years, enrolled in an adult literacy program in a small city in Minas Gerais, Brazil. Similarly to what has been found for preliterate Brazilian Portuguese-, English-, and Hebrew-speaking preschoolers, most phonetically appropriate letters in the adults' spellings consisted of letters whose names could be clearly detected in the pronunciation of words. These results suggest that letter name knowledge is a key factor contributing to the understanding of the connection between print and speech.

Top

Julia Carroll (University of Warwick); Myers, Joanne; Adelman, James - Phonemic and Sub-Phonemic Neighbourhood Similarities in Young Children's Lexicons

Several researchers have suggested that the phonological representations of children are less detailed than those of adults, perhaps because their lexicons are not as densely populated with similar sounding words (Charles-Luce & Luce, 1990). However, these analyses are based on estimates of expressive vocabulary, which underestimates the total number of words they must represent. This paper presents the results of an analysis of neighbourhood densities of words within an average child's receptive vocabulary at four years, estimated using files from the CHILDES database. Neighbourhood densities will be analysed both in terms of phonemic similarities and in terms of shared phonetic features.

Top

Severine Casalis (ureca) - Words and pseudowords as formal primes : differential effects in dyslexic and normal reader children

Orthographic coding was examined in dyslexic children through a masked priming paradigm. The impact of neighbourhood size was examined. Both words and pseudowords were used as primes, allowing to enlighten the format through orthographic information may be encoded. A lexical decision task, with masked priming was administered to 11 years old dyslexics, age matched readers and reading-level matched children. Formal (orthographic) primes were compared to unrelated primes. Differential effects of both primes and neighbourhood size were evidenced across groups. In dyslexics, priming effects were observed only when primes were words; the neighbourhood size had reliable effect in older children only.

Top

Anne Castles (ARC Centre of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders); Davis, Chris; Cavalot, Pauline; Forster, Kenneth - Tracking the acquisition of orthographic skills in developing readers: Masked priming effects

The masked priming procedure was used to explore developmental changes in the tuning of orthographic, or lexical, word recognition processes. Priming was examined for two different types of prime-target lexical similarity: one-letter-different (e.g. rlay -> PLAY) and transposed-letters (e.g. lpay -> PLAY). Skilled readers showed no significant priming, indicating that their recognition mechanisms for these items had become finely-tuned. In contrast, Grade 3 children showed substantial priming for both measures of lexical similarity. A two-year follow up study on the children revealed an attenuation in one-letter-different priming but continued transposed-letter priming. A developmental transition towards more precise lexical recognition mechanisms is proposed.

Top

Ting-Ting Chang (Laboratories for Cognitive Neuroscience, National Yang-Ming University); Huang, Yu-Chun; Lee, Jun Ren; Tzeng, Ovid, J. -L; Hung, Daisy, L. - Parallel or Serial? English Visual Word Recognition of English as Foreign Language Learners

A lexical decision task was conducted with words from General Service List and University Word List as stimuli to examine the word length effect of English as foreign language readers. In the current study, we observed a significant inhibitory letter-length effect throughout the words ranged from 3 to 10 letters from the data of 28 undergraduate subjects. The detailed multiple regression analysis and discussion would be presented in the conference.

Top

Aleck Shih-wei Chen (National Cheng Kung University, Taiwan) - Syllable Structure Transfer from Chinese to English and its Implications for Subsyllabic Division Unit Preference

This paper addresses the recent debate over the preferred subsyllabic division units in light of syllable structure transfer from Chinese, a simple syllable language, to English, a complex syllable language. Items used in prior studies arguing for a body

Top

Ju-Ling Chen (National Taiwan Normal University); Su, Yi-Fen - Relationship between decoding ability and word length effect when reading Chinese script

The present study was designed to investigate the developmental changes in word-length effects when decoding Chinese script. Length was defined in three ways:(1) the number of constituent strokes of characters(Experiment 1), (2) the number of constituent radicals of characters(Experiment 2), and (3) the number of constituent characters of words(Experiment3). The three experiments involved a lexical recognition task, and the participants were 90 third graders, divided into 3 group: 30 second graded decoding level, 30 third graded decoding level, 30 fourth graded decoding level, respectively, on the basis of the Graded Chinese Character Recognition Test. The present study was designed to systematically investigate developmental change in word-length effects when decoding Chinese script.

Top

Hsiu-Fen Chen (Special Education Center, National Taiwan Normal University); Hung, Li-Yu; Chen, Shu-Li; Chen, Mei-Feng - What predicts early Chinese reading in Taiwan? -Phonetic symbols (Zhu Yin Fu Hao)

The core cognition related to Chinese reading has been discussed. Since phonological awareness was inconsistently reported as predictor to Chinese reading, the study tried to investigate the issue by comprehensive reading variables in Chinese. The Zhu Yin Fu Hao, similar to letter-sound in alphabetic language, was found the most powerful predictor to early Chinese reading in the 2nd grade.

Top

Him Cheung (The Chinese University of Hong Kong); Chung, Kevin K. H.; Wong, Simpson W. L.; McBride Chang, Catherine; Penney, Trevor B.; Ho, Connie S.-H. - Organization of speech in Chinese-reading dyslexic children: Aspiration and lexical tone

The purpose of this study is to highlight lexical tone and aspiration, two contrastive dimensions in Cantonese speech perception, as correlates of dyslexia in a sample of 8-year-old Chinese-reading children. Our results showed that the dyslexic children: (1) performed less satisfactorily than age-matched controls on phonological awareness, morphological awareness, and lexical decision, and (2) perceived tonal and aspiration contrasts less categorically than age-matched controls. Result (1) is generally consistent with previous findings; result (2) reinforces the role of speech perception in dyslexia by underscoring the importance of how tonal and aspiration contrasts, which are not represented in the Chinese orthography and certainly unavailable in English speech, are processed in a categorical perception context, which has not been investigated in relation to dyslexia.

Top

Bonnie Wing-Yin Chow (Chinese University of Hong Kong); McBride-Chang, Catherine - Enhancing Chinese Children's Language and Literacy acquisition through Dialogic Reading and Morphology Training

This study investigated the effects of parents' shared book-reading and metalinguistic training on 148 Hong Kong kindergartners' language and literacy skills. Children were pretested on Chinese character recognition, vocabulary, morphological awareness, and reading interest, and then assigned randomly to one of four conditions: dialogic reading with morphology training (DR+MT), dialogic reading (DR), typical reading, or control. After a 12-week intervention, DR yielded greater gains in vocabulary, and DR+MT yielded greater improvement in character recognition and morphological awareness. Both interventions enhanced children's reading interest. Results confirm that different home literacy approaches influence children's oral and written language skills differently.

Top

Kevin Kien Hoa Chung (Department of Special Education and Counselling, The Hong Kong Institute of Education); McBride-Chang, Catherine; Penney, Trevor B; Cheung, Him; Ho, Connie S H; Wong, Simpson W L - Do visual and auditory temporal processing deficits account for Chinese dyslexic children?

The study examined the effects of visual and auditory temporal processing on Chinese word reading accuracy and fluency among Chinese dyslexic children. Three groups of children (dyslexic readers, chronological age controls and reading level controls) were administered tests of visual and auditory temporal processing, rapid naming, visual-orthographic knowledge, phonological processing and morphological awareness. It was found that Chinese dyslexic children evidence visual temporal processing, phonological processing, morphological awareness and rapid naming differences that, in turn, influence their subsequent word reading accuracy but not word reading fluency. These results suggest that visual temporal deficits may contribute to reading difficulties in Chinese.

Top

Ellie Clin (); Wade-Woolley, Lesly - Investigating the role of prosody in the development of fluent reading.

For nearly thirty years, research has shown that strong sensitivity to phonemic and phonological awareness is an invaluable part of developing strong reading ability. Until recently, however, research in this field has largely ignored the role of prosody, an important phonological component to many languages, in its demonstration of the predictive powers of phonological processing on reading skill. This study presents an analysis of individual differences in children at different levels of reading development and their sensitivity to metrical stress. Children with stronger prosodic sensitivity are shown to be more fluent readers, stronger comprehenders, and more accurate decoders.

Top

Joanne Cocksey (University of Oxford); Nation, Kate - Hidden deficits in reading comprehension: Relating teacher's perceptions to performance on psychometric tests.

There has been some suggestion that specific difficulties with reading comprehension go unnoticed in the classroom. Reading and language skills were assessed in a sample of 250 children aged 5-6 years. Their classroom teachers were also asked to complete questionnaires regarding the children's reading, language and behaviour. The main aim of the study was to compare children's performance on standardised tasks with teacher's perceptions of their abilities. In general, teachers were aware of children's strengths and difficulties across the curriculum.

Top

Chris Coleman (UGA Regents' Center for Learning Disorders); Gregg, Noel; Davis, Mark; Hartwig Lindstrom, Jennifer - Assessment of Phonological and Orthographic Abilities in Adults: A New Battery of Computerized Tests

Clinically speaking, any dyslexia assessment should include tests of phonological and orthographic processing. Unfortunately, there is a paucity of such measures for the adult population; in fact, it is unclear which childhood predictors of literacy acquisition (e.g., rhyming; syllabication) remain correlated with achievement in adulthood. In this pilot study, 100 university students were administered a battery of computer-based tasks designed to assess aspects of phonological and orthographic abilities. Measures of basic and higher-level literacy skills were also administered. Analyses will focus on the relationships between phonological/orthographic predictors (accuracy and RT scores) and achievement variables (e.g., decoding; spelling; reading comprehension).

Top

Don Compton (Vanderbilt University) - Facilitating struggling readers' acquisition of declarative knowledge and word meaning while reading in context

Results will be presented from a research program exploring the potential of text to increase the vocabulary and declarative knowledge of struggling readers. Sixty struggling readers, grades 2-5, were randomly assigned to three interventions. All three interventions received decoding, fluency, and oral reading instruction, with groups differing in terms of the in-text instruction. The control group received teacher-directed questioning with no dialogue, the vocabulary intervention received dialogue instruction combined with definitions and semantic maps to learn the meaning of target words in text, and the knowledge intervention learned the dialogue and strategies to learn declarative knowledge contained in the text.

Top

Ellen Connell (Australian National University); Kevan, Alison; Pammer, Kristen - Single or Dual Orthographic Representations for Spelling and Reading: the Product of the Definition

There is debate over whether single or dual orthographic representations are accessed for spelling and reading. The single-route model is supported by the argument that some categorical dissociations between spelling and reading, such as 'poor-readers/good-spellers' have never been found. This study analysed children's spelling and reading ability with performance on three visual processing measures. Different criteria were used to categorise good and poor spellers, demonstrating that the generation of different reading and spelling profiles was an artefact of arbitrary definitions for poor spellers, rather than any real difference in spelling and reading ability.

Top

Carol Connor (Florida State University and the Florida Center for Reading Research); Morrison, Frederick; Underwood, Phyllis; Fishman, Barry; Schatschneider, Christopher - The Effect of Individualized Reading Instruction on Student Reading Outcomes: The Results of a Randomized Field Trial

The efficacy of the individualizing student instruction (ISI) intervention, using Assessment-to-Instruction software (A2i), was tested in a random field trial. A2i uses students' vocabulary and reading scores in algorithms incorporating child-by-instruction interactions, which compute recommended amounts and types of instruction for each student. In 10 schools with 47 teachers HLM revealed that children in treatment classrooms made significantly greater gains overall in reading comprehension compared to children in control classrooms, controlling for initial status. The more teachers used A2i, the greater was their students' reading comprehension skill growth. There was an fidelity-by-vocabulary interaction such that the treatment effect was greater for students with lower fall vocabulary skills. This means that high fidelity teachers closed the outcome gap between students with strong and weak vocabulary skills.

Top

Jody Conod (); Wade-Woolley, Lesly; Cormier, Pierre - Characteristics of Nonresponders: The Effects of an English and French Phonological Awareness Intervention on Grade 1 French Immersion Students

Researchers report as many as 30% of at-risk readers and up to 50% of special needs students may not benefit from phonological awareness (PA) interventions (Al Otaiba & Fuchs, 2002). Evidence from English monolingual studies suggests that there are some common learner characteristics of students who are nonresponsive to PA interventions but no research has been found that examines the learner characteristics of nonresponsive French Immersion (FI) students (Al Otaiba & Fuchs, 2002; Nelson, Benner, & Gonzalez, 2003). This study examines the learner characteristics of Grade 1 FI students who are deemed nonresponsive to an English and a French phonological awareness intervention.

Top

Nicole Conrad (Department of Psychology, Saint Mary's University); Deacon, S. Helene; McGonnell, Melissa - Examining the orthographic skills of high functioning adults with dyslexia

Approximately one fourth of children with dyslexia achieve a level of reading proficiency that enables them to participate in post-secondary education. Given the persistent problems with phonological skills reported in this population of high-functioning adults with dyslexia, of interest are the compensatory mechanisms that enable this relatively high level of reading skill. This study compared the reading skills, phonological skills, and orthographic skills of high functioning adults with dyslexia and adult average readers. Although differences were found between groups on some reading skills and phonological skill, no differences were found between groups on three different measures of orthographic skill. Results are discussed in relation to potential compensatory mechanisms.

Top

Pierre Cormier (Université de Moncton); Wade-Woolley, Lesly - A test of cross linguistic transfer: Training phonological awareness in French immersion children

A training study of phonological awareness in French immersion is reported. This study deals experimentally with the issue of cross linguistic transfer. Groups of children at risk of reading difficulties were trained on phonological awareness in either French (language of instruction) or English (home language) for ten weeks at a rate of three 30-minute sessions per week. The training program drew attention to the different phonological units (syllables, onsets-rimes, phonemes) and explicitly taught graphophonemic relations. Children selected for this training were at the lower 1/3 of an initial sample of 205 kindergarten children. The presentation will focus on the progress registered by these groups of children - as well as a control group - from the initial testing in the May 2006 to the immediate post-test in December 2006 and to the delayed post-test in April 2007.

Top

Michael Coyne (Department of Educational Psychology) - Direct Vocabulary Intervention in Kindergarten: Investigating Transfer Effects

This poster presents the results of a school-based intervention study evaluating the efficacy of direct vocabulary instruction with kindergarten students. Students assigned to the treatment group (n = 81) were taught the meanings of 54 vocabulary words over 36 half-hour instructional lessons (two lessons per week over 18 weeks). Another 47 students served as a control group. Posttest measures included target vocabulary knowledge, overall receptive vocabulary, listening comprehension, and ability to infer new word meanings in context. Results revealed differences favoring the treatment group on all measures. Findings suggest that direct and extended vocabulary instruction may confer benefits beyond learning target vocabulary.

Top

Claudine Crane (University of York); Hulme, Charles; Carroll, Julia; Miles, Jeremy; Duff, Fiona; Fieldsend, Elizabeth; Snowling, Margaret - Early Language Intervention: Predictors of Treatment Outcome

Two intervention programmes designed for children with speech and language difficulties were delivered by trained teaching assistants in mainstream schools; a Phonology with Reading (P+R) programme and an Oral Language (OL) programme. The programmes were evaluated in terms of the children's performance on measures of language and literacy immediately after the intervention and again 6 months later. The P+R programme was most effective for training phonological awareness and letter knowledge, whereas the OL programme fostered vocabulary and grammatical ability. Both showed enduring training effects. Individual differences were explored by investigating the predictors of treatment outcomes in both programmes. Predictors of treatment outcome were largely independent of group assignment. These results have implications for the implementation of effective intervention programmes in primary school settings.

Top

Sarah Critten (Coventry University); Pine, Karen; Messer, David - A longitudinal study of the process of explicitation in children's reading and spelling representations

A year-long longitudinal study tracked the development of children's spelling and reading representations using the framework of the Representational-Redescription (RR) model (Karmiloff-Smith, 1992). Seventy-three children from the UK (aged 4-5 years) were given spelling and reading recognition tasks involving comparison of target words to incorrect alternatives and verbal explanations of how words are spelt/read (expanding upon Critten, Pine & Steffler, in press) to establish whether understanding was implicit or one of the more advanced explicit levels. Results support the use of the implicit-explicit continuum in this domain. Furthermore, how the skills developed in relation to each other reflected the findings of Caravolas, Hulme & Snowling (2001) in terms of spelling and reading "pacemaker" notions originating from Frith (1985).

Top

Virginia Cronin (George Washington University) - The Growth of Automaticity in Double-Deficit Groups

Reading development was assessed in a longitudinal study involving an original sample of 130 children. They were divided into groupings based on phonological awareness and rapid naming by preschool and kindergarten performances. Growth curve analyses found that those high in both phonology and naming achieved automaticity with both nonword reading and Stroop performances faster than the groups with one high and one low ability which did not differ. The children low in both abilities did not reach automaticity with these measures until third grade. The findings were discussed in terms of the two-core hypothesis of reading acquisition.

Top

J. P. Das (University of Alberta); Hayward, Denyse; Georgiou, George K. - What is the role of working memory in reading relative to phonological awareness, and rapid naming speed?

The purpose of this study was to examine: (a) the extent to which working memory contributes unique variance to reading beyond the contribution of phonological awareness and rapid naming, and (b) the cognitive processes in which reading disables are experiencing difficulties compared to good readers. 50 grade 3 Native Canadian children were tested on measures of working memory, phonological awareness, rapid naming, word identification, word attack, and reading comprehension. The results indicated that: (a) working memory was not uniquely contributing to any reading measure beyond phonological awareness and RAN, and (b) reading disables were significantly poorer than good readers on all three cognitive processes.

Top

Dana David (Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto); Koyama, Emiko; Geva, Esther - Phoneme Discrimination in Primary School Children who are English as a Second Language Learners and Reading Disabled: A Longitudinal Study

Auditory phonemic discrimination is linguistic component that is related to subsequent vocabulary and reading skills in an L2. Persistent difficulties in acquiring new phonemic contrasts may be an early marker of reading disabilities and slower vocabulary growth. The longitudinal development of novel English phonemes in young English as a Second Language (ESL) learners from various linguistic backgrounds and native English speakers (EL1) who were labeled as Reading Disabled (RD) or non-RD was investigated with respect to the development of their auditory discrimination ability. Contrast findings will be discussed with respect to normal developmental course, the effects of home language, and reading disability status.

Top

Nicole Davis (Vanderbilt University); Lorang, Craig; Gore, John; Fuchs, Lynn; Anderson, Adam; Cannistraci, Christopher; Compton, Donald - An Investigation of the Effects of Neural Connectivity on Math and Reading Ability

Several studies comparing children with reading difficulties to normal readers report significant differences in the structure of the temporal-parietal region. Little is known about children who have comorbid math and reading problems. This poster will discuss the results of a study with fifty third-grade children that investigated whether differences in neuronal connectivity corresponded to variability in participants' math and reading ability. Anatomical maps for all participants were obtained via diffusion tensor imaging. Regions with significantly different group functional anisotropy values were identified and correlated with participants' performance on the WRAT-III math and reading subtest.

Top

Claire Davis (University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston); Drouin, Michelle - The Beginning and Development of Word Knowledge: A Test of Ehri's Spelling Hypothesis

In a cross-sectional study we tested directly Linnea Ehri's hypothesis that spellers in the partial phonetic phase acquire word specific knowledge before they acquire general orthographic knowledge: Children from kindergarten and first-grade were tested on their spelling of high frequency words that involved digraphs (e.g. with) and matched pseudo-words (e.g. bith). Results showed that kindergarteners' use of digraph spellings appeared first in high frequency words and, as reading ability improved, in pseudo-words next. Also, that from kindergarten to first grade the developmental rate of increase in children's use of digraphs was greater in familiar words than unfamiliar ones.

Top

Peter F. de Jong (University of Amsterdam) - The effect of repeated reading on the word length effect

In several models of reading (Ans et al., 1998; Coltheart et al., 2001) a sublexical reading procedure is postulated. Evidence for its use is often based on the word length effect: the decrease of reading speed as the number of letters in a word increases. The effect is assumed to be absent if word specific knowledge is available. In this study normal and dyslexic children read words and pseudowords repeatedly. We found an overall increase in reading speed, but the magnitude of the word length effect did not change. Implications for the interpretation of the word length effect are discussed.

Top

S. Hélène Deacon (Dalhousie University); Pacton, Sébastien - Using spelling as an empirical test of rules versus statistics.

Current debate surrounds children's degree of sensitivity to orthographic versus morphological patterns in spelling and how it is that they learn about these patterns. One question is whether they learn rules or whether they rely on statistical regularities. Even if it is uncovered that children rely on statistics, as advocated by Kemp & Bryant (2003), the nature of these regularities must be specified. These might be orthographically and/or morphologically based. The present study, conducted with child and adult spellers, is designed to address these questions. We will discuss results in light of contemporary theories of literacy and cognitive development.

Top

Sylvia Defior (Universidad de Granada (C.I.F. Q-1818002F) Cuesta del Hospicio s/n); Jimenez, Gracia; Serrano, Francisca; Wilson, Maximiliano - Fluent reading and phonological abilities in Spanish

The relationship between phonological awareness and reading acquisition has been well established. Nevertheless, there are few studies that address the subject of phonological abilities and prosody (Wade-Woolley & Wood, 2006). This work aims to study the relationship between lexical prosody (fluent word reading) and phonological tasks (e.g., phonemic segmentation, letter naming and pseudoword reading) in Spanish children from 1st to 4th year of primary school. The results show significant differences across school years. A step-wise linear regression analyses showed that only Pseudoword reading could significantly account for prosody variation. These findings highlight the importance of mastering phonological mechanisms for fluent word reading.

Top

Carolyn A. Denton (University of Texas Health Science Center - Houston); Mathes, Patricia G.; Shih, Minyi - The Effects on Student Outcomes of Coaching Support Provided to Reading Intervention Teachers

A two-year study examined the effects of instructional coaching implemented to support teachers of reading intervention for first grade students at-risk for reading difficulties. Participants were 88 teachers from 70 schools who delivered instruction to a total of 793 students in two cohorts. Teachers were randomly assigned by school to receive in-person coaching, a technology-based coaching application , or coaching "on demand" (essentially a no-treatment comparison). The same four coaches provided coaching in all conditions. Data included student pre-post and continuous progress monitoring assessments. Analyses are underway to determine whether differences in coaching condition had significant effects on student outcomes.

Top

Alain Desrochers (School of Psychology, University of Ottawa); Cormier, Pierre - Lexicality effects in phonemic awareness but not in syllabic awareness

A sample of 191 children participated in two segmental elision tasks in which the stimulus term was either a familiar word or a pseudoword. In turn, the elision of a syllable or a phoneme produced either a familiar word or a pseudoword. No lexicality effects were found on syllabic elision. However, phonemic elision scores were higher when the response term was a word rather than a pseudoword. These results highlight the importance of lexicality effects in phonemic awareness and differences between syllabic and phonemic awareness.

Top

Eric Dion (Universite du Quebec a Montreal); Roux, Catherine; Landry, Danika; Fuchs, Douglas; Wehby, Joseph - Preventing Reading Disabilities among Disadvantaged First-Graders: A Two-Pronged Approach

Underprivileged students with both very limited basic reading skills and attention problems are at very high risk for reading disabilities. Tow interventions are combined to better address their needs. The Peer-Assisted Learning Strategies is used to provide an engaging context to practice reading, while an adaptation of the Good Behavior Game serves to maximize attention during the most important reading lessons. 60 first-grade classrooms have been recruited and randomly assigned to a control, PALS or PALS + GBG condition. Participating students with the most pronounced reading and attention problems are assessed. Preliminary results support the relevance of the combined intervention.

Top

Beatriz Diuk (CIPA-UNSAM); Borzone, Ana Maria; Benitez, María Elena - Phonological processing abilities and reading and spelling acquisition in Spanish-speaking children from different sociocultural backgrounds

Development of phonological processing abilities, reading and spelling was studied in two groups of kindergarten children from different socioeconomic backgrounds. Low-income group teachers were trained to promote phonological sensitivity, reading and spelling. Children were administered tests of reading, spelling, letter knowledge, phoneme identity, pseudoword repetition and RAN. At pre-test, middle-income children performed better on all tasks. A year later middle-income children were better at pseudoword repetition and RAN but low-income children scored higher in all other tests. Results suggest that in a transparent orthography systematic intervention can promote reading even if children lag behind in basic phonological processing abilities.

Top

Michelle Drouin (Indiana Purdue University Fort Wayne); Davis, Claire - Readers' and spellers' development of word-specific knowledge and code skills.

We examined the developmental sequence of word-specific knowledge and code skills. We tested kindergarten (n=67) and first graders' (n=68) reading and spelling of word-specific knowledge (using high frequency words like 'went') and code knowledge (using matched pseudo-words like 'hent') in regular words. In both grade levels, results showed high frequency word scores were superior to pseudo-word scores. Also, there was an asymmetry in children's reading and spelling of high frequency words, where spelling was worse than reading, but not of pseudo-words, where spelling was as good as reading. The pattern was the same even when individual differences were examined.

Top

Lynne Duncan (University of Dundee); Casalis, Séverine; Colé, Pascale - Acquiring knowledge about derivational suffixes during early schooling: Some observations from a comparison of English and French

Preliminary data will be presented from a cross-linguistic comparison of morphological development in French and English. The study focuses on early manipulation of suffixes in oral language games and relates this to chronological age, vocabulary development and year of schooling (Years 1-3). Morphological development was accelerated in French relative to English. The French advantage encompassed knowledge of a broader range of derivational suffixes and a markedly greater facility for generalising morphological knowledge to novel contexts. These initial results are interpreted in relation to the word formation systems of English and French, and the instructional methods in each country.

Top

Aydin Yucesan Durgunoglu () - The role of first language in adult beginning readers of English

This study looked at adult Hmong and Spanish speakers who are in English literacy/ESL classes. Although the two groups had similar levels of English vocabulary, spelling, and self-reported English language skills, the word recognition skills were very different when TOWRE nonword and TOWRE sight word data were compared. The two language groups also showed differences in how the literacy components were related to each other and to English reading comprehension. The results are discussed in terms of the role of home language on second language literacy development.

Top

Elisabeth Duursma (University of Groningen) - Is one parent enough? Parental bookreading in low-income families and the relationship with young children's emergent literacy, oral language and cognitive skills

This study found that fathers in low-income families where both parents reported reading frequently to their toddlers tended to have higher levels of education and mothers were more likely to speak English (vs. Spanish) compared to families where only mothers reported reading frequently. Families where both parents read frequently were more likely to have girls and children with larger vocabularies. In addition, paternal bookreading at child ages 24 and 36 months predicted children's emergent literacy skills at 60 months over and above maternal bookreading and controlling for demographics. Parental bookreading did not predict children's oral language or cognitive skills.

Top

Carsten Elbro (University of Copenhagen) - Dyslexia. Does verbal IQ matter?

Despite two decades of research showing no relevance of IQ to dyslexia, references to IQ are still part of influential definitions of dyslexia. The presentation suggests one reason why this may be so: whilst IQ is largely irrelevant to the nature of dyslexia as a disability, IQ does relate to an ensuing handicap. A study of 165 adult poor readers indicated that when reading ability is controlled, individuals with high verbal IQ are more likely than others to experience a reading handicap. On the other hand, verbal IQ did not matter for the adults' self-rated abilities with specific texts.

Top

Amy Elleman (Middle Tennessee State University); Lindo, Endia J.; Morphy, Paul; Compton, Donald L. - The Effects of Vocabulary Instruction on Reading Comprehension: A Meta-Analysis of Students PreK to 12.

In this study we use meta-analysis to estimate the effects of vocabulary instruction on reading comprehension outcomes for children in grades pre-K through 12. A preliminary analysis of seven studies yielded an estimated average effect-size that was both statistically and practically important (ES = 0.43). By expanding our searches, we were able to identify a total of 20 studies, allowing us to examine the role of likely moderators (e.g., participant-type, intervention-type, and methodological characteristics) for our final report. We conclude this study by interpreting identified effects with recommendations for future study of vocabulary-based reading comprehension interventions.

Top

Mary Ann Evans (Department of Psychology, University of Guelph); Reynolds, Kailey; Audet, Diana - Parental Goals for Shared Book Reading and Relationship to Print-Referencing Behaviour with Young Children

Young children rarely spontaneously look at print while being read to. Moreover parents vary in the feedback they give to children's reading errors which is associated with children's subsequent word identification skills. What drives this behaviour is poorly understood. It may be the beliefs parents hold about the nature of learning to read and/or the goals they have for reading with their child. This poster describes parent goals from JK through grade 1, and documents the extent to which parents reference print when reading to their child in JK, and its relationship to their goals. Each year, 120 parents rated items by mail regarding goals for shared book reading and were observed reading to their child. Parent behaviours were coded as referencing print versus enhancing story attention /comprehension. In general, parents rarely drew the child's attention to print. However if fostering reading was the highest rated goal, then parental print referencing was more frequent.

Top

Maria Fagan Rogers (Ontario Institute for Studies in education of the University of Toronto); Wiener, Judith - Parental involvement Beliefs and Behaviors and

This study investigated whether parents' motivational beliefs and involvement behaviors predict their children's reading achievement. Participants were 101 children (ages 8 - 12), 53 of whom had a diagnosis of ADHD, and their parents. Regression analyses indicated that parenting (measured through self-report) predicted children's reading achievement (measured through a standardized test) above and beyond children's ADHD symptoms. Parents who reported more positive experiences of school and who felt more competent at helping their children had children with higher reading abilities. Parents who reported more academic involvement behaviors in the home (e.g., supervision of homework), however, had children with lower reading achievement.

Top

Isabel Hub Faria (University of Lisbon); Luegi, Paula; Costa, Armanda - Syntactic structure changes reading behavior: cluster analysis of eye movements

In this study we registered the eye movement of 20 Portuguese university students during the reading of two texts. Texts differed in topic familiarity (T1 - familiar - and T2 - less familiar) and were presented with (T') or without (T) syntactic manipulations. We will present the results of a cluster analysis that shows that reading behavior (eye movements) depends on the syntactic characteristics of the sentence being read.

Top

Fataneh Farnia (Hincks-Dellcrest Centre-Department of Psychiatry and OISE/University of Toronto); Geva, Esther - Modeling Growth in Reading Comprehension in EL1 and ESL Children: A Longitudinal, Individual Growth Curve Analysis From First to Sixth Grade

This study examined growth patterns of reading comprehension in English-as-a-second-language (ESL, N= 107) and English as-a-first-language (EL1, N= 50) children and the role of cognitive and linguistic predictors in understanding this growth. Children's performance on the potential cognitive, language, and basic reading skills was assessed yearly in Stage 1 (Grades 1 to 3) and Stage 2 (Grades 4 to 6). Reading comprehension was tracked from Grade 2 to Grade 6. Hierarchical Linear Modeling indicated that in Stage 1, ESL children developed faster than EL1 children their word-level reading skills, aspects of phonological processing, oral language, and reading comprehension.

Top

Jo Ann Farver (University of Southern California); Lonigan, Christopher; Eppe, Stefanie - Developmental Trajectory of Emergent Literacy Skills in Monolingual and Bilingual Preschoolers

This study examined the developmental trajectory of emergent literacy skills in 949 Spanish-English bilingual and English monolingual children over a preschool year to understand whether English oral language, phonological and print processing skills follow the same quantitative growth profile in the two groups. Results of growth curve analyses indicated that the monolingual children scored higher on all measures at T1 and T3; however, children in both groups showed improvement on all emergent measures from T1 to T3. The bilingual children grew at much faster rates than the monolingual children on oral language tasks and on Rapid Naming, which measures phonological access. The bilingual children were also catching up to their monolingual counterparts on Word Span and Nonword Repetition, which measure phonological memory, but the growth rate differences were not as dramatic as PLS 4 and Rapid Naming.

Top

Gary Feng (Educational Testing Service); Guo, Jia - Seeing the Onset of the Matthew Effect? Evidence from Young Children's Eye Movements during Shared Storybook Reading

Two recent studies (Evans & Saint-Aubin; 2005; Justice et al., 2005) found prereading children avoid looking at the text during shared storybook reading. In this study, story books were read to seventeen 6-year-old Chinese-speaking preschoolers while their eye movements were monitored. Results show that children with a modest sight word vocabulary spent substantial amount of time on texts, but children who do not know any characters avoid texts. The data suggest the Matthew Effect begins before children can read. An initial print vocabulary appears to be necessary to trigger the snow-balling effect of print exposure in shard book reading.

Top

Ruth Fielding-Barnsley (University of Tasmaia); Hay, Ian - Language and phonological awareness intervention for at-risk beginning readers: First year results.

It is proposed that children's oral language proficiency underpins the emergence of reading skills. Research evidence also indicates the necessity of helping readers acquire the explicit knowledge of phonological word structure. Sustained interventions are critical for children with difficulties, however what is not resolved is the design and duration of that intervention. Despite intervention, these poor readers usually remain poor readers throughout their schooling. Results of an integrated approach involving language and phonological instruction with 90 experimental children and 60 controls provide evidence of the usefulness of a combined approach for children identified as at-risk for future reading difficulties.

Top

Alexis Filippini (); Gerber, Michael; Solari, Emily; Eadie, Cara - Structure vs. relationships: Effectiveness of two types of vocabulary instruction for young at-risk English Learners

This paper compares effects of two strategies for vocabulary intervention in a high-risk group of first grade English Learners (N = 79). Specifically, this study measures the effectiveness and efficiency of oral vocabulary instruction delivered in addition to phonological awareness and decoding (PAD) instruction. The two PAD-Plus (vocabulary-added) conditions differ in emphasis: morphological features of language versus semantic relations. In both treatment conditions, 30% of the instructional time is allotted to PAD instruction. These two conditions are contrasted further with a treatment-control PAD-only condition. Growth in vocabulary, phonological awareness, decoding, word reading, and comprehension will be compared.

Top

Joan Foley (Temple University); Cromley, Jennifer - Text features of basal readers: Changes in text difficulty from second through fourth grade

By fourth grade, academic standards stress the importance of reading to learn so that students apply comprehension skills to acquire subject matter knowledge. Publishers of basal readers for second and third grades play an important role in the transitional process through passage selections that incorporate certain text features. This study investigated the change in text features related to reading fluency in expository and narrative texts to understand how and whether basal readers progressively prepare students for reading to learn. A series of statistical analyses suggests a pattern of progression in some, but not all text features related to reading fluency.

Top

Angela Friend (University of Colorado at Boulder); Olson, Richard K. - Phonological Spelling and Reading Deficits in Children with Spelling Disabilities

Spelling errors were analyzed for 77 pairs of children matched on spelling. Each pair included one older child with spelling disability (SD) and one younger child with normal spelling ability from the Colorado Learning Disabilities Research Center. Graphotactic-accuracy (GA) and phonological accuracy (PA) were calculated using the spelling errors. The SD group scored significantly worse on PA, and non-significantly better on GA, which yielded a significant interaction. Spelling matched pairs also had similar scores on word recognition and orthographic coding, but the SD group exhibited significant deficits in reading measures of phonological decoding and in language measures of phonological awareness.

Top

Jorgen Frost (University of Oslo) - The influence of aspects of Language ability on Reading development - from 3 to 16 years of age.

In this longitudinal study we have investigated the relation between different aspects of early language ability at the age of three and development of phonemic awareness at the age of 6. We describe the impact of these other aspects on phonemic awareness and relate the findings to theory of language and reading development. Next, we have examined linguistic precursors to reading development beyond phonemic awareness. The aim was to describe the pattern of influence from other linguistic variables and phonemic awareness on reading development.

Top

Dries Froyen (Maastricht University, The Netherlands); van Atteveldt, Nienke; Bonte, Milene; Blomert, Leo - The long road to automaticity: Development of letter - speech sound integration in normal and dyslexic readers.

Automatic integration of letters and speech sounds is necessary to establish fluent reading. We investigated the neural correlates of the development of this integration using ERP (Mismatch Negativity). After one year of reading instruction children adequately relate letters to speech sounds, but do not show automaticity of integration, which requires several years of instruction. However, even then the time windows for integration do not exhibit full automaticity as found in adult readers. The results of the dyslexics suggest that they do not develop the narrow time windows which seem characteristic for automatic integration of letters and speech sounds after several years of reading instruction.

Top

Douglas Fuchs (Vanderbilt University); Fuchs, Lynn; Compton, Donald; Caffrey, Erin; Lemons, Chris; Bouton, Bobette - Alternative Approaches to "Responsiveness-To-Intervention" as a Method of Identifying Reading Disabilities: Dynamic Assessment and Event Response Potential

Traditional assessment of reading disabilities (e.g., IQ-achievement discrepancy) has been criticized partly because of its insensitivity to very low-achieving children, including low-income children of color. Responsiveness-To-Intervention (RTI) has been proposed as an alternative by policymakers. In most RTI models, children's responsiveness is monitored for 10-15 wks to identify non-responders in need of more intensive instruction. This time frame is arguably too long. Two alternatives, Dynamic Assessment (DA) and Event Response Potential (ERP), have the potential to identify needy students in one session. In this study, we explored the predictive validity of both methods, and we obtained encouraging results.

Top

Barbara Fussenegger (); Landerl, Karin - Neurocognitive deficits in dyslexia and dyscalculia

One hundred and nine children (2nd - 4th grade) were selected for dyslexia, dyscalculia or arithmetic and reading difficulties. They were compared to controls on a range of basic number processing tasks, phonological tasks and cognitive abilities. A phonological awareness deficit was found for dyslexic children, irrespective of additional arithmetic deficits. In contrast, deficits in basic number processing were observed in dyscalculic children, irrespective of additional reading problems. These findings suggest that dyslexia and dyscalculia are not causally related, but are caused by two different neurocognitive deficits, namely a phonological deficit in the case of dyslexia and a basic number processing deficit in dyscalculia.

Top

Wei Gao (University of Maryland); Wang, Min - Subsyllabic Unit Preference of Young Chinese Children in Reading Pinyin

We designed four experiments to investigate subsyllabic unit preference of reading Pinyin in young Chinese children. We hypothesize that children will demonstrate body preference in reading Pinyin due to the existence of a large number of open syllables in Chinese spoken language (Wang & Cheng, 2006). In Experiment 1 and 2, Pinyin analogy tasks were designed for monophthong and diphthong pseudo-Pinyin words respectively, in which 16 groups of words with different shared subsyllabic units (i.e., body, rime, and onset-coda) are read in tone matched and unmatched conditions. In Experiment 3 and 4, short term recall tasks with 32 lists of 3 pseudo-pinyin words are designed in tone matched and unmatched conditions, respectively. Error patterns are analyzed.

Top

Eduardo García (); Reitsma, Pieter; Rispens, Judith; Berends, Inez - Predictability reduces orthographic learning

An experiment was designed to compare orthographic learning in a more or less predictable context. A group of 81 Spanish Grade 3 children read target words 6 times in a connected text where predictability of the target was manipulated by having the same two adjectives always preceding or following the targets. The target words were familiar in spoken form but unfamiliar in spelling. Contrasts between pre- and posttest of a orthographic choice task and a spelling task indicated that the manipulation of the context significantly affected orthographic learning. Orthographic learning of words in a less predictable context was highest.

Top

George Georgiou (University of Alberta); Parrila, Rauno - Why is Rapid Naming Speed Related to Reading Ability? Contrasting the Phonological Processing, the Orthographic Processing, and the Speed-of-Processing Hypotheses

Different competing hypotheses have been developed to account for the RAN-reading relationship. The purpose of this study was to contrast the explanatory power of three hypotheses: the phonological processing hypothesis, the orthographic processing hypothesis, and the speed-of-processing hypothesis. 208 grade 4 Greek-speaking children were tested on measures of general cognitive ability, phonological awareness, RAN, orthographic knowledge, speed-of-processing, and reading ability. Data are currently analyzed.

Top

Russell Gersten (Instructional Research Group); Dimino, Joe; Jayanthi, Madhavi; Kim, James; Santoro, Lana - Impact of Teacher Study Groups on Observed Teaching Practice and Student Vocabulary and Comprehension for First Grade Teachers: Results of Large Scale Randomized Controlled Trials

This session describes a large scale randomized controlled trials study of Teacher Study Groups for first grade teachers involved in the Reading First program. Participants included 81 teachers (39 experimental and 42 control) in 19 schools in three large urban districts (Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Fairfax County). A total of 19 schools were randomly assigned to conditions (9 treatment, 10 control) and teachers received bi-monthly 75 minute sessions where they studied key research findings in the areas of comprehension and vocabulary and then worked with the facilitator to enhance their core reading program so that these principles were embedded in the unit they taught the following week. Results indicated a significant impact on observed teaching practice. MANOVA and HLM results revealed that treatment group teachers scored significantly higher on a classroom observation measure of comprehension and vocabulary instruction. In addition, treatment group teachers scored significantly higher than controls on a teacher knowledge of vocabulary instruction and overall attitudes toward professional development activities, which were part of the Teacher Study Groups . No significant effects were found in student reading achievement on individually administered subtests of Woodcock Diagnostic Reading Battery (WDRB) and oral reading fluency. However, a moderate and marginally significant effect size of .41 was found on the oral vocabulary subtest of the WDRB. The effect size on a standardized test of comprehension and vocabulary (Terra Nova/CAT6) was near .20 standard deviations and in line with results from other school-level interventions for improving student reading outcomes (e.g., Success for All).

Top

Esther Geva (University of Toronto); Ndlovu, Katherine - Writing Skills - The Role of Home Language and Learning Disability Status

The study examined writing ability in English as L1 (EL1, n=96) and English as L2 (ESL, n=177) children in Grade 5. All children attended English schools since Grade 1. The performance of a sub-sample with reading disabilities (RD; 8 -EL1, and 17-ESL) was also examined. Children with RD performed significantly more poorly than children without RD on various components of the test of writing ability. However, in spite of difference sin language proficiency there were no significant EL1-RD and ESL-RD on the writing task. Likewise, there were no differences between the non-RD ESL and EL1 groups. Research and applied implications will be discussed.

Top

Lucie Godard (Département de didactique des langues) - Inference Comparison between Native French-Speaking, Non-Native French-Speaking and French Learning Disability Students attending French Schools.

Both, Non-Native (NN) and Learning Disabilities (LD) students have reading comprehension problems. Are difficulties in making inferences the same for NN and LD students? In this study, we compared 595 students (386 Native French-Speaking Normal Achiever (NFSNA); 42- Native French-Speaking with Learning Disabilities (NFSLD) and 152 Non-Native French-Speaking Normal Achiever (NNFSNA) from grade 3 to 6. Differences between NFSNA and NFSLD (F(1,427=31,861 p=0,000) and between NFSNA and NNFSNA (F1,517=17,00 p=0,00) were significant for all questions, but not for each type of inference. We will present a qualitative analysis of these differences.

Top

M. Carmen González-Trujillo (); Defior, Sylvia - Prosody, a nowadays challenge in reading comprehension: an intervention study

The study aimed to establish the influence of training prosody to improve reading comprehension. 42 third graders were randomly assigned to Prosody Group (PG; N=23) and Control Group (CG; N=19). PG and CG attended 16 sessions (2/week). Prosody -defined as fluency and expressiveness components- was trained with oral/written tasks. PG (complete sample) showed significantly better performance on syntax, written prosody and expressiveness in oral reading. A subsample of PG (poor readers) showed significantly better performance on decoding skills, letter naming and fluency in oral reading, pre-requisites skills for reading comprehension. Educational implications of these findings are discussed.

Top

Debbie Gooch (Royal Holloway, University of London); Snowling, Maggie; Hulme, Charles - The relationships between reading, executive functioning and time perception in children.

A deficit in behavioural inhibition is said to underlie the behavioural and cognitive symptoms associated with ADHD. In relation to this deficits in time perception have been found in ADHD and dyslexia. Furthermore these may be amplified in children with comorbid ADHD and dyslexia. The current study aimed to investigate the relationships between measures of inhibition, planning, working memory and time perception. As both dyslexia and ADHD are related to academic underachievement the relationships between these measure and reading and maths, were also explored. The results will be discussed with reference to theories of ADHD and dyslexia.

Top

Ilana Goodman (Queen's University); Wade-Woolley, Lesly; Libenson, Amanda - Sensitivity to lexical and metrical stress in early reading development

Recent research has indicated that sensitivity to linguistic stress may be related to phonological awareness and reading (e.g., Journal of Research in Reading, vol. 29(3), 2006). The purpose of this study is to examine the role of two types of sensitivity to linguistic stress (lexical and metrical stress) and phonological awareness (PA) in the development of letter knowledge and early decoding ability. This study addresses two questions: (1) whether sensitivity to stress predicts variance in early reading skills beyond that accounted for by PA, and (2) whether lexical and metrical stress are equally related to early reading skills.

Top

Usha Goswami (Cambridge University) - Synthetic Phonics: Where is the Data?

A review of the teaching of early reading in England commissioned by the U.K. Government (Independent Review of the Teaching of Early Reading, Rose 2006) recently recommended a return to the bottom-up, discrete and decontextualised teaching of phonics ("synthetic phonics") in all English classrooms. Concluding a research-based defence of the Rose Review, Stuart (2006) argued "teaching phonics first and fast means that for the vast majority of children, what needs to be accomplished can be accomplished within the first year of school". But where are the data? The Rose Review relied heavily on a study of "synthetic phonics" teaching carried out in Scotland, which had major flaws (Johnston & Watson, 2004). The National Reading Panel concluded that there was no "optimal" way to teach phonics. In fact, a cross-language analysis of early reading shows that the key factors in literacy acquisition are not the method of phonics tuition that is used, but the transparency of the orthography and the phonological complexity of the syllable (Ziegler & Goswami, 2005, 2006). In addition, key factors in language development must be taken into account, for example the salience of prosodic and rhythmic patterns in fostering phonological awareness (Goswami, in press).

Top

Usha Goswami (University of Cambridge) - Rhythm, Stress, Reading Acquisition and Dyslexia

I will summarise our research on the contribution of rhythmic processing to phonological development and literacy development in children. Recent work in language development suggests that young children attend primarily to global spectral structure, arising from relatively slow modulations of the vocal tract (e.g., amplitude envelopes). The rate of change of amplitude envelopes at onset (rise time) is also a cue to speech rhythm and prosody, as stressed syllables have stronger rise times. In a variety of studies, we have been exploring the role of rise time processing in the development of phonological awareness by children. Sensitivity to rise time and also duration explains unique variance in children's phonological awareness and literacy attainment, even when I.Q. is controlled, with dyslexic children showing impaired abilities across languages with different rhythm types. We argue that impaired processing of suprasegmental auditory cues to rhythm and stress are causal in the phonological deficit in dyslexia.

Top

Alexandra Gottardo (Wilfrid Laurier University); Charbonneau, Rebecca; van Daal, Victor; Meberg, Tore; Skaathun, Astrid - Vocabulary knowledge in Norwegian-English bilinguals

Vocabulary knowledge is crucial for reading comprehension (Carver, 1997; Tunmer & Hoover, 1992). Vocabulary development in bilinguals is of concern due to continued lower vocabulary scores in the L1 and L2 (August, Carlo, Dressler & Snow, 2005). Alternatives are to calculate true vocabulary knowledge based on known concepts in either the L1 or L2 (Oller, & Pearson, 2002). The current study administered identical measures of picture naming to advantaged, bilingual Norwegian-English speakers. Items were analyzed to determine vocabulary that overlapped across languages and that was unique to each language. Findings are discussed in terms of lexical development and the organization of the lexicon of bilinguals.

Top

Lori Graham (Texas A&M University); Joshi, R. Malatesha; Boulware-Gooden, Regina; Boettcher, Cindy; Hairrell, Angela - From Research to Practice: The Effect of Multi-Component Vocabulary Instruction on 4th Grade Students' Social Studies Vocabulary and Comprehension Performance

According to the National Reading Panel Report (2000), there exists a need for conducting research with real teachers in real classroom settings. The implementation of multi-component vocabulary strategy instruction designed to enhance the performance of fourth grade students in social studies will be presented. Some of the materials were adapted from a currently funded IES Teacher Quality Grant. While the grant focused on professional development, this study focused on intensive vocabulary instruction and the resulting student outcomes in vocabulary and comprehension performance after six weeks of intensive vocabulary instruction and at six weeks post intervention. Results will be presented.

Top

Amy Grant (); Gottardo, Alexandra; Geva, Esther - Using measures of print exposure to predict reading ability and children at-risk for reading disabilities in second language learners

The present study intends to explore what differences exist between a group of Portuguese-speaking second language learners (L2) and a group of English as a first language (L1) children in terms of various reading and reading-related skills. This study hopes to use print exposure as a factor that can serve to differentiate good from poor readers. Using preliminary data from L2 learners, we have found that a model using word identification, rapid automatized naming (letters) and a title recognition test as a measure of print exposure, accounted for a significant amount of variance in reading comprehension (r2 = 70.1%).

Top

Christopher Grieve (University of Dundee, Scotland); Duncan, Lynne - Do Dyslexic Children Really Show Evidence of a Left 'Mini-Neglect'?

The study examines visuospatial attention amongst ten children with developmental dyslexia. A computerised Landmark task was used to examine claims of a deficit in attending to stimuli in the left visual field. Children were required to indicate which side of a pre-transected line was longer under short and long presentation times. Contrary to expectation, dyslexics tended to show a greater bias to the left than chronological age controls in a pattern more similar to reading age controls. Dyslexics also exhibited a large amount of variance in bias under short presentation times suggesting that bias and reading profile might be related.

Top

Barbara Gunn (Oregon Research Institute); Smolkowski, Keith; Vadasy, Patricia - Evaluating the Efficacy of Read Well Kindergarten: Year 01 and 02 Outcomes of a Randomized Controlled Trial of a Reading Intervention

Twenty three kindergarten teachers in 10 schools participated in a randomized controlled trial evaluating the efficacy of Read Well Kindergarten (RWK). Three hundred and sixty-seven children were given pre and posttest measures of phonological processing, vocabulary, knowledge of letter names and sounds, and basic decoding skills. The 11 treatment teachers completed 8-10 of the 26 RWK small group units. The 12 comparison teachers taught their regular literacy activities. Preliminary analyses found a statistically significant difference favoring students receiving RWK on the measure of decodable words. Results for the Woodcock Word ID and Word Attack were non significant, but favored the RWK students after removing students who knew 24-26 letter sounds at pre-test.

Top

Nicolas Gutierrez-Palma (University of Jaén, Spain) - Stress sensitivity and reading acquisition in Spanish

This work investigates the relationship between detecting stress patterns and reading acquisition in Spanish. In particular, it examines the hypothesis that stress sensitivity affects reading fluency and comprehension. In a first study, participants were children (aged 6 to 8 years) who completed tasks involving reproducing pseudoword stress patterns, reading words, reading pseudowords, and stressing pseudowords. Results showed that stress sensitivity predicted fluency and word comprehension better than phonological awareness and other control measures. In addition, stress sensitivity was the best predictor of children's performance in stressing pseudowords, suggesting that it may affect the learning of stress regularities. These results point out that stress sensitivity may affect reading acquisition. If so, this relationship between stress sensitivity and reading performance should not be found in adults; stress sensitivity should relate to reading performance just during reading acquisition. A second study examined this hypothesis. Results are discussed in relation to the role of prosody in learning to read.

Top

Bente Hagtvet (University of Oslo); Lyster, Solveig A.H. - Oral and written language skills in poor and good readers. A longitudinal study of Norwegian children at familial risk of dyslexia age 5 through 9.

The present study focuses the interrelations between vocabulary, phonemic awareness skills, and reading skills in good and poor readers at familial risk of dyslexia. 150 children of dyslexic parents were studied longitudinally from age 5 through 9, and the relationship between preschool oral language skills and later reading skills were retrospectively studied for good and poor reading comprehenders (age 9) respectively. In both groups reading comprehension at age 9 was largely determined by speeded and accurate word reading at age 8, which was again determined by phonological awareness skills at ages 5 and 6. However, vocabulary appeared to play a more dominant role in the development of good than poor reading comprehension.

Top

Julie Hansen (Queensland University of Technology); Cebulski, Linda - Cognitive and motivational factors in children's reading comprehension.

The contribution of motivational and cognitive factors to primary school children's reading comprehension was investigated in a sample of 72 Grade 4 children, who completed questionnaires assessing reading motivation, reading exposure, word decoding, listening comprehension, and reading comprehension. Multiple regression analyses revealed that only the cognitive variables explained significant variance in reading comprehension. In line with the Simple View of Reading, word decoding accuracy and listening comprehension each explained relatively independent variance in reading comprehension. Motivational factors and reading exposure were not significantly correlated with reading comprehension. Studies examining reading motivation should take these reading-related cognitive skills into account.

Top

Nicole Harlaar (Institute of Psychiatry, London); Plomin, Robert - How are reading experience and reading achievement related over time? Results from a genetically informative cross-lagged study

It is widely believed that there are bidirectional links between reading achievement and reading experience: children who read more do better at reading, and reading achievement itself promotes reading. We examined the cross-lagged relationships between reading experience and reading achievement from ages 10 to 12 years in the Twins Early Development Study (TEDS). Results indicate that genetic influences on reading achievement contribute to later propensities to seek out reading experiences. Reading experience also has weak environmentally-mediated effects on later reading achievement. These findings may have important consequences for understanding reading development in children at genetic risk for reading disabilities.

Top

Gina Harrison (Educational Psychology & Leadership Studies, University of Victoria); Ogle, Keira - Component Reading and Spelling Skills in a Case of Developmental Surface Dysgraphia

The case of an adolescent, AN, with severe developmental spelling and writing difficulties in the absence of a concomitant reading disorder is described. Norm-referenced and experimental measures of general cognition, memory, phonological, orthographic, reading, spelling, and writing were administered. Spelling error analyses were also conducted. AS's performance on experimental tasks was compared to spelling-level (SL) and chronological age-matched (CA) controls. The results indicated subtle developmental phonological deficits paired with more severe visual-orthographic deficits that appear to be affecting reading and spelling in different ways. The phonological deficits were undetected by norm-referenced tests of phonological processing, word level reading, and decoding.

Top

Sara Hart (Department of Psychology, Florida Center for Reading Research); Petrill, Stephen A. - Home Literacy Environment as an Environmental Measure: A Twin Study

We examined the etiology of the home literacy environment and its relationship with reading outcomes using 400 twins (M = 4.6-8.2yrs) from the ongoing Western Reserve Reading Project. Twins were examined across three annual waves of assessment, beginning when children entered school. Results suggested that, although there were genetic influences on early reading (h2 = .36), and home literacy environment (h2 = .33), the correlation between the home literacy environment and reading was due to shared environmental influences. Thus, a portion of the shared environmental influences estimated in early reading can be explained by measures of the home literacy environment.

Top

Karolina Hartfeld (Freie Universität Berlin); Jacobs, Arthur M.; Heine, Angela; Thaler, Verena - Comparison of the eye movements from dyslectic children and children with ADHD during reading in a regular orthography

Abstract We examined the reading behaviour of German-speaking children with dyslexia, ADHD and comorbid dyslexia/ADHD by measuring their eye-movements and naming latency during single word reading. We manipulated word difficulty by contrasting (1.) short vs. long words with (2.) either low vs. high sublexical complexity. Dyslexic children and dyslexia/ADHD-children exhibited similar word length and complexity effects, but later made substantially more errors. ADHD-children showed a word length, but no complexity effect and made second most errors. Dyslexic children were slow but accurate, highlighting the importance of taking speed as the defining measure of dyslexia in regular orthographies.

Top

Stefan Hawelka (University of Salzburg, Austria); Wimmer, Heinz - No visual-attentional deficits in string processing in dyslexic readers.

In two former studies we found lower dyslexic performance in string processing task which used a common partial report paradigm. This deficit was suggestive of a visual-attentional processing deficit similar to the one of acquired letter-by-letter readers, but - alternatively - an impairment in the fast parallel activation of name codes is also possible. The present study avoided this confound by using target detection instead of partial report and no longer found a dyslexic deficit in string processing. Therefore, it seems that the critical bottle-neck in string processing tasks is the fast parallel activation of name codes.

Top

Emma Hayiou-Thomas (University of York) - Preschool language skills and reading at 7, 9 and 10 years: etiology of the relationship.

Using longitudinal data from the Twins Early Development Study, we examined the etiology of the relationship between language and expressive phonology at 4½ years, and reading skills at 7, 9 and 10 years. Phenotypically, there is a moderate and stable relationship between 4 ½ -year language scores and later reading at all three ages. There is a similar relationship between 4½-year expressive phonology and later reading. Etiologically, the links between early language skills and reading are mediated by both genetic and environmental factors. However, the links between expressive phonology and later reading are mediated entirely by shared genetic factors.

Top

Lindsay Heggie (Queen's University); Wade-Woolley, Lesly; Cormier, Pierre - Using progress monitoring to measure student response to a phonemic awareness intervention program in French Immersion

Key metalinguistic skills, such as phonological awareness (PA) have been shown to transfer between languages. At-risk readers in language immersion programs require early assessment and intervention to prevent reading failure, but it is not clear whether to give support in the native language or in the language of instruction. The current study uses progress monitoring measures to examine French Immersion Grade 1 students' growth over the course of a PA intervention program delivered either in French and English. Implications for early intervention in French Immersion environments are discussed.

Top

Maartje Hilte (VU Amsterdam) - Semantic cues facilitate learning to spell

Based on computational models, neuropsychological studies, and various intervention studies it seems reasonable to expect that semantic cues in a training program may be effective in learning to spell. Therefore, the current experiment examines the effect of semantic cues in a training program in less skilled spellers from Grade 2 and the question is whether progress in spelling skill is larger when semantic cues are provided as compared to no cues. A second question is how semantic cues could be best provided: either as a picture or in a text. Results showed that semantics provided in a text are most effective as a cue in training as compared to semantics in a picture or no semantic cue.

Top

Annemarie Hindman (Temple University College of Education); Morrison, Frederick J. - Parenting of Preschoolers: Multiple Dimensions and their Complex Associations with Early Literacy and Social Skills

This study explored the nature and structure of parenting preschoolers, the variability in parenting between families, and the associations between parenting and children's early literacy and social development. Children (n=192) were assessed on early literacy and learning-related social skills, and parents completed a parenting questionnaire. Factor analyses suggested that parenting can be characterized by three dimensions: home learning environment (HLE), warmth/responsiveness (WR), and control/discipline (CD). Families varied on HLE and CD but less on WR. SEM results indicated that these dimensions demonstrated complex relations to early literacy and social skills. Implications for parenting practices and future research will be discussed.

Top

Sini Hintikka (); Landerl, Karin; Aro, Mikko; Lyytinen, Heikki - Training reading fluency: Is generalization possible and is it important to practice oral articulation?

Outcomes of computerized training of sub-lexical units (onset cluster syllables) on reading speed were evaluated for 39 German-speaking poor readers in Grades 2 and 3. Performance of a Phonological-Orthographic Association Group, an Articulation Group, and a Combined Group were compared with an untrained Control Group. During training the intervention groups showed better gains in trained sub-lexical items and words including a trained syllable than the control group. No differences were found between the three intervention groups. Thus, it is possible to attain generalization from sub-lexical level to word-level in training reading fluency. Practicing phonological-orthographic associations and oral articulation were equally effective.

Top

Connie Suk-Han Ho (The University of Hong Kong); Leung, Man-Tak; Cheung, Him - Early Language and Phonological Difficulties of Chinese Preschool Children at Familial Risk for Dyslexia

The present study examined whether Chinese preschool children at familial risk for dyslexia had early language and cognitive difficulties. 99 high-risk and 44 low-risk Chinese 4-year-old children (Kindergarten first year, K1) were recruited at the beginning of a 4-year longitudinal study. Results of the first two years of this study showed that high-risk children performed significantly less well than low-risk children in language and phonological measures. Language, phonological, paired-associate learning (PAL), and rapid naming skills were found to have significant unique contribution to Chinese character reading in K2 even when the autoregressive effect of Chinese reading in K1 was controlled. However, only Chinese phonological skills and PAL had significant unique contribution to English word reading in K2. These results suggest that Chinese preschool children at familial risk for dyslexia have early difficulties in spoken language and phonological processing like their alphabetic counterparts. Phonological skills and PAL may be common to learning both Chinese and English at their early stage, but oral language and rapid naming skills in Chinese are relevant mainly for learning Chinese. (This study was funded by the Research Grants Council in Hong Kong, #HKU 7212/04H)

Top

Tiffany Hogan (University of Nebraska - Lincoln); Catts, Hugh; Adlof, Suzanne; Storkel, Holly; Vitevitch, Michael - Dissociations between semantic and phonologic lexical structure in adolescent poor comprehenders and poor decoders.

Poor comprehenders show deficient reading comprehension in spite of good word recognition. In addition to their reading problems, numerous studies have documented oral language deficits in this population. Nation & Snowling (1998) showed that these language deficits precluded poor comprehenders' ability to benefit from sentence context when reading single words. Building on their findings, we examined semantic priming of spoken words in poor comprehenders, poor decoders, and age matched controls. Preliminary analyses converge with past work and show that the poor comprehenders have limited priming for spoken words, whereas the controls and poor decoders show the expected priming.

Top

Virginia M. Holmes () - Do unexpectedly poor spellers have inferior visual memory?

Why do some skilled adults who can read difficult-to-spell words, such as plagiarism, have greater trouble than others spelling these words accurately? The current results indicate that this problem does not arise from worse immediate memory for nonverbal visual sequences, whether tested through a reproduction or a recognition format. However, unexpectedly poor spellers have weaker orthographic processing skill than better spellers, as shown by slower and more error-prone lexical decisions on printed words. While the findings suggest that we should rethink the notion of unexpectedly poor spelling, they provide positive confirmation of the intimate relationship between reading and spelling processes.

Top

Michelle Hood (Griffith University , Australia) - What Predicts Parental Literacy Socialisation Practices in the Pre-school Home Environment?

This study examined factors that predict the extent to which parents engage pre-school-aged children in literacy socialisation practices. Two hundred parents (94% mothers) of pre-school-aged children (3.7 - 6.4 years old; 51.2% male) participated. Parents completed a home literacy environment questionnaire, which also assessed a range of characteristics thought to influence literacy practices (including reading beliefs, stress, perceptions of child reading interest, and SES). Results indicated that parental stress was negatively related to reading beliefs and perceived child interest. Different parental beliefs about reading as pleasurable versus an important skill were related to different parent literacy socialisation practices.

Top

Sherri L. Horner (Bowling Green State University) - The development of uppercase and lowercase letter names

I report on data on uppercase and lowercase letters from approximately 500 three-, four-, and five-year-old preschoolers from three sites (e.g., New York City, Memphis, TN, Toledo, OH). The research questions are: is there a bi-modal distribution for a) uppercase and b) lowercase letters for same-age preschoolers. Preliminary chi-squares have shown bi-modal distributions for uppercase letters for all three age groups from NYC and for the 3-year-olds and 5-year-olds from Memphis. I conclude by proposing that perhaps young children go through a "uppercase letter-naming explosion" whereby they very rapidly learn many names of the uppercase letters.

Top

Tzipi Horowitz (Neurocognitive Research Laboratory) - Comparison of cerebral activity during performance of an error move as compared to a precise move among dyslexic as compared to regular readers using ERN's ERP component potential. Tzipi Horowitz & Zvia Breznitz Ph.D Neurocognitive research Labora

Several researches have shown that the brain of a precise processor contains a mechanism for monitoring errors, which is activated upon commission of an error and results in an evocation of post-response ERP's component called "ERN" (Miltner,1997). Based on the definition (BDA1999) that the dyslexia phenomenon is characterized by an inaccurate and slow decoding of reading representations, the present study will examine the existence of the error monitoring mechanism among adult dyslexic readers using behavioral and electrophysiological measures Our results indicate a significant difference in the ERN's activity pattern among dyslexic as compared to regular readers.

Top

Li-Yu Hung ( National Taiwan Normal University); Chen, Shu-Li; Wang, Chiung-Chu - The comparison of two resources to detect high risk RD students during the process of identification

Teacher referral and group test screen are two major resources to detect high risk students with RD. 1126 students participated in the first stage of identification process and 118 RD students were diagnosed throng three stage. The study aimed to investigate the function of two different resources of detecting high risk students. The difference of reading tests among groups varied by grades. Two resources of detecting RD students function differently, and difference varied from grade. The result should be taken into account for the model of screen RD.

Top

Florian Hutzler (University of Salzburg); Braun, Mario; Münte, Thomas F.; Rotte, Michael; Jacobs, Arthur M. - Still troubles in the Neighborhood? Competing syllabic & orthographic cohorts.

During lexical decision, response times to words with high-frequency first syllables are slower than to words with low-frequency first syllables. This so called inhibitory effect of first syllable-frequency in visual word recognition was interpreted (Carreiras et al., 1993, 2006) in terms of lexical competition in an interactive activation model. Functional imaging data recorded during a lexical decision task in German is presented, directly comparing activations resulting from syllable-frequency and neighborhood size in order to further explore the above mentioned notion.

Top

Maureen Jean (Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto) - Does L2 Vocabulary Knowledge Predict L2 Word Recognition Skills in ESL and EL1 Upper-elementary Children?

How important is vocabulary's role in predicting word recognition in English-as-a-Second Language (ESL) and English-as-a-First Language (EL1) children? An analysis of the profiles of ESL and EL1 upper elementary-aged children revealed that English vocabulary knowledge explained additional unique variance on English word recognition, after accounting for the contributions of PA, RAN, and working memory in both groups. Additionally, the two groups did not differ on underlying processing components (PA, RAN, and working memory) or on word recognition, but ESL children continued to lag behind their EL1 peers on English vocabulary corresponding approximately to their grade level.

Top

Joseph Jenkins (University of Washington); Fuchs, Lynn; Hamlett, Carol; Powell, Sarah; Lambert, Warren - Analysis of Decoding Skill

This study measured decoding skills of 243 grades 2-5 children, using a nonword decoding inventory of 10 word types. We had five purposes: (1) examining the factor structure of decoding ability; (2) determining if performance within a phonics category was more consistent than performance across categories; (3) determining the relative difficulty of the phonic categories across and within grade levels; (4) examining the concurrent validity of the decoding measure using oral reading fluency as a criterion; (5) examining the potential of the inventory for revealing performance profiles of individual students.

Top

Gracia Jiménez-Fernández (University of Granada); Defior, Sylvia; Vaquero, Joaquin - Reading acquisition and implicit learning

Previous research yielded equivocal results concerning the relationship between implicit learning and reading acquisition. Some recent studies, using the serial reaction time task, have found that poor readers have deficits in implicit sequence learning but other studies have not. The present study compares poor and good readers on two learning tasks: an incidental (implicit learning) task and an intentional task (explicit learning). Results show that good readers show learning on both tasks, however, poor readers evidence learning only on intentional task, but not on incidental task. These findings suggest that implicit learning could be involved in literacy acquisition.

Top

Anna Johnson (National Center for Children and Families, Columbia University); Petrill, Stephen A. - The home literacy environment and early reading: Evidence from a twin study

The current study assessed multiple measures of the home literacy environment (HLE), in the ongoing Western Reserve Reading Project, a study of 456 twins recruited in Kindergarten or first grade. The goal of the current analyses was to distinguish between aspects of the early reading environment that were shared by siblings living in the same home compared to those that were child-specific. Results suggested that child-specific aspects of the HLE, along with the degree of household order, were the most consistent predictors of early reading. Moreover, the impact of these characteristics and household order was moderated by maternal reading ability.

Top

Rhona S. Johnston (University of Hull) - English speaking boys have better word recognition than girls with synthetic phonics teaching

In two longitudinal studies where children learnt to read by programmes including either analytic (N=228) or synthetic (N=237) phonics teaching, the boys and the girls read and spelt equally well at the end of their first and second years at school. However, by the end of the third year at school it was found that boys taught by the analytic phonics approach were a significant 3 months below the girls in word reading and spelling, whereas those taught by the synthetic phonics approach were 5 months ahead, and spelling was as good as that of girls.

Top

Amber Johnston (University of Guelph); Barnes, Marcia; Davis, Bronwen - The Role of Attentional Control in Reading Comprehension

Scores from standardized attention measures, teachers' ratings of classroom inattention, and an experimental verbal working memory task were used to predict performance on two standardized measures of reading comprehension and an experimental measure of bridging inferences. One hundred and twelve children in grades 3 through 8 were tested. The findings suggest that the attentional and memory processes needed for successful comprehension differ depending on the particular tool used to measure comprehension. Building mental models during reading appears to rely on language based attentional processes, while understanding a constructed mental model may rely on language and non-language based attentional processes.

Top

Rhona Johnston (University of Hull, UK) - [untitled]

Children in the United Kingdom start school early, as young as 4.5 years old in Scotland and 4 years old in England. Our research shows that given this early start, children read better if they learn by the synthetic phonics rather than the analytic phonics approach. We have also found that children from poorer economic homes do as well as those from better off homes for much of their primary schooling, and that boys have better word recogniton skills than girls. Finally, although many of the children in our study came from poor SES homes, the sample's reading comprehension was found to be significantly above chronological age.

Top

Manon Jones (University of Edinburgh) - Which components of Rapid Automised Naming influence naming speed in average and dyslexic readers?

We examined dyslexic Rapid Automised Naming (RAN) deficits. Experiment 1 varied task format and suggested that preview of an adjacent stimulus facilitates average readers' but not dyslexic performance. Experiment 2 compared reading groups on three types of confusable (similar) letter sets (orthographic, onset and rime), presented adjacently or non-adjacently. When presented adjacently, letters with confusable rimes (e.g. "k" - "j") impaired dyslexic RAN performance, but letters with confusable orthographic and onset properties did not. Results suggest that retrieving ill-defined phonological rime information contributes to the RAN deficit.

Top

Anna Jordan (York University) - The Role of IQ and Speed of Processing in Reading

Phonological skills do not account for all the variance in reading ability, so there has been a recent search for non-phonological factors (Sabatini, 2000). Speed of information processing (SoP), is one popular non-phonological factor. The current study explored the role of IQ and speed of processing in reading among adults, aged 16-42 years. Participants were assessed on a number of tests which tapped reading and phonological skills, general cognitive ability, verbal STM and SoP. The data support a role for speed of processing in reading and indicate that different aspects of SoP predict different aspects of reading.

Top

R. Malatesha Joshi (Texas A & M University); Boulware-Gooden, R.; Ocker-Dean, Emily; Aaron, P. G. - Can Componential Model of Reading be applied to acquisition of Spanish literacy?

Administration of decoding and comprehension tasks to English-speaking children from grades 2-4 showed that approximately 50 % of the variance could be explained by decoding and comprehension. Similarly, approximately 60% of the variance seen in the reading comprehension of Spanish-speaking children in grades 2-3 could also be explained by decoding and comprehension. The major findings of the study were; (a) Componential Model can be applied to Spanish also; and (b) The variance seen in decoding scores of Spanish third graders resembled that of English fourth graders which supports the orthographic depth hypothesis as well.

Top

Holger Juul (Centre for Reading Research, University of Copenhagen) - Predicting early reading development from group administered preschool measures

Linguistic abilities were assessed in 600 Danish 6-year-olds at the beginning of their preschool year. Measures were in multiple choice-format and included phonological awareness, vocabulary, and letter knowledge. The predictive validity of these measures was tested in a follow-up study of the children's reading and spelling skills in Grade 2. For educational systems, it will be an advantage if such group administered measures can be used to identify children at risk for dyslexia, as group testing is more economical than the individual testing usually employed in prediction studies. [Data have just been collected and will be analysed in January-February 2007.]

Top

Benjawan Kasisopa (MARCS Auditory Laboratories, University of Western Sydney); Burnham, Denis; Luksaneeyanawin, Sudaporn; Reilly, Ronan; Winskel, Heather; Radach, Ralph - The Effects of Thai Orthography on Reading Accuracy of Native Thai Readers

Although the Thai alphabetic script has no spaces between words, it appears that readers fixate near the middle of words, just like readers of spaced scripts. Here the effect of two features of Thai orthography - frequency of initial and final characters, and the combination of consonant classes and tone characters - on Thai children's reading as a function of age was studied. Words with high frequency initial and final characters were recognised faster and with fewer errors than those with average or low frequency; as were words beginning with the characters in the more tonologically transparent middle consonant class than the less transparent low or high classes.

Top

Janice M. Keenan (University of Denver); Miller, Amanda - The Power of Prior Knowledge to Compensate for Deficits in Reading Disability

Retellings of a passage consistently show that central information is recalled better than peripheral information. Although retellings of children with reading disability (RD) show this centrality effect, they also show what we call a centrality deficit - a bigger deficit relative to age-matched controls on central ideas than on peripheral ideas. We show that this deficit can be eliminated, however, when children with RD have prior knowledge of the topic. We also show that having prior knowledge allows children with RD to read passages faster than children matched on word-list reading speed and accuracy but who lack prior knowledge.

Top

Nenagh Kemp (School of Psychology, University of Tasmania, Australia) - Spelling roolz: Intervening to improve university students' spelling of morphological patterns

The complexities of the English orthographic system mean that even university students can struggle with spelling. Morphological rules, as well as alphabetic rules, determine the spelling of tax vs. tacks; adolescents vs. adolescence, its vs. it's. Pre- and post-test spelling performance was examined in 100 university students who completed three intervention sessions focused on grammar/spelling, and in 30 controls. Neither group improved in general spelling, or in spelling morphologically-determined endings, and both groups improved in spelling pseudoword morphological endings. However, the intervention specifically improved the spelling of pairs such as its-it's and your-you're. Suggestions for improving intervention efficacy are made.

Top

Panayiota Kendeou (Cyprus Pedagogical Institute); Papadopoulos, Timothy C.; Constantinidou, Maria; Christou, Elena - Bridging theories to better understand early reading difficulties

Grade 1 children were assigned to four groups of reading competence [(CAS-Low Readers (CAS-LG); DEST-Low Readers (DEST-LG); Average Readers (AG); and Very Good Readers (VGG)] on the basis of their reading speed scores on real word and pseudoword reading, and were compared to a set of cognitive and neuropsychological measures (from the CAS and the DEST-R batteries). The CAS successive and simultaneous measures distinguished the CAS-LG from the other 3 groups. Similarly, seven DEST tests distinguished the DEST-LG from both the CAS-LG and the typically developing reading groups. The findings argue in favor of an integrative theoretical approach to reading difficulties.

Top

Alison Kevan (School of Psychology); Pammer, Kristen - Making the link between magnocellular sensitivity, orthographic processing and reading ability

Increasing evidence suggests that dyslexic readers possess a magnocellular deficit. However, at present it is unclear how such a deficit relates to reading or indeed reading failure. Using the frequency doubling illusion to assess visual functioning, dyslexic readers were shown to possess a magnocellular deficit. Results from this study also provide evidence to suggest that visual sensitivity can predict reading ability, indicating that in addition to phonological deficits, the visual impairments observed in dyslexic readers may contribute to their reading impairment through orthographic sensitivity.

Top

Agnès Kipffer-Piquard (LORIA - CNRS, speech team, Nancy, France - agnes.kipffer@loria.fr); Sprenger-Charolles, Liliane - The predictive power of early phonemic discrimination skills on reading: Follow-up of 85 French-speaking children from 5 to 8 years of age

Our main goal was to test the predictive power of phonemic discrimination vs. phonemic segmentation, phonological STM, rapid naming, and letter knowledge (assessed at age 5) on different reading skills (assessed at age 8). The population included 39 children classified as being at-risk for reading on the basis of their phonemic discrimination skills (scores under the first quartile) who were matched to 46 not at-risk children (scores over the median) on PIQ, VIQ, chronological age and sex. Phonemic discrimination and rapid naming appear to be the best predictors of future reading skills, whatever the task (pseudoword reading, word reading in isolation and in context) and the measure (accuracy or speed).

Top

John R. Kirby (Queen's University, Canada) - Discussant

 

Top

Ann-Mari Knivsberg (National Centre for Reading Education and Research); Andreassen, Anne Brit - Behaviour, attention, and cognition in severe dyslexia

Students with phonological deficits and severely impaired reading abilities are in focus in this study. The aim was to assess if these students have more behavioural/emotional problems than normal reading students. A clinical sample of 70 students was compared to a normal reading control group. Mean age for the two groups was 150 months, and mean IQ approximately 100. Information on behaviour/emotions was obtained from parents, teachers, and participants through standardised observation schemes. The dyslexia group showed significantly more problems in all areas than the controls. The results indicate that additional information may be imperative for diagnostic and remedial procedures.

Top

In Yeong Ko (University of Maryland, College Park); Wang, Min; Choi, Jaeho - Morphological awareness is important in Korean-English biliteracy acquisition

This study investigated the contribution of morphological awareness in a group of Korean-English bilingual children learning to read Korean and English simultaneously in the US. Grades 2 to grade 4 children were tested on a set of experimental tasks tapping into phonological, morphological and reading skills in both Korean and English. We hypothesize that morphological awareness contributes to reading over and above phonological awareness within both Korean and English. More importantly, we predict a cross-language transfer from English morphological awareness to Korean reading skills. The transfer from English L2 to Korean L1 is due to the bilingual children's rapidly increasing English L2 skills in their primary school years.

Top

Ofra Korat (Bar Ilan University, Israel) - The Effects of CD-ROM Storybook Reading on Children's Emergent Literacy

We researched the effects of age and frequency of reading a CD-ROM storybook (0 vs. 3 vs. 5 times) on their emergent literacy with pre-kindergarteners' (n = 108) and kindergarteners' (n = 106). No significant age differences emerged; there was no interaction between age and reading frequency. Children using the software five times showed greater progress in word meaning than those using it three times; both groups did better than the control group. Children using the software five times showed greater progress in word reading and phonological awareness than the control group. All children showed good story comprehension.

Top

Sebastian Korinth (University of Haifa); Breznitz, Zvia; Sommer, Werner - Semantics Processing Altered by Reading Speed and Training - N 400 Effects of the Reading Acceleration Training

Breznitz's "acceleration phenomenon" (Breznitz 1997; 2006) states that dyslexics and regular readers of Hebrew and English can better decode and comprehend written materials if forced to read faster by external manipulation. Based on this phenomenon a computer based training program (Reading Acceleration Program) was developed. The ERP data presented in the poster were obtained in an experiment which employed the Reading Acceleration Program (RAP) for the first time in the German Language. The aim of the experiment was to shed light on the underlying mechanisms which are causing the Acceleration Phenomenon (Breznitz 1997; 2006) 22 German students, all of them regular readers, underwent an ERP recording session before and after they completed a six week RAP-training. A sentence reading paradigm, which manipulated two conditions: stimulus presentation time and semantic violation (aiming to trigger N400 effects) was utilized. The N400 (Kutas & Hillyard, 1980) is widely accepted to be an ERP component which reflects brain activity involved in semantic processing. The poster focuses on the presentation and interpretation of N400 effects altered by three experimental conditions: training, semantic violation and stimulus presentation time. Further information concerning behavioral and eye tracking data will be presented in a symposium talk (Prof. Werner Sommer).

Top

Emiko Koyama (Ontario Institute for Studies in Education); Segal-Seiden, Lucja; Geva, Esther - Common underlying factors in mathematic difficulties and in reading related problems: a case of 31 children at risk of academic failure followed through grade 5 and grade 6.

Association between reading and mathematics abilities was examined in 31 grade 5 children (11 EL1 and 20 EL2) with nonverbal cognitive ability above average (Raven score 53% and above) and WRAT3 Arithmetic score one grade below grade level or lower. The comparison group were 31 children with WRAT3 Arithmetic score at grade level and above, matched on Raven score and language status. Children with mathematics difficulties scored significantly lower than controls on tasks assessing memory (digits backwards/forwards), processing speed (RAN letters), phonological awareness, nonword span, word reading, and spelling. The same overall profile was found when assessed 1 year later.

Top

Richard S. Kruk (University of Manitoba); Petrasko, Ashley - From transparent to shift: Development of morphological awareness and its contribution to reading acquisition

Morphological awareness (MA) development and its role as a predictor of decoding and comprehension were examined in children from Grades 1 to 3. MA improved with age. MA with transparent items (compared to shift items, wherein phonological or orthographic content change between root and derived forms) emerged as a mediating variable for comprehension, but not for decoding in Grade 1. As children progressed to Grade 3, their performance on shift items emerged as a significant predictor of both comprehension and decoding. Results are consistent with research showing that MA accounts for a wider range of reading skills as reading achievement improves.

Top

Li-Jen Kuo (Texas A&M University) - Effects of Early Exposure to a Second Language on Children's Development of Phonological Awareness

This study investigates how early bilingualism affects children's development of phonological awareness. Bilingual children were found to outperform their monolingual peers on tasks that required them to manipulate sound units and reflect upon structural properties of sounds. The bilingual advantage is discussed in the framework of cognitive flexibility theory.

Top

Yooan Kwon (Cognitive Neuroscience Lab., Department of Psychology, Korea University); Nam, Kichun - Different effects of the orthographic and phonological neighborhood density on Korean visual word recognition

The purpose of the current study was to examine the different role of the orthographic syllable and the phonological syllable in Korean visual word recognition. In order to accomplish the research goal, three experiments were conducted, and in each experiment, the neighborhood density defined by the orthographic syllable and the phonological syllable commonness at the first position of disyllablic words was varied. In Experiment 1, the lexical decision task was used, and the results showed that as the number of the neighbors based on the phonological syllable commonness increases, lexical decision latencies became longer, and as the number of orthographic syllable neighbors increases, words are recognized faster. In Experiment 2, the same design and materials to Experiment 1 was used, except that the instruction to do the lexical decision task was changed to focus on the accuracy of the lexical decision rather than response speed. The results of Experiment 2 showed the same effects of the phonological syllable and the orthographic syllable neighborhood density to those of Experiment 1. This result suggests that the fact of Experiment 1 was not due to the specific instruction influence. In Experiment 3, the naming task was employed to examine whether the results of Experiment 1 occurred due to the lexical decision demand. The results of Experiment 3 presented the exactly very similar pattern of the results of Experiment 1, and this result implies that the different roles of the orthographic syllable and the phonological syllable are real. Through three experiments, it can be said safely that the phonological syllable neighbor density effect comes from the multiple lexical-activation and lexical competition, whereas the orthographic syllable effect is due to the sub-lexical unit overlapping and orthographic redundancy.

Top

Fiona Kyle (City University London); Harris, Margaret; Goswami, Usha; Stainthorp, Rhona; Mathews, Leonie - Deaf children's use of spelling strategies

This paper will look at deaf children's use of spelling strategies and whether these strategies develop with age. 29 severely/profoundly deaf children (mean age 7:10) and 31 reading-age matched hearing children (mean age 6:10) were given a picture based spelling task. The two groups did not differ in their overall scores on the spelling task. The deaf children were administered the same spelling task every twelve months over a period of three years. Their spelling errors were analysed both quantitatively and qualitatively (1) comparing the types of strategies employed by the deaf and hearing children and (2) examining the developmental change in deaf children's use of strategies over time.

Top

Adele Lafrance (The Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto); Geva, Esther - EL1 and ESL Spelling of Grammar Markers: Language Status or Risk Status?

One hundred and sixty-six children (30% EL1, 70% ELL) from a larger project conducted in a Canadian metropolis were administered, among others, measures of spelling, phonological awareness and rapid naming. The spelling of the words wanted and peeked were analyzed for the presence of past tense markers (coded as either 0: no marker; 1: related marker, e.g., wantet instead of wanted; or 2: accurate representation of the past tense marker). The accuracy of spelling of past tense markers was examined for EL1 and ESL groups in Grades 1, 2 and 3. No significant differences were noted between the language groups at any grade. As a result, the children in the sample were then categorized according to risk status on the basis of their phonological awareness and naming speed skills measured in Grade 1. Differences were noted between low- and high-risk groups in terms of the spelling of past tense markers for both words (wanted and peeked). Theoretical implications are discussed.

Top

Marie Lallier (Laboratoire de Psychologie et Neurocognition, Grenoble, France); Bosse, Marie-Line; Valdois, Sylviane - The visual attention span deficit in developmental dyslexia is not a perceptual span disorder.

The present study aimed at assessing whether the visual attention span (VAS) deficit recently reported as contributing to the poor reading performance of dyslexic readers could simply be an expression of differences in perceptual span. The spatial pattern of performance of 30 French dyslexic children with a VAS disorder was analysed as they were engaged in a global report task. Results showed that they exhibited a better performance on the letter furthest to the left of the fixation point compared to the rightmost letter, contrary to our expectations following a perceptual span reduction.

Top

Nicole Landi (Haksins Labs); Mirman, Daniel - Explorations of the relations between statistical speech segmentation, speech rate, and reading skill

Statistical learning based on conditional probabilities of syllable transitions in speech has been proposed as an important component of language processing. We compared adult performance on a statistical learning task at five different speech rates with performance on a test of reading ability. We found a reliable positive correlation at some of the speech rates, but not others, suggesting that skilled readers are better able to learn the statistics of speech (at least at some speech rates). Follow-up experiments are examining this possible relationship more closely using additional tests of language-related skills.

Top

Susan Landry (University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston); Anthony, Jason; Swank, Paul; Gunnewig, Susan - What components are needed for effect professional development? A large scale evaluation of four professional development programs for teachers of at-risk preschoolers.

We compared four professional development (PD) programs for teachers of at-risk preschoolers. All PD programs included year-long coursework, practice in one's classroom, and online message boards with fellow teachers. Mentoring and Feedback conditions were crossed such that teachers in two programs were provided weekly mentoring and teachers in two programs received detailed, instructionally linked feedback on children's progress in language and literacy. The four PD conditions were compared to a control group. 265 teachers were randomly assigned to experimental conditions. Mentoring and detailed feedback on children's progress had positive effects on teaching quality, classroom environments, and children's achievement, but the most powerful program included the core activities, ongoing mentoring, and detailed feedback on children's progress.

Top

Pierre Largy (Université de Toulouse le Mirail) - Study of implicit learning abilities in children with and without dyslexia

The aim of the present study was to examine the material's impact on implicit sequence learning abilities assessed by an Serial Reaction Time task. In this study, we developed a Serial Reaction Time (SRT) task in which the target varied in it's linguistic characteristics. In a first experiment, 78 children, 8- and 10-year-old, all normal readers, were tested to assess the sequential learning variations according to the level of reading expertise. In a second experiment, using the same task, we compared dyslectic children to a control group of children matched as to the reading capacity.

Top

Delphine Lassus (LPNC Grenoble France); Valdois, Sylviane - Visual attention span deficit in developmental dyslexia: A simultaneous processing disorder.

The aim of this study was to confront two explanatory assumptions of developmental dyslexia. The first one suggests that dyslexic children exhibit a rapid stimulus processing disorder. The second one proposes that dyslexia results from a visual attention span deficit, i.e. a simultaneous processing disorder. Dyslexic children without phonological problems and matched chronological age controls were submitted to two tasks requiring to orally report simultaneously or sequentially displayed letters. The dyslexic children were found to exhibit a simultaneous visual processing deficit in the absence of serial processing disorder.

Top

Lilach Lebovitz (University of Haifa, Israel) - Computing meaning from print: A comparison between dyslexic and regular readers

Research in reading has commonly focused on the decoding process. The current study focuses on the lexical stage, and investigates the processing of meaning using behavioral and electrophysiological methods. A living/non-living semantic judgment task was presented to regular and dyslexic adult readers. Reliance on phonological decoding was manipulated using 2 types of stimuli presented at short (100ms) and long (self-paced) durations. Stimuli included high-frequency words and meaning-matched pseudo-homophones. The assumption was that regular and compensated dyslexic readers differ in the ways by which they compute meaning from single words, in terms of both behavioral and brain responses. Results will be presented.

Top

Gabriel Lee (Daito Bunka University) - Towards a simple view of second language learning: relationships between fluency, vocabulary, reading and listening comprehension

Does fluency play a unique role in the comprehension of language? A recent study by Adlof et al. (2006) found it did with second grade schoolchildren, but not with a sample of fourth and eighth graders. L2 research has also suggested fluency is an important part of predicting language ability (Hirai, 1999; Lee 2006). The current study investigated 92 Japanese learners of English as a foreign language. Multiple regression was used to investigate whether or not fluency contributed any unique variance to the prediction of reading comprehension after accounting for word recognition accuracy and listening comprehension. Results found that fluency did contribute unique variance to the prediction of reading comprehension. Thus, it seems that Carver's (1993) Simple View II model is superior when modeling young native speaker children or L2 learners.

Top

Jee-Young Lee (Kyungnam University); Cho, Jeung-Ryeul - Cross-Language Transfer of Morphological and Phonological Awareness to reading in L2 English and Chinese Hanja among Korean children

This study examined the transfer of Korean phonological and morphological awareness to reading and spelling in L2 English and Chinese Hanja among 107 sixth graders from Korea. In regression equations, phoneme deletion, morpheme production and visual matching of automitization contributed unique variance in English word reading; and number naming speed and morpheme production contributed unique variance in Hanja reading. Similar patterns of results were found in spelling. Korean phoneme awareness transfers to reading in L2 English. Morphological awareness transfers to reading in both Chinese Hanja and English. It is suggested that morphological awareness is a general and not a language-specific cognitive process.

Top

Christopher Lemons (Peabody College of Vanderbilt University); Fuchs, Doug; Fuchs, Lynn - Longitudinal evidence of improved kindergarten reading outcomes and implications for intervention research

The purpose of this study was twofold. First, we described an extant database on the reading performance of 5 cohorts of kindergarteners (1997, 1998, 1999, 2004, and 2005) in the same large, urban metropolitan school district. Our data show marked improvements in reading performance from the first 3 years to the last 2 years. Second, we interviewed school district leaders to determine what decisions made at the district level may have contributed to these outcomes. This presentation will focus on student improvements and on the possible causes of these improvements. The implications for conducting intervention research in a context of improving typical classroom instruction will be discussed.

Top

Arne Lervag (University of Oslo) - Prediction of development in beginning reading.

The study examined the role of phoneme awareness, RAN pauses and RAN articulations as longitudinal predictors of non-word reading, orthographic choice and reading fluency. 197 children were tested three times over a period of two years. Through latent variable modelling it was established that Phoneme Awareness was able to predict reading at the second, but not at the third time point. Further, the decomposition of the RAN tasks revealed that the pauses were strongly related to the total rapid naming score and predicted all the reading constructs measured at both the second and the third time point. The articulations were only able to weakly predict reading at the second time point.

Top

Kate Nga-ki Leung (The University of Hong Kong); Ho, Connie, Suk-han - Reading-related behavioral characteristics as predictor of reading difficulties of Chinese adults: The use of adult behavior checklist for reading and writing in Hong Kong

The present study examined the behavioral characteristics that would predict the reading level of Chinese adults. A confirmatory factor analysis based on the ratings of 3798 adults confirmed the proposed twenty-two reading-related behavioral characteristics of six dimensions (reading, writing, organization, memory, arithmetic and oral language). In a separate sample of 234 adults who did the reading and writing assessment, regression analysis showed that mean scores of the behavioral characteristics significantly predicted the literacy skill of the participants after controlling for age, education level and intelligence. Each item score and the mean score of the behavioral checklist were also able to differentiate adults with reading difficulties from those with average reading-level. Results indicated a sensitivity and a specificity of 75.7% and 75.6% respectively, at a cutoff score of 2.4 out of the total score of 5.

Top

Ronit Levie (Ronit Levie, Tel Aviv University); Levin, Iris; Ravid, Dorit - Developing sensitivity to storybook style: analysis in two SES

This study investigates Hebrew-speaking children's sensitivity to expressions typical of children's storybooks. 288 children (kindergarten to 5th grade) from two SES took the 'Hebrew Storybook-style Recognition and Explanation' task. Children listened to 52 pairs of content-matched sentences, one in storybook style and the other in conversational style. They had to select the sentence more suitable to storybooks, and to explain their choice. Explanations were reliably categorized into pre-meta-linguistic, preliminary meta-linguistic and meta-linguistic. Correct responses increased with age and schooling in both populations. Results ordered linguistic distinctions by difficulty level. Middle-high SES children outperformed low SES counterparts, but only in K and 1st Grade.

Top

Iris Levin (Tel Aviv University, Israel) - The role of letter names in early literacy: Hebrew letter names have the same role as English, almost

Letter names are used to spell words at the phase when children are still unable to use letter sounds. When the name of a letter can be detected in a word children succeed more in spelling it. Tolchinsky claimed that Hebrew letter names are not useful because the names are too long to be embedded in words. Children were asked to spell orally and in writing words including full letter names (CVC), partial (CV), and the letter sound (C). Performance increased with length of correct cues and decreased with length of wrong cues. Effects were stronger than reported on English.

Top

Endia Lindo (University of North Texas); Compton, Donald - Evaluating the Impact of Family Background on the Comprehension Ability of Struggling Readers in the Late Elementary Grades

This study examines how family background impacts the comprehension of struggling readers in grades 2-6. Family background surveys were administered to parents (N=46), who also completed cognitive, reading, stress, and depression measures. These data, in conjunction with student behavior ratings, will be used to examine the predictive validity of the family background instrument, in comparison to common socioeconomic measures (i.e., Free-Reduced Lunch, Hollingshead), in identifying students at-risk for comprehension difficulty. SPSS reliability and regression analyses will be conducted to examine how the variables composing family background correlate, and their relationship to the students' comprehension score on the Gates MacGinitie.

Top

Christopher Lonigan (Florida State University) - Significance of Early Vocabulary Development for Beginning Reading

Efforts to identify environmental causes of the development of phonological awareness have not yielded consistent findings. One possible origin for the development of phonological awareness is the development of vocabulary. Results from longitudinal studies of children from diverse economically backgrounds exploring the development of emergent literacy skills in preschool children will be reviewed. Results demonstrate concurrent and predictive linkages between preschool vocabulary skill and skill on measures of phonological awareness. Results of an intervention study for children at-risk of reading difficulties will be summarized that provide evidence of a causal role for vocabulary development in the development of phonological awareness.

Top

Carol Lord (Department of Teacher Education) - Does the sentence end here? Patterns of novel sentence-final intonation

Non-fluent readers sometimes impose sentence-final falling intonation and pause inappropriately before the last words of the print sentence. Does the child bring a sentence structure template to the reading task? This study analyzes audio recordings of narrative passages read by 64 third grade non-fluent readers. More than 100 instances of novel declination and pause were observed, most often at the point in the text where the core argument requirements of the verb were satisfied. Some children used declination rarely; others appeared to use it when they were confident that they had completed a plausible sentence structure.

Top

Yang Luo (OISE/University of Toronto); Jing Zhang, Cherry; Chen, Xi - General Visual and Visual-Orthographic Skills in Chinese Character Acquisition

The present study investigated general visual and visual-orthographic skills in prediction of Chinese character acquisition in China and Canada. The participants included 122 children in China and 93 children in Canada from kindergarten to Grade 2. The results showed no difference in general visual measures between the two countries, whereas children in China outperformed their peers in Canada on visual-orthographic measures. Moreover, compared with general visual skills, visual-orthographic measures were better predictors of character reading. Visual skills significantly predicted character reading in kindergarteners, suggesting that these skills were important for early character reading acquisition.

Top

Solveig-Alma Lyster (Department of Special Needs Education) - Dyslexia in a regular language - the role of phonology, grammar and semantics

From a total of 167 second grade children of familial risk of dyslexia 38% of the poorest and 24% of the best reading comprehenders were selected. Significant differences were found between the poor and good readers on word identification speed, but not on word reading accuracy. No differences were found between the groups on phonological awareness measures at the ages of five, six and seven, but pre-school differences on vocabulary and grammatical measures were large. Partial eta squared shows that a large part of the variance in reading comprehension can be explained by children's grammar in pre.school.

Top

Paul Macaruso (Community College of Rhode Island) - The benefits of computer assisted instruction to enhance literacy skills in kindergarten children

We examined the benefits of computer assisted instruction (CAI) used to supplement a phonics-based reading curriculum for kindergartners in an urban public school system. The CAI program provides systematic exercises in phonological awareness and simple letter/sound correspondences. Comparisons were made between children receiving CAI and matched control children taught by the same teacher but without CAI support. The treatment and control groups did not differ on pretest measures of early literacy skills. There were, however, significant differences favoring the treatment group on post-test measures. The largest post-test differences were found for students with the lowest pretest scores.

Top

Jeannette Mancilla-Martinez (University of California, Irvine); Kieffer, Michael J.; Christodoulou, Joanna; Biancarosa, Gina; Snow, Catherine E. - The Simple View Grows Up: Investigating the Development of English Reading Comprehension among Adolescent Language Minority Learners

This study examines the English reading comprehension developmental trajectories of 140 adolescent Spanish-English bilinguals in the U.S. using the theoretical lens of the Simple View of Reading. Three cohorts of students were each assessed at three time points in reading comprehension, language comprehension, and word reading. Regression analyses and Individual Growth Modeling were used to examine students' trajectories. Preliminary analyses suggest that both language comprehension and word reading predict students' concurrent performance and future growth in reading comprehension. However, their influence on reading comprehension varies to some extent across the middle grades, enriching a developmental perspective on the Simple View.

Top

Frank Manis (University of Southern California) - Speech and Tone Discrimination in Noise by Dyslexic and Non-Dyslexic Children

Three experiments tested the hypothesis that developmentally dyslexic children have difficulties excluding noise in the process of forming perceptual categories. Children heard the word "spy" or "sky" (p/k contrast) with and without white noise, and a discrimination threshold was established using psychophysical methods. Thresholds for perception of steady-state, and dynamically changing tones in noise were also calculated. Preliminary results indicated that dyslexic children had higher overall thresholds for both speech and tone stimuli, and this effect was more marked in noise than in the clear. The results indicate a general difficulty in excluding noise may be characteristic of at least some dyslexic children.

Top

Franklin Manis (University of Southern California, Los angeles, USA) - A re-appraisal of the impact of speech perception and phonological deficits on dyslexia theory

Discussion of the presented papers. The results presented in the symposium will be critically reviewed. The resulting perspective will be illustrated and broadened with additional data from the discussant's own work.

Top

George I. Manolitsis (University of Crete, Greece); Georgiou, George K.; Parrila, Rauno; Stephenson, Kathy - Early cognitive and non-cognitive predictors of reading fluency, spelling, and reading comprehension skills in Greek and English

This longitudinal study from kindergarten until Grade2 examines the effects of early cognitive and non-cognitive factors on reading and spelling skills in an orthographically opaque language (English) and in an orthographically transparent language (Greek). In kindergarten and grade 1 the children (61 Canadian and 71 Greek) were examined in general cognitive ability, phonological sensitivity, RAN, phonological memory, alphabet knowledge, and word reading. Moreover, parents' beliefs, home literacy environment and student's achievement strategies were assessed. In grade 2 the same children were reassessed on measures of reading fluency, spelling, and reading comprehension. In the data analysis, language will be treated as a predictor variable, whereas the interest would also be on the effects of the language by predictor variables interaction terms.

Top

Eva Marinus (Macquarie University/ ARC Centre of Excellence in Cognition and its Disorders (CCD)); de Jong, Peter F. - Sublexical and lexical processing in dyslexic and normal reading children reading in a transparent language.

Dyslexic children, reading in languages with a transparent orthography, typically rely more on sublexical reading procedures than normal reading children (Martens & de Jong, 2006). This relative reliance on sublexical reading procedures is assumed to be a consequence of a deficit in the build up of lexical knowledge and its use during reading. In the present study we found that the dyslexic children indeed displayed more sublexical processing compared to normal reading children. However, the dyslexic children did show a normal sensitivity to neighborhood size suggesting intact lexical processing.

Top

Frances Martin (University of Tasmania) - The Relationship Between the Processes Involved in Reading and Spelling in Adults

This study examined the effect of word frequency and reading age on the reading and spelling performance of adults. Sixty adults were presented with high and low frequency regular word, irregular word, and nonword reading and spelling lists on separate occasions. Results indicated that lexical and non-lexical processes were used equally when reading, however when spelling a reliance on the lexical process was found. Fewer errors were produced for high frequency words compared to low frequency words for both reading and spelling. The results suggest that care should be taken when extrapolating results obtained from children to adults.

Top

Sandra Martin-Chang (Concordia University); Chapman, Jessica; Meuse, Reanne - Effects of parental knowledge on child reading skill: Evidence from home schooled, unschooled, and traditionally schooled children.

Reading-related knowledge of parents and abilities of primary school children were measured in home schooling, unschooling, and traditionally schooling dyads. Home schooling and unschooling practices were differentiated based on the mothers' acceptance or rejection of curriculum use. Results indicated that both home schooling and unschooling mothers achieved higher reading-related knowledge scores than mothers of traditionally schooled students. Home schooled children achieved the highest reading scores, followed by traditionally schooled students; unschooled children obtained the lowest scores of all three groups. Correlations showed positive relationships between maternal reading-related knowledge and the children's ability to read real words, non-words, and comprehend passages.

Top

Linda H. Mason (The Pennsylvania State University) - Self-regulated strategy development instruction for expository reading comprehension and writing: Effects on performance of 7th and 8th grade students with disabilities.

Effects of classroom teacher implemented reading comprehension and writing strategy instruction for 50 students with disabilities, compared to students with disabilities not receiving strategy instruction, were examined in a quasi-experimental study. Performance was measured by examining students' growth in written retelling and in responses to a NAEP-like assessment prior to instruction, after reading comprehension instruction, after reading comprehension plus writing instruction, and in months (1 month, 3 months, 6 months) following instruction. An oral retell measure and standardized measures for reading comprehension (TORC-3) and written expression (OWLS) were collected prior to instruction, after instruction, and in 3 months following instruction.

Top

Naama Mayseless (Haifa University, Neurocognitive Lab); Breznitz, Zvia - Domain specific or domain general: Electrocortical measures during lexical and object decision tasks, a comparison of dyslexic and regular readers

Studies using ERP methodology have found differences between dyslexic and regular readers in both behavioral reaction time and brain activity when performing lexical decision (word pseudowords) tasks. Whether the between groups of readers differences mainly appear at a written language form or whether this can also be seen when processing meaningful and meaningless objects is the focus of the present study.

Top

Genevieve McArthur (ARC Centre of Cognition and its Disorders); Budd, Timothy; Bishop, Dorothy - Auditory processing in specific language impairment: Insights from the N1

The N1 event-related potential (ERP) brain response to tones presented at slow, moderate, and rapid rates was measured in 14 adolescents with specific language impairment (SLI) with a range of reading abilities as well as 14 controls. The N1 responses of the group with SLI were significantly different to controls when the tones were presented at slow and moderate rates but not at rapid rates. Contrary to a popular hypothesis, these data suggest that people with SLI do not have a specific deficit for processing rapid sounds.

Top

Catherine McBride-Chang (The Chinese University of Hong Kong) - Psycholinguistic units in relation to word recognition and vocabulary knowledge in Chinese and English among Hong Kong children

In a one-year longitudinal investigation, we explored the contributions of phoneme onset awareness, syllable awareness, and tone awareness to word reading and vocabulary knowledge in Hong Kong children ages 4-6. With nonverbal reasoning statistically controlled, phoneme onset emerged as a unique predictor of English word recognition and vocabulary knowledge among these Hong Kong Chinese children. In contrast, the same analyses demonstrated that tone awareness was strongly and uniquely predictive of word recognition and vocabulary knowledge in Chinese. These results will be discussed in relation to the psycholinguistic grain size theory (e.g., Ziegler & Goswami, 2005) for word recognition and the lexical restructuring hypothesis (e.g., Metsala & Walley, 1998) for vocabulary knowledge.

Top

Lynn McQuarrie (University of Alberta, Department of Educational Psychology,); Parrila, Rauno - "Phonological" representations: The effects of perceptual similarity on form-based similarity judgments in deaf children and adults.

The sources of knowledge that individuals use to make similarity judgements between words is thought to tap underlying phonological representations. In two studies we examined the effects of perceptual similarity between stimuli on deaf children and adult's ability to make similarity judgments using a newly created test of phonological awareness-perceptual similarity judgments (PA-PSJ). Manipulation of stimulus contrasts (acoustic, visual, tactile) allowed a finer-grained estimate of the sources of knowledge that deaf individuals use to make similarity judgements between words. Results do not support long-held assumptions of 'functional' equivalence between 'heard' and 'seen' speech in the development of 'phonological' representations in deaf learners.

Top

Monica Melby-Lervag (University of Oslo, Dep. of special needs education) - The Relationship Between Free recall, Serial Recall and Phonological Skills

Gathercole and Baddeley (1993) have proposed that verbal short-term memory problems can cause reading difficulties. Hulme and Roodenrhys (1995) have suggested an alternative view: that a common set of phonological representations underpin verbal short-term memory and reading skills. A training study is reported, in which effects of phonological awareness training and semantic training on free recall and serial recall have been assessed. Results show that phonological awareness training affects serial and free recall, while semantic training have impact on free recall. This supports that a common set of phonological representations underpin serial recall, while free recall is dependent of semantic representations.

Top

Kristina Moll (University of Graz) - The Double-Deficit Hypothesis in German orthography.

In a study with 266 German-speaking children, we investigated the cognitive deficits underlying dyslexia on the basis of the theoretical framework of the double-deficit hypothesis by using hierarchical regression methods as well as the subtyping method introduced by the proponents of the double-deficit hypothesis. Both, phonological awareness and RAN accounted for unique variance for reading as well as spelling. But while for reading, RAN turned out to be the best predictor, phonological awareness accounted for more independent variance in spelling. The results are interpreted with regard to the asymmetry of consistency (high feedforward, but low feedback consistency) in German orthography.

Top

Angeliki Mouzaki (University of Crete, Greece); Sideridis, Georgios; Simos, Panagiotis; Protopapas, Athanassios - The importance of vocabulary in longitudinal prediction of reading comprehension by word-level skills

Reading comprehension (RC) is related to word-level reading skills and print-independent language skills. Development of RC is expected to depend on development of such skills. We present data from a longitudinal study of 516 Greek children first assessed in spring of Grades 2, 3, and 4 and again one year later. RC at 2nd assessment was significantly predicted mainly by 1st assessment RC and vocabulary measures. Word-level reading predictors were substantially less important. After partialling out vocabulary, the small contribution from RC indicated that most of the longitudinally reliable RC variance can be attributed to lexical print-independent skills.

Top

Kate Nation (University of Oxford); Cocksey, Joanne - Beginning readers activate semantics from orthography

We used the semantic competition paradigm to explore whether children (7 years) automatically activate semantic information from orthography. Children decided whether words were members of a semantic category. Children showed interference when classifying words that contained an embedded word related in meaning to the category (e.g., there is a hip in ship, resulting in slower and less accurate responses to reject ship as a body part than to reject ship as an animal). Interference was observed regardless of whether the pronunciation was shared between carrier and embedded word (e.g., the hip in ship) or not (e.g., the crow in crown), and regardless of the position of the embed within the carrier. These data demonstrate co-activation of semantic representations during the process of word identification by young children, still in the early stages of learning to read. Most generally, our findings offer strong support to the view that semantic factors are intimately linked with the processes involved in word reading. More specifically, as semantic activation was not dependent on waiting for a word to be uniquely recognised, it appears to be cascaded and parallel, consistent with the possibility that semantics provides a source information that may directly influence the word recognition process itself.

Top

Jessica Nelson (Carnegie Mellon University) - Effects of Skill and Training on Eye Movement Control During Reading

In a previous eye-tracking study, we showed that, for skilled readers, orthographic training of unknown words significantly improved reading efficiency on those words. By contrast, explicit phonological training had little effect on first-pass measures. We tested the hypothesis that less-skilled readers benefit more from explicit phonological training than skilled readers. In this study, skilled and less-skilled readers were taught unknown words in conditions using combinations of orthographic, phonological, and meaning training. Eye movements were recorded while they read sentences containing those words. Differences between the effects of training on skilled and less-skilled readers are discussed.

Top

Rod I. Nicolson (The University of Sheffield); Fawcett, Angela; Alivisatos, Maya - Triple deficits and reading difficulties: Studies of early years Greek reading

The double deficit framework claims that literacy problems are significantly more severe in the presence of deficits in both speed and phonological processing. A battery of speed, phonology, literacy and cerebellar tests was administered to 56 dyslexic and 70 non-dyslexic Greek elementary school children matched for school and age (7-12 years). The expected pattern of double deficits was found for the dyslexic group. When the additional tests were included, the majority (56%) of the dyslexic group showed a triple deficit (phonology, rapid naming and 'cerebellar'). Results are interpreted in terms of problems within the neural systems for procedural learning.

Top

Terezinha Nune (Department of Educational Studies, University of Oxford); Burman, Diana; Evans, Deborah; Bell, Daniel; Hallett, Darcy; Gardner, Adelina - Deaf children's use of morphology in reading and writing

Congenitally, profoundly deaf pupils have severe difficulties in literacy learning due to their low level of phonological sensitivity. However, English orthography represents sounds and morphemes, which are units of meaning with a constant visual form. We analysed deaf children's use of morphemes in spelling and carried out an intervention to improve their morphological knowledge and literacy. Study 1 showed that deaf children use morphemes in spelling significantly less often than hearing peers. Study 2 showed that an intervention that improved their awareness of syntax and morphology had a significant impact on their spelling of suffixes, reading comprehension and writing skills.

Top

Jane Oakhill (University of Sussex); Smith, Lucy; Elmitt, Sarah - The Small Unit Theory in Early Reading Acquisition: The Small Unit Theory in Early Reading Acquisition: Further thoughts on the Common Unit Task

Duncan, Seymour and Hill (1997) showed that linguistic awareness typically follows a small to large unit progression; this finding was supported by the data from Seymour, Duncan and Bolik (1999). However, the stimuli used for the common unit task were flawed in that many of the stimuli relied on phonemic, rather than phonological, judgements. In addition, the instructions could be interpreted as ambiguous. The current paper presents two replications of the common unit task, one with modified stimuli and the other with modified instructions. The findings broadly support the theory of a small to large unit progression in linguistic awareness, with some caveats.

Top

Misato Oi (Nagoya university); Saito, Hirofumi - Interference between first language and second language in the word-sentence congruency task.

We examined whether processing words in a first language (L1) by bilinguals is interfered with by a second language (L2) that uses interlingual homographs. Both Chinese-Japanese and Japanese-Chinese bilinguals performed the word-sentence congruency task in Experiments 1 and 2. Based on the results, we conclude that processing of a word in the target language is interfered with by the nontarget language regardless of the BAL of the target language and of the nontarget language. However, the strength of the interference by a nontarget language is greater in the L2 target condition than in the L1 target condition.

Top

Ake Olofsson (Umeå University); Kantola, Leila - The development of word decoding accuracy and fluency during the first school year in two Scandinavian orthographies.

The normal course of early reading acquisition was studied longitudinally by detailed assessment of word decoding skills at four points of time during the first year of schooling. The focus was on the initial phase in reading acquisition covering the development from pre-school letter knowledge and phonological awareness to decoding of words with increasing length and syllabic complexity and with high and medium frequency words and pseudo-words. By contrasting children with two rather closely related languages the study aimed at describing the effects of orthographic complexities on the development of word decoding speed and accuracy.

Top

Richard Olson (University of Colorado, Boulder); Friend, Angela; Byrne, Brian; Corley, Robin; DeFries, John; Hulslander, Jacqueline; Samuelsson, Stefan; Wadsworth, Sally - Gene by environment interactions in the etiology of individual differences and group deficits in reading development

Kremen et al. (2005) reported that the etiology of individual differences in word recognition among adult twins was moderated by parent education, wherein lower heritability and higher shared environment influences were found among twins whose parents had lower education. We have not found this effect in a population sample of young Colorado twins whose reading and related skills were assessed in preschool, and the end of Kindergarten, 1st grade, and 2nd grade. However, we did find the effect for reading disabilities among 8- to 18-year-old twins assessed in the Colorado Learning Disabilities Research Center.

Top

Gene Ouellette (Mount Allison University) - Invented Spelling: A Window into Literacy Acquisition

This paper presents a training study in which 5-year olds (classified as nonreaders) were trained to be better invented spellers. In particular, the effects of training invented spelling on subsequent phonemic awareness, orthographic awareness, and learni

Top

Sébastien Pacton (University Paris V, France); Casalis, Séverine; Deacon, Hélène - The joint influence of orthographic and morphological regularities on children's spelling: Evidence from French.

In French, many non-inflected words include a final silent letter. Some of these have a derivational basis whereas others do not. Results of a single word dictation task show that nine-year-old children's spellings are influenced by their sensitivity to orthographic regularities and by their appreciation of the morphological relationships between words, which mostly help them to elucidate the presence, as well as the absence of a silent letter. However, children sometimes over-generalize the principle of root consistency to words that do not adhere to this principle. The extent to which spelling performance is linked to morphological awareness is discussed.

Top

Prakash Padakannaya (University of Mysore); Rao, Rashmi; Haward, Dynyse; Schneider, Phyllis - Narrative Production and Reading Comprehension in children with and with out Learning Disability

The present investigation studied narrative production and reading comprehension of children with Learning Disability(LD) and normally developing. Twenty normal and twenty children with LD, in the age range of 7-9 years participated in the study. The children narrated stories for the pictures (A and C levels) from 'The Edmonton Narrative Norms Instrument' in Kannada. The stories were audio recorded and transcribed. Reading comprehension was measured by Cloze procedure. The Stories were analysed with the help of Story Grammar (SG) model. 2(group) x 2(story) ANOVA, t-tests and correlation were used to analyze the data. The results were discussed in terms of age of the participants, cultural specificity of the SG and the complexity of the stories.

Top

Kristen Pammer (The Australian National University); Connell, Ellen; Kevan, Alison - Spelling and reading; Single or dual orthographic representations?

The proposal that spelling occurs via orthographic representations that are separate from reading, has been challenged by research supporting single-route models suggesting that spelling and reading share orthographic representations. Previous research has implicated a role for the visual dorsal pathway in reading ability, but little research has specifically investigated the role of the dorsal stream in spelling. We found that visual frequency doubling mediated by the dorsal pathway, predicted reading ability but not spelling, while a non-frequency doubling visual control predicted spelling but not reading ability. This double-dissociation supports dual-route models of orthographic representation for spelling and reading.

Top

Timothy C. Papadopoulos (University of Cyprus); Kendeou, Panayiota; Demetriou, Stefanos; Demetriou, Andreas - Diagnosis of reading difficulties in kindergarten and Grade 1 in Greek: The role of CAS and DEST-R

We examine two approaches in early diagnosis of reading disabilities. Specifically, we investigate how the Cognitive Assessment System (CAS) and the Dyslexia Early Screening Test (DEST-R) relate to phonological, rapid automatized naming, orthographic, reading accuracy, and reading comprehension measures from kindergarten to first grade. Findings demonstrated that DEST-R in kindergarten related to all other measures in first grade, whereas the concurrent interelations in first grade were weak. CAS in kindergarten related to some measures in first grade, whereas the concurrent interelations in first grade were strong. We discuss the diagnostic appropriateness of these tools for different age and ability groups.

Top

Rauno K. Parrila (University of Alberta); Georgiou, George; Liao, Chen-Huei - RAN components and reading: Evidence from English, Greek, and Chinese

This cross-linguistic study examined: (a) which RAN components -articulation time and pause time - are related to RAN total times, and (b) what RAN components are related to reading. Grade 4 children from Canada, Cyprus, and Taiwan were examined in Digit Naming, Letter Naming (or Zhu-Yin-Fu-Hao), Word Identification (or Character Recognition) and TOWRE (or One-Minute reading). Responses of the children on RAN tasks were recorded and analyzed. Initial data analyses suggest that, across languages, articulation time and pause time were significantly related (a) with each other, (b) with their respective total time, and (c) with reading measures.

Top

Courtney Patterson (Wilfrid Laurier University); Ferretti, Todd; Gottardo, Alexandra - Assessing phonology, syntax, & working memory using ERP: Towards an understanding of the underlying cause of developmental dyslexia.

Working memory is generally believed to be a problem for those with dyslexia because the storage of information involves the use of phonological codes (Chiappe et al., 2004; Gottardo et al., 1996; SLC, 2001). Recent research in adults with and without dyslexia, where brainwaves and behavioural measures were correlated, suggests the two groups utilize different strategies while reading complex syntactic structures and this difference is dependent on working memory ability (Patterson, Brown, Ferretti, Gottardo, 2006). In order to assess the role working memory plays in the development of syntactic ability and general reading acquisition, children with dyslexia will be asked to read and listen to sentences. Visually presented sentences will involve both complex syntactic and phonological processing. Aurally presented sentences will still pose the same level of syntactic complexity, however, without the same phonological difficulty. If syntactic processing accounts for linguistic delays, it is assumed that dyslexic children should perform similarly on the task, regardless of modality. However, if phonological processing is the primary deficit involved in dyslexia, dyslexia children's performance overall should improve on the auditory task. The role of working memory in both typical and dyslexic reading development will be emphasized.

Top

Kors Perdijk (Orthopedagogiek Leren en Ontwikkeling); Schreuder, Rob; Vesters, Karin; Verhoeven, Ludo - Reading Noun-Noun Neologisms: a Developmental Perspective

This study investigates recognition of noun-noun neologisms with varying semantical interpretability for Dutch. Third grade and sixth grade children are compared to adults using visual lexical decision. Adults are slower while rejecting a noun-noun neologism as an existing word when it is highly interpretable compared to when it is low in interpretability. Sixth graders tend to behave similarly. In contrast to the results of the two other age groups, third graders, surprisingly, reject highly interpretable neologisms faster than neologisms which are low in interpretability. Therefore our hypothesis is that third graders read noun-noun neologisms in a qualitatively different way.

Top

Charles Perfetti (University of Pittsburgh ) - [untitled]

 

Top

Linda Phillips (University of Alberta); Norris, Stephen P. - A Longitudinal Parent-Child Literacy Intervention Study

The 3-part family literacy program (children 3+ yrs: adult, child, and joint adult-child daily sessions. Eight units were taught for 90 hrs across 12 weeks designed to improve the children's, parents' literacy, and parents' ability to develop their children's literacy. Families were tested and interviewed at pretest, posttest, 1st year, 2nd year, and 3rd year follow-ups. Matched control families received no intervention. Results confirm the powerful effect of parents' education on children's reading ability; children in the lowest 70% to 80% of scores at the pretest gained and sustained the most. No increase in parents' reading was found but they implemented more frequent and varied literacy activities in the home.

Top

Beth Phillips (Florida Center for Reading Research); Lonigan, Christopher - Variations in Home Literacy Environments: A Cluster Analytic View of an Early Childhood Sample

Home literacy surveys were collected from the primary caregiver of 1130 two-to six-year-old children representing a wide range of socioeconomic backgrounds and types of early educational programs or child care. Hierarchical cluster analyses with cross-validation revealed that a four-cluster solution best fit the data. Clusters differed on frequency of shared reading and literacy teaching activities; notably these types of activities varied somewhat independently. Cluster membership was significantly related to socioeconomic status, family living circumstances, maternal stress, and maternal reading ability.

Top

Ramona Pittman (Florida State University); Joshi, R. Malatesha; Boulware-Gooden, Regina; Graham, Lori - Spelling, writing, and dialect: A strategy intervention in phonology, morphology, and orthography

This study examines a strategy intervention that is in use to improve the spelling performance of African American children. The intervention focuses on phonological and grammatical elements that are often omitted by students who speak African American English. Participants are sixth grade students in a large, urban school district in Texas. The design is a pretest/posttest/posttest design. Students receive a strategy intervention in phonology, morphology, and orthography for a length of eight weeks.

Top

Monique Plaza (Chargée de Recherche CNRS Laboratoire de Psychologie et Neurosciences cognitives) - Reading Impairment in Second Grade Children with Reading and Mathematical Impairments

Two groups of 12 children with written language and mathematics difficulties were enrolled in a cross-over training program with two software, during 24 sessions. To assess developmental improvement (time and accuracy) in reading, spelling, memory, visual attention, phonological awareness, naming speed, a control group of average children was constituted. The reading software, which involves 27 levels of increasing complexity and proposes a feedback for each response, requires children to match auditory stimuli (phonemes, syllables and words) and graphic stimuli (from 3 to 7). The results show improvement in the two groups, notably in word spelling / reading and sentence comprehension.

Top

Hanne Poelmans (ExpORL, Dept. of Neurosciences, K.U.Leuven, Belgium); Serniclaes, Willy; Froyen, Dries - Possible interactions between speech perception development and learning to read.

A substantial proportion of dyslexics show deficits in speech perception, particularly in speech sound discrimination. According to a recent theory this might be attributed to an allophonic in stead of a phonemic perception mode in dyslexics. To investigate this claim we investigated the development of categorical speech perception in normal reading and dyslexic children cross-sectional from grades 2 to 4. Only at grade 2 dyslexics show less accurate identification and discrimination performances in comparison to normal reading children. This might indicate that not only the dyslexia deficit or its consequences but also other developmental aspects contribute to normal categorical perception.

Top

Sharolyn Pollard-Durodola (University of Denver, Child, Family, and School Psychology); Gonzalez, Jorge; Simmons, Deborah - The Effectiveness of a Thematically Designed Shared-book Reading Intervention for Preschool Children from Low-Income Households

The purpose of the Words of Oral Reading and Language Development (WORLD) study is to develop and investigate the effects of a shared-book reading intervention on vocabulary and language development of preschoolers from low-income households. Vocabulary was thematically (science) linked to narrative and informational books and lessons were built on principles of effective instructional design. The research design was experimental with random assignment of 185 preschoolers in 18 classrooms to either treatment or comparison conditions. Experimental student groups met daily for 20 minutes of instruction for twelve weeks. Comparison students received shared book reading instruction as it was typically delivered.

Top

Simonne Pollini (Teachers College, Columbia University); Williams, Joanna; Nubla-Kung, Abigail; Snyder, Anne; Garcia, Amaya; Weng, Hsiao-Ling; Endo, Amy - Improving the comprehension of cause/effect text in the social studies content area for at-risk second graders.

A program that integrated comprehension instruction and social studies instruction was developed. Focused on the cause/effect text structure, it emphasized clue words, questions, graphic organizers, and the close analysis of specially constructed cause/effect paragraphs. Fourteen teachers were randomly assigned to (1) the cause/effect program; (2) a more conventional program (same materials but no focus on text structure); or (3) no treatment. Students in the cause/effect program performed better than students in the other conditions on comprehension measures assessing explicit training and transfer. As expected, no difference was found between the two instructed programs on social studies content measures, and performance in these conditions was superior to performance in the no treatment condition. Results support previous findings on compare/contrast and cause/effect structures.

Top

Heather Poole (); Levy, Betty Ann - Patterns of reading success following rime family training

Emphasizing visual patterns in print by blocking together rime families improves online word reading performance in beginning nonreaders, but gains do not persist beyond the training environment (Poole & Levy, 2006). This study investigated the mechanisms underlying this failure to persist following rime family training. Instead of using the number of words read as a measure of learning, we measured all onsets and rimes that were read correctly, regardless of whether the entire word was correctly identified. Surprisingly, rime family training led to improvements in identification of onsets, but not rimes. Results are discussed in terms of focus of attention.

Top

Mads Poulsen (University of Copenhagen); Elbro, Carsten - Input and output phonological processing in dyslexia

Word production difficulties are well documented in dyslexia, whereas the results are mixed for receptive phonological processing. This asymmetry raises two questions: are receptive difficulties revealed when speed is considered? Are receptive and productive abilities related? To answer these questions, the present study investigated how speed and accuracy with two perception tasks (categorical perception and auditory lexical decision) predicted performance on production as measured by picture naming and RAN. General processing speed was controlled. Lexical decision was used in addition to categorical perception to assess effects of quality of lexical representations on reception.

Top

Daisy Powell (Institute of Education, University of Reading); Stainthorp, Rhona; Stuart, Morag; Quinlan, Philip; Garwood, Holly - Are orthographic representations compromised in children with problems in Rapid Automatized Naming tasks?

The Reicher-Wheeler paradigm was used to investigate orthographic representations in groups of 8-10 year olds who differed in performance on RAN tasks but who were matched on phonological awareness, verbal and nonverbal abilities. Both groups were sensitive to orthographic characteristics of items. There was a Word Superiority Effect with respect to nonwords but not pronounceable pseudowords, and an advantage for pseudowords over nonwords. This indicated that lexical feedback operated at the sub-word level, which has implications for the structure of the orthographic lexicon. Futhermore, the low RAN group showed evidence of an emerging problem in the formation of orthographic representations.

Top

Athanassios Protopapas (Institute for Language & Speech Processing / Athena); Gerakaki, Svetlana - Development of processing written stress diacritics in reading Greek: A case of delayed decoding

Reading aloud entails production of stress patterns and not only segment sequences. In Greek, stress is always marked with a special diacritic. This information is not always fully utilized, as strong lexical influences on stress assignment have been found in children and adults. Here we investigate the development of decoding the stress diacritic in 90 children from Grades 2, 3, and 4, who read 108 pseudowords, half of them resembling the words they were derived from, presented with or without a diacritic. Results showed strong and increasing lexical effects through the grades. The effect of the diacritic grew more rapidly, approaching but not reaching the lexical effect at higher grades. We conclude that decoding of the diacritic is not the preferred option for developing readers, only becoming efficiently utilized at advanced reading stages, despite constant availability and reliability. We discuss possible reasons in terms of processing cost versus information gained.

Top

Cynthia Puranik (University of Pittsburgh); Lonigan, Christopher - Young children's knowledge about writing.

The purpose of this study was to examine patterns in writing development as children progress from preschool to kindergarten. 90 children, ages three through six were assessed on several measures of writing which included print awareness, knowledge of name, knowledge of the alphabet, spelling, and picture description. The objective was to examine how writing is used as a communicative tool and as a domain of knowledge. Performance improved significantly from preschool to kindergarten however, our analyses did not reveal a fixed order in the acquisition of writing skills. The findings support the theory that young children acquire general and specific information about writing simultaneously.

Top

Pauline Quemart (Centre de Recherche sur la Cognition et l'Apprentissage); Séverine, Casalis; Emmanuelle, Mathiot - Morphological decomposition in visual word recognition in French beginning readers

The aim of this study was to determine if French beginning readers process morphological units during visual word recognition and if this processing was more than a simple location of orthographic regularities. To test this hypothesis, a lexical decision task was proposed to 3rd and 6th grade readers, including words and pseudowords that varied in terms of their morphological construction. Results showed that 3rd graders are able to extract morphemic units in words during visual word recognition, and that this process is more than purely orthographic in that it has a morphological specificity (93 words)

Top

Saradha Ramesh (The Pennsylvania State University); Petrill, Stephen A. - Relationship between the Amount of Time Spend in Reading and Word Identification: A Twin Study

The amount of time a child reads clearly is related to reading ability, but the etiology of this relationship is not clear. We examined this association in 350 pairs of 6-8.5 years-old twins from the ongoing Western Reserve Reading project. Behavioral analysis suggested that the amount of time a child spends reading is heritable (h2 = 0.63). Moreover, the correlation between amount of time a child spends reading and Woodcock-Johnson Word Identification was moderate (r =0.35), and completely accounted for by genetic covariance. These results suggest that amount of time a child reads is likely influenced by active gene-environment processes.

Top

Gloria Ramirez (Thompson Rivers University); Chen-Bumgardner, Becky; Gerber, Michael; Geva, Esther - Morphological awareness, vocabulary and reading comprehension in Middle School English language learners

This study examined the relationship between morphological awareness, vocabulary and reading comprehension in 44 grade 7 English language Learners. Results indicated that vocabulary plays a significant role to reading comprehension over and above memory and morphological awareness. Furthermore, the relationship between vocabulary and reading comprehension is bidirectional. Morphological awareness as measured with a cloze task focusing on derivational sufixes did not make a significant contribution to reading comprehension. The results are discussed focusing on the implications and constrains of measuring morphological awareness in English language learners.

Top

Dorit Ravid (Tel Aviv University, Israel) - Spelling function letters in Hebrew across grade school

Hebrew homophonous letters with grammatical functions are generally easier to spell correctly than root letters because of their high token frequency and clear mapping onto morphological segments. 173 children in grades 1-6 and a control group of 8th graders were administered a spelling test of 70 words containing function letters from a variety of morphological categories. Performance increased with age and schooling. Most function letter categories were correctly spelled by 3rd grade, but some categories took longer. Factors promoting early spelling success were transparency of orthography-morphology mapping, and the degree to which the letter was perceived as having a clear grammatical role.

Top

Paula Luegi Bernardes Ribeiro (University of Lisbon); Costa, Armanda; Faria, Isabel Hub - Eye movements during the reading of syntactically manipulated structures

In this study we registered the eye movement of 20 Portuguese university students during the reading of two texts. Texts differed in topic familiarity (T1 - familiar - and T2 - less familiar) and were presented with (T') or without (T) syntactic manipulations. We will focus on two particular results: first, the more frequently used an ungrammatical structure is, the better it is detected; second, information about the argumental structure of the verb is needed very early, in order to disambiguate the interpretation of a sentence.

Top

Susan J. Rickard Liow (Department of Psychology, National University of Singapore); Yeong, Stephanie H.-M. - Phonemic Representation and Early Spelling Skills: Differences between in Mandarin (L1)-English and English (L1)-Mandarin Bilinguals

The influence of early linguistic experience on phonemic representation in two groups of bilingual kindergarten children (N= 51; aged 5-6 years) was investigated using an experimental cloze-type spelling task comprising 60 words. Mandarin-L1/English-L2 and English-L1/Mandarin-L2 children were matched for spelling proficiency on /m/, a phoneme common to both languages, before their performance was compared on two sets of minimal pairs (/b/ /p/ and /v/ /f/). As predicted, accuracy for both /f/ and /p/ was equivalent for the two groups, but the Mandarin-L1/English-L2 children's spellings of /v/ and /b/, phonemes both absent in Mandarin, was significantly poorer than that of the English-L1/Mandarin-L2 speakers. These results support the view that home language affects early literacy skills (e.g., Rickard Liow & Lau, 2006) and that untutored spellings are based on reintegration of the child's own speech-based representations.

Top

Jessie Ricketts (University of Oxford); Nation, Kate; Bishop, Dorothy - Vocabulary acquisition through reading: Orthographic and semantic learning

Reading provides an opportunity for vocabulary acquisition. An experiment was conducted to investigate both orthographic and semantic learning for the same stimuli in the same paradigm. Children read nonwords embedded in stories. Orthographic learning was assessed using orthographic choice and spelling post-tests. Semantic learning was assessed using nonword-picture matching tasks. Decoding skills were associated with orthographic learning. Reading comprehension and vocabulary scores were related to semantic learning. Poor decoders had difficulty with orthographic learning, whereas children with weak vocabulary and/or reading comprehension skills had difficulty with semantic learning. Thus, orthographic and semantic learning are supported by different reading and language skills.

Top

Theresa Roberts (California State University, Sacramento) - Letter Sound Instruction For 3-4 Year-Olds: Effects on Alphabet Knowledge, Phonemic Awareness and Motivation

Preschool age children (3-year-olds and 4-year-olds) were randomly assigned to one of two treatments designed to teach alphabet letter sounds. One treatment utilized integrated mnemonics with letter-sound characters formed from letters and rich narratives with the letter sound characters prominently featured. In the other treatment, traditional letter-sound correspondences and alphabet books were the foundation of instruction. At the end of treatment, children in the integrated mnemonics with rich letter-sound character narrative treatment had learned significantly more letter sounds (but not letter names), performed significantly better on phonemic awareness tasks and showed significantly greater interest in learning letters, although treatment was not associated with children's perceptions of their ability. Results indicate 1) that small differences in quality of instruction matter and 2) that both memory and motivational enhancement may contribute to differences in instructional outcomes.

Top

Sarah Robins (Washington University in St. Louis, Philosophy-Neuroscience-Psychology Program); Treiman, Rebecca - How Parents Speak to their Children about Writing: Clues to the Nature of Print in Young Children's Environments

We carried out two analyses using the CHILDES database to explore the possibility that children begin to learn about the nature of print through implicit clues in parent speech. Such clues may help children recognize the similarity between print and speech, and the difference between writing and drawing. Our results indicate that parents offer clues of both types, which children appear to pick up on and incorporate into their own speech by age three. The results shed light on the ways in which children learn about the nature of writing before receiving explicit reading instruction.

Top

Alysia Roehrig (Florida State University and the Florida Center for Reading Research) - Reading First, Professional Development, Teacher Knowledge, and Student Outcomes

Grade 1-3 teachers (n=853) completed a survey about their professional development experiences, their knowledge about teaching reading, and their classroom literacy instruction practices. Teachers in their first year of Reading First reported less frequent instructional grouping, provided less extra individual assistance, had less knowledge of how to teach comprehension and decoding skills, and had fewer opportunities to engage in active professional development than did teachers from schools in the 2nd or 3rd year of Reading First implementation. Links between quality of professional development, teachers' knowledge about teaching reading, instructional practices, including time spent in differentiated small groups, and student reading outcomes will be discussed.

Top

John Sabatini (Educational Testing Service); Scarborough, Hollis; Shore, Jane; Bruce, Kelly - Preliminary results for low literacy adults receiving decoding and fluency interventions

This is the fifth year of a project comparing the relative effectiveness of interventions focused on decoding and fluency in a sample of adults with word recognition abilities between 2nd and 6th grade levels. Over 100 have completed the initial interventions; over 500 received a battery of component tests. Measures from the WRAT, WJIII, CTOPP, and TOWRE, as well as experimental, repeated progress monitoring measures were included in the main battery. We will present data exploring response to intervention and individual profile interactions. Specifically, we present structural models of cross-sectional profile, as well as pre-post and repeated measure comparative gains.

Top

Chantal Sabourin (Université du Québec à Montréal); Labelle, Marie - What's in a word? Evaluating French-Immersion students' morphological knowledge (through grades 2, 4 and 6)

Morphological awareness in French was assessed in a cross-sectional study of grade two, four and six enrolled in a 50/50 French Immersion (FI) program, as well as in a francophone school of the same city. Using an adaptation of traditional C-tests (Raatz and Klein-Bradley, 1982), we asked students to complete words figuring in a coherent French text. Targets were morphemic (either cognate or non-cognate) or control (orthographic or syllabic). Results were correlated with vocabulary scores, syntactic knowledge and grade level-taken as a measure of exposure to French.

Top

Javier S. Sainz (Departamento de Procesos Cognitivos); Garcia-Zurdo, Ruben; Villalba Muñoz, Carmen - Phonological Neighborhood Effects on Visual Word Recognition

In two ERP experiments the influence of phonology on visual word recognition is studied by using a visual search task. Adult readers were first presented with a two-stimuli display, -a target and a distracter differing in letter order-, and then required to chose a phonologically or orthographically postcued target. Subjects were required to respond by choosing the target among a set of distracters that evoke phonological and orthographic associates of the target. Target and distracter word patterns are judged as more dissimilar when letter reordering produces a phonological change of any letter or a prosodic change of a pattern.

Top

Hirofumi Saito (Nagoya University, Graduate School of Information Science); Kawakami, Masahiro; Masuda, Hisashi - Disassembly and Assembly of Kanji Readings

The goal of this study is to construct a database of psychologically meaningful elements which can be used repeatedly to reconstruct kanji. As the target kanji of disassembly, in this study we focused on the Japanese Industrial Standard level-1 Kanji set (2,965 Kanji) in order to extract common visual patterns that can be assembled into 2,965 kanji. We disassembled each kanji and, at the same time, clarified the rules in order to create consistency among the results of all disassemblies. The result of n-th recursive division can be summarized as follows: The 1st 2,965 JIS kanji characters consist of 449 components.

Top

Paula Salmi (Niilo Mäki Institute); Aro, Tuija; Tolvanen, Asko; Eklund, Kenneth; Ahonen, Timo; Lyytinen, Heikki - Modelling the association of the naming skills with neurocognitive, motor and reading skills in children at familial risk for dyslexia.

A SE model of naming skills and their associations to neurocognitive, motor, and reading skills was formulated and tested with a sample of 5 to 9 -year old children with and without familial risk for dyslexia (n=198). The components related to naming skills were phonological, semantic, oromotor, and visuomotor skills and memory. Motor speed was related directly to rapid serial naming (RSN) speed. RSN speed and phonological skills were related to reading fluency, and RSN accuracy and familial risk for dyslexia to reading accuracy at the end of the 2nd grade.

Top

Stefan Samuelsson (University of Linköping, Linköping Sweden, and University of Stavanger, Stavanger Norway); Byrne, Brian; Hulslander, Jacqueline; Olson, Richard K. - A new curriculum for reading and spelling: Changes in estimated genetic and environmental influences on early literacy development in Norway

Estimated genetic and environmental influences on early reading development vary across twin populations at a particular time, and within a twin population across time. One major reason for these findings is differences and changes in educational opportunities. Results from our International Longitudinal Twin Study (ILTS) including twins from Scandinavia, Australia, and the United States have shown that individual differences in early literacy skills are accounted for by shared environment in countries with limited formal reading instruction and that there is an increasing dominance of genetic influence from kindergarten to the first grade when teaching reading and spelling skills are part of the national curriculum (cf. Norway). This change in the pattern of genetic and environmental influences across time for one twin population suggests that estimated heritability for literacy should increase if formal literacy instruction in school was introduced one year earlier. This hypothesis will be tested in Norway where twins born in 2000 received formal reading instruction one year earlier compared to twins born in 1999.

Top

Kristi Santi (University of Houston); Francis, David; York, Mary; Foorman, Barbara - Contextual Effects on Predicting Risk for Reading Difficulties in Kindergarten and First Grade

This study utilized early reading assessment data from a randomized trial of 210 urban and rural schools in Texas to examine contextual effects on risk prediction in kindergarten and first grade. The primary objective was to examine the roles of (a) individual differences, (b) the kindergarten classroom, and the (c) pairing of kindergarten and first grade teachers in determining grade 1 outcomes in word reading and fluency. Analyses found that a combination of student pretest and mean of pretest classroom was a better predictor than student pretest alone. On average, intraclass correlations (ICCs) ranged from 11% to 15%.

Top

Robert Savage (Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology) - ABRACADABRA: The design and evaluation of a web-based balanced literacy program

ABRACADABRA (http://grover.concordia.ca/ABRA/version1/abracadabra.html) is a web-based application that implements a balanced reading curriculum in a digital environment, allowing students to develop word, text and fluency skills. We present exciting results from our study examining the effectiveness of the tool as a resource for teaching reading. All students were pre-tested on literacy measures and then Small groups of students were randomly assigned to rime- and phoneme - based interventions and worked with trained facilitators on combinations of decoding, word recognition and comprehension activities. Significant post-test effects in letter-sound knowledge and blending, listening and reading comprehension were evident. The strongest treatment effects were evident in the phoneme-based intervention.

Top

Alfred Schabmann (University of Cologne); Klicpera, Christian; Ludwig, Stefan - What has changed in children's learning to read in 15 years: A comparison of two longitudinal studies

The results of two longitudinal studies are compared that were carried out in Vienna from 1985-1993 and 1998-2006 respectively (N1=541, N2=878). In both studies, comparable measures of word and nonword reading as well as phonological awareness were undertaken from grade 1 to grade 4. In addition, special remedial programs for children were analyzed with respect to efficacy. In part, the 1989-2006 study results were a perfect replication of the older study, particularly concerning stability of reading achievement and (non-)efficacy of the current support for dyslexic children in Austria. Implications for reading research and school policies are discussed.

Top

Rachel Schiff (Bar-Ilan University) - Conflicting cues in marking plural adjectives in Hebrew: The effects of development and literacy s of development and literacy

The current study investigated the role of development and literacy in learning to pluralize Hebrew adjectives in conflicting and non-conflicting contexts. 210 children from kindergarten to 6th grade were orally administered a plural agreement task with singular noun phrases containing a noun and an adjective, which they had to convert to plural forms. Accuracy improved gradually with age and schooling, while reaction time decreased significantly between 3rd and 4th grade. Phrases with conflicting suffixes were more difficult than phrases with non-conflicting suffixes, and took more time to formulate, though differences in reaction time diminished in higher grades. Educational and clinical implications are discussed.

Top

Mila Schwartz (University of Haifa, Oranim Colledge); Share, David L.; Leikin, Mark; Kozminsky, Ely - On the Benefits of Bi-literacy: Just a Head Start in Reading or Specific Orthographic Insights?

On the Benefits of Bi-literacy: Just a Head Start in Reading or Specific Orthographic Insights? *Mila Schwartz, David L. Share1, Mark Leikin1 & Ely Kozminsky2 *Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, 1Department of Learning Disabilities, Faculty of Education, University of Haifa, 2Ben -Gurion University of the Negev, ISRAEL *milasch@bgu.ac.il The primary purpose of the present study was to investigate the unique impact of early literacy in L1 Russian on L2 Hebrew reading acquisition compared to the impact of an early start in literacy development in L1 Hebrew. The results showed that over and above an early start in phonemic awareness and alphabetic skills, it seems that bilinguals' ability to distinguish between consonants and vowels in Russian may promote insights into complex system of vowel diacritics in Hebrew.

Top

Lucja Segal-Seiden (OISE/UT); Geva, Esther - Distinct differential sound substitutions in adult Polish-Canadian learners of English as a second language

The errors in perception and spelling of word initial and word final variants of the English voiceless interdental fricative /θ/ were investigated in 35 adult Polish-Canadians (L2 group) and 35 native speakers of English (L1 group). The L2 group errors were differential sound substitutions distinct from the L1 group errors. Overall, the L2 group performed better on word final than on word initial /θ/, whereas the L1 group performed equally well regardless of /θ/ position. Ability to discriminate non-native phonemic contrasts improved with language proficiency but did not reach the native-like performance. The results partially support critical period hypothesis (CPH).

Top

Francisca Serrano (University of Granada); Defior, Sylvia - Reading accuracy and speed problems in Spanish dyslexics children

This study examine Spanish dyslexics reading abilities using a reading-level match design. Participants consisted of 31 dyslexic children that were compared to 31 children with the same chronological age and 31 children with the same reading level, thereby younger. Children's reading abilities were evaluated using two tasks of 127 words and 127 pseudowords, respectively. Results showed dyslexic children have worse performance than normal children both in the speed, as expected by other studies in transparent orthographies, and in the accuracy measure, that is a more relevant result. These findings are discussed regarding implications for dyslexia assessment and intervention in Spanish.

Top

Michal Shany (Haifa University, Israel); Geva, Esther - The effects of new phonemes on L2 spelling acquisition: The case of Ethiopian children in Israel

The study examined the effects of novel Hebrew phonemic contrasts on the spelling skills of 319 children whose L1 is Amharic or Hebrew in grades 1, 2, 4 and 6. The experimental spelling task consisted of 48 words that varied by difficulty level, and included phonemes that exist in Hebrew, but not in Amharic. The Ethiopian participants made significantly more spelling errors than their peers, but the gap between the groups disappeared with schooling. Across all grades, participants from Ethiopian origin made more phonetic errors involving novel phonemes, but not orthographic and morphological errors. Results are discussed in terms of a contrastive framework and the effects of schooling.

Top

Shelley Shaul (Edmond J. Safra Brain Research Center for the study of Learning Disabilities, Haifa University); Breznitz, Zvia - Visual, Auditory and Cross Modal Integration: A comparison of processing between dyslexic and regular readers by means of electrophysiological and behavioral measures.

One of the main difficulties of the dyslexic reader is word decoding. An abundance of research evidence has pointed to a phonological deficit based on the auditory modality among these readers. The aim of the present study was to determine whether dyslexics, when given cross modal presentation in the visual and auditory modality simultaneously, will improve their performance as compared to single modal presentation. Words and pseudo words were presented in the visual and auditory modalities separately as well as simultaneously to university students, 20 regular readers and 20 compensated dyslexics. The subject was required to decide whether a sequence of letters presented constituted a real word existing in spoken language or whether the stimulus seen/heard was not an accurate word. The research utilized behavioral and electro-physiological measures using ERP and LORETA methodologies. In general, dyslexics exhibited slower reaction times and made more mistakes when performing the task, the biggest gap between the two groups of readers was found on the visual task. Moreover, the ERP components (P200, P300 and P600) appeared later among the dyslexics as compared to the regular readers on the visual task as well. However, the dyslexics benefited from the cross modality presentation and the differences between the two groups were minimized in both the behavioral and electrophysiological measures. The results of this study strengthen the claim that supporting the processing systems relevant to reading will assist inter-sensory integration, and may ease the word decoding process among dyslexics.

Top

Joseph Shimron (University of Haifa) - [untitled]

 

Top

Hua Shu (State Key Lab of Cognitive Neuroscience and Learning, Beijing Normal University) - The important factors in reading acquisition of Chinese

The relations of multiple reading-related factors and reading ability in Chinese children at different stages of development were investigated in a series of studies. Through transverse and longitudinal studies, kindergarten and primary school children were tested on a set of linguistic, cognitive skills and word reading tasks. The results showed that phonological awareness and speeded naming are particularly important in explaining word reading of kindergarten children. However, apart from phonological awareness and speeded naming, morphological and orthographic awareness become significant to word reading of school children. The results suggest that mastery of a writing system depends upon acquiring adequate phonological knowledge of the language, especially in very early development, while the characteristics of the Chinese language and orthography make morphological and orthographic skills important in later reading development.

Top

Patrick Snellings (University of Amsterdam, Netherland) - Enhancing the Reading Fluency and Accuracy of Dyslexic children in Dutch

Breznitz (2005) demonstrated that adult dyslexic Hebrew readers benefited from experimental reading rate manipulation. Dutch dyslexic children show slow reading and naming speed (de Jong & van der Leij, 2003). This training experiment accelerated the reading rate of 67 Dutch regular and dyslexic children. Results showed that repeated reading was not sufficient, only children in the accelerated reading condition improved their reading rate and accuracy at the time of the posttest. Crucially, this study showed that Dutch dyslexics, who mainly fall short in reading speed, could not only increase their self paced reading rate but also their accuracy levels.

Top

Catherine Snow (Harvard University) - [untitled]

The long history of contention in the English-speaking world about the best route of entry into reading reflects several factors: the complexities of a deep orthography, the fact that some children will learn to read under any instructional method, the tensions between constructivist and didactic stances, and the only recent availability of incontrovertible evidence about the componential skills involved in reading. A truce in the reading wars in the U.S., negotiated as a result of research consensus and then also imposed as a feature of the federal No Child Left Behind legislation and its consequences in many states, has unfortunately shifted policy and practice farther toward didactic approaches and toward a focus on a subset of the componential skills than is justifiable. In other words, current literacy practices in U.S. primary grades have raised the floor on reading outcomes, but have concurrently lowered the ceiling.

Top

Brooke Soden (Ohio State University, Dept of Psychology); Petscher, Yaacov; Schatschneider, Christopher - Matthew effects for oral reading fluency: A longitudinal investigation of first through third graders.

In 1986, Stanovich proposed that the existence of Matthew Effects in reading, where children with good initial skills in reading would continue to grow faster in this skill while children with low skills in reading would grow more slowly or not at all. Since this suggestion, a small number of research studies have empirically addressed the existence Matthew Effects in reading by looking at longitudinal data. One longitudinal study presented evidence of a Matthew effect for IQ, but not for reading (Shaywitz et al., 1995). The current study examined potential Matthew Effects in oral reading fluency (ORF) for 17,779 students longitudinally from first through third grades. Individual growth curve analysis was conducted on each student in order to identify students' yearly growth rate in first grade. A fan-spread growth pattern was discovered and that 3.6% of the students demonstrated a lack of growth that was not distinguishable from no growth. Factors at the student, classroom, and school levels will be presented to explain this differential variability in growth.

Top

Hyojeong Sohn (Department of Psychology, Korea University); Pyun, Sung-Bom; Jung, Jaebum; Nam, Kichun - Cerebral activation related to visual word processing in Korean language - case study on alexic patients and fMRI study -

This present study was to investigate the functional role of midfusiform gyrus including the cluster of x=-44, y=-58, z=-15(r=5) known as "VWFA(visual word form area)" in visual word processing. The specific objects are to identify characteristics of early visual word processing in alexic patients through psychological assessment and functional MRI, to examine the compatibility of "VWFA(visual word form area)" in Korean which has different graphemic and phonological system from alphabetic language, and to investigate the activation of ventral occipito-temporal region related Korean visual word processing according to word frequency and lexicality using fMRI.

Top

Emily Solari (University of California Davis); Eadie, Cara; Filippini, Alexis - Early Comprehension Development of Spanish-speaking Enlgish Language Learners

This study investigated treatment effects of three instructional conditions on precursors to successful reading for kindergarten Spanish-speaking English Language Learners (ELL). This study had three main purposes. First, to evaluate intensive pre-referral instruction that included precursors to both reading decoding (phonological awareness and alphabet knowledge) and reading comprehension (listening comprehension). Second, to investigate the influence of both academic and cognitive variables (memory processes) that may predict responsiveness to intervention. Third, to determine if kindergarten ELL students can successfully be taught comprehension strategies and generalize the strategies to new text.

Top

Werner Sommer (Humboldt university, Berlin, Germany); Korinth, Sebastian; Dimigen, Olaf; Breznitz, Zvia - Effects and mechanisms of reading acceleration training in German regular readers: Evidence from eye movement recordings and event-related brain potential analysis

As a part of cross linguistic research project focusing on the enhancement of reading fluency among different groups of readers, the current study implemented the "Acceleration Phenomenon" in the form of the reading acceleration training program in order to examine the beneficial effect of training on reading fluency in German. In this study, behavioral, eye tracker and brain activity recordings were employed in order to examine the hypothesis that by being forced to read faster than their routine reading rate, readers of different levels will improve their word decoding and comprehension. 15 regular reading university students participated in the study.

Top

Seung-Hee Son (University of Utah); Morrison, Frederick - The Nature and Impact of Changes in Home Shared Book Reading during Preschool Years: Changes in Meaning-Focused and Code-Focused Talk

Given that parents tend to adjust their practices to better meet children's developing needs, parents may modify/change their book-reading practices as their preschoolers grow, especially as they approach kindergarten entry. However, extensive evidence is not available on the longitudinal trend of book reading interactions. This study examines the nature, extent and impact of changes in book reading practices of 42 preschooler-parent dyads over 2 years. Results showed that while most parents did not change their home book reading practices significantly, some parents tended to decrease the relative frequency of meaning-focused talk (specifically, nonimmediate talk) and to increase the relative frequency of code-focused talk (specifically, talk about sounds, and talk about word recognition). HLM analyses found that increased code-focused talk is related to growth in children's literacy skills in letter-word identification.

Top

Susan Sonnenschein (University of Maryland Baltimore County, USA) - Relations between early and later literacy development: The impact of early home experiences

This paper reports follow-up data from a longitudinal study of literacy development. We interviewed a subset of the parents and the now 11th graders and documented the adolescents' literacy skills. Results show the enduring importance of the early environment for later literacy development. Early literacy skills predicted growth in students' literacy development. Parental beliefs about the importance of engaging children's interest continued to relate to literacy development. The affective quality of early reading interactions was related to the frequency with which the adolescents chose to read, which was related to their literacy skills and their grades in school.

Top

George Spanoudis (University of Cyprus); Papadopoulos, Timothy C.; Kendeou, Panayiota - Psychometric properties and norming data for a battery of ten phonological tasks in Greek

The performance of 289 Grade 1 children on 10 phonological tasks was analysed using the Rasch model (Winsteps; Linacre, 2003) in order to examine the unidimensionality of the phonological scale and obtain norming data. The first Rasch analysis was conducted with the whole sample (n=289) and with all the 140 items deriving from the tests. A second analysis followed separately for each gender. In both instances, the infit and outfit indices were close to 0.99 demonstrating scale's good fitting to the Rasch model. Subsequent confirmatory factor analysis revealed a broad and a narrow phonological factor adding extra validation to the Rasch model.

Top

Rhona Stainthorp (Institute of Education, University of Reading); Stuart, Morag; Powell, Daisy; Quinlan, Philip; Garwood, Holly - The relationship between RAN and reading: A longitudinal study.

This paper summarises findings from experiments investigating those cognitive processes thought to be implicated in individual differences in RAN performance, and in turn to impact on reading. We report on data collected as part of a two-year longitudinal study, designed to probe explicitly the cognitive processes distinguishing 7-10 year old children poor on RAN tasks and closely matched controls. Crucially, the controls were matched on phonological awareness (PA) allowing us to bypass the confound arising from the correlation between RAN and PA. The implications of these finding for rival theories of RAN and its relationship to reading are discussed.

Top

Esther Steenbeek-Planting (Dep of Special Education (OLO), Radboud University Nijmegen); van Bon, W.H.J. (Wim) - Stability of children's word reading accuracy and speed

The stability of word reading accuracy and reading speed of normally developing (n=135) and disabled readers (n= 90), from grade 1, 2 and 3 is compared. Participants were asked to read 200 Dutch CVC words at two different times, separated by an interval of a few days. The correspondence between the first and second administration is determined using various indices (Intra-class correlation, tetrachoric correlation, percentage agreement, etc.) The dependence of these stability indices on word characteristics and reading ability will be reported and the theoretical and practical implications for reading instruction will be discussed.

Top

Ron Stringer (McGill University); Irannejad, Shahrzad - Using a 3-axis accelerometer to measure postural stability as an indicator of cerebellar procesing.

The postural stability of 84 normal participants, mean age 7.8 years, was assessed using a 3-axis accelerometer during a modified Romberg task. The sums of the amplitudes of motions made by the participants over a five-second period following a postural challenge were recorded. Over three trials, the sums were correlated at moderate levels and no significant differences amongst the means were found. Despite the sensitivity of the measurement, no correlations were found between the postural stability and measures of reading and reading-related abilities.

Top

M. Kendra Sun-Alperin (University of Maryland, College Park); Wang, Min - Spanish-speaking children's spelling errors with English vowel sounds that are represented by different graphemes in English and Spanish words.

There are four vowel phonemes in Spanish that are represented by different graphemes in English. For Spanish-speaking children learning to spell in English, this transition from a shallow to a deep orthography could potentially cause many difficulties. We are interested in determining whether the spelling of English vowel sounds is particularly difficult for Spanish speakers and whether the errors that are made are consistent with Spanish phonological and orthographic rules. Participants were given real word and pseudoword spelling tasks in English and Spanish. We hypothesize that the Spanish speakers will commit more spelling errors than the English speakers and that the errors committed on spelling vowels will be consistent with Spanish orthographic rules.

Top

Nadia Taibah (King Abdulaziz University) - Cross-Linguistic Transfer of Phonological Processing Skills in Bilingual Arabic/English-Speaking Children

The transferability of literacy related skills between Arabic and English were investigated using parallel forms of tests in both languages. Seventy-four bilingual children participated from KG to 4th grade. It was found that children could reach a high level of word reading accuracy in Arabic before English because of the orthographic differences. Arabic phonological awareness measures predicted English word identification and English rapid naming measures predicted Arabic word identification, which indicates that these skills are transferable between languages; however each language specifies the prediction power of these transferred skills based on its own orthography.

Top

Jo Taylor (Medical Research Council Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit); Nation, Kate; Angell, Philip; Cocksey, Joanne - Phonological processing, vocabulary and reading development: What underlying cognitive skills are responsible for the relationships among these abilities?

It is well documented that phonological awareness predicts reading in children. However, phonological awareness tasks recruit a wide range of skills and it remains to be determined how each of these relates to reading development. In addition, broader language abilities such as vocabulary may also influence reading ability. This large scale longitudinal study addressed these issues by assessing 250 children on a wide variety of phonological, vocabulary and reading tasks at ages 4;10, 5;3, 6;0 and 7;0. Analyses revealed that there are different components to phonological processing, that these components contribute differently to reading and that vocabulary also plays a role.

Top

Janet Tilstra () - What Good and Struggling 5th Grade Readers Do When Reading Expository Text for a Specific Purpose: Implications for Intervention

In this study we examined the reading processes and comprehension outcomes of sixty 5th grade good and struggling readers when reading expository text for general comprehension or a specific purpose. Equal groups of good and struggling readers made think aloud statements while reading expository texts, retold the text, and then highlighted important sentences in the text based on the assigned reading purpose. Results examine the following questions. Do 5th grade good and struggling readers: 1) Show awareness of reading purpose during and after reading? 2) Show improved recall of purpose-relevant and overall text when reading for a specific purpose?

Top

Xiuli Tong (the Chinese University of Hong Kong, China); McBride-Chang, Catherine - Spelling acquisition in young Chinese children

Among 197 Hong Kong Chinese children, Time 1 (measured at ages 3-4 years old) tasks of letter name knowledge and visual spatial skills significantly predicted time 2 (measured at ages 5-6 years old) spelling; phonological awareness (PA) did not. At time 2, spelling was uniquely explained by concurrent measures of morphological awareness, RAN (numbers), orthographic knowledge, and age; PA was not uniquely associated with spelling. Findings underscore the importance of visual-orthographic skills and morphological awareness for early spelling in Chinese but suggest that PA is of relatively little help for early Chinese spelling acquisition.

Top

Rebecca Treiman (Washington University); Pennington, Bruce F.; Shriberg, Lawrence D.; Boada, Richard - Which children benefit from letter names in learning letter sounds?

Typical U.S. children use their knowledge of letters' names to help learn the letters' sounds. Consequently, they perform better on letter sound tests with letters that have their sounds at the beginnings of their names, such as V, than with other letters, such as H. We found this same pattern among children with speech sound disorders, children with language impairments as well as speech sound disorders, and children who later developed serious reading problems. Even children who scored at chance on rhyming and sound matching tasks showed the pattern, leading to questions about the nature and importance of phonological awareness.

Top

Styliani Tsesmeli (Dr. Styliani Tsesmeli); Seymour, Philip H.K. - Teaching morphemes to dyslexic individuals. Is there any difference?

The paper aimed to study how the training of morphemes could affect the spelling performance of dyslexic individuals in comparison with two control groups matched in terms of chronological and reading age. The study used word-pairs of bases and derivations (e.g., dark-darkness). The training had significant effects to enhance the spelling of derivations by the dyslexic individuals at a level similar to their reading age. Error analyses revealed that suffix gains were the most important outcome of the study explaining also the significant generalisation effects occurred on untrained items of similar structure to the trained ones (e.g., soft-softness).

Top

Sonja Ugen (Université du Luxembourg); Bodé, Sylvie; Leybaert, Jacqueline - Differences of the spelling performances of biliterate Luxemburgish and Romanophone good and poor spellers in German and French

The study aims to examine spelling skills of good and poor eight-year-old spellers from two different linguistic backgrounds in German and in French acquired at school. The children were part of a longitudinal study and were selected in second grade. Different specific spelling categories were analyzed from simple to complex rule-based spellings. Results show that overall the good spellers perform better than the poor spellers in both languages. Within the poor spellers, there are no differences between Luxemburgish and Romanophone children. However, in the good spellers group, Luxemburgish children have an advantage in German and the Romanophone in French.

Top

Anniek Vaessen (University of maastricht, The Netherlands); Blomert, Leo - The naming speed deficit is not what it looks like: Testing the assumptions of the double deficit hypothesis

An increasing body of evidence demonstrates that dyslexics show impaired rapid naming skills. This has been interpreted as support for the existence of a second core deficit in dyslexia, independent from a phonological core deficit (Bowers and Wolf, 1993). Other researchers, however, have claimed that impaired rapid naming skills are a result of poor phonological skills (Vellutino et al., 2004). In the present behavioral study, the main assumptions of the double deficit hypothesis are tested in a large population of dyslexics. The results do not support the claim that naming speed problems represent a second core deficit in dyslexia.

Top

Jyotsna Vaid (Psychology Dept., Texas A&M University); Rao, Chaitra; Chen, Hsin-Chin - Factors influencing word recognition in an alpha-syllabic Indic script: Evidence from Hindi

This study examined word recognition in the relatively understudied Hindi script, a non-Roman Indic script classified as partly alphabetic and partly syllabic. Although phonologically transparent, Indic scripts are visually complex. Two lexical decision experiments were conducted to contrast the influence of lexical (word frequency) and non-lexical effects (word length, as defined by syllable number) and the effect of visual degradation on lexical decision performance. The results showed a significant effect of all three variables. However, word frequency effects were restricted to one and two syllable words. The findings support a predominantly assembled route for Hindi word recognition.

Top

Vered Vaknin (University of Haifa); Shimron, Joseph - Processing allomorphs in reading plural inflections

Plural inflection of regular Hebrew nouns is mainly linear, and it is achieved by affixation similarly to English (thing-thing-s), for example, DaVaR -- DVaR-iM, 'thing-thing-s'. But unlike English plural inflection, in Hebrew, in addition to suffixation, there are often vocal alternation in the base form, as in the example above. To examine whether plural forms with such vowel alternations are read with greater difficulty than those without them (those faithful to the singular form) we used a naming priming paradigm. In four experiments a plural form, e.g., DVaRiM 'things' was primed by the base (DaVaR), which is identical to the singular form, or the stem (DVaR), or a wrongly voweled stem (DuVeR). All three primes were written with vowel signs. A control condition was an unrelated plural form, such as SKaRim 'lies'. The target was always the plural form DVaRiM. Except for the control, comparison of priming effects indicated no difference between the priming conditions.

Top

Wim H.J. van Bon (); Kuijpers, Cécile - The stability of children's spellings

The stability was established with which words that have an idiosyncratic letter pattern and pseudowords are spelled on dictation by children in primary education. The correlation between performances two weeks apart was high, not only at the sum score but also at the item level. The probability of spelling quality (correct or incorrect) being identical on both occasions was above chance for most items. Even when errors were classified as violating the phonological structure of the spoken word, as phonologically correct but breaking orthographical rules, or as phonologically correct and orthographically legitimate, item stability suggested a relatively solid pattern of underlying skill. Practical and theoretical implications will be discussed.

Top

Victor H.P. van Daal (Edge Hill University); Gottardo, Alexandra; Skaathun, Astrid - Bilingual spelling

Spelling and reading are related in monolingual English speakers (Ehri, 2000; Frith, 1985). In addition, first language and second language reading are related in bilinguals (Durgunoglu, 2002). Therefore, L1 and L2 spelling should be related to each other. L1 and L2 spelling has been studied in across disparate orthographies, Chinese and English (Wang & Geva, 2003; Wang, Koda & Perfetti, 2003). However, relationships between spelling in two alphabetic languages with similar phonologies and many cognates in oral language but different orthographic depths ( i.e. English & Norwegian) have rarely been tested. We examined L1 and L2 spelling in children who were English-Norwegian and Norwegian-English bilinguals. Errors specific to L1 were expected on specially designed spelling lists. Relationships between L1 and L2 spelling were examined. Results will be discussed in relation to L1 models of reading-spelling development and orthographic depth of the L1 and L2.

Top

Wim Van den Broeck (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) - The interaction between phonological awareness, rapid naming and verbal association learning as concurrent predictors of word reading ability.

In this study we examined concurrent predictive patterns of interactive relationships between phonological segmentation, rapid naming of pictures and verbal paired associate learning on word reading performance of an unselected group of first grade children (N = 296). Although each predictor contributed unique variance to word reading scores, the predictive power was limited to the range of poor reading scores. Most importantly, the interaction between phonological segmentation and rapid naming explained part of the variability of good word reading scores.

Top

Frank R. Vellutino (SUNY @ Albany) - Using Responsiveness to Kindergarten and First Grade Intervention to Predict Reading Achievement and Risk Status in First, Second, and Third Grade

Kindergarten children "at risk" for reading difficulties were provided with small group intervention throughout kindergarten and reading growth in these children was periodically assessed. Growth curve modeling was used to identify measures of responsiveness to kindergarten intervention and several logistic regression models were compared in classifying children as poor or no-longer-at-risk readers at the beginning of first grade. Responsiveness to first grade intervention for continued risk children was also used to predict second and third grade reading achievement. Kindergarten and first grade RTI measures were found to be better predictors of risk status than were psychometric screening and intelligence measures.

Top

Ludo Verhoeven (Radboud University Nijmegen, The Netherlands); van Leeuwe, Jan - Prediction of Dutch spelling development throughout elementary school

The purpose of the present study was to investigate the growth of Dutch spelling skills throughout elementary school for a representative sample of 2791 children living in the Netherlands. Following a longitudinal design, the children's spelling abilities were assessed in every grade. Analyses within the framework of Item Response Theory indicated that one latent ability is underlying spelling ability over the grades. Linear structural equation analysis showed the development of spelling over the years to be highly interdependent with the development of Dutch word decoding. Moreover, the development of both word decoding and spelling could be predicted from children's phonological awareness and letter knowledge.

Top

Lesly Wade-Woolley (Queen) - Stress assignment and derivational morphology in skilled reading

It has long been recognized that English derivational suffixes vary in their ability to affect the word stem; one class of suffix (e.g., -ity) obligatorily causes a shift word stress (e.g., ACtive - acTIvity), while the other class of suffix (e.g., -ful) has no effect on word stem stress (e.g., BEAUty - BEAUtiful). We report a study of the relationship between derivational suffixes and stress assignment in adult readers of English. We demonstrate that skilled readers (a) are sensitive to this distinction in oral language and (b) when reading, assign stress to derived pseudowords in a way that is consistent with this underlying linguistic competence. Furthermore, sensitivity to the stress properties of derivational suffixes is correlated to general reading ability. We argue that it is through implicit knowledge of stress assignment that good readers are able to use morphological knowledge to decode novel, multisyllabic words.

Top

Barbara Wagensveld (F. C. Donders Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging); van Turennout, Miranda; Verhoeven, Ludo - Phonological processing abilities in Dutch preschool children.

Phonological awareness is thought to develop gradually during pre-school years from less complex activities such as rhyme judgment to more complex activities such as phonemic segmentation. The present study examines different stages of phonological awareness in 41 preschool children aged 5-6 years. Behavioral performance was measured using a rhyme judgment task (comparing rhyming word-pairs with phonologically overlapping and phonologically unrelated word-pairs) and a go-nogo task examining phonological segmentation abilities at the level of syllable, body-coda and onset-rime. Differential effects in the rhyming as well as the segmentation task provide an index of phonological processing capacities in pre-literate children.

Top

Rick Wagner (Florida State University); Rashotte, Carol - Origins of Individual and Developmental Differences in Reading Comprehension

Results will be presented from a research program involving converging operations to investigate the origins of individual and developmental differences in reading comprehension. Two studies have been carried out. The first is a three year longitudinal study of reading comprehension and predictors including decoding, vocabulary, and working memory. The younger cohort, with 129 students remaining, was recruited in second grade and followed through third. The older cohort, with 119 students remaining, was recruited in fourth grade and followed through sixt grade. The second study manipulated passage-specific decoding fluency and vocabulary knowledge. Participants were assigned randomly to one of three groups: (1) decoding fluency training; (2) vocabulary training; (3) decoding fluency plus vocabulary training. Similarities and differences between the results of the two studies will be discussed.

Top

Min Wang (University of Maryland, College Park); Yang, Chen; Cheng, Chenxi - Contribution of phonology, orthography, and morphology in Chinese-English biliteracy acquisition

This study investigates the contribution of phonological, orthographic and morphological skills in Chinese-English biliteracy acquisition. A group of grade 1 Chinese children who are learning to read Chinese and English simultaneously in the US are tested on a set of experimental tasks tapping into phonological, orthographic, and morphological processing as well as word reading skills in Chinese and English, taking into consideration the contrasts between the two languages and writing systems. Based on our previous work (Wang, et al., 2005, 2006), a proposed path model suggests a strong causal link between Chinese orthographic processing and Chinese character reading skills within Chinese, and a strong causal link between English phonemic processing and English word reading within English. Most importantly, we hypothesize that there is a cross language transfer between Chinese phonology and English reading, and possibly a transfer between Chinese morphology and English reading.

Top

Suzanne Welcome (University of California, Riverside); Leonard, Christiana M.; Halderman, Laura; Towler, Stephen; Chiarello, Christine - Word Reading Skill and Brain Anatomy in Adult Resilient Readers

We examined the behavior and brain anatomy of adults who show a large discrepancy between pseudoword reading and text comprehension abilities. Participants performed several divided visual field tasks and received a structural MRI. Resilient readers performed less accurately on basic word recognition tasks but not tasks involving semantic access. Resilient readers did not differ from proficient readers in reaction time, degree of lateralization, or several measures of brain anatomy. However, the relationship between brain anatomy and behavior differed between groups. The findings support the hypothesis that reading does not necessarily rely upon the same behavioral and neural substrates across individuals.

Top

Karen Whalley (Queensland University of Technology); Hansen, Julie - The Role of Prosodic Sensitivity in Children's Reading Comprehension

This study examined the development of prosodic skills in primary school children, and the contribution of children's prosodic skills (their sensitivity to the tempo, rhythm and stress of language) to listening and reading comprehension. One hundred primary school children in Grades 2 and 4 completed a test battery assessing their prosodic, syntactic and semantic skills, phonological awareness, word-reading accuracy and fluency, listening and reading comprehension, and complex memory span. Prosodic sensitivity was assessed at the syllable, word, phrase, and sentence levels. Hierarchical regression analyses at each grade level examined the contribution of prosodic skills to listening and reading comprehension, and the extent to which prosodic skills contribute to reading comprehension over and above their role in listening comprehension. This research provides further insights into aspects of prosodic development in middle childhood, and the similarities and differences in the contribution of prosodic skills in spoken and written language contexts.

Top

Bozena White (); Kirby, John - Depth of processing: Its relation to reading comprehension, component skills and cognitive processes

This study examines the reading and reading-related component skills that underlie the performance of 140 grade 10 readers on a variety of reading comprehension measures. Component skills measured included word recognition, phonological awareness, naming speed, morphological and orthographic processing, working memory, and intelligence. Measures of reading comprehension included a commercially available standardized test, a broadly based government mandated measure, and more theoretically driven experimental measures. Correlation, factor, and regression analyses examined the dimensionality of the reading comprehension domain and the unique contributions of the component skills to reading comprehension. Implications for theory and instruction will be discussed.

Top

Edith Willburger (University of Salzburg); Landerl, Karin - Naming speed in dyslexia and dyscalculia

Rapid naming of digits, quantities, letters and objects and naming tasks requiring executive functioning (inhibition and shifting) were carried out with 67 children (grade 2 - 4) with dyslexia, dyscalculia, or both and 42 controls. Dyslexic and dyslexic/dyscalculic children were deficient in all simple naming conditions, dyscalculic children were only deficient in naming of quantities. For executive naming tasks no deficits were found in either group. Findings suggest that dyslexics experience general naming speed deficits, that dyslexic/dyscalculic children experience the combination of problems that characterize children with a single learning deficit, and that learning disabled children without comorbid attentional deficits are not impaired in inhibition and shifting.

Top

Gonny Willems (University of Maastricht,); Richardson, Ulla; Blomert, Leo - Evaluating pre-school 'reading' training for dyslexia at risk children

The need for intervention that prevents reading difficulties seems pertinent given reports that dyslexia may be identified in kindergarten. We evaluated a training for letter-speech sound learning in children with and without familial risk for dyslexia. Immediate effects of training were found for letter knowledge and spelling in both groups, but only for letter-sound association in the non-risk group. There were no direct training effects on reading. A substantial part of at-risk children, roughly equivalent to the expected proportion of affected offspring, did not profit from the training, suggesting that early intervention may not be effective for the 'really at-risk'.

Top

Serniclaes Willy (CNRS & Université René Descartes, Paris 5); Froyen, Dries; Blomert, Leo - Allophonic theory of dyslexia: new evidence from labelling and discrimination functions.

Allophonic theory explains dyslexia by specific mode of speech perception based on allophones rather than on phonemes and which would in turn affect the set-up of grapheme-phoneme correspondences. Here we present new evidence based on both discrimination and labelling of three different VOT continua by 7 and 9 years old dyslexic children and controls. Results show that the labelling and/or discrimination functions of the dyslexic children are consistently different from those of controls. Examination of individual response lends further support to the allophonic model.

Top

Heinz Wimmer (Universitat Salzburg) - Developmental dyslexia and acquired letter-by-letter reading: Similarities and differences

First, a review of findings will show that dyslexic readers similar to acquired letter-by-letter (LbL) readers exhibit a very substantial word length effect on several reading measures (voice onset, lexical decision, number of fixations). This serial dyslexic word reading strategy was found for regular orthographies (Italian, German, Dutch)but also for English. The second part of the talk will present visual perceptual findings and neuroimaging findings from our lab which were associated with serial dyslexic word reading and relate these to findings from acquired LbL readers. Of specific interest is a dysfunction of a ventral region of the left occipitotemporal cortex during reading which was found for both syndroms.

Top

Heather Winskel (University of Western Sydney) - Processing vowels in Thai: Some preliminary findings

In Thai some vowels precede the consonant in writing but follow it in speech, e.g pen would be written as epn. A processing cost has been found for these misaligned vowels in Devanagari in Hindi speakers (Vaid & Gupta, 2002). In order to investigate this further in Thai, eye movements of twenty university students reading 50 pairs of misaligned and aligned vowel words matched for length and frequency embedded in same sentence frames was conducted. No significant difference was found in eye movement measures. Behavioural data collected from children reading and spelling comparable words was also analysed for errors.

Top

Barbara Wise (University of Colorado); Snyder, Lynn; Van Vuuren, Sarel; Cole, Ron - Improving Early Reading with an Interactive Independent Tutoring System

Over three years, kindergarten to second-grade children in 44 classrooms in Colorado read independently with the Foundations to Literacy (FtL) interactive reading system. In FtL, an animated Virtual Tutor guides and supports students as they progress through foundational reading exercises and interactive books. Despite modest hours, children who read for 3 to 11 hours gained more in word reading and passage comprehension than did untrained classroom controls, with moderate effect sizes. Paradoxically, gains were stronger for children with moderate hours, who spent proportionally more time in exercises, than for children with over 6 hours who spent more time in books.

Top

Simpson Wai Lap Wong (); S-H Ho, Connie - Central executive and speed of processing deficit in Chinese developmental dyslexia: its impact on word decoding and reading comprehension

This study examined central executive (CE) and speed of processing (SOP), and their impacts on word decoding and reading comprehension among Chinese dyslexic children. Thirty dyslexic children, 30 chronological age-controls and 30 reading level-controls were recruited. Group comparisons showed that dyslexic children showed impairments of SOP and CE components such as inhibition of irrelevant information, handling two tasks simultaneously, long-term memory retrieval and working memory span. Regression analyses showed that CE and SOP had direct effects on word decoding; their effects on reading comprehension were mediated by word decoding. Results implied that untreated CE and SOP problems would magnify reading problems.

Top

Clare Wood (Coventry University, Psychology Department); Joshi, Puja - Sensitivity to Stress in Speech and its Relationship to Spelling Proficiency in Adults

Building on research in this area with young children, this study aims to examine whether adults' sensitivity to the placement of stress in speech is related to their performance on written language tasks like spelling. A sample of undergraduate students will be asked to complete tasks that will assess the following: identification of primary lexical stress in spoken words; preference for lexical stress placement when listening to nonwords; preference for lexical stress placement when reading individual nonwords; their ability to spell the nonwords they have been reading; and a single word spelling test (real words). The results will be analysed to see whether the participants' performance on the stress related measures is predictive of performance on the spelling of standard English words.

Top

Taeko N. Wydell (Brunel University); John, Joanna; Khilosia, Raksha - Relationship between Phonological Awareness Skills and Reading Ability among Secondary School Pupils (aged 15)

158 secondary-school pupils (aged 15) were tested on cognitive/reading-related/phonological-awareness skills to ascertain the relationship between these skills and the British Standard Attainment Tests (SATS-English, Maths, and Science). None of these tests, except Schonell-Dictation, accounted for SATS-English. 16 pupils were then identified as poor-readers, who were tested on Reading/PA tests together with 16 control participants. The poor-readers' scores from these tests, and SATS-English/Science, but not Maths were significantly lower than the control. Thus even among secondary-school pupils impaired PA was associated with poor reading skills. The poor-readers were also found to show a different cognitive profile to that of the control.

Top

Xiao XiaoYun (Xiao XiaoYun); Ho, Connie Suk-Han - Development of Syntactic Awareness in Chinese children

The present study examined the development of syntactic awareness in Chinese children. Different aspects of syntactic awareness were investigated among 237 Chinese children in Grade 2 to Grade 5 in Hong Kong. Results suggest that syntactic awareness develops through 3 stages and significantly predicts reading comprehension in each stage. Stage 1 involves a rapid development of different syntactic knowledge. Stage 2 represents a consolidation phase in which the significance of syntactic knowledge in reading comprehension subsides, pathing the way for the development of more advanced syntactic knowledge in Stage 3. Among the different syntactic processing skills, transformation of active and passive sentences is the easiest to acquire and thus it plays an important role in reading comprehension in stage 1. Recognition of sentence parts is more complex and difficult and thus it develops and influences reading comprehension in stage 3.

Top

Pui-sze Yeung (The University of Hong Kong) - Learning to read and spell in English among Chinese English-as-a-second-language learners in Hong Kong

English reading and spelling development among Chinese ESL learners in Hong Kong was examined in a one-year longitudinal study covering three developmental periods: Kindergarten to Grade 1, Grade 2 to Grade 3, and Grade 4 to Grade 5. One hundred and fifty five participants were tested on cognitive-linguistic and language proficiency measures. Results showed that (1) rapid naming ability is more important than phonological awareness in learning to read and spell English among the younger participants; (2) visual-orthographic skills played a more important role in English spelling than in English reading among the more advanced learners, contradicting Frith's (1985) prediction.

Top

Elena Zaretsky (College of Educatio and Human Development); Hodgson, James; Curro, Kristina - Do cognitive abilities matter in developing compensatory strategies for reading and spelling? Evidence from individual cases.

The discrepancy between the IQ scores and reading and spelling has long been seen as a hallmark in diagnosing dyslexia, i.e., relatively high IQ compared to low reading and spelling achievements. However, the observable and measurable testing behaviors, when seen as identifying criteria, often divert the attention away from the underlying causes that result in reading and spelling difficulties (Frith, 1997). Another fall out of this particular practice is neglecting children with lower IQ scores who may also have dyslexia (Siegel, 1992). Identifying compensatory strategies in children with different IQs may provide a better understanding of underlying cognitive abilities.

Top

Aubree Zelnick (University of Utah); Dole, Janice; Hosp, John; Hosp, Michelle - School Reform and Students with Disabilities: The Impact of the Reading First Program on Students in Special Education

Until recent years, students with disabilities have typically been excluded from reading reform efforts in the United States. Although federal law now requires that these students take part in reform activities, little is known about the impact of these activities on students with disabilities. The purpose of this paper will be to study the effect of a nationwide reading reform initiative, the federal Reading First program, on students with disabilities in one western state. Student outcome data will be analyzed to demonstrate the impact of Reading First on students with disabilities over the first three years of implementation.

Top

Jason D. Zevin (Sackler Institute, Weill Medical College of Cornell University); Brandao de Avila, Clara Regina; de Souza Batista, Adriana; Maria Chiari, Brasilia; Faleiros Paolucci, Juliana - Evaluation of reading comprehension with and without text consultation

The objective of the work was to investigate the influence of text consultation over performance on the reading comprehension. Forty students from 3rd to 6th grade of Middle School with no complaints of reading and writing difficulties participated. It was evaluated the comprehension of the silently read text through multiple choice tests, for two different groups of students, distributed according to the read text recall. The correct score averages by group were calculated and statistically analyzed (ANOVA). It was concluded that the availability of the text for consultation did not influence the performance on the reading comprehension of the students with no complaints.

Top

Marcy Zipke (Providence College); Ehri, Linnea - Metalinquistic Instruction Improves Third Graders' Reading Comprehension

The purpose of this study was to investigate the efficacy of instruction in metalinguistic awareness for improving reading comprehension. An active learning program utilizing riddles and other ambiguous texts was taught to twenty-three third-graders. Twenty-three control group participants matched for comprehension ability received comprehension lessons without a metalinguistic component. It was found that four training sessions of 30-40 minutes each was effective in teaching the treatment group how to identify and define homonyms and ambiguous sentences. Furthermore, trained students improved significantly more than the control group in comprehension monitoring and in reading comprehension as measured by a standardized cloze task.

Top