Word Reading Fluency in Brazilian Portuguese

Word Reading Fluency in Brazilian Portuguese

First Author: Jane Corrêa -- Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro
Additional authors/chairs: 
Giuliana Ramires
Keywords: Fluency, Word reading, Phonological awareness, Rapid naming, Vocabulary
Abstract / Summary: 

Purpose: Text reading fluency has been hypothesized as comprising word-level reading skills and higher order reading skills. If children have to use too much of their cognitive resources to read the words in text, they have little remaining for text comprehension. Improvements in word-reading accuracy have been easier to obtain than improvements in reading fluency. Thus we aimed to examine the contribution of different linguistic-cognitive skills for word reading fluency in Brazilian Portuguese, a relatively shallow orthography Method: Eighteen third graders (8- 9 years) were presented with the following tasks: word reading fluency, pseudoword reading fluency, phonological awareness (detection, subtraction and segmentation), rapid automatized naming (objects, colors, letters and numbers) word and pseudoword repetition, letter and syllable recognition, sublexical reading fluency, derivational morphology ( analogy), flexional morphology (judgment task). Children´s verbal ability, vocabulary, attention and working memory skills were also assessed.
Results: Children´s performance on word reading fluency (accuracy and speed) correlated significantly with verbal ability. Word reading accuracy correlated significantly with syllable and phoneme tasks, vocabulary and pseudoword accuracy. Reading speed words per minute correlated significantly with pseudoword reading speed and rapid automatized naming (letters and numbers).
Conclusion: In spite of the fact that word reading fluency in Brazilian Portuguese, a relative shallow language, correlated significantly with verbal ability, each of its components were associated with sets of different skills. Word reading accuracy is related to phonological analysis and lexical extension. On the other hand, word reading speed is associated with automatized and processing speed skills. These results may have important implications for educational programs and clinical intervention to develop reading fluency. (CAPES, FAPERJ, CNPq)