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Spelling Consistency Affects Reading in Young Dutch Readers with and without Dyslexia

Anna M. T. Bosman, Wietske Vonk and Margriet van Zwam
Annals of Dyslexia
Vol. 56, No. 2 (September, 2006), pp. 271-300
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23765347
Page Count: 30
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Spelling Consistency Affects Reading in Young Dutch Readers with and without Dyslexia
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Abstract

Lexical-decision studies with experienced English and French readers have shown that visual-word identification is not only affected by pronunciation inconsistency of a word (i.e., multiple ways to pronounce a spelling body), but also by spelling inconsistency (i.e., multiple ways to spell a pronunciation rime). The aim of this study was to compare the reading behavior of young Dutch readers with dyslexia to the behavior of readers without dyslexia. All students participated in a lexical-decision task in which we presented pronunciation-consistent words and pseudowords. Half of the pronunciation-consistent stimuli were spelling consistent and the other half were spelling inconsistent. All three reader groups, that is, students with dyslexia, age-match students, and reading-match students, read spelling-consistent words faster than spelling-inconsistent words. Overall reading speed of students with dyslexia was similar to that of reading-match students, and was substantially slower than that of age-match students. The results suggest that reading in students with or without dyslexia is similarly affected by spelling inconsistency. Subtle qualitative differences emerged, however, with respect to pseudoword identification. The conclusion was that the findings were best interpreted in terms of a recurrent-feedback model.

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