Subtypes of developmental dyslexia in transparent orthographies: A comment on Lachmann and van Leeuwen (2008)

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Abstract

Lachmann and Van Leeuwen (2008) proposed two diagnostic subtypes of developmental dyslexia in a language with transparent orthography (German). The classification was based on reading time, rather than reading errors, for lists of words and nonwords. The two subtypes were "frequent-word reading impaired" (FWRI) and "nonword reading impaired" (NWRI). Notably, FWRI were very slow in reading high-frequency words but as fast as controls in reading nonwords; ca. one-third of these children showed this "reversed lexicality effect" in a particularly marked fashion (i.e., read non- words two to three times faster than high-frequency words). Since Italian is a highly transparent language, we applied this classification to 87 third- and sixth-grade dyslexics from various previously published studies. Some children showed a marked lexicality effect, while others showed small or no difference between word and nonword reading speed. However, regardless of stimulus length, grade and presence/absence of a previous language delay, no child showed a marked reversed lexicality effect; more generally, no child could be classified as FWRI. These findings indicate that the search for subtypes of developmental dyslexia in transparent orthographies still constitutes an open question.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)752-758
Number of pages7
JournalCognitive Neuropsychology
Volume26
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2009

Fingerprint

Dyslexia
Reading
Language
Language Development Disorders
Orthography
Nonwords
Developmental Dyslexia
Lexicality
Word Reading

Keywords

  • Developmental dyslexia
  • Nonwords
  • Subtypes of dyslexia
  • Transparent orthographies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

Cite this

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title = "Subtypes of developmental dyslexia in transparent orthographies: A comment on Lachmann and van Leeuwen (2008)",
abstract = "Lachmann and Van Leeuwen (2008) proposed two diagnostic subtypes of developmental dyslexia in a language with transparent orthography (German). The classification was based on reading time, rather than reading errors, for lists of words and nonwords. The two subtypes were {"}frequent-word reading impaired{"} (FWRI) and {"}nonword reading impaired{"} (NWRI). Notably, FWRI were very slow in reading high-frequency words but as fast as controls in reading nonwords; ca. one-third of these children showed this {"}reversed lexicality effect{"} in a particularly marked fashion (i.e., read non- words two to three times faster than high-frequency words). Since Italian is a highly transparent language, we applied this classification to 87 third- and sixth-grade dyslexics from various previously published studies. Some children showed a marked lexicality effect, while others showed small or no difference between word and nonword reading speed. However, regardless of stimulus length, grade and presence/absence of a previous language delay, no child showed a marked reversed lexicality effect; more generally, no child could be classified as FWRI. These findings indicate that the search for subtypes of developmental dyslexia in transparent orthographies still constitutes an open question.",
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