Dyslexic and skilled reading dynamics are self-similar
until further notice
Number of pages
SourceAnnals of Dyslexia, 64, 3, (2014), pp. 202-221
Article / Letter to editor
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Annals of Dyslexia
SubjectLearning and Plasticity
The shape of a word pronunciation time distribution supplies information about the dynamic interactions that support reading performance. Speeded word-naming pronunciation and response time distributions were collected from 20 sixth grade Dutch students with dyslexia and 23 age-matched controls. The participants' pronunciation times were modeled and contrasted with a lognormal inverse power-law mixture distribution. Identical contrasts were also conducted on the same participants' response time distributions derived from flanker, color-naming, and arithmetic tasks. Results indicated that children with dyslexia yield slower, broader, and more variable pronunciation time distributions than their age-matched counterparts. This difference approximated a self-similar rescaling between the two group's aggregate pronunciation time distributions. Moreover, children with dyslexia produced similar, but less prominent trends toward slower and more variable performance across the three non-reading tasks. The outcomes support a proportional continuum rather than a localized deficit account of dyslexia. The mixture distribution's success at describing the participants' pronunciation and response time distributions suggests that differences in proportional contingencies among low-level neurophysiological, perceptual, and cognitive processes likely play a prominent role in the etiology of dyslexia.
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