Progress in reading and spelling of dyslexic children is not affected by executive functioning.

Research paper by Sietske A E SA Walda, Marjolijn M van Weerdenburg, Maarten L ML Wijnants, Anna M T AM Bosman

Indexed on: 10 Sep '14Published on: 10 Sep '14Published in: Research in Developmental Disabilities


Although poor reading and spelling skills have been associated with weak skills of executive functioning (EF), its role in literacy is not undisputed. Because EF has different theoretical underpinnings, methods of analysis and of assessing, it has led to varying and often contrasting results in its effects in children with dyslexia. The present study has two goals. The first goal is to establish the relationship between a large number of EF tasks and reading and spelling skills in a large number of Dutch dyslexic children (n = 229). More interesting, however, is the second aim. To what extent do EF skills predict progress in reading and spelling in dyslexic children who attended a remediation programme? The results revealed small, but significant relationships between EF and reading and spelling skills, but no relationships between EF and progress in reading and spelling. It is concluded that training EF skills is unlikely to enhance reading and spelling skills.