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Orthographic learning during reading: the role of whole-word visual processing

Abstract : The self-teaching hypothesis suggests that knowledge about the orthographic structure of words is acquired incidentally during reading through phonological recoding. The current study assessed whether visual processing skills during reading further contribute to orthographic learning. French children were asked to read pseudowords. The whole pseudoword letter string was available at once for half of the targets while the pseudoword's sub-lexical units were discovered in turn for the other half. Then memorisation of the targets orthographic form was assessed. Although most pseudowords were accurately decoded, target orthographic forms were recognised more often when the pseudowords entire orthographic sequence was available at once during the learning phase. The whole-word presentation effect was signifi cant and stable from third to fifth grades. This effect was affected neither by target reading accuracy nor by target reading speed during the learning phase. Results suggest that beyond recoding skills, the ability to process the entire orthographic letter string at once during reading contributes to efficient orthographic learning.
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Submitted on : Thursday, October 22, 2015 - 5:29:20 PM
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Marie-Line Bosse, Nathalie Chaves, Pierre Largy, Sylviane Valdois. Orthographic learning during reading: the role of whole-word visual processing. Journal of Research in Reading, Wiley, 2015, 38, pp.141-158. ⟨10.1111/j.1467-9817.2012.01551.x⟩. ⟨hal-01218316⟩

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