[PS-2.10] The role of whole-word visual processing on orthographic acquisition: A study on dyslexics with or without visual attention span deficit

Alloix, J. 1 , Bosse, M. 1 & Valdois, S. 1, 2

1 Laboratoire de Psychologie et NeuroCognition LPNC, UMR5105 CNRS, France
2 CNRS, France

The self teaching hypothesis suggests that most knowledge about the orthographic structure of words is acquired incidentally during reading through phonological recoding. However, recent studies have shown that visual processing skills during reading further contribute to orthographic learning. More precisely, the ability to process the entire orthographic letter string at once during reading appears as a significant factor of efficient orthographic learning, for normal readers (e.g., Bosse, Chaves, Largy, & Valdois, in press). The present study tested this hypothesis on dyslexic children with or without visual attention span deficit (Bosse, Tainturier, & Valdois, 2007). Participants were asked to look at pseudo-words, listen to their oral form and read them. The whole pseudo-word letter-string was available at once for half of the targets and the pseudo-word?s sublexical units were discovered in turn for the other half. Presentation time and total time of processing were controlled. The memorisation of target orthographic forms was assessed 10 minutes after reading. Results are not yet available because the experiment is in progress. The main hypothesis is that results of dyslexics without visual attention span deficit will be equivalent as normal readers, with more orthographic learning when pseudo-words have been seen in their whole. On the contrary, dyslexics with a visual attention span deficit are expected to memorise less items than the others, and to memorise equally items seen under a whole-word presentation and items seen under a sequential presentation.