ERIC Number: ED211919
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Aug
Reference Count: 0
The Disabled Readers: What Are Their Weaknesses in Language and in the Reading Process?
Noting that one reason for the discrepant results found in research on reading difficulties is the variety of approaches used to assess reading and spelling problems, this paper examines two of these approaches in terms of their implicit assumptions and inherent failings. The paper first discusses the etiological approach, which tries to identify physical, environmental, and emotional factors that impede the reading or spelling process. The paper points out three difficulties with this approach: (1) a lack of criteria for differential diagnosis and the problem of overlap, (2) uncertainty of the direct causal relationship, and (3) the low and indirect therapeutic value of the approach. The paper next discusses the cognitive defect approach, which tries to isolate various types of reading problems. Among the shortcomings listed for this approach are the inadequacy of the assumptions about the process of reading underlying it and its implicit assumption that the cognitive functions are a unitary process. The paper concludes that a more fruitful attempt to identify variables in reading difficulties is the process-oriented approach, which tries to identify partial processes of reading in which children with reading problems are deficient and cites a number of studies that support the value of this approach. (FL)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the European Conference on Reading (2nd, Joensuu, Finland, August 2-5, 1981).