ERIC Number: EJ1057421
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Sep
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 20
The Influence of Spelling Ability on Handwriting Production: Children with and without Dyslexia
Sumner, Emma; Connelly, Vincent; Barnett, Anna L.
Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, v40 n5 p1441-1447 Sep 2014
Current models of writing do not sufficiently address the complex relationship between the 2 transcription skills: spelling and handwriting. For children with dyslexia and beginning writers, it is conceivable that spelling ability will influence rate of handwriting production. Our aim in this study was to examine execution speed and temporal characteristics of handwriting when completing sentence-copying tasks that are free from composing demands and to determine the predictive value of spelling, pausing, and motor skill on handwriting production. Thirty-one children with dyslexia (M[subscript age] = 9 years 4 months) were compared with age-matched and spelling-ability matched children (M[subscript age] = 6 years 6 months). A digital writing tablet and Eye and Pen software were used to analyze handwriting. Children with dyslexia were able to execute handwriting at the same speed as the age-matched peers. However, they wrote less overall and paused more frequently while writing, especially within words. Combined spelling ability and within-word pausing accounted for over 76% of the variance in handwriting production of children with dyslexia, demonstrating that productivity relies on spelling capabilities. Motor skill did not significantly predict any additional variance in handwriting production. Reading ability predicted performance of the age-matched group, and pausing predicted performance for the spelling-ability group. The findings from the digital writing tablet highlight the interactive relationship between the transcription skills and how, if spelling is not fully automatized, it can constrain the rate of handwriting production. Practical implications are also addressed, emphasizing the need for more consideration to be given to what common handwriting tasks are assessing as a whole.
Descriptors: Spelling, Handwriting, Children, Dyslexia, Comparative Analysis, Experimental Psychology, Foreign Countries, Elementary School Students, Scores, Statistical Analysis, Reading Skills, Nonverbal Ability, Psychomotor Skills, Conceptual Tempo, Cognitive Processes, Time, Multivariate Analysis
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (England)
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: British Ability Scales