The role of visual processing in reading ability and disability: Can dyslexia be partially traced to a deficit in statistical learning?

by Elín Ástrós Þórarinsdóttir 1992; Hilda Björk Daníelsdóttir 1992

Institution: University of Iceland
Year: 2015
Keywords: Sálfræði
Record ID: 1222340
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/20852


There is growing evidence that statistical learning, the ability to detect statistical regularities in the environment, underlies reading. Recent studies suggest that a higher statistical learning ability is related to a higher reading ability in the general population. The objective of the current study was to determine if dyslexics show a deficit in statistical learning. We compared the performance of 39 adult dyslexics (M = 27.2 years) and 39 matched typical readers (M = 26.6 years) on a well-established statistical learning test. Dyslexic participants showed significantly poorer performance on the statistical learning test compared to typical readers. These results held after controlling for participants’ nonverbal intelligence, ADHD, object recognition abilities and handedness. Our results indicate that dyslexia can be partially traced to a deficit in statistical learning. It is therefore possible that dyslexia represents a general impairment in statistical learning.