Harvard Educational Review
  1. Fall 1977 Issue »

    Alternative Conceptualizations of Dyslexia

    Evidence in Support of a Verbal-Deficit Hypothesis

    Frank R. Vellutino
    The history of our knowledge about specific reading disability—dyslexia—is checkered with different hypotheses and theories. In this overview of the literature Frank Vellutino critically examines the foci of four prevalent explanations for reading failure in children: visual perception, intersensory integration, temporal– order perception, and verbal functioning. Applying findings from his own laboratory investigations and other selected research to each of the four hypotheses, Vellutino argues that the verbal-deficit hypothesis offers the most convincing explanation. Through the use of direct and indirect evidence Vellutino demonstrates the relationship between reading problems and dysfunction in the semantic, syntactic, or phonological aspects of language. Finally, Vellutino pursues the implications of his position and asserts that the linguistic problems of some poor readers necessitate an emphasis on the internal structure of words in learning to read.

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    Fall 1977 Issue

    Abstracts

    Introduction
    Eugene Radwin, Maryanne Wolf-Ward
    Foreword
    Helen Popp
    From Utterance to Text
    The Bias of Language in Speech and Writing
    David R. Olson
    Two Functions of Language
    Carol Fleisher Feldman
    Trends in Second-Language-Acquisition Research
    Kenji Hakuta, Herlinda Cancino
    Learning about Psycholinguistic Processes by Analyzing Oral Reading
    Kenneth S. Goodman, Yetta M. Goodman
    Alternative Conceptualizations of Dyslexia
    Evidence in Support of a Verbal-Deficit Hypothesis
    Frank R. Vellutino
    An Interactionist Approach to Advancing Literacy
    Nan Elsasser, Vera P. John-Steiner
    The Nature of Literacy
    An Historical Exploration
    Daniel P. Resnick, Lauren B. Resnick
    Making Sense of Reading—And of Reading Instruction
    Frank Smith
    Varieties of Deficiency in the Reading Processes
    Magdalen D. Vernon
    Reading Reconsidered
    Thomas Wolf
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