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Neuroscience - Science Policy

Cognitive Profile of Students Who Enter Higher Education with an Indication of Dyslexia
Published: Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Author: Maaike Callens et al.

by Maaike Callens, Wim Tops, Marc Brysbaert

For languages other than English there is a lack of empirical evidence about the cognitive profile of students entering higher education with a diagnosis of dyslexia. To obtain such evidence, we compared a group of 100 Dutch-speaking students diagnosed with dyslexia with a control group of 100 students without learning disabilities. Our study showed selective deficits in reading and writing (effect sizes for accuracy between d?=?1 and d?=?2), arithmetic (d˜1), and phonological processing (d>0.7). Except for spelling, these deficits were larger for speed related measures than for accuracy related measures. Students with dyslexia also performed slightly inferior on the KAIT tests of crystallized intelligence, due to the retrieval of verbal information from long-term memory. No significant differences were observed in the KAIT tests of fluid intelligence. The profile we obtained agrees with a recent meta-analysis of English findings suggesting that it generalizes to all alphabetic languages. Implications for special arrangements for students with dyslexia in higher education are outlined.