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Reading development and dyslexia in a transparent orthography: a survey of Spanish children. Spanish-speaking children learn to read words printed in a relatively transparent orthography. Variation in orthographic transparency may shape the architecture of the reading system and also the manifestation of reading difficulties. We tested normally developing children and children diagnosed with reading difficulties. Reading accuracy was high across experimental conditions. However, dyslexic children read more slowly than chronological age (CA)-matched controls, although, importantly, their reading times did not differ from those for ability-matched controls. Reading times were significantly affected by frequency, orthographic neighbourhood size and word length. We also found a number of significant interaction effects. The effect of length was significantly modulated by reading ability, frequency and neighbourhood. Our findings suggest that the reading development of dyslexic children in Spanish is delayed rather than deviant. From an early age, the salient characteristic of reading development is reading speed, and the latter is influenced by specific knowledge about words. ad.
Spanish-English L2 speakers' use of subcategorization bias information in the resolution of temporary ambiguity during second language reading. Using a self-paced moving window reading paradigm, we examine the degree to which structural commitments made while 60 Spanish-English L2 speakers read syntactically ambiguous sentences in their second language (L2) are constrained by the verb's lexical entry about its preferred structural environment (i.e., subcategorization bias). The ambiguity under investigation arises because a noun phrase immediately following a verb can be parsed as either the direct object of the verb 'The CIA director confirmed the rumor when he testified before Congress', or as the subject of an embedded complement 'The CIA director confirmed the rumor could mean a security leak'. In an experiment with 59 monolingual English participants, we replicate the findings reported in the previous literature demonstrating that native speakers are guided by subcategorization bias information during sentence interpretation. In a bilingual experiment, we then show that L2 subcategorization biases influence L2 sentence interpretation. The results indicate that L2 speakers keep track of the relative frequencies of verb-subcategorization alternatives and use this information when building structure in the L2. ap.
The Spanish adaptation of ANEW (affective norms for English words). This article presents the Spanish adaptation of the Affective Norms for English Words (ANEW; Bradley & Lang, 1999). The norms are based on 720 participants' assessments of the translation into Spanish of the 1,034 words included in the ANEW. The evaluations were done in the dimensions of valence, arousal and dominance using the Self-Assessment Manikin (SAM). Apart from these dimensions, five objective (number of letters, number of syllables, grammatical class, frequency and number of orthographic neighbors) and three subjective (familiarity, concreteness and imageability) psycholinguistic indexes are included.