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Changes in reading strategies in school-age children. Learning to read is one of the most important cognitive milestones in the human social environment. One of the most accepted models explaining such process is the Double-Route Cascaded Model. It suggests the existence of two reading strategies: lexical and sublexical. In the Spanish language there are some contradictions about how these strategies are applied for reading. In addition, there are only a few studies dealing with the analysis of shifts between them, achieving a fluent reading process. In this paper we use a reading task including words and pseudowords for characterizing the cost of shifting between reading strategies in children with developmental dyslexia and normal controls. Our results suggest the presence of both strategies in these two experimental groups. In controls, both strategies become more efficient in correspondence to the increased exposition to written material. However, in children with developmental dyslexia only the lexical strategy exhibits such improvement. Their also point to a low cost for shifting between strategies in controls and a much more significant one in children with developmental dyslexia, differentiating subgroups with distinct shifting patterns. sjp
LEXIN: a lexical database from Spanish kindergarten and first-grade readers. The LEXIN database offers psycholinguistic indexes of the 13,184 different words (types) computed from 178,839 occurrences of these words (tokens) contained in a corpus of 134 beginning readers widely used in Spain. This database provides four statistical indicators: F (overall word frequency), D (index of dispersion across selected readers), U (estimated frequency per million words), and SFI (standard frequency index). It also gives information about the number of letters, syntactic category, and syllabic structure of the words included. To facilitate comparisons, LEXIN provides data from LEXESP's (Sebastián-Gallés, Martí, Cuetos, & Carreiras, 2000), Alameda and Cuetos's (1995), and Martínez and García's (2004) Spanish adult psycholinguistic frequency databases. Access to the LEXIN database is facilitated by a computer program. The LEXIN program allows for the creation of word lists by letting the user specify searching criteria. LEXIN can be useful for researchers in cognitive psychology, particularly in the areas of psycholinguistics and education. br
Using language sampling in clinical assessments with bilingual children: challenges and future directions. Current language tests designed to assess Spanish-English-speaking children have limited clinical accuracy and do not provide sufficient information to plan language intervention. In contrast, spontaneous language samples obtained in the two languages can help identify language impairment with higher accuracy. In this article, we describe several diagnostic indicators that can be used in language assessments based on spontaneous language samples. First, based on previous research with monolingual and bilingual English speakers, we show that a verb morphology composite measure in combination with a measure of mean length of utterance (MLU) can provide valuable diagnostic information for English development in bilingual children. Dialectal considerations are discussed. Second, we discuss the available research with bilingual Spanish speakers and show a series of procedures to be used for the analysis of Spanish samples: (a) limited MLU and proportional use of ungrammatical utterances; (b) limited grammatical accuracy on articles, verbs, and clitic pronouns; and (c) limited MLU, omission of theme arguments, and limited use of ditransitive verbs. Third, we illustrate the analysis of verb argument structure using a rubric as an assessment tool. Estimated scores on morphological and syntactic measures are expected to increase the sensitivity of clinical assessments with young bilingual children. Further research using other measures of language will be needed for older school-age children. ssl.