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Brain Sci. 2018, 8(2), 26; doi:10.3390/brainsci8020026

What is Developmental Dyslexia?

Department Physiology, Anatomy & Genetics, University of Oxford, Oxford OX1 3PT, UK
Received: 11 January 2018 / Revised: 30 January 2018 / Accepted: 2 February 2018 / Published: 4 February 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dyslexia, Dysgraphia and Related Developmental Disorders)
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Abstract

Until the 1950s, developmental dyslexia was defined as a hereditary visual disability, selectively affecting reading without compromising oral or non-verbal reasoning skills. This changed radically after the development of the phonological theory of dyslexia; this not only ruled out any role for visual processing in its aetiology, but it also cast doubt on the use of discrepancy between reading and reasoning skills as a criterion for diagnosing it. Here I argue that this theory is set at too high a cognitive level to be explanatory; we need to understand the pathophysiological visual and auditory mechanisms that cause children’s phonological problems. I discuss how the ‘magnocellular theory’ attempts to do this in terms of slowed and error prone temporal processing which leads to dyslexics’ defective visual and auditory sequencing when attempting to read. I attempt to deal with the criticisms of this theory and show how it leads to a number of successful ways of helping dyslexic children to overcome their reading difficulties. View Full-Text
Keywords: Dyslexia; reading; magnocellular neurons; vision; hearing; phonology; sequencing; timing; temporal processing; transient; coloured filters; rhythm; music; omega 3s Dyslexia; reading; magnocellular neurons; vision; hearing; phonology; sequencing; timing; temporal processing; transient; coloured filters; rhythm; music; omega 3s
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Stein, J. What is Developmental Dyslexia? Brain Sci. 2018, 8, 26.

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