Research Review: Reading comprehension in developmental disorders of language and communication

Authors


  • Conflict of interest statement: No conflicts declared.

Abstract

Background:  Deficits in reading airment (SLI), Down syndrome (DS) and autism spectrum disorders (ASD).

Methods:  In this review (based on a search of the ISI Web of Knowledge database to 2011), the Simple View of Reading is used as a framework for considering reading comprehension in these groups.

Conclusions:  There is substantial evidence for reading comprehension impairments in SLI and growing evidence that weaknesses in this domain are common in DS and ASD. Further, in these groups reading comprehension is typically more impaired than word recognition. However, there is also evidence that some children and adolescents with DS, ASD and a history of SLI develop reading comprehension and word recognition skills at or above the age appropriate level. This review of the literature indicates that factors including word recognition, oral language, nonverbal ability and working memory may explain reading comprehension difficulties in SLI, DS and ASD. In addition, it highlights methodological issues, implications of poor reading comprehension and fruitful areas for future research.

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