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Language and Reading Disabilities


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Table of Contents



Contributors and Affiliations

CHAPTER 1: Language and Reading: Convergences and Divergences

Alan G. Kamhi and Hugh W. Catts

Defining Language






Defining Reading

Models of Spoken and Written Language Comprehension

Comprehending Spoken and Written Language

Perceptual Analyses

Word Recognition

Discourse-Level Processes

Differences between Spoken and Written Language

Physical Differences

Situational Differences

Functional Differences

Form Differences

Vocabulary Differences

Grammatical Differences

Processing Differences

Basic Factors in Reading and Language Development



CHAPTER 2: Reading Development

Alan G. Kamhi and Hugh W. Catts

Emergent Literacy Period (Birth-Kindergarten)

Joint Book Reading

Learning about Print


The Development of Word Recognition Skills

Logographic Stage

Alphabetic Stage

Orthographic Stage and Automatic Word Recognition

Problems with Stage Theories of Word Recognition

The Self-Teaching Hypothesis

Evaluating the Self-Teaching Hypothesis

The Development of Reading Comprehension

Misconceptions about Comprehension Development



CHAPTER 3: Defining and Classifying Reading Disabilities

Hugh W. Catts, Alan G. Kamhi, and Suzanne A. Adlof

Historical Basis of Reading Disabilities

Early Reports


Johnson and Myklebust

The Modern Era



Gender Differences

Defining Reading Disability

Exclusionary Factors

IDA Definition

Dyslexia as a Specific Learning Disability

Problems in Word Recognition and Spelling

Deficits in Phonological Processing

Unexpected Underachievement

Secondary Consequences

Classifying Dyslexia and Other Language-Based Reading Difficulties

Subtypes Based on the Simple View of Reading

Classification Studies

Other Subtyping Methods Based on Word Recognition Skills

Combining Subtypes in Research and Practice

Clinical Implications


CHAPTER 4: Causes of Reading Disabilities

Hugh W. Catts, alan G. Kamhi, and Suzanne A. Adlof

Extrinsic Causes of Reading Disabilities

Early Literacy Experience

Reading Instruction

Matthew Effects

Intrinsic Causes of Reading Disabilities

Genetic Basis

Neurological Basis

Visually-Based Deficits

Auditory Processing Deficits

Attention-Based Deficits

Language-Based Deficits


CHAPTER 5: Assessment and Instruction for Phonemic Awareness and Word Recognition Skills

Stephanie Al Otaiba, Marcia L.Kosanovich, and Joseph K. Torgeson

Development and Assessment of Phonemic Awareness

The Importance of Phonemic Awareness in Learning to Read

Purposes for Assessment of Phonemic Awareness

Procedures and Measures Used to Assess Phonemic Awareness

Development and Assessment of Word Recognition

Issues in the Assessment of Word Recognition

Commonly Used Measures of Word Recognition Ability

Code-focused Classroom Instruction and More Intensive Small-Group Supplemental Intervention

What Do We Know about Effective Code-focused Classroom Instruction?

What Do We Know about Tier 1 Instructional Strategies that Maximize Reading Outcomes?

What Do We Know about Training Code-focused Skills through Supplemental Interventions?

What Do We Know about Poor Responders?

Issues for Future Research and Development


CHAPTER 6: Perspectives on Assessing and Improving Reading Comprehension

Alan G. Kamhi

Defining comprehension

Reader Abilities

Text Factors

Task Factors

A Model of Comprehension

Assessing Reading Comprehension

Comprehension Instruction

Strategy Instruction

Content Goals and Disciplinary Literacy

Summary and Conclusions

CHAPTER 7: Assessing and Remediating Text Comprehension Problems

Carol E. Westby

Cognitive and Linguistic Underpinnings for Literacy

Linguistic Skills for Literacy

Cognitive Understanding for Text Comprehension

Assessing Language and Cognitive Skills for Text Comprehension

Assessing Literate Language Style (Text Microstructures)

Assessing Knowledge of Narrative Content Schemata and Text Grammar Schemata (Text Macrostructures)

Assessing Recognition/Comprehension of Content Schemata

Assessing ability to organize schema content and text grammars

Facilitating Text Comprehension

Developing Linguistic Microstructures

Developing Macrostructure Schemas



Children's Materials

Appendix A: Books to Develop Connectives/Complex Clauses

Appendix B: Cinderella Stories

CHAPTER 8: Spelling Assessment and Intervention: A Multiple Linguistic Approach to Improving Literacy Outcomes

Kenn Apel, Julie J. Masterson, and Danielle Brimo

The Language Basis of Spelling

Phonological Knowledge

Orthographic Pattern Knowledge

Morphologic Knowledge

Semantic Knowledge

Mental Graphemic Representations

Relation between Spelling and Other Literacy Skills

Developmental Spelling Theories

Multi-linguistic Approach to Assessment

Determining Goals

Measuring Progress

Multi-Linguistic Approach to Instruction and Intervention

Prescriptive, Multi-Linguistic Intervention

Improving Orthographic Pattern Knowledge

Other Orthographic Pattern Knowledge Strategies

Improving Morphological Knowledge

Supplementing Language Knowledge Strategies with Word-Specific Learning Tactics

Multi-linguistic Instruction at the Classroom Level



CHAPTER 9: Learning to Write

Cheryl M. Scott

A Framework for Writing

Emergent and Early School Writing: Age 4-8 Years

Learning to Write Genre-Specific Text: Ages 9+

Learning the Macrostructure of Writing: Genre Development

Interpretation of Genre Studies: Effects of Task and Curriculum

Learning the Microstructure of Writing: Sentence Grammar

Learning the Process of Writing

How Well Do Children Write: Incidence of Writing Disorder and National Assessments

Writing, Reading, and Oral Language



CHAPTER 10: Developing Knowledge and Skills for Writing

Carol E. Westby


Developing Writing Foundations

Production/Transcription Skills

Cognitive/Linguistic Skills

Exploring the post-modern genre

Expository texts

Syntactic Structures


Developing Writing Processes

Strategies for Generative Ideas and Planning

Strategies for Production

Strategies for Revising


Children's Books

Appendix 10.1



About the Author

Author Bio

Alan G. Kamhi, Ph.D.

Department of Communication

University of North Carolina at

Greensboro, Greensboro, NC

Hugh W. Catts, Ph.D.

Department of Speech-Language-

Hearing: Sciences and Disorders

University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS


Cheryl M. Scott, Ph.D.

Department of Communication Disorders

Rush University Medical Center,

Chicago, IL

Carol E. Westby, Ph.D.

Research Center for Family and Community

Albuquerque, NM

Stephanie Al Otaiba, Ph. D.

Florida State University

Tallahassee, FL

Marcia L. Kosanovich Ph. D.

Florida Center for Reading Research

Tallahassee, FL

Joe K. Torgesen, PhD.

Florida Center for Reading Research

Florida State University,

Tallahassee, FL

Suzanne L. Adlof, Ph.D.

University of Kansas

Department of Speech-Language-Hearing: Sciences and Disorders,

Lawrence, Kansas

Kenn Apel, PhD; Danielle Brimo, M.A.

School of Communication Science and Disorders,

The Florida State University,

Tallahassee, FL

Julie Masterson, PhD

Communication Sciences and Disorders

Missouri State University,

Springfield, MO

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