In order to become expert readers of an alphabetical language like French, students must develop and adequately use phonological knowledge. Considering that the phonological knowledge used in reading largely comes from knowledge of the oral language, what happens when the oral language is not accessible, as is the case for many deaf children? In this study, graphophonemic and syllabic processes in pseudoword reading were assessed with a similarity judgment task. Gestual deaf subjects aged 10–18 years old (N = 24) were compared to 24 age-matched hearing subjects. The results show that deaf readers are less sensitive to the graphemic and the syllabic structures of pseudo-words than hearing readers. In deaf subjects, the results are different than chance-level in the 13–15 and the 16–18-year-old groups. These results indicate that gestual deaf readers can develop phonological knowledge even in settings where sign language is promoted.
Reading and Writing – Springer Journals
Published: Aug 11, 2007
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