, Volume 21, Issue 6, pp 587-607,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.
Date: 20 Jun 2007

Morphological awareness and early and advanced word recognition and spelling in Dutch


This study investigated the relations of three aspects of morphological awareness to word recognition and spelling skills of Dutch speaking children. Tasks of inflectional and derivational morphology and lexical compounding, as well as measures of phonological awareness, vocabulary and mathematics were administered to 104 first graders (mean age 6 years, 11 months) and 112 sixth graders (mean age 12 years, 1 month). For the first grade children, awareness of noun morphology uniquely contributed to word reading, and none of the morphological tasks were uniquely associated with spelling. In grade 6, derivational morphology contributed both to reading and spelling achievement, whereas awareness of verb inflection uniquely explained spelling only. Lexical compounding did not uniquely contribute to literacy skills in either grade. These findings suggest that awareness of both inflectional and derivational morphology may be independently useful for learning to read and spell Dutch.