Reading and Writing

, Volume 4, Issue 4, pp 327–364 | Cite as

Cognitive componential modelling of reading in ten- to twelve-year-old readers



The longitudinal project attempts to estimate the parameters of a priori postulates with their measurement errors, and the goodness-of-fit of model-implied population covariance sigma matrices with observed sample covariance matrices, using linear structural equation modelling (LISREL). The present report deals with Phase 2 of the project (see Leong 1988 for Phase 1 results) and involved 252 ten-to twelve-year-old readers. Three latent exogenous components were postulated: (a) orthographic/phonological component, (b) morphological component, and (c) sentence comprehension component. These constructs were subserved by 8 measurable indicators (5 lexical decision and 3 vocalization tasks). These 8 independent tasks were all administered on-line via the microcomputer under laboratory conditions with combined, scaled accuracy and latency measures as indices of efficiency in processing the reading related tasks. The latent endogenous or dependent component Reading Performance was subserved by standardized vocabulary and reading comprehension tests. Maximum likelihood analyses using LISREL VI to test the approximation of the hypothesized model show a good fit for the grade 4 data, a reasonable fit for grade 5, and a less unambiguous fit for grade 6. These results are generally confirmed with the simultaneous structural analyses of Phase 2 and Phase 1 (N=298 students) multisamples. Multi-components and multi-levels of reading for these age groups are emphasized.

Key words

Componential analysis Cohort study Linear structural equation modelling Reading (Grades 4 to 6) 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Adams, M. J. & Huggins, A. W. F. (1985). The growth of children's sight vocabulary: A quick test with educational and theoretical implications.Reading Research Quarterly 20: 262–281.Google Scholar
  2. Anderson, J. C. (1987). Structural equation models in the social and behavioral sciences: Model building.Child Development 58: 49–64.Google Scholar
  3. Anderson, J. C. & Gerbing, D. W. (1988). Structural equation modeling in practice: A review and recommended two-step approach.Psychological Bulletin 103: 411–423.Google Scholar
  4. Bakker, D. J. & Satz, P., eds. (1970).Specific reading disability: Advances in theory and method. Rotterdam: Rotterdam University Press.Google Scholar
  5. Baltes, P. B., Cornelius, S. W. & Nesselroade, J. R. (1979). Cohort effects in developmental psychology, pp. 61–87, in: J. R. Nesselroade & P. B. Baltes (eds.),Longitudinal research in the study of behavior and development. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  6. Bentler, P. M. (1980). Multivariate analysis with latent variables: Causal modeling.Annual Review of Psychology 31: 419–456.Google Scholar
  7. Bentler, P. M. (1986). Structural modeling and Psychometrika: An historical perspective on growth and achievements.Psychometrika 51: 35–51.Google Scholar
  8. Berninger, V. W. (1989). Orchestration of multiple codes in developing readers: An alternative model of lexical access.International Journal of Neuroscience 48: 85–104.Google Scholar
  9. Berninger, V. W., Chen, A. C. N. & Abbott, R. D. (1988). A test of the multiple connections model of reading acquisition.International Journal of Neuroscience 42: 283–295.Google Scholar
  10. Bierwisch, M. (1983). How on-line is language processing?, pp. 113–168, in: G. B. Flores d'Arcais & R. J. Jarvella (eds.),The process of language understanding. New York: John Wiley.Google Scholar
  11. Calfee, R. C. (1977). Assessment of independent reading skills: Basic research and practical applications, pp. 289–323, in: A. S. Reber & D. L. Scarborough (eds.),Toward a psychology of reading. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  12. Calfee, R. C. (1982). Cognitive models of reading: Implications for assessment and treatment of reading disability, pp. 151–176, in: R. N. Malatesha & P. G. Aaron (eds.),Reading disorders: Varieties and treatments. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  13. Calfee, R. C., Chapman, R. & Venezky, R. (1972). How a child needs to think to learn to read, pp. 139–182, in: L. W. Gregg (ed.),Cognition in learning and memory. New York: John Wiley.Google Scholar
  14. Calfee, R. C. & Drum, P. A. (1978). Learning to read: Theory, research and practice.Curriculum Inquiry 8: 183–249.Google Scholar
  15. Carlisle, J. F. (1987). The use of morphological knowledge in spelling derived forms by learning disabled and normal students.Annals of Dyslexia 37: 90–108.Google Scholar
  16. Carlisle, J. F. (1988). Knowledge of derivational morphology and spelling ability in fourth, sixth, and eighth graders.Applied Psycholinguistics 9: 247–266.Google Scholar
  17. Carpenter, P. A. & Just, M. A. (1975). Sentence comprehension: A psycholinguistic processing model of verification.Psychological Review 82: 45–73.Google Scholar
  18. Carr, T. H. (1981). Building theories of reading ability: On the relation between individual differences in cognitive skills and reading comprehension.Cognition 9: 73–114.Google Scholar
  19. Carr, T. H. & Levy, B. A., eds. (1990).Reading and its development: Component skills approaches. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  20. Carroll, J. B., Davies, P. & Richman, B. (1971).The American heritage word frequency book. Boston, MA: Houghton-Mifflin.Google Scholar
  21. Clark, H. H. & Chase, W. G. (1972). On the process of comparing sentences against pictures.Cognitive Psychology 3: 472–517.Google Scholar
  22. Cliff, N. (1983). Some cautions concerning the application of causal modeling methods.Multivariate Behavioral Research 18: 115–126.Google Scholar
  23. Comrey, A. L. (1985). A method for removing outliers to improve factor analytic results.Multivariate Behavioral Research 20: 273–281.Google Scholar
  24. Connell, J. P., & Tanaka, J. S., eds. (1987). Structural equation modeling [Special section].Child Development 58: 1–175.Google Scholar
  25. Cutler, A. (1983). Lexical complexity and sentence processing, pp. 43–79, in: G. B. Flores D'Arcais & R. J. Jarvella (eds.),The process of language understanding. New York: John Wiley.Google Scholar
  26. Donders, F. C. (1969). On the speed of mental processes, in: W. G. Koster (ed. & trans.), Attention and Performance II.Acta Psychologica 30: 412–431 [Tr. original: Over de snelheid van psychische processen. Onderzoekingen in het Physiologisch Laboratorium der Utrecht Hoogeschool (1868–1869) 2: 92–120].Google Scholar
  27. Elliott, C. D., Murray, D. J. & Pearson, L. S. (1978).British Ability Scales: Manual 3: Directions for administration and scoring / Manual 4: Tables of abilities and norms. Windsor, Berks.: NFER.Google Scholar
  28. Fischer, F. W., Shankweiler, D. & Liberman, I. Y. (1985). Spelling proficiency and sensitivity to word structure.Journal of Memory and Language 24: 423–441.Google Scholar
  29. Fletcher, J. M., Satz, P. & Morris, R. (1984). The Florida longitudinal project: A review, pp. 280–304, in: S. A. Mednick, M. Harway & K. M. Finello (eds.),Handbook of longitudinal research. New York: Praeger.Google Scholar
  30. Frederiksen, J. R. (1981). Sources of process interactions in reading, pp. 361–386, in: A. M. Lesgold & C. A. Perfetti (eds.),Interactive processes in reading. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  31. Frederiksen, J. R. (1982). A componential theory of reading skills and their interactions, pp. 125–180, in: R. J. Sternberg (ed.),Advances in the psychology of human intelligence, Vol. 1. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  32. Frederiksen, J. R. & Warren, B. M. (1987). A cognitive framework for developing expertise in reading, pp. 1–39, in: R. Glaser (ed.),Advances in instructional psychology, Vol. 3. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  33. Frederiksen, J. R., Warren, B. M. & Rosebery, A. S. (1985a). A componential approach to training reading skills: Part 1. Perceptual units training.Cognition and Instruction 2: 91–130.Google Scholar
  34. Frederiksen, J. R., Warren, B. M. & Rosebery, A. S. (1985b). A componential approach to training reading skills: Part 2. Decoding and use of context.Cognition and Instruction 2: 271–338.Google Scholar
  35. Glushko, R. J. (1979). The organization and activation of orthographic knowledge in reading aloud.Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance 5: 674–691.Google Scholar
  36. Hayduck, L. A. (1987).Structural equation modeling with LISREL: Essentials and advances. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.Google Scholar
  37. Henderson, L., Coltheart, M., Cutler, A. & Vincent, N., eds. (1988). Linguistic and psychological approaches to morphology [Special issue].Linguistics 26(4): 519–714.Google Scholar
  38. Hertzog, C. (1990). On the utility of structural equation models for developmental research, pp. 257–290, in: P. B. Baltes, D. L. Featherman & R. M. Lerner (eds.),Life-span development and behavior Vol. 10. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  39. Hoelter, J. W. (1983). The analysis of covariance structures: Goodness-of-fit indices.Sociological Methods & Research 11: 325–344.Google Scholar
  40. Hunt, E., Lunneborg, C. & Lewis, J. (1975). What does it mean to be highly verbal?Cognitive Psychology 7: 194–227.Google Scholar
  41. James, L. R., Mulaik, S. A. & Brett, J. M. (1982).Causal analysis: Assumptions, models, and data. London: Sage Publications.Google Scholar
  42. Jarvella, R. J. & Snodgrass, J. G. (1974). Seeing ring in rang and retain in retention: On recognizing stem morphemes in printed words.Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior 13: 590–598.Google Scholar
  43. Jöreskog, K. G. (1981). Analysis of covariance structure.Scandinavian Journal of Statistics 8: 65–92.Google Scholar
  44. Jöreskog, K. G. (1985). Simultaneous analysis of longitudinal data from several cohorts, pp. 323–370, in: W. M. Mason & S. E. Fienberg (eds.),Cohort analysis in social research: Beyond the identification problem. New York: Springer-Verlag.Google Scholar
  45. Jöreskog, K. G. & Sörbom, D. (1982). Recent development in structural equation modeling.Journal of Marketing Research 19: 404–416.Google Scholar
  46. Jöreskog, K. G. & Sörbom, D. (1984).LISREL 6: Analysis of linear structural relationships by the method of maximum likelihood. Chicago: Scientific Software, Inc.Google Scholar
  47. Jöreskog, K. G. & Sörbom, D. (1989).LISREL 7: A guide to the program and applications, 2nd ed. Chicago: IL; SPSS Inc.Google Scholar
  48. King, E. M., ed. (1982).Canadian Tests of Basic Skills: Multilevel edition/Levels 9–12/Forms 5 & 6. Toronto: Nelson.Google Scholar
  49. Kuhn, T. S. (1970).The structure of scientific revolutions, 2nd ed. enlarged. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  50. Leong, C. K. (1988). A componential approach to understanding reading and its difficulties in preadolescent readers.Annals of Dyslexia 38: 95–119.Google Scholar
  51. Leong, C. K. (1989a). The effects of morphological structure on reading proficiency — A developmental study.Reading and Writing: An Interdisciplinary Journal 1: 357–379.Google Scholar
  52. Leong, C. K. (1989b). Productive knowledge of derivational rules in poor readers.Annals of Dyslexia 39: 94–115.Google Scholar
  53. Leong, C. K. (1991). Modelling reading as a cognitive and linguistic skill, pp. 161–173, in: R. F. Mulcahy, R. H. Short & J. Andrews (eds.),Enhancing learning and thinking. New York: Praeger.Google Scholar
  54. Leong, C. K. (in press). A framework for diagnosis and remediation of reading disorders, in: R. M. Joshi & C. K. Leong (eds.),Reading disabilities: Diagnosis and Component processes. Dordrecht (The Netherlands): Kluwer Academic Publishers.Google Scholar
  55. Leong, C. K., Cheng, S. C., Lundberg, I., Olofsson, Å. & Mulcahy, R. (1989). The effects of cognitive processing, language access on academic performance — Linear structural equation modelling.International Journal of Experimental Research in Education 26: 15–46.Google Scholar
  56. Leong, C. K. & Lock, S. (1989). The use of microcomputer technology in a modular approach to reading and reading difficulties.Reading and Writing: An Interdisciplinary Journal 2: 245–255.Google Scholar
  57. Leong, C. K. & Parkinson, M. E. (1992). Sensitivity to orthotactic rules in visual word recognition by below average readers.Reading and Writing: An Interdisciplinary Journal 4: 1–17.Google Scholar
  58. Lock, S. & Leong, C. K. (1991). An algorithmic implementation of Rasch approach to item analysis with graphical interpretation.Educational Research Journal 6: 40–52.Google Scholar
  59. Mancini, G., Mulcahy, R. & Leong, C. K. (1990). Metalinguistic and specific language abilities in nine- and eleven-year-old good and poor readers, pp. 131–149, in: G. Th. Pavlidis (ed.),Perspectives on dyslexia, Vol. 2:Cognition, language, and treatment. New York: John Wiley.Google Scholar
  60. Miller, G. A. & Gildea, P. M. (1987). How children learn words.Scientific American 257: 94–99.Google Scholar
  61. Nesselroade, J. R. & Baltes, P. B. (1984). Sequential strategies and the role of cohort effects in behavioral development: Adolescent personality (1970–72) as a sample case, pp. 55–87, in: S. A. Mednick, M. Harway & K. M. Finello (eds.),Handbook of longitudinal research, Vol. 1:Birth and childhood cohorts. New York: Praeger.Google Scholar
  62. Olson, R. K., Kliegl, R., Davidson, B. J. & Foltz, G. (1985). Individual and developmental differences in reading disability, pp. 1–64, in: G. E. Mackinnon & T. G. Waller (eds.),Reading research: Advances in theory and practice, Vol. 4. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  63. Olson, R., Wise, B., Conners, F. & Rack, J. (1990). Organization, heritability, and remediation of component word recognition and language skills in disabled readers, pp. 261–322, in: T. H. Carr & B. A. Levy (eds.),Reading and its development: Component skills approaches. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  64. Pachella, R. G. (1974). The interpretation of reaction time in information-processing research, pp. 41–82, in: B. H. Kantowitz (ed.),Human information processing: Tutorials in performance and cognition. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  65. Parkin, A. J. (1982). Phonological recoding in lexical decision: Effects of spelling-to-sound regularity depend on how regularity is defined.Memory & Cognition 10: 43–53.Google Scholar
  66. Pellegrino, J. W. & Kail, R. (1982). Process analyses of spatial aptitude, pp. 311–365, in: R. J. Sternberg (ed.),Advances in the psychology of human intelligence, Vol. 1. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  67. Perera, K. (1984).Children's writing and reading. London: Basil Blackwell.Google Scholar
  68. Polich, J., McCarthy, G., Wang, W. S. & Donchin, E. (1983). When words collide: Orthographic and phonological interference during word processing.Biological Psychology 16: 155–180.Google Scholar
  69. Popper, K. R. (1935/1959).The logic of scientific discovery. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
  70. Popper, K. R. (1972).Objective knowledge: An evolutionary approach. Oxford: Clarendon Press.Google Scholar
  71. Rasch, G. (1960/1980).Probabilistic models for some intelligence and attainment tests. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  72. Rogosa, D. (1979). Causal models in longitudinal research: Rationale, formulation, and interpretation, pp. 263–302, in: J. R. Nesselroade & P. B. Baltes (eds.),Longitudinal research in the study of behavior and development. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  73. Satz, P. & Ross, J. J., eds. (1970).The disabled learner: Early detection and intervention. Rotterdam: Rotterdam University Press.Google Scholar
  74. Stanovich, K. E. (1980). Toward an interactive-compensatory model of individual differences in the development of reading fluency.Reading Research Quarterly 16: 32–71.Google Scholar
  75. Sternberg, R. J. (1977).Intelligence, information processing, and analogical reasoning: The componential analysis of human abilities. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  76. Sternberg, R. J. (1980). Sketch of a componential subtheory of human intelligence.The Behavioral and Brain Sciences 3: 573–613.Google Scholar
  77. Sternberg, R. J. & Rifkin, B. (1979). The development of analogical reasoning processes.Journal of Experimental Child Psychology 27: 195–232.Google Scholar
  78. Taft, M. (1979). Lexical access via an orthographic code: The basic orthographic syllabic structure (BOSS).Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior 18: 21–39.Google Scholar
  79. Taft, M. (1985). The decoding of words in lexical access: A review of the morphographic approach, pp. 83–123, in: D. Besner, T. G. Waller & G. E. Mackinnon (eds.),Reading research: Advances in theory and practice, Vol. 5. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  80. Taft, M. (1988). A morphological-decomposition model of lexical representation.Linguistics 26: 657–668.Google Scholar
  81. Taylor, D. A. (1976). Stage analysis of reaction time.Psychological Bulletin 83: 161–191.Google Scholar
  82. Waters, G. S. & Seidenberg, M. S. (1985). Spelling-sound effects in reading: Time course and decision criteria.Memory & Cognition 13: 557–572.Google Scholar
  83. Widaman, K. F., Geary, D. C., Cormier, P. & Little, T. D. (1989). A componential model for mental addition.Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition 15: 898–919.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department for the Education of Exceptional Children, College for EducationUniversity of SaskatchewanSaskatoonCanada

Personalised recommendations