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Implicit sequence learning is preserved in dyslexic children

Abstract

This study investigates the implicit sequence learning abilities of dyslexic children using an artificial grammar learning task with an extended exposure period. Twenty children with developmental dyslexia participated in the study and were matched with two control groups—one matched for age and other for reading skills. During 3 days, all participants performed an acquisition task, where they were exposed to colored geometrical forms sequences with an underlying grammatical structure. On the last day, after the acquisition task, participants were tested in a grammaticality classification task. Implicit sequence learning was present in dyslexic children, as well as in both control groups, and no differences between groups were observed. These results suggest that implicit learning deficits per se cannot explain the characteristic reading difficulties of the dyslexics.

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Funding

This work was supported by national Portuguese funding through Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia, project ref. UID/BIM/04773/2013 CBMR, PTDC/MHC-PCN/1175/2014, and SFRH/BD/85439/2012.

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Correspondence to Filomena Inácio.

Appendix

Appendix

Table 2 Stimulus material. Mean ACS (standard deviations in parenthesis and range in brackets) and length distribution for sequences used in acquisition and classification tasks

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Inácio, F., Faísca, L., Forkstam, C. et al. Implicit sequence learning is preserved in dyslexic children. Ann. of Dyslexia 68, 1–14 (2018). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11881-018-0158-x

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Keywords

  • Artificial grammar learning
  • Children
  • Dyslexia
  • Implicit learning
  • Reading acquisition