Psychonomic Bulletin & Review

, Volume 16, Issue 3, pp 567–572 | Cite as

Dyslexic and nondyslexic reading fluency: Rapid automatized naming and the importance of continuous lists

  • Manon W. Jones
  • Holly P. Branigan
  • M. Louise Kelly
Brief Reports


Rapid automatized naming (RAN; Denckla & Rudel, 1976) tasks are consistent predictors of fluency that also discriminate between dyslexic and nondyslexic reading groups. The component processes of RAN that are responsible for its relationship with reading ability remain underspecified, however. We report a study on dyslexic and nondyslexic adult groups that experimentally manipulated RAN formats to elucidate how different components of RAN differentially influence dyslexic and nondyslexic performance. The dyslexic group showed a pervasive deficit in rapid access of individually presented items. Additionally, they showed a significant impairment when multiple items were presented, whereas nondyslexic readers showed marginal facilitation for this format. We discuss the implications of these findings with respect to reading-group differences in reading fluency.


  1. Baayen, R. H. (2008). Analyzing linguistic data: A practical introduction to statistics using R. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Bates, D. M., Maechler, M., & Dai, B. (2008). lme4: Linear mixedeffects models using S4 classes (R Package Version 0.999375-25) [Software]. Available from lme4/index.html.Google Scholar
  3. Biscaldi, M., Gezeck, S., & Stuhr, V. (1998). Poor saccadic control correlates with dyslexia. Neuropsychologia, 36, 1189–1202. doi:10.1016/ S0028-3932(97)00170-XCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Bouma, H. (1971). Visual recognition of isolated lower-case letters. Vision Research, 11, 459–474.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Bowers, P. G., & Swanson, L. B. (1991). Naming speed deficits in reading disability: Multiple measures of a singular process. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 51, 195–219. doi:10.1016/0022-0965(91)90032-NCrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Breznitz, Z. (2006). Fluency in reading: Synchronization of processing. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  7. Castel, C., Pech-Georgel, C., George, F., & Ziegler, J. C. (2008). Lien entre dénomination rapide et lecture chez les enfants dyslexiques [Link between rapid automatized naming and reading in dyslexic children]. Année Psychologique, 108, 395–421.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Chace, K. H., Rayner, K., & Well, A. D. (2005). Eye movements and phonological parafoveal preview: Effects of reading skill. Canadian Journal of Experimental Psychology, 59, 209–217. doi:10.1037/ h0087476PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. Clarke, P., Hulme, C., & Snowling, M. (2005). Individual differences in RAN and reading: A response timing analysis. Journal of Research in Reading, 28, 73–86. doi:10.1111/j.1467-9817.2005.00255.xCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Denckla, M. B., & Cutting, L. E. (1999). History and significance of rapid automatized naming. Annals of Dyslexia, 49, 29–42. doi:10.1007/ s11881-999-0018-9CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Denckla, M. B., & Rudel, R. G. (1976). Rapid “automatized” naming (R.A.N.): Dyslexia differentiated from other learning disabilities. Neuropsychologia, 14 , 471–479.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Georgiou, G. K., Parrila, R., & Kirby, J. (2006). Rapid naming speed components and early reading acquisition. Scientific Studies of Reading, 10, 199–220. doi:10.1207/s1532799xssr1002_4CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Hawelka, S., & Wimmer, H. (2005). Impaired visual processing of multi-element arrays is associated with increased number of eye movements in dyslexic reading. Vision Research, 45, 855–863. doi:10.1016/j.visres.2004.10.007CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Hawelka, S., & Wimmer, H. (2008). Visual target detection is not impaired in dyslexic readers. Vision Research, 48, 850–852. doi:10.1016/j.visres.2007.11.003CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. Hutzler, F., Kronbichler, M., Jacobs, A. M., & Wimmer, H. (2006). Perhaps correlational but not causal: No effect of dyslexic readers’ magnocellular system on their eye movements during reading. Neuropsychologia, 44, 637–648. doi:10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2005.06.006CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. Jones, M. W., Kelly, M. L., & Corley, M. (2007). Adult dyslexic readers do not demonstrate regularity effects in sentence processing: Evidence from eye movements. Reading & Writing, 20, 933–943. doi:10.1007/s11145-007-9060-3CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Jones, M. W., Obregón, M., Kelly, M. L., & Branigan, H. P. (2008). Elucidating the component processes involved in dyslexic and nondyslexic reading fluency: An eye-tracking study. Cognition, 109, 389–407.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Kooi, F. L., Toet, A., Tripathy, S. P., & Levi, D. M. (1994). The effect of similarity and duration on spatial interaction in peripheral vision. Spatial Vision, 8, 255–279. doi:10.1163/156856894X00350CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. Lervåg, A., & Hulme, C. (in press). Rapid naming (RAN) taps a basic constraint on the development of early reading fluency. Psychological Science.Google Scholar
  20. Levi, D. M. (2008). Crowding—An essential bottleneck for object recognition: A mini-review. Vision Research, 48, 635–654. doi:10.1016/j.visres.2007.12.009CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. Manis, F. R., Doi, L. M., & Bhadha, B. (2000). Naming speed, phonological awareness, and orthographic knowledge in second graders. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 33, 325–333.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. Manis, F. R., Seidenberg, M. S., Doi, L. M., McBride-Chang, C., & Petersen, A. (1996). On the bases of two subtypes of developmental dyslexia. Cognition, 58, 157–195. doi:10.1016/0010-0277(95)00679-6CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  23. Morgan, J. L., & Meyer, A. S. (2005). Processing of extrafoveal objects during multiple-object naming. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, & Cognition, 31, 428–442. doi:10.1037/0278-7393.31.3.428CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Pernet, C., Valdois, S., Celsis, P., & Démonet, J.-F. (2006). Lateral masking, levels of processing and stimulus category: A comparative study between normal and dyslexic readers. Neuropsychologia, 44, 2374–2385. doi:10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2006.05.003CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  25. Powell, D., Stainthorp, R., Stuart, M., Garwood, H., & Quinlan, P. (2007). An experimental comparison between rival theories of rapid automatized naming performance and its relationship to reading. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 98, 46–68. doi:10.1016/j.jecp.2007.04.003CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. Ramus, F., & Szenkovits, G. (2008). What phonological deficit? Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 61, 129–141.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Savage, R. S., Frederickson, N., Goodwin, R., Patni, U., Smith, N., & Tuersley, L. (2005). Relationships among rapid digit naming, phonological processing, motor automaticity, and speech perception in poor, average and good readers and spellers. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 38, 12–28.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. Sereno, S. C., & Rayner, K. (2000). Spelling-sound regularity effects on eye fixations in reading. Perception & Psychophysics, 62, 402–409.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Shaywitz, S. E., & Shaywitz, B. A. (2005). Dyslexia (specific reading disability). Biological Psychiatry, 57, 1301–1309. doi:10.1016/j.biopsych.2005.01.043CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  30. Snowling, M. J. (2000). Dyslexia (2nd ed.). Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  31. Sperling, A. J., Lu, Z.-L., Manis, F. R., & Seidenberg, M. S. (2005). Deficits in perceptual noise exclusion in dyslexia. Nature Neuroscience, 8, 862–863.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  32. Taroyan, N. A., Nicolson, R. I., & Fawcett, A. J. (2007). Behavioural and neurophysiological correlates of dyslexia in the continuous performance task. Clinical Neurophysiology, 118, 845–855. doi:10.1016/j.clinph.2006.11.273CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  33. Torgesen, J. K., Wagner, R. K., Rashotte, C. A., Burgess, S., & Hecht, S. (1997). Contributions of phonological awareness and rapid automatic naming ability to the growth of word-reading skills in second-to fifth-grade children. Scientific Studies of Reading, 1 161–185. doi:10.1207/s1532799xssr0102_4CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Wagner, R. K., Torgesen, J. K., Laughon, P., Simmons, K., & Rashotte, C. A. (1993). Development of young readers’ phonological processing abilities. Journal of Educational Psychology, 85, 83–103. doi:10.1037/0022-0663.85.1.83CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Walsh, D. J., Price, G. G., & Gillingham, M. G. (1988). The critical but transitory importance of letter naming. Reading Research Quarterly, 23, 108–122. doi:10.2307/747907CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Wilkinson, G. S. (1993). The Wide Range Achievement Test: Administration Manual. Wilmington, DE: Wide Range.Google Scholar
  37. Wimmer, H., Mayringer, H., & Landerl, K. (2000). The double-deficit hypothesis and difficulties in learning to read a regular orthography. Journal of Educational Psychology, 92, 668–680. doi:10.1037/0022-0663.92.4.668CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Wolf, M., & Bowers, P. G. (1999). The double-deficit hypothesis for the developmental dyslexias. Journal of Educational Psychology, 91, 415–438. doi:10.1037/0022-0663.91.3.415CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Wolf, M., & Obregón, M. (1992). Early naming deficits, developmental dyslexia, and a specific deficit hypothesis. Brain & Language, 42, 219–247. doi:10.1016/0093-934X(92)90099-ZCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Young, A., & Bowers, P. G. (1995). Individual difference and text difficulty determinants of reading fluency and expressiveness. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 60, 428–454. doi:10.1006/ jecp.1995.1048CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Psychonomic Society, Inc 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Manon W. Jones
    • 1
  • Holly P. Branigan
    • 1
  • M. Louise Kelly
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of EdinburghEdinburghScotland

Personalised recommendations