Essay on The Phonological Model of Dyslexia

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The Phonological Model of Dyslexia

Doctor Morgan of Sussex, England, published the first case of what is now known as dyslexia in 1896. Dr. Morgan wrote about Percy F, a 14-year-old boy who was intelligent, bright, quick with learning games, and the intellectual equal of his peers. He fell behind, however, in his inability to learn how to read. Today, as in 1896, most people associate intelligence with the ability to read, but Percy F and the experience of millions of people with dyslexia breaks down the relationship between reading and intelligence (1). But, researchers were left with the question, "What causes dyslexia if intelligence is not the marker?

The exact cause of dyslexia is unknown. However, researchers believe
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A genetically determined phonological module automatically constructs words from phonemes for the speaker and deconstructs the words into phonemes for the listener. Speech is instinctive; it is the exemplary biological human trait. The alphabet, conversely, was created 5000 years ago to give speech concrete representation at the phonological level. Thus, reading is an invented artifact that must be learned on a conscious level. Reading is a difficult task because 'the reader must learn to listen with his eyes' (3). The reader must realize that the orthography, the sequence of letters on a page, represents the phonological structure of words (1) (4).

The phonological module of dyslexia argues that dyslexics have impaired reading ability because they have a deficit in phonological processing. According to this model, dyslexics have a difficult time with written language because they have an impaired ability to deconstruct written words into phonemes, thus preventing word identification. This low level phonological deficit prevents words from reaching high level linguistic processing, which would allow the reader to gain meaning from the text. Thus, dyslexics have intact memory and comprehension language processes that are not activated because they can only be activated after a word has been identified through phonological processing. The phonological model of dyslexia explains why

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