Chapter 3. Which Prosodic Skills are Related to Reading Ability in Adulthood?

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Over the past decade researchers have demonstrated that prosodic language skills are an important predictor of reading ability and that these skills exert both indirect/distal effects and direct/proximal effects on children’s reading performance. This research has placed prosody at the cutting edge of two fundamental issues in reading research: the origins of phoneme awareness and the search for new independent predictors of reading ability. It is argued in this chapter that recent research conducted with skilled and impaired adult readers places prosody at the forefront of another key issue: the nature of dyslexia. This research, which parallels similar investigations into readers’ phoneme-level skills, indicates that while certain phonological processes contribute to reading failure, others remain counter-intuitively intact.


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