Simultaneous training on overlapping grapheme phoneme correspondences augments learning and retention [post]

Tanja Roembke, Michael V. Freedberg, Eliot Hazeltine, Bob McMurray
2018 unpublished
An important component of learning to read is the acquisition of letter-to-sound- mappings. The sheer quantity of mappings and many exceptions suggests that children may use a form of statistical learning to acquire them. However, while statistical models of reading are item-based, reading instruction typically focuses on rule-based approaches involving small sets of regularities. This discrepancy poses the question of how different groupings of regularities, an unexamined factor of most
more » ... curricula, may impact learning. Exploring the interplay between item statistics and rules, this study investigated how consonant variability, an item-level factor, and the degree of overlap among the to-be-trained vowel strings, a group-level factor, influence learning. First graders (N = 361) were randomly assigned to be trained on vowel sets with high overlap (e.g., EA, AI) or low overlap (EE, AI); this was crossed with a manipulation of consonant frame variability. While high vowel overlap led to poorer initial performance, it resulted in more learning when tested immediately and after a two-week-delay. There was little beneficial effect of consonant variability. These findings suggest that online letter/sound processing impacts how new knowledge is integrated into existing information. Moreover, they suggest that vowel overlap should be considered when designing reading curricula.
doi:10.31234/ fatcat:yis27w7er5ddllxlq7drx2cmji