Reading and Reading Acquisition

Authored by: Brian Byrne

Encyclopedia of Library and Information Science, Fourth Edition

Print publication date:  November  2017
Online publication date:  November  2017

Print ISBN: 9781466552593
eBook ISBN: 9781315116143
Adobe ISBN:


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The role of written language and therefore of reading in society and in the individual is examined. This is in part achieved by an examination of the historical emergence of writing systems, which in turn is used to suggest parallels with the acquisition of literacy by the child. The hypothesized parallels are tested against empirical evidence on the normal trajectory of reading acquisition. Failures of acquisition (developmental dyslexia) are also discussed. Turning attention to skilled reading, some abiding issues, such as speed reading, eye movements, and the role of “inner speech,” are canvassed. Modern computer-based models of reading are also introduced, models that are bringing the study of reading to new levels of scientific rigor and promise.

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