The relationship between inhibition and working memory in predicting children’s reading difficulties

Booth, Josephine N. and Boyle, James M.E. and Kelly, Steve W. (2013) The relationship between inhibition and working memory in predicting children’s reading difficulties. Journal of Research in Reading, 37 (1). ISSN 0141-0423

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Abstract

The study evaluated the role of working memory and inhibition in predicting children’s word reading difficulties. Twenty-one participants with word reading difficulties were individually matched to two other participants to form the chronological-age-matched and the reading-level-matched group. All participants were administered measures of performance IQ, inhibition and working memory. Multinomial logistic regression revealed that tasks of working memory and a composite measure of inhibition discriminated between the groups above the impact of performance IQ when the working memory task was verbally based, but only inhibition discriminated when a nonverbal working memory task was used. This suggests domain-specific deficits on tasks of working memory, independent of the influence of inhibition on reading difficulties. The implications for theory and assessment practice are discussed.