Poor comprehenders (PCs) refer to children who have normal word reading but difficulties in reading comprehension. The current 3-year longitudinal study took the initiative to identify PCs among Chinese early graders and explored their underlying cognitive-linguistic weaknesses. We identified three groups of children among 103 Chinese children at the end of first grade – poor comprehenders (16), dyslexic readers (16), and average readers (14). Their reading and cognitive-linguistic abilities were compared among the three groups, both concurrently at first grade and retrospectively at kindergarten. The current study provided empirical evidence of the existence of PCs among Chinese readers. Unlike dyslexic readers, Chinese PCs did not have significant problems in phonological and orthographic skills. Instead, their core weaknesses were in oral discourse skills and working memory. The retrospective data revealed that the oral discourse weakness of PCs started to show as early as at age four. The present study provided practical implications on the necessity to develop assessment and intervention tools that focus on oral discourse skills for Chinese PCs. Copyright © 2018 Society for the Scientific Study of Reading (SSSR).
|Publication status||Published - Jul 2018|