Cognitive, Intervention, and Neuroimaging Perspectives on Executive Function in Children With Reading Disabilities

Jessica A. Church, Paul T. Cirino, Jeremy Miciak, Jenifer Juranek, Sharon Vaughn, Jack M. Fletcher

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

The role of executive function (EF) in the reading process, and in those with reading difficulties, remains unclear. As members of the Texas Center for Learning Disabilities, we review multiple perspectives regarding EF in reading and then summarize some of our recent studies of struggling and typical readers in grades 3–5. Study 1a found that a bi-factor structure best represented a comprehensive assessment of EF. Study 1b found that cognitive and behavioral measures of EF related independently to math and reading. Study 1c found that EF related to reading, above and beyond other variables, but Study 1d found no evidence that adding an EF training component improved intervention response. Study 1e found that pretest EF abilities did not relate to intervention response. Neuroimaging studies examined EF-related brain activity during both reading and nonlexical EF tasks. In Study 2a, the EF task evoked control activity, but generated no differences between struggling and typical readers. The reading task, however, had group differences in both EF and reading regions. In Study 2b, EF activity during reading at pretest was related to intervention response. Across studies, EF appears involved in the reading process. There is less evidence for general EF predicting or improving intervention outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)25-54
Number of pages30
JournalNew Directions for Child and Adolescent Development
Volume2019
Issue number165
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2019

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Disabled Children
Executive Function
Neuroimaging
Reading
Aptitude
Learning Disorders

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

Cite this

Cognitive, Intervention, and Neuroimaging Perspectives on Executive Function in Children With Reading Disabilities. / Church, Jessica A.; Cirino, Paul T.; Miciak, Jeremy; Juranek, Jenifer; Vaughn, Sharon; Fletcher, Jack M.

In: New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development, Vol. 2019, No. 165, 05.2019, p. 25-54.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Church, Jessica A. ; Cirino, Paul T. ; Miciak, Jeremy ; Juranek, Jenifer ; Vaughn, Sharon ; Fletcher, Jack M. / Cognitive, Intervention, and Neuroimaging Perspectives on Executive Function in Children With Reading Disabilities. In: New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development. 2019 ; Vol. 2019, No. 165. pp. 25-54.
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