Basic number processing in children with specific learning disorders: Comorbidity of reading and mathematics disorders.
Moll K., Göbel SM., Snowling MJ.
As well as being the hallmark of mathematics disorders, deficits in number processing have also been reported for individuals with reading disorders. The aim of the present study was to investigate separately the components of numerical processing affected in reading and mathematical disorders within the framework of the Triple Code Model. Children with reading disorders (RD), mathematics disorders (MD), comorbid deficits (RD + MD), and typically developing children (TD) were tested on verbal, visual-verbal, and nonverbal number tasks. As expected, children with MD were impaired across a broad range of numerical tasks. In contrast, children with RD were impaired in (visual-)verbal number tasks but showed age-appropriate performance in nonverbal number skills, suggesting their impairments were domain specific and related to their reading difficulties. The comorbid group showed an additive profile of the impairments of the two single-deficit groups. Performance in speeded verbal number tasks was related to rapid automatized naming, a measure of visual-verbal access in the RD but not in the MD group. The results indicate that deficits in number skills are due to different underlying cognitive deficits in children with RD compared to children with MD: a phonological deficit in RD and a deficit in processing numerosities in MD.