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  • Print publication year: 2019
  • Online publication date: September 2019

13 - Neurocognitive Markers of Developmental Dyslexia

from Part II - Cross-Linguistic Perspectives on Developmental Dyslexia


In the history of human evolution, reading and writing skills were developed about 5,400 years ago (Dehaene, 2009), which is fairly late in the context of the 350,000–150,000 years of history of human speech (Perreault & Mathew, 2012). In terms of ontogeny, the acquisition of reading also follows that of speech over the course of the child’s early years. Nonetheless, reading has become one of the most important cognitive functions for daily life and reading difficulties can severely limit an individual’s ability to thrive in the modern world (Calfee, 1982; Rawson, 1978). Across languages and cultures, approximately 5–20 percent of the population (depending on definitional criteria) is affected by developmental dyslexia (DD), a specific reading impairment presents in the absence of other cognitive impairments (S. E. Shaywitz & Shaywitz, 2003).