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  • Print publication year: 2007
  • Online publication date: September 2009

Appendix: Transcript and behavioral data from Profiles in Reading Skills (Four Boys)

    • By Jane Holmes Bernstein, in collaboration with members of the MBB / Development Working Group of the Harvard Interfaculty Initiative on Mind, Brain, & Behavior Senior Associate in Psychology/Neuropsychology Children's Hospital Boston, Francine Benes, Professor of Psychiatry McLean Hospital, Kurt Fischer, Charles Warland Bigelow Professor and Director of the Mind, Brain, and Education Program Harvard Graduate School of Education, Jerome Kagan, Deborah Waber, Director of Research in the Department of Psychiatry Children's Hospital Boston; Associate Professor (Psychology) Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Maryanne Wolf, Director of the Center for Reading and Language Research and Professor of Child Development Tufts University
  • Edited by Kurt W. Fischer, Harvard University, Massachusetts, Jane Holmes Bernstein, The Children's Hospital, Boston, Mary Helen Immordino-Yang, University of Southern California
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • DOI:
  • pp 293-326


The children: the initial interview

The four boys are all 9 years old. They are right-handed. Jonathan has not experienced difficulty in learning to read. The other three boys have.


… … Well, I like to play sports… …. I like to play

[Jane Holmes Bernstein (JHB): You're a sportsman – OK]

lots of different sports, like… …. I play baseball … and soccer…. I want to play–LAUGHS–hockey and football but I can't–LAUGHS–

[JHB LAUGHS. Why can't you play hockey and football?]

'cos I'll break too many teeth… … . disingenuous expression +


Facial Expression

Bright, animated, mischievous.


Within normal limits: varies appropriately with content.


Arms on table, in “conversational space” with JHB.

Gaze Patterns

Gazes up when thinking/formulating remarks; focuses appropriately on JHB when making point.

Interviewer Comment

Comfortable with himself, enjoying the attention. Fluent use of conversational language: turn-taking is smooth with appropriate “cross-cutting” of his and JHB's remarks. Socially aware, even sophisticated: knows that his last remark will not be expected – waits for its effect on JHB!


… … I'm really good at geography… …. and … hummm!… I'm really good at

[Maryanne Wolf (MW): yeah]

singing… …. I'm pretty good at lots of things actually.

[MW: Yes, I know that … that's what I hear] [Yeah! That's great …]

Facial Expression

Bright, engaged.


Appropriately varied; matched to content of remarks.


Arms on table; in conversational space with MW.

Gaze Patterns

Looks up and to the side when thinking/formulating; focuses on MW appropriately when offering specific information.

Interviewer Comment

Mildly anxious but very familiar with MW, whom he likes and who enjoys him. Elicits encouraging, soothing tone of voice from MW. Conversation moves smoothly between W and MW with appropriate cross-cutting of utterances.

Rapid naming
Denckla, M. B. & Rudel, R. G. (1976). Rapid automatized naming (R.A.N.): Dyslexia differentiated from other learning disabilities. Neuropsychologia, 14, 471–9.
Wolf, M. (1991). Naming speed and reading: the contribution of the cognitive neurosciences. Reading Research Quarterly, 26, 123–41.
Reading words and non-words: untimed
Woodcock, R. W. & Johnson, M. B. (1989). The Woodcock-Johnson Psycho-Educational Battery, Revised. Allen, TX: DLM Resources. Letter-Word Identification subtest.
Woodcock, R. W. & Johnson, M. B. (1990) Woodcock-Johnson-Revised Tests of Achievement. The Riverside Publishing Company. Word Attack subtest.
Reading words and non-words: timed
Torgesen, J. K., Wagner, R. K. & Rashotte, C. A. (1999). Test of Word Reading Efficiency. Austin, TX: PRO-ED Publishing, Inc.
Paragraph reading
Gray Oral Reading Test, 3rd edn, 1992. Austin, TX: PRO-ED.
Motor tapping
Wolff, P. H. 1993. Impaired temporal resolution in developmental dyslexia. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 682, 87–103.
Wolff, P. H., Michel, G. F., Ovrut, M. & Drake, C. (1990). Rate and timing precision of motor coordination in developmental dyslexia. Developmental Psychology, 26, 349–59.
Rey-osterrieth complex figure
Bernstein, J. H. & Waber, D. P. (1996). Developmental scoring system for the Rey-Osterrieth complex figure. Odessa, FL: Psychological Assessment Resources, Inc.
Osterrieth, P. A. (1944). Le test de copie d'une figure complexe. Archives de Psychologie, 30, 206–356.
Rey, A. (1941). L'examen psychologique dans le cas d'encéphalopathie traumatique. Archives de Psychologie, 28, 286–340.