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Causal Models of Reading Disability: A Twin Study

  • Rolando D. Tiu (a1), Sally J. Wadsworth (a2), Richard K. Olson (a3) and John C. DeFries (a4)

Abstract

The genetic and environmental relationships among measures of phoneme awareness, naming speed, Intelligence Quotient (IQ), and reading performance were investigated in 623 identical and fraternal twin pairs tested in the Colorado Learning Disabilities Research Center. A Cholesky decomposition analysis of these measures provided evidence supporting the double deficit hypothesis that difficulties in phonological processing and naming speed both contribute to reading disability. Additionally, the model revealed marginally significant genetic and significant non-shared environmental relationships between IQ and reading independent of naming speed and phoneme awareness. Thus a more complete causal model of reading disability should include IQ as well as measures of phonological processing and naming speed.

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Copyright

Corresponding author

*Address for correspondence: R. D. Tiu, Institute for Behavioral Genetics, University of Colorado, 1480 30th St., Boulder, CO 80309-0447, USA.

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