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ReAL – Neurobehavioral Development of Reading and Arithmetic Skills – A Longitudinal Study

ReAL – Neurobehavioral Development of Reading and Arithmetic Skills – A Longitudinal Study

The project ReAL examines the development of children's reading and calculation skills over the course of elementary school, using a combination of behavioral and neurophysiological (EEG, MRI) measures.

Project Description

The project ReAL (Neurobehavioral Development of Reading and Arithmetic Skills – A Longitudinal Study) aims at combining methods from developmental psychology and cognitive neurosciences on a longitudinal basis. The learning development of elementary school children was monitored from first to fourth grade, with a particular focus on the combined analysis of reading and arithmetic skills.

The participating children fulfilled three testing sessions per year: In a first session, the children’s strategy use was assessed while they read words and solved arithmetic problems of diverse complexity. For this purpose, the children were interviewed and their overt behavior was videotaped. In a second session, electroencephalography (EEG) was used to record the electrical activity on the scalp surface of the participants while they worked on similar tasks. EEG allows for assessing the interplay of neural networks at a very high temporal resolution. In the final session, the children were asked to perform the reading and arithmetic tasks in a magnetic resonance scanner. Complementary to EEG, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) enables the detection of neural activity at a very high spatial resolution. Additionally, structural MRI scans were collected to assess differences in cortical grey and white matter that can be related to interindividual differences in reading and arithmetic skills and strategy use.

In this longitudinal study the phase of testing has been completed. Data analysis and the publication of results are still underway.

Funding

LOEWE-Logo

Cooperations

Goethe University Frankfurt

Selected Publications

Lonnemann, J., Linkersdörfer, J., Hasselhorn, M., & Lindberg, S. (2013). Developmental changes in the association between approximate number representations and addition skills in elementary school children. Frontiers in Psychology, 4, 783. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00783

Linkersdörfer, J., Lonnemann, J., Lindberg, S., Hasselhorn, M., & Fiebach, C. J. (2012).  Grey matter alterations co-localize with functional abnormalities in developmental dyslexia: An ALE meta-analysis. PLoS ONE, 7(8), e43122.

Lindberg, S., Lonnemann, J., Linkersdörfer, J., Biermeyer, E., Mähler, C., Hasselhorn, M., & Lehmann, M. (2011).  Early strategies of elementary school children's single word reading. Journal of Neurolinguistics, 24(5), 556–570.

Project management

Project team

Susanne Weber

Project Details

State:
Current projects
Duration:
11/2008 – 12/2017
Funding:
External funding
Department: Education and Human Development
Contact: Dr. Janosch Linkersdoerfer, Academic staff
last modified Nov 17, 2017