"I like to take my own sweet time": Case study of a child with naming-speed deficits and reading disabilities

Theresa Deeney, Tufts University
Maryanne Wolf, Tufts University
Alyssa Goldberg O'Rourke, Tufts University


Three types of dyslexic readers exist, according to the Double-Deficit Hypothesis: those with (a) a single phonological deficit, (b) a single naming-speed deficit, or (c) a combination of deficits. Although there is considerable information about phonologically based reading disabilities, there is insufficient information about poor readers who have intact phonological skills but severe naming-speed problems. This case is the first in-depth study of a reading disabled student with a profound single naming-speed deficit. Through an analysis of the student's performance on a variety of educational and neuropsychological tasks, we explore how the single naming-speed pattern of disruption affects reading performance, and whether this performance is consistent with theoretical assumptions regarding the role of naming speed in reading. We also describe a theoretically based reading program (RAVE-O) designed to address deficits in processing speed and fluency. Through pre/posttest analysis, we discuss whether the reading performance of this reader changed after participation in the program.