Perception of voice and tone onset time continua in children with dyslexia with and without attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder

Joshua I. Breier, Lincoln Gray, Jack M. Fletcher, Randy L. Diehl, Patricia Klaas, Barbara R. Foorman, Michelle R. Molis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Tasks assessing perception of a phonemic contrast based on voice onset time (VOT) and a nonspeech analog of a VOT contrast using tone onset time (TOT) were administered to children (ages 7.5 to 15.9 years) identified as having reading disability (RD; n = 21), attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD; n = 22), comorbid RD and ADHD (n = 26), or no impairment (NI; n = 26). Children with RD, whether they had been identified as having ADHD or not, exhibited reduced perceptual skills on both tasks as indicated by shallower slopes on category labeling functions and reduced accuracy even at the end-points of the series where cues are most salient. Correlations between performance on the VOT task and measures of single word decoding and phonemic awareness were significant only in the groups without ADHD. These findings suggest that (a) children with RD have difficulty in processing speech and nonspeech stimuli containing similar auditory temporal cues, (b) phoneme perception is related to phonemic awareness and decoding skills, and (c) the potential presence of ADHD needs to be taken into account in studies of perception in children with RD.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)245-270
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Experimental Child Psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 2001



  • Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder
  • Dyslexia
  • Phonetics
  • Speech perception

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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