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SIL Electronic Working Papers 2005-003

Are there age-related psychophysiological barriers to the acquisition of literacy?

Author  Abadzi, Helen
Abstract 

This paper was presented at the International Literacy Year Colloquium in October 1990, in Washington, D.C. It addresses some of the psychophysiological issues facing adults in acquiring literacy. The paper addresses three possible neurological barriers for adults. These barriers are:

  1. The brain may be more developmentally prepared for reading acquisition at an early age;
  2. The changing mechanisms of information storage may affect consolidation of letter patterns; and
  3. Diminishing attentional resources may affect reading comprehension.
The question is then raised whether greater returns may be reaped from investing in literacy for younger illiterates instead of older adults illiterates.

  Are there age-related psychophysiological barriers to the acquisition of literacy?
Published  2005
Subjects  Literacy
Literacy methods
Literacy problems
Keywords  literacy; Literacy Colloquium; age-related barriers; reading acquisition; instructional methodology; adult women; Literacy methods; Literacy problems