Different speed of processing levels in childhood and their contribution to early literacy and reading abilities

Shelley Shaul, Einat Nevo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Based on the effectiveness of speed of processing (SOP) skills, in particular rapid automatic naming, in kindergarten children to predict reading in first grade, the aim of the current study was to examine the connections between SOP skills and early literacy skills in kindergarten and their relationship to reading abilities in first grade. Ninety-six children were tested twice: first in kindergarten using speed of processing, early literacy, phonological awareness, language and rapid naming speed measures; and a year later in first grade, using speed of processing and different reading ability measures (decoding, reading comprehension, and fluency). The children were divided into three groups according to their performance on the speed of processing measures: slow, average, and fast. In kindergarten, the group with slow SOP exhibited the lowest scores on all the measures, while the groups with average and fast SOP performed better, with no significant difference between them. In first grade, speed of processing skills affected the different reading abilities in a dissimilar way, and the three groups showed different patterns of reading ability. SOP in kindergarten explained approximately 11% of the variance in reading in the 1st grade among the slow and average SOP groups. These findings have implications for early assessment and intervention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-203
Number of pages11
JournalEarly Childhood Research Quarterly
StatePublished - 23 Apr 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier Inc.


  • Developmental changes
  • Reading abilities
  • Speed of processing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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