Evaluation of the multiple-deficit hypothesis among dyslexic Arabic-speaking children

Salim Abu Rabia, Esraa Darawshe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study examined the multiple-deficit hypothesis among Arabic-speaking elementary school students. A total of 90 students, divided into three main groups based on their performance on an Arabic word-reading task: dyslexic (n = 30), regular age-matched (n = 30), and 3rd-grade regular students, who were matched to the dyslexic group in regard to their reading proficiency level (n = 30). Participants underwent a nine-domain Arabic reading experiment that measured accuracy and fluency to evaluate general reading proficiency. The performance of Arabic dyslexic students was significantly worse than age-matched controls, but similar to young matched controls based on the reading level of each cognitive task. Moreover, dyslexic students showed deficits in three or more cognitive functions, depending on severity. This study adds to the limited empirical research on the double-deficit hypothesis and its extension to the multiple-domain model among young Arabic students.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere1759
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


  • Arabic orthography
  • multiple-deficit hypothesis
  • naming speed
  • orthographic processing
  • phonological awareness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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