Date of Award

8-1-2019

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Psychology

First Advisor

Kibby, Michelle

Abstract

The current project investigated the brain-behavior relationships between fusiform volume and orthographic processing in children with Reading Disability (RD) and Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). It was hypothesized that there would be differences in fusiform volume between those with and without RD. Individuals with and without ADHD were not expected to differ in fusiform volume and an interaction in the RD/ADHD group was not expected. Children with RD/ADHD were expected to have similar volumes to children who have RD. It also was hypothesized that size of the left fusiform segments would be correlated with three orthographic processing tasks and tests of reading achievement (i.e., Orthographic Choice, Homophone/Pseudohomophone Choice and the Colorado Perceptual Speed Task; Letter Word Identification, Word Attack, and Reading Fluency). Results indicated that there were no group differences in fusiform volume between children with and without RD as well as with and without ADHD. There were also no relationships between the left fusiform and any of the orthographic or reading achievement measures. However, all three measures of orthographic processing were significantly related to the right posterior fusiform. Additionally, Homophone/Pseudohomophone Choice and Reading Fluency demonstrated a trend with the right anterior fusiform. The findings reported in this study were largely unexpected and suggest that further research examining the relationship between right fusiform volume and orthographic processing is warranted.

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