Thursday, July 10, 2014

Reading, Writing, Counting

Summary of the lesson:

Genetics and education

The human brain has not evolved to learn to read, but it has the potential to acquire an additional lexicon in a new modality (usually visual). Representations for visual forms of words progressively settle in the occipito- temporal cortex, recruiting for their own purpose a subset of a functionally appropriate object recognition region. These new functional areas have to connect with the existing lexicon in the temporo-parietal junction. In alphabetic writing systems, the acquisition of orthographic lexical items and their connection with phonological and semantic ones is greatly facilitated by the acquisition of sublexical relations between graphemes and phonemes: such orthographic-phonological conversion is likely performed by the posterior superior temporal gyrus. In developmental dyslexia, reading acquisition difficulties seem to stem from a specific phonological deficit comprising an impaired phonological awareness, leading to a poor ability to learn grapheme-phoneme correspondences. At the neural level, this may result from a dysfunction of the temporo-parietal brain areas, or of their underlying connections with orthographic representations.

For revising the lesson: 

Genetics and education
  • Ramus, F. (2006). Genes, brain, and cognition: A roadmap for the cognitive scientist. Cognition, 101(2), 247-269  RamusCSI06web.pdf
  • Ramus, F. (2004). The neural basis of reading acquisition. In  M. Gazzaniga, The Cognitive Neurosciences.  3rd edition.
  • Ramus, et al. (2006). Lecture: Le point de vue des scientifiques.
  • Lecture en débat
  • Sciences cognitives et éducation - Les grands principes de l'apprentissage. Colloque du Ministère de l'éducation et du Collège de France (2012).
Further readings: 
  • Readings: Reading, writing, counting

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