Anne Castles

Anne Castles
Macquarie University · Department of Cognitive Science

B.Sc (Hons), PhD

About

150
Publications
80,215
Reads
How we measure 'reads'
A 'read' is counted each time someone views a publication summary (such as the title, abstract, and list of authors), clicks on a figure, or views or downloads the full-text. Learn more
6,754
Citations
Introduction
Please note that I do not monitor my Researchgate account regularly. Please email me at my Macquarie University address to request the full text of a paper: anne.castles@mq.edu.au
Additional affiliations
January 2010 - present
Macquarie University
Position
  • Head of Department

Publications

Publications (150)
Article
Purpose Readers can draw on their knowledge of sound-to-letter mappings to form expectations about the spellings of known spoken words prior to seeing them in written sentences. The current study asked whether such orthographic expectancies are observed in the absence of contextual support at the point of reading. Method Seventy-eight adults recei...
Article
Full-text available
The present study combined magnetoencephalography (MEG) recordings with fast periodic visual stimulation (FPVS) to investigate automatic neural responses to morphemes in developing and skilled readers. Native English-speaking children (N = 17, grade 5–6) and adults (N = 28) were presented with rapid streams of base stimuli (6 Hz) interleaved period...
Article
Do readers benefit from their knowledge of the phonological form and meaning of stems when seeing them embedded in morphologically complex words for the first time in print? This question was addressed using a word learning paradigm. Participants were trained on novel spoken word stems and their meanings (“tump”). Following training, participants t...
Preprint
Morphological knowledge is known to be positively associated with reading ability. However, whether morphological knowledge affects children’s learning of new orthographic representations is less clear. Purpose: This study aims to investigate morphological effects on orthographic learning, and whether this effect, if any, is different for monolingu...
Chapter
In this chapter, the authors review what is known about how children learn to read words, surveying well‐established findings and exploring new directions in this rapidly evolving field. They begin by considering what skills and knowledge children need to acquire if they are to become expert word readers: What, precisely, is the learning challenge?...
Article
Children's oral vocabulary acquisition is an important aspect of language development that plays a crucial role in reading and literacy development and subsequent academic success. Therefore, it is important to identify and implement evidence-based effective strategies of vocabulary instruction for primary school children. Orthographic facilitation...
Preprint
Distributing study opportunities over time typically improves the retention of verbal material compared to consecutive study trials, yet little is known about the influence of temporal spacing on the learning of orthographic form specifically. This experiment sought to obtain and compare estimates of the magnitude of the spacing effect on written w...
Article
Despite substantial evidence that spacing study opportunities over time improves the retention of learned verbal material compared with study trials that occur consecutively, the influence of temporal spacing on children’s learning of written words has not been investigated. This experiment examined whether temporal spacing influenced Grade 3 and 4...
Article
Children may link words in their oral vocabulary with novel printed word forms through a process termed mispronunciation correction, which enables them to adjust an imperfect phonological decoding. Additional evidence suggests that sentence context may play a role in helping children to make link between a word in oral vocabulary and its irregular...
Article
Full-text available
This study explored whether a daytime nap aids children's acquisition of letter‐sound knowledge, which is a fundamental component for learning to read. Thirty‐two preschool children in Sydney, Australia (Mage = 4 years;3 months) were taught letter‐sound mappings in two sessions: one followed by a nap and the other by a wakeful period. Learning was...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper, we survey current evidence on cognitive precursors of reading in different orthographies by reviewing studies with a cross-linguistic research design. Graphic symbol knowledge, phonological awareness, morphological awareness, and rapid automatized naming were found to be associated with reading acquisition in all orthographies invest...
Article
Purpose Learning spoken words can be challenging for children with hearing loss who communicate orally and who are known to have weaker oral vocabulary skills than age-matched children who hear. Since vocabulary skills play a crucial role in reading and literacy acquisition, and academic success, it is important to identify effective vocabulary acq...
Article
Full-text available
While research has established a close relationship between children’s oral vocabulary and reading ability in Chinese, the nature of this relationship is not clear. This study aims to examine if vocabulary knowledge of Chinese words facilitates learning novel orthographic forms during independent reading. We also investigate whether such oral vocab...
Article
There is good evidence for an association between poor reading and anxiety, but the mechanisms responsible for this association are currently unknown. In this study, we used structural equation modeling of four large longitudinal databases from the United Kingdom (n = 7,870), the United States (ns = 8,001 and 7,160), and Australia (n = 768) to expl...
Preprint
Despite substantial evidence that distributing study opportunities over time improves the retention of learned verbal material compared to study trials that occur consecutively, the influence of temporal spacing on children’s learning of written words has not been investigated. This experiment examined whether temporal spacing influenced Grade 3 an...
Article
In this study, we investigated if children build a print-to-meaning connection via the semantic radical – a mechanism we call semantic decoding – and its interaction with phonological decoding in orthographic learning of Chinese compound characters. Ninety-two Grade 4 children were taught the pronunciations and meanings of 16 pseudocharacters and w...
Article
Literate children can generate expectations about the spellings of newly learned words that they have not yet seen in print. These initial spelling expectations, or orthographic skeletons, have previously been observed at the first orthographic exposure to known spoken words. Here, we asked what happens to the orthographic skeleton over repeated vi...
Article
Instruction in regular letter-sound relationships is a key element of teaching children to read. However, in the English language, many words have irregular spellings (e.g. said , are , yacht ). What is the best way to help children learn to read these words? To date, a number of different viewpoints have been put forward, but these viewpoints are...
Article
Full-text available
Learning to read in most alphabetic orthographies requires not only the acquisition of simple grapheme-phoneme correspondences (GPCs) but also the acquisition of context-sensitive GPCs, where surrounding letters change a grapheme’s pronunciation. We aimed to explore the use and development of simple GPCs (e.g. a ➔ /æ/) and context-sensitive GPCs (e...
Article
Full-text available
It is well known that information from spoken language is integrated into reading processes, but the nature of these links and how they are acquired is less well understood. Recent evidence has suggested that predictions about the written form of newly learned spoken words are already generated prior to print exposure. We extend this work to morpho...
Preprint
Full-text available
The type of sublexical correspondences employed during non-word reading has been a matter of considerable debate in the past decades of reading research. Non-words may be read either via small units (graphemes) or large units (orthographic bodies). In addition, grapheme-to-phoneme correspondences may involve context-sensitive correspondences, such...
Preprint
Full-text available
Learning to read fluently involves moving from an effortful phonological decoding strategy to automatic recognition of familiar words. However, little is known about the timing of this transition, or the extent to which children continue to be influenced by phonological factors when recognizing words even as they progress in reading. We explored th...
Article
A visual attention span (VAS) deficit has been widely reported in the Developmental Dyslexia (DD) literature, however, consensus regarding what underlies this problem and the nature of its relationship with reading ability remains elusive. Thirty-two children with DD (15 females) were compared with 23 age matched (12 females) and 17 reading matched...
Preprint
Most Chinese compound characters represent meaning explicitly and systematically via the semantic radical. Previous research has shown that readers can use the semantic radical to infer the meaning of unknown compound characters (i.e., semantic decoding). Yet it is unclear whether it influences reading in natural texts or facilitates orthographic l...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of the current research was to test the hypothesis that the activation of embedded words (e.g., the farm in farmhouse) is the starting point for the development of an abstract morphological parsing system in children's reading. To test this hypothesis, we examined the developmental trajectory of compound priming effects in third- and fifth-...
Article
Neuroethics is central to the Australian Brain Initiative’s aim to sustain a thriving and responsible neurotechnology industry. Diverse and inclusive community and stakeholder engagement and a trans-disciplinary approach to neuroethics will be key to the success of the Australian Brain Initiative.
Article
Nonword reading measures are widely used to index children’s phonics knowledge, and are included in the Phonics Screening Check currently implemented in England and under consideration in Australia. However, critics have argued that the use of nonword measures disadvantages good readers, as they will be influenced by their strong lexical knowledge...
Article
Full-text available
Theories of reading development generally agree that, in addition to phonological decoding, some kind of orthographic processing skill underlies the ability to learn to read words. However, there is a lack of clarity as to which aspect(s) of orthographic processing are key in reading development. We test here whether this is orthographic knowledge...
Article
Full-text available
Background: The reading skills of 16% of children fall below the mean range for their age, and 5% of children have significant and severe reading problems. Phonics training is one of the most common reading treatments used with poor readers, particularly children. Objectives: To measure the effect of phonics training and explore the impact of va...
Article
Purpose: The purpose of the current study was to investigate the relationship between orthographic learning and language, reading, and cognitive skills in 9-year-old children who are deaf or hard of hearing (DHH) and to compare their performance to age-matched typically hearing (TH) controls. Method: Eighteen children diagnosed with moderate-to-...
Article
Full-text available
There is intense public interest in questions surrounding how children learn to read and how they can best be taught. Research in psychological science has provided answers to many of these questions but, somewhat surprisingly, this research has been slow to make inroads into educational policy and practice. Instead, the field has been plagued by d...
Article
This research examines the acquisition of letter-position processing. Study 1 investigated letter-position processing in Grades 1–6 and adult readers, using the occurrence of specific error types as the outcome measure. Between Grades 1 and 2, there was a shift from making more other-word to making more letter-position errors. This shift was a func...
Article
Full-text available
The self‐teaching hypothesis describes how children progress toward skilled sight‐word reading. It proposes that children do this via phonological recoding with assistance from contextual cues, to identify the target pronunciation for a novel letter string, and in so doing create an opportunity to self‐teach new orthographic knowledge. We present a...
Article
According to the self-teaching hypothesis (Share, 1995), phonological decoding is fundamental to acquiring orthographic representations of novel written words. However, phonological decoding is not straightforward in non-alphabetic scripts such as Chinese, where words are presented as characters. Here, we present the first study investigating the r...
Article
Full-text available
It is well-established that poor readers exhibit deficits in paired associate learning (PAL), and there is increasing evidence for a phonological locus of these deficits. However, it remains unclear whether poor performance stems from difficulties specific to the phonological output system or difficulties that affect both phonological input and out...
Article
Full-text available
Recent evidence from visual word recognition points to the important role of embedded words, suggesting that embedded words are activated independently of whether they are accompanied by an affix or a non-affix. The goal of the present research was to more closely examine the mechanisms involved in embedded word activation, particularly with respec...
Article
Full-text available
A substantial proportion of children struggle to learn to read. This not only impairs their academic achievement, but increases their risk of social, emotional, and mental health problems. In order to help these children, reading scientists have worked hard for over a century to better understand the nature of reading difficulties and the people wh...
Article
Full-text available
Much research suggests that words comprising more than one morpheme are decomposed into morphemes in the early stages of visual word recognition. In the present masked primed lexical decision study, we investigated whether or not decomposition occurs for both prefixed and suffixed nonwords, and for nonwords which comprise a stem and a non-morphemic...
Article
There is an established association between children's oral vocabulary and their word reading but its basis is not well understood. Here, we present evidence from eye movements for a novel mechanism underlying this association. Two groups of 18 Grade 4 children received oral vocabulary training on one set of 16 novel words (e.g., 'nesh', 'coib'), b...
Article
Full-text available
Children learn new words via their everyday reading experience but little is known about how this learning happens. We addressed this by focusing on the conditions needed for new words to become familiar to children, drawing a distinction between lexical configuration (the acquisition of word knowledge) and lexical engagement (the emergence of inte...
Article
Full-text available
Previous studies have found that words and nonwords with many body neighbours (i.e., words with the same orthographic body, e.g., cat, brat, at ) are read faster than items with fewer body neighbours. This body-N effect has been explored in the context of cross-linguistic differences in reading where it has been reported that the size of the effect...
Article
Objective: Children with epilepsy have higher rates of reading difficulties compared to the general population. Reading difficulties are associated with lower academic attainments, higher school drop-out rates, greater risk of unemployment, lower income, and poorer adjustment. We examined the literature dealing with reading in children with the mo...
Article
Full-text available
There is evidence that poor readers are at increased risk for various types of low self-concept—particularly academic self-concept. However, this evidence ignores the heterogeneous nature of poor readers, and hence the likelihood that not all poor readers have low self-concept. The aim of this study was to better understand which types of poor read...
Article
A proposal for an Australian Brain Initiative (ABI) is under development by members of the Australian Brain Alliance. Here we discuss the goals of the ABI, its areas of research focus, its context in the Australian research setting, and its necessity for ensuring continued success for Australian brain research.
Article
Lexical competition processes are widely viewed as the hallmark of visual word recognition, but little is known about the factors that promote their emergence. This study examined for the first time whether sleep may play a role in inducing these effects. A group of 27 participants learned novel written words, such as banara, at 8 am and were teste...
Article
Paired-associate learning is a dynamic measure of the ability to form new links between two items. This study aimed to investigate whether paired-associate learning ability is associated with success in orthographic learning, and if so, whether it accounts for unique variance beyond phonological decoding ability and orthographic knowledge. A group...
Article
Full-text available
Studies have shown that letter position processing changes as reading develops. Whether these changes are driven by the development of the orthographic lexicon is currently unclear. In this study, we administered a novel variant of the Reicher-Wheeler task to children aged 7-12 years (Experiment 1) and adults (Experiment 2) to clarify the role of t...
Article
Full-text available
Masked transposed-letter (TL) priming effects have been used to index letter position processing over the course of reading development. Whereas some studies have reported an increase in TL priming over development, others have reported a decrease. These findings have led to the development of 2 somewhat contradictory accounts of letter position de...
Article
Full-text available
Phonological decoding is central to learning to read, and deficits in its acquisition have been linked to reading disorders such as dyslexia. Understanding how this skill is acquired is therefore important for characterising reading difficulties. Decoding can be taught explicitly, or implicitly learned during instruction on whole word spellings and...
Article
Full-text available
Masked priming studies have repeatedly provided evidence for a form-based morpho-orthographic segmentation mechanism that blindly decomposes any word with the mere appearance of morphological complexity (e.g., corn + er). This account has been called into question by Baayen et al. Psychological Review, 118, 438-482 (2011), who pointed out that the...
Article
Full-text available
Given the importance of effective treatments for children with reading impairment, paired with growing concern about the lack of scientific replication in psychological science, the aim of this study was to replicate a quasi-randomised trial of sight word and phonics training using a randomised controlled trial (RCT) design. One group of poor reade...
Article
Full-text available
Orthographic depth has been studied intensively as one of the sources of cross-linguistic differences in reading, and yet there has been little detailed analysis of what is meant by orthographic depth. Here we propose that orthographic depth is a conglomerate of two separate constructs: the complexity of print-to-speech correspondences and the unpr...
Article
Full-text available
Phonological decoding skill has been proposed to be key to successful sight word learning (orthographic learning). However, little is known about how children with phonological dyslexia, who have impaired phonological decoding, acquire sight words, or why children with surface dyslexia can have normal phonological decoding skill yet impaired sight...
Article
Full-text available
The paper reports on a study designed to develop a risk model that can best predict single-word spelling in seven-year-old children when they were aged 4 and 5. Test measures, personal characteristics and environmental influences were all considered as variables from a community sample of 971 children. Strong concurrent correlations were found betw...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The self-teaching hypothesis (Share, 1995) describes a psychologically plausible process by which people learn to read without constant supervision. Despite being highly regarded and supported by a good deal of empirical investigation, the self-teaching hypothesis has not been widely explored computationally. A computational cognitive model affords...
Article
Full-text available
The type of sublexical correspondences employed during non-word reading has been a matter of considerable debate in the past decades of reading research. Non-words may be read either via small units (graphemes) or large units (orthographic bodies). In addition, grapheme-to-phoneme correspondences may involve context-sensitive correspondences, such...
Article
Full-text available
Previous studies have found that children with reading difficulties need more exposures to acquire the representations needed to support fluent reading than typically developing readers (e.g., Ehri and Saltmarsh, 1995). Building on existing orthographic learning paradigms, we report on an investigation of orthographic learning in poor readers using...
Article
Full-text available
Many children with reading difficulties display phonological deficits and struggle to acquire non-lexical reading skills. However, not all children with reading difficulties have these problems, such as children with selective letter position dyslexia (LPD), who make excessive migration errors (such as reading slime as "smile"). Previous research h...
Article
Dehaene (in Reading in the Brain) reviews and finds support for the phonological deficit hypothesis of developmental dyslexia, which proposes that dyslexics have a basic deficit in processing the constituents of spoken words. This hypothesis can be seen as reflecting three associated claims: a) there is only one basic kind of dyslexia; b) all (or m...