Ulla Richardson

Ulla Richardson
University of Jyväskylä | JYU · Agora Center

About

66
Publications
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3,533
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Publications

Publications (66)
Article
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Background In 2018, it was found that only a quarter of Grade 3 children in India were reading at grade level. A growing demand for English education has further limited children's literacy achievement. Despite a strong evidence base in favour of using systematic phonics for building English literacy skills, many teachers in India continue to use r...
Article
Full-text available
This study explores the neurocognitive predictors of response to intervention with GraphoGame Rime (GG Rime), an adaptive software game designed to aid the learning of English phonics. A cohort of 398 children (aged 6–7 years) who had participated in a recent randomised controlled trial (RCT) of GG Rime in the United Kingdom were studied. Half were...
Article
The interest in computer-assisted interventions to promote literacy has increased over the years. In this study, we developed the Portuguese version of the GraphoGame Fluent and tested its effects on reading, spelling, and phonological awareness. Second graders struggling to read were randomly assigned to two groups: GraphoGame Fluent group (n = 15...
Article
Full-text available
The interest in computer-assisted interventions to promote literacy has increased over the years. In this study, we developed the Portuguese version of the GraphoGame Fluent and tested its effects on reading, spelling, and phonological awareness. Second graders struggling to read were randomly assigned to two groups: GraphoGame Fluent group (n = 15...
Article
Full-text available
Pinyin is an alphabetic script that denotes pronunciations of Chinese characters. Studies have shown that Pinyin instruction enhances both phonological awareness (e.g., Shu et al., Developmental Science, 2008, 11, 171–181) and character reading (e.g., Lin et al., Psychological Science, 2010, 21, 1117–1122) in Chinese children. In the present study,...
Article
Serious games are designed to improve learning instead of providing only entertainment. Serious games analytics can be used for understanding and enhancing the quality of learning with serious games. One challenge in developing the computerized support for learning is that learning of skills varies between players. Appropriate algorithms are needed...
Article
Computerized game-based assessment (GBA) system for screening reading difficulties may provide substantial time and cost benefits over traditional paper-and-pencil assessment while providing means also to individually adapt learning content in educational games. To study the reliability and validity of a GBA system to identify struggling readers pe...
Article
We developed a computerized audiovisual training programme for school-aged children with specific language impairment (SLI) to improve their phonological skills. The programme included various tasks requiring phonological decisions. Spoken words, pictures, letters and written syllables were used as training material. Spoken words were presented eit...
Poster
Full-text available
Objective: To determine whether GraphoLearn, a computer-assisted reading tool, could be used to support the English reading skills of struggling readers in India.
Article
Full-text available
India, a country with a population of more than 1.3 billion individuals, houses the world’s second largest educational system. Despite this, 100 of millions of individuals in India are still illiterate. As English medium education sweeps the country, many are forced to learn in a language which is foreign to them. Those living in poverty further st...
Chapter
Learning to master reading and spelling can be assisted by communication technologies, ever more common among children. The aim of this study was to investigate whether a new science-based computer-assisted intervention could improve reading and spelling in 2nd graders at risk to fail literacy acquisition. Participants were 7-year-old monolingual c...
Article
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The purpose of this pilot study with a within-subject design was to gain a deeper understanding about the promise and restrictions of a virtual tutoring system designed to teach science to first grade students in Finland. Participants were 61 students who received six tutoring science sessions of approximately 20 min each. Sessions consisted of a s...
Article
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Early intervention programs are generally considered the most efficient and beneficial approach to providing support to struggling beginning readers. This paper discusses the theoretical background, development, and design of, as well as the first results obtained with, GraphoGame for Standard Indonesian, a technology-enhanced learning environment...
Article
We explore the potential of a computer-adaptive decoding game in Spanish to increase the decoding skills and oral reading fluency in Spanish and English of bilingual students. Participants were 78 first-grade Spanish-speaking students attending bilingual programs in five classrooms in Texas. Classrooms were randomly assigned to the treatment (i.e.,...
Article
Full-text available
Un enseignement systématique des relations grapho-phonologiques (le décodage) est nécessaire pour apprendre à lire. Des outils numériques, tel que GraphoGame, un logiciel audio-visuel finlandais, peuvent faciliter la mise en place, et l’automatisation du décodage. L’article présente une adaptation en français de GraphoGame sur tablette qui tient co...
Article
Full-text available
GraphoGame (GG) is originally a technology-based intervention method for supporting children with reading difficulties. It is now known that children who face problems in reading acquisition have difficulties in learning to differentiate and manipulate speech sounds and consequently, in connecting these sounds to corresponding letters. GG was devel...
Chapter
Reading acquisition is under the influence of the structure and function of the language itself, the individual’s capacity to learn and the differential methods of instruction. Alphabetic languages vary from the bidirectionally consistent phoneme–grapheme–phoneme units of Finnish, to English as the most inconsistent for small units, but the latter...
Article
Learning to read in a language with a transparent orthography is generally quick and easy. To be able to read any words, learners need to know how to connect the smallest spoken language units, phonemes, into the written counterparts, graphemes. However, even learning the basic alphabetic principle has proven difficult for some learners. Here we fo...
Article
Full-text available
This intervention study was conducted to document conditions under which a computer based literacy game (GraphoGame TM) could enhance literacy skills of first grade students in an African city. The participants were first grade students from Government schools (N = 573). These students were randomly sampled into control (N = 314) and various interv...
Article
Full-text available
This paper provides an overview of the GraphoGame method. Both theoretical and methodological aspects related to the method are presented. The method’s guiding principles are based on the prevailing theories and experimental research findings on learning and teaching basic reading skills in alphabetic languages, especially from the point of view of...
Article
Identifying children at risk for reading problems or dyslexia at kindergarten age could improve support for beginning readers. Brain event-related potentials (ERPs) were measured for temporally complex pseudowords and corresponding non-speech stimuli from 6.5-year-old children who participated in behavioral literacy tests again at 9 years in the se...
Article
Full-text available
Sensitivity to print is characterized by a left occipito-temporal negativity to words in the event-related potential N1. This sensitivity is modulated by reading skills and may thus represent a neural marker of reading competence. Here we studied the development of the N1 in regular and poor readers from preschool age to school age to test whether...
Article
Full-text available
Computer-assisted training of Finnish phonemic length was conducted with 7-year-old Russian-speaking second-language learners of Finnish. Phonemic length plays a different role in these two languages. The training included game activities with two- and three-syllable word and pseudo-word minimal pairs with prototypical vowel durations. The lowest a...
Article
Purpose: The authors investigated the importance of phonemic length discrimination ability on reading and spelling skills among children with reading disabilities and familial risk for dyslexia and among children with typical reading skills, as well as the role of prereading skills in reading and spelling development in children with reading disab...
Article
Children who are poor readers usually experience troublesome school careers and consequently often suffer from secondary emotional and behavioural problems. Early identification and prediction of later reading problems thus is critical in order to start targeted interventions for those children with an elevated risk for emerging reading problems. I...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of this randomised crossover study was to investigate the development of reading skills in children with low letter knowledge in the first year of their formal reading instruction and to assess the effectiveness of GraphoGame Polish (PL) – intensive computer game-based training in recognition of grapheme-phoneme associations. The results sh...
Article
In Jyväskylä Longitudinal Study of Dyslexia, we have investigated neurocognitive processes related to phonology and other risk factors of later reading problems. Here we review studies in which we have investigated whether dyslexic children with familial risk background would show atypical auditory/speech processing at birth, at six months and late...
Article
Children who are poor readers usually experience troublesome school careers and consequently often suffer from secondary emotional and behavioural problems. Early identification and prediction of later reading problems thus is critical in order to start targeted interventions for those children with an elevated risk for emerging reading problems. I...
Article
Phonological awareness refers to the ability to perceive and manipulate the sound structure of language and is especially important when children learn to read. Poor phonological awareness is considered the major cause for the emergence of reading difficulties. In this functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study, we examined the brain correl...
Article
To examine the ability to discriminate phonemic length and the association of this ability with reading accuracy, reading speed, and spelling accuracy in Finnish children throughout Grades 1-3. Reading-disabled (RDFR, n = 35) and typically reading children (TRFR, n = 69) with family risk for dyslexia and typically reading control children (TRC, n =...
Article
Full-text available
The acquisition of reading skills is a major landmark process in a human's cognitive development. On the neural level, a new functional network develops during this time, as children typically learn to associate the well-known sounds of their spoken language with unfamiliar characters in alphabetic languages and finally access the meaning of writte...
Article
Adaptive learning games should provide opportunities for the student to learn as well as motivate playing until goals have been reached. In this paper, we give a mathematically rigorous treatment of the problem in the framework of Bayesian decision theory. To quantify the opportunities for learning, we assume that the learning tasks that yield the...
Article
We present a simple but effective method based on Luce’s choice axiom [Luce, R.D. (1959). Individual choice behavior: A theoretical analysis. New York: John Wiley & Sons] for consistent estimation of the pairwise confusabilities of items in a multiple-choice recognition task with arbitrarily chosen choice-sets. The method combines the exact (non-as...
Article
This is a story about the fate of a psychological application: from its conception to the optimistic vision surrounding its future. We hope that this application - an enjoyable learning game (www or mobile phone-based, available free of charge to the end users) for children - can at best help millions of children in their reading acquisition in the...
Article
The Jyväskylä Longitudinal Study of Dyslexia project (JLD) has followed the development of 200 children from birth until 10 years of age. Half the children are from families in which at least one of the parents has dyslexia, thus the child has a high risk of becoming dyslexic, and half have no such risk. Here the main findings of four studies in li...
Article
Our goal was to investigate auditory and speech perception abilities of children with and without reading disability (RD) and associations between auditory, speech perception, reading, and spelling skills. Participants were 9-year-old, Finnish-speaking children with RD (N = 30) and typically reading children (N = 30). Results showed significant gro...
Article
It has been proposed that sensitivity to the parameters underlying speech rhythm may be important in setting up well-specified phonological representations in the mental lexicon. However, different acoustic parameters may contribute differentially to rhythm and stress in different languages. Here we contrast sensitivity to one such cue, amplitude e...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Deficiencies in the ability to map letters to sounds are currently considered to be the most likely early signs of dyslexia. This has motivated the use of Literate, a computer game for training this skill, in several Finnish schools and households as a tool in the early prevention of reading disability. In this paper, we present a Bayesian model th...
Article
Full-text available
Within alphabetic languages, spelling-to-sound consistency can differ dramatically. For example, English and German are very similar in their phonological and orthographic structure but not in their consistency. In English the letter a is pronounced differently in the words bank, ball, and park, whereas in German the letter a always has the same pr...
Article
Full-text available
In this article, we explore whether structural characteristics of the phonological lexicon affect serial recall in typically developing and dyslexic children. Recent work has emphasized the importance of long-term phonological representations in supporting short-term memory performance. This occurs via redintegration (reconstruction) processes, whi...
Article
Children at risk for familial dyslexia (n=107) and their controls (n=93) have been followed from birth to school entry in the Jyväskylä Longitudinal study of Dyslexia (JLD) on developmental factors linked to reading and dyslexia. At the point of school entry, the majority of the at-risk children displayed decoding ability that fell at least 1 SD be...
Article
We review the main findings of the Jyväskylä Longitudinal study of Dyslexia (JLD) which follows the development of children at familial risk for dyslexia (N = 107) and their controls (N = 93). We will illustrate the development of these two groups of children at ages from birth to school entry in the skill domains that have been connected to readin...
Article
It is now well-established that there is a causal connection between children's phonological skills and their acquisition of reading and spelling. Here we study low-level auditory processes that may underpin the development of phonological representations in children. Dyslexic and control children were given a battery of phonological tasks, reading...
Article
As yet relatively little is known of the earliest signs of dyslexia. We present evidence showing that the speech perception of 6-month-old infants from dyslexic families differs significantly from that of infants from control families with normal reading parents; the former group needed a significantly longer duration to categorize speech sounds as...
Article
Full-text available
A core difficulty in developmental dyslexia is the accurate specification and neural representation of speech. We argue that a likely perceptual cause of this difficulty is a deficit in the perceptual experience of rhythmic timing. Speech rhythm is one of the earliest cues used by infants to discriminate syllables and is determined principally by t...
Article
Reading difficulties are associated with problems in processing and manipulating speech sounds. Dyslexic individuals seem to have, for instance, difficulties in perceiving the length and identity of consonants. Using magnetoencephalography (MEG), we characterized the spatio-temporal pattern of auditory cortical activation in dyslexia evoked by thre...
Article
A specific learning disability, developmental dyslexia, is a language-based disorder that is shown to be strongly familial. Therefore, infants born to families with a history of the disorder are at an elevated risk for the disorder. However, little is known of the potential early markers of dyslexia. Here we report differences between 6-month-old i...
Article
Full-text available
We measured event-related potentials (ERPs) to synthetic consonant-vowel syllables (/ba/, /da/, /ga/) from 26 newborns with familial risk for dyslexia and 23 control infants participating in the Jyväskylä Longitudinal Study of Dyslexia. The syllables were presented with equal probability and with interstimulus intervals ranging from 3,010 to 7,285...
Article
Full-text available
Comparisons of the developmental pathways of the first 5 years of life for children with (N = 107) and without (N = 93) familial risk for dyslexia observed in the Jyväskylä Longitudinal study of Dyslexia are reviewed. The earliest differences between groups were found at the ages of a few days and at 6 months in brain event-related potential respon...
Article
We studied the brain's reactions to deviations in the duration of a stop consonant using event-related potentials in an oddball paradigm. A naturally produced nonsense word was used as a frequent standard stimulus which differed from two infrequently presented deviant stimuli only by the duration of the silence period inside the stop, making the co...

Projects

Projects (4)
Project
To identify effective interventions which can be used to support early reading development of at-risk students in India. Particular focus is being put on children from slum communities who are studying in English medium schools.