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The Importance of Vowel Diacritics for Reading in Hebrew: What Can Be Learned from Readers with Prelingual Deafness?
ARTICLE

Reading and Writing: An Interdisciplinary Journal Volume 17, Number 6, ISSN 0922-4777

Abstract

This study investigates the importance of vowel diacritics for the reading of Hebrew in individuals with different levels of phonological control. A paradigm calling for written ordered-recall of 12 lists of 8 consecutively displayed Hebrew nouns was used as a test tool. Item presentation and between-item interval were computer-controlled. Half of the nouns on the lists were presented with vowel diacritics designating their vowels. The remaining nouns appeared with their vowel diacritics removed. Thirty-nine hearing students (mean grade 6.5) and twenty-seven students with prelingual deafness (mean grade 6.9) participated in the experiment. Analyses of the groups' recall rate, recall-order accuracy, and intrusion error rate indicate that, overall, adding vowel diacritics had a facilitating effect on the participants' quantitative and qualitative STM performance. Fine-tuned post-hoc examinations further suggest that providing vowel diacritics may be particularly worthwhile for Hebrew readers with impoverished reading skills. These findings are discussed with regard to their implications for the reading of Hebrew.

Citation

Miller, P. (2004). The Importance of Vowel Diacritics for Reading in Hebrew: What Can Be Learned from Readers with Prelingual Deafness?. Reading and Writing: An Interdisciplinary Journal, 17(6), 593-615. Retrieved November 27, 2022 from .

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