Connections between mathematics and reading development: Numerical cognition mediates relations between foundational competencies and later academic outcomes. – PsycNET

Spencer, M., Fuchs, L. S., Geary, D. C., & Fuchs, D. (2022). Connections between mathematics and reading development: Numerical cognition mediates relations between foundational competencies and later academic outcomes. Journal of Educational Psychology, 114(2), 273–288. https://doi.org/10.1037/edu0000670
We examined longitudinal relations between 1st-grade cognitive predictors (early nonverbal reasoning, processing speed, listening comprehension, working memory, calculation skill, word-problem solving, word-reading fluency, attentive behavior, and numerical cognition) and 2nd-grade academic outcomes (calculations, word-problem solving, and word reading) in 370 children (Mage = 6.55 years, SDage = 0.33 years at the start of the study) who were identified as at-risk or not-at-risk for mathematics disability. Path analysis mediation models revealed that numerical cognition, assessed at an intermediary timepoint, mediated the effects of processing speed, working memory, calculation skill, word-problem solving, and attentive behavior on all 3 outcomes. Findings indicate that multiple early domain-general cognitive abilities are related to later mathematics and reading outcomes and that numerical cognition processes, which may track ease of forming symbol-concept associations, predict later performance across both academic domains. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved)
Impact Statement
Educational Impact and Implications Statement—Given the frequent co-occurrence of difficulties in learning mathematics and reading, identifying the processes and skills that support success in both domains is important. The study showed that several domain-general abilities, such as working memory and attentive behavior, contributed to earlier and later calculation skill, word-problem solving, and word-reading fluency. More critically, the study showed that one bridge between the codevelopment of reading and mathematics achievement is the fluency of processing basic numerical relationships. The numerical measure in turn likely indexes the ease with which students form symbol-concept associations, and this cognitive system might be contributing to the co-occurrence of difficulties in mathematics and reading. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2022 APA, all rights reserved)


 Connections between mathematics and reading development: Numerical cognition mediates relations between foundational competencies and later academic outcomes. – PsycNET 
https://doi.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Fedu0000670

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Kevin S. McGrew, PhD
Educational & School Psychologist
Director
Institute for Applied Psychometrics (IAP)
https://www.themindhub.com
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