Italian journal of clinical and applicational research

Scientific Committee: Giacomo Stella e Enrico Savelli
Periodicity: january, may, october

Vol. 14, n. 3, 2017

Table of Contents

Enrico Savelli Giacomo Stella


This research project was founded with the intent to carry out a local survey with the aim of investigating the clinical profiles of a sample of 68 users with Learning Disabilities diagnosed in the year 2015-2016 at a diagnostic and treatment Centre in Salento, examining the expressiveness of these disorders in childhood and obtaining a description of the complexity of the clinical profiles in an attempt to make a comparison with the main theories proposed by recent scientific literature, which have emphasized the underlying common aspects of these disorders or, on the contrary, have highlighted their differences. The dimensions investigated were: the average age of first diagnosis, the subjects’ medical history, the relationship between Learning Disabilities, analysis of the most damaged performances, and analysis of homotypic and heterotypic comorbidity. The results highlight the importance of an integrated study of these disorders given the heterogeneity of the clinical profiles which emerged.

Orientamenti della ricerca

Angela Pasqualotto Laura Fattorelli Paola Venuti

Dyslexia and dysorthography: identifying transversal prerequisites through screening of reading and writing abilities

DOI: 10.14605/DIS1431702

This paper describes a longitudinal experience of screening made in several schools in the province of Trento. The aim of this study was to investigate whether children «at risk» perform below average in some cognitive tasks when compared to typically developing children. Moreover, we wanted to identify potential causal links between the abilities assessed at the beginning and the literacy skills tested at the end of primary year one. A group of 219 children underwent a neuropsychological battery in order to evaluate its predictive value in identifying those at risk of early future learning disorders. Furthermore, multiple regression models were carried out to investigate the relative contribution of each function to reading and writing performance. In addition, we assessed the relationship between the performances of subjects «at risk of dyslexia» and subjects «at risk of dysorthography». The results highlight the role played by phonological awareness, naming, visuospatial attention mechanisms and processing speed. Overall, these findings appear to confirm the importance of using the multifactorial model to place learning disorders.

Orientamenti della ricerca

Nunzia Losito Claudia Zamperlin Martina Massini Enrico Toffalini

Reading skills and grammatical competence in Latin of high school students with dyslexia

DOI: 10.14605/DIS1431703

In 2014 our research group published a new battery, including a reading task of words and pseudowords in Latin and a grammar Latin task, for the assessment of reading skills in high school students. It was important for us to investigate the learning of Latin, considering as a foreign language (L2), in high school students. The study examined also the case of students with dyslexia, whose difficulties with learning foreign languages have already been documented. Learning Latin can be strongly difficult for these students, because it is a language mainly learned through written exposure. This hypothesis has been confirmed in this paper by the evaluation of reading skills of words and pseudowords in Latin in 32 students with dyslexia. Results showed that the difficulties with Latin seem similar to those found with Italian and emerged even if the use of grammatical rules is less compromised.


Damiano Angelini Caterina Barletta-Rodolfi Alessandra Manassero Mavi Lodoli Federico Gasparini Alessandro Marti Enrico Ghidoni

Normative data for adults in classical reading and writing tests. Calibration for individuals aged between 18 and 54

DOI: 10.14605/DIS1431704

In this work, we present the normative data for adults, evaluated with the classical tests commonly used in Italy in children for reading and writing (lists of words, pseudowords and text), a task of allographic comparison, a text comprehension task, and a writing test (pseudowords). Data were collected on 403 subjects, aged between 18 and 54 years, with 3 levels of schooling (5-8 years, 9-13, >13). The performances in the various tests are very sensitive to the level of schooling, while the effect of age is limited. We present both normative values for the various combinations of age and education, or considering only schooling. We provide the normative data in terms of 2 or 1.5 standard deviations from the mean, or of 5° or 10° centile for scores with non-normal distribution. The use of these data can allow the direct comparison with the performance of the same subject in childhood, outlining the trajectory of reading skills development.


Massimo Ciuffo Massimo Ingrassia Antonio Milanese Maria Venuti Ausilia Alquino Alice Baradello Eva Germanò Giacomo Stella Antonella Gagliano

At what speed do we read to ourselves? Developmental trajectories in silent reading speed

DOI: 10.14605/DIS1431705

The present research is aimed to measure the silent reading speed in a sample of proficient students, assessed by an original silent reading fluency task, based on behavioural indicators of the silent reading speed. A total of 180 high school and university skilled students (age range 14-23 years) have been assessed using 3 tasks aimed to evaluate the oral reading speed (lists of words, lists of pseudowords and narrative text) and one task aimed to measure the silent reading speed. The average silent reading speed in our sample was 12.5 syllables per second, almost double than the oral reading speed rate. The silent reading speed increased from 8.9 to 12.67 syllables/sec from the first year of high school (ninth grade) to the fifth year of University. Conversely, the oral reading speed unchanged for the entire academic course. This study highlights the importance of including both silent and oral reading modes in the assessment of the older students and young adults.


Valentina Dazzi Alice Guardigli Giuseppe Pellegrino Niccolò Rovatti

English camp: technology, innovation and experience for an original approach to the English language for SLD

DOI: 10.14605/DIS1431706

The English Camp for dyslexic youth has been taking place in San Marino, Italy, since 2005. In the camp participants work in a computer room and attend English practical activities; in addition, due to the fact that the Camp is residential, they are fully time immersed in a welcoming and non-judgmental atmosphere of exchange and sharing. Through the computer room activities, participants discover that learning English is not an impossible goal, that they can master tools to reach it, and learn them in a manner suited to their learning patterns, and finally they find out how to explore useful strategies to improve their own studying autonomy. Computers and compensatory instruments are available at all times, so the students can choose their preferred tools and strategies for each task. The English practical activities are a set of «Italian language forbidden» situations, in which everybody has to communicate in English while playing games. Equally important are the moments outside of the classroom, in which a professional supports and facilitates debate and exchange among the group.


Stefano Calzolari Giulia Fronza

Eventi e notizie dall’Italia


Cristiano Termine

Una finestra sull’Europa