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Rapid and Widespread White Matter Plasticity During an Intensive Reading Intervention

Huber, E., Donnelly, P. M., Rokem, A., & Yeatman, J. D. (2018, February 22). White matter plasticity and reading instruction: Widespread anatomical changes track the learning process. Nature Communications. Preprint doi:10.1101/268979

The Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences (I-LABS) at the University of Washington conducted a study examining growth in reading skills and neural connections (white matter) as a result of intensive reading intervention to develop the sensory-cognitive function of symbol imagery. This study is the first to measure white matter during an intensive reading intervention for dyslexics, comparing children’s learning with their brain’s changes. The children who struggled with reading and/or had a diagnosis of dyslexia received eight weeks of intensive reading intervention at a Lindamood-Bell Learning Center. They took a series of reading tests before and after the intervention, and underwent MRI scans at the beginning, middle, and end. A control group of children with mixed reading skill levels did not receive the reading intervention.

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