Robin van Rijthoven

141 General discussion 6 results underline the division of labour between interacting phonological and semantic pathways as described in the triangular reading and spelling framework (Seidenberg & McClelland, 1989). Variation in both phonological and semantic processing seems to be related to individual differences in literacy development, whereas children with dyslexia rely on contributions from the semantic pathway because of their poorly developed phonological pathway (Conrad, 2008; Nation & Snowling, 2004). With regard to our first research question we can conclude that semantic abilities indeed can be seen as a possibly compensatory factor for reading and spelling, but it should be noted that children with dyslexia remain weak in reading and spelling. Compensatory phonics through spelling intervention Regarding the second research question, results of the present dissertation indicate that stimulating the orthographic representations with a phonics through spelling intervention is beneficial for children with dyslexia. In chapter 3, we found that a phonics through spelling intervention benefits word and pseudoword reading efficiency and word spelling in children with dyslexia. Children with dyslexia gained more on all three measures compared to norm-based peers. In addition, chapter 4 showed that children with dyslexia make fewer phonological, morphological, and orthographic errors throughout the phonics through spelling intervention, with the biggest reduction of orthographic spelling (morphological and orthographic errors). A phonics through spelling intervention thus facilitates both phonological and orthographic processes of spelling. In order to gainmore insight in the effects of relative strengths and weaknesses of cognitive abilities of children with dyslexia, we also related cognitive precursors to the response to intervention. In chapter 3, it was found that phonological awareness, rapid automatized naming, and verbal working memory did not influence children’s reading and spelling progress in the phonics through spelling intervention. Semantic representations as a cognitive factor, however, seemed to influence the spelling results, as was found in chapter 4. To be more specific, children with dyslexia with welldeveloped semantic abilities representations made fewer phonological, morphological, and orthographic errors throughout the intervention compared to children with dyslexia with less developed semantic representations. This means that children with broad and deep semantic networks are able to benefit more from the phonics through spelling intervention when focusing on spelling errors. Finally, Chapter 5 showed that verbal learning and consolidation are both not related to the progress children made during the phonics through spelling intervention. The learning curve of verbally presented words and the ability to maintain these words in memory for a longer period was not related to reading and spelling outcomes during the phonics through spelling intervention.