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Visual perceptual, perceptual motor and temporal sequence tasks : the performance of average and below… Watson, Rita P. M. 1978

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V i s u a l P e r c e p t u a l , P e r c e p t u a l Motor and Temporal Sequence Tasks: The Performance of Average and Below Average Readers C "7 by R i t a P. M. Watson B. A., U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1973 A Thesis Submitted i n P a r t i a l F u l f i l m e n t of the Requirements f o r the Degree of Master of A r t s in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES i n the Department of E d u c a t i o n a l Psychology We accept t h i s t h e s i s as conforming to the r e q u i r e d standard The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia August, 1978 •4^ ' Rita P. M. Watson, 1978 In presenting th is thes is in pa r t i a l fu l f i lment o f the requirements for an advanced degree at the Univers i ty of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the L ibrary sha l l make it f ree ly ava i lab le for reference and study. I fur ther agree that permission for extensive copying of th is thesis for scho lar ly purposes may be granted by the Head of my Department or by his representat ives. It is understood that copying or pub l i ca t ion of th is thes is fo r f inanc ia l gain sha l l not be allowed without my wri t ten permission. Department of EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY The Univers i ty of B r i t i s h Columbia 2075 Wesbrook Place Vancouver, Canada V6T 1W5 Date September 1, 1978 i i ABSTRACT Although v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l and p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks emerge from d i v e r s e t h e o r e t i c a l r a t i o n a l e s - a n d are used i n a v a r i e t y of c o n t e x t s , systematic comparisons of the s i g n i f i c a n c e of task parameters i n d i f f e r e n t i a t i n g between s u b j e c t groups are l a c k i n g . The present study compares the performance by average and below average readers on a group of v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l , p e r c e p t u a l motor and temporal sequence t a s k s , s y s t e m a t i c a l l y v a r i e d across p r e s e n t a t i o n and response parameters, i n order to explore the r e l a t i v e s i g n i f i c a n c e of task parameters, and a l s o to examine c o g n i t i v e processes used by the groups i n task performance. Subjects were i n i t i a l l y i d e n t i f i e d as average or below average readers on the b a s i s of reading t e s t s c o r e s , and the f i n a l sample of 40 average and 40 below average readers was s e l e c t e d by matching f o r IQ across reading groups. A b a t t e r y of 10 tasks was administered to a l l s u b j e c t s i n the f i n a l sample. T - t e s t s between groups i n d i c a t e d that some c a t e g o r i e s of t a s k s , i n c l u d i n g v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s and i i i temporal sequence t a s k s , d i f f e r e n t i a t e d between groups more p o w e r f u l l y than o t h e r s , although no s i n g l e para-meter emerged as u n i q u e l y s i g n i f i c a n t . Task i n t e r -c o r r e l a t i o n s and f a c t o r a n a l y s i s r e s u l t s suggested that p a t t e r n s of c o g n i t i v e processes d i f f e r e d between groups. Average readers tended to use a s i n g l e process i n performance of s e v e r a l task v a r i a t i o n s , while the performance of below average readers tended to be dominated by t a s k - s p e c i f i c demands. i v TABLE OF CONTENTS CHAPTER P A G E 1 INTRODUCTION 1 2 REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE . 1 1 A P e r s p e c t i v e 11 Task Parameters 14 C e n t r a l P r o c e s s i n g 22 C e n t r a l P r o c e s s i n g , P e r c e p t u a l Motor I n t e g r a t i o n and Reading 25 Summary 27 3, STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM 32 4 METHOD'" 34 Subjects 34 Tasks 35 Procedure 42 5 RESULTS 44 6 CONCLUSIONS 57 D i s c u s s i o n 57 L i m i t a t i o n s 68 Suggestions f o r Further Research. . . . 70 REFERENCES". 72 APPENDIX 79 V LIST OF TABLES AND FIGURES TABLE PAGE 1 SAMPLE CHARACTERISTICS OF THE TWO READING GROUPS 36 2 MEANS AND STANDARD DEVIATIONS (RAW DATA) . . . 45 3 ADJUSTED MEANS AND T-TESTS 46 4 TASK INTERCORRELATIONS 48 5 CORRELATIONS AMONG CLASSIFICATION VARIABLES AND TASKS 49 6 PRINCIPAL COMPONENTS WITH VARIMAX ROTATION . . 53 FIGURE 1 GRID FOR CLASSIFICATION OF TASKS BY PRESENTATION AND RESPONSE VARIABLES 37 v i ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The .author would l i k e to thank Dr. Ronald F. Jarman f o r i n v a l u a b l e c o n t r i b u t i o n s at c r i t i c a l p o i n t s i n the study. The suggestions of Dr. Jon Shapiro and Dr. A n n e l i e s e Robens are a l s o much a p p r e c i a t e d . Thanks a l s o to C a r o l i n e Gipps, who d i d the l i o n ' s share of data g a t h e r i n g and marking; Alan Moodie, Coordinator of E v a l u a t i o n and Research S e r v i c e s , Vancouver School Board; and the many teachers and students of the Vancouver School D i s t r i c t who c o n t r i b u t e d so generously of t h e i r time i n the course of the i n v e s t i g a t i o n . F i n a n c i a l support f o r the p r o j e c t was provided through a grant from the E d u c a t i o n a l Research I n s t i t u t e of B.C., f o r which the author would l i k e to express a p p r e c i a t i o n . CHAPTER 1''• INTRODUCTION Tests of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n , u s u a l l y c o n s i s t i n g of the r e c o g n i t i o n and copying of two-dimensional geometric forms, have become well-known and widely u t i l i z e d f o r a v a r i e t y of c l i n i c a l , r e s e a r c h and e d u c a t i o n a l purposes. R e c o g n i t i o n of t h e i r s i g n i f i c a n c e has l e d to a p r o l i f e r a t i o n of tasks emerging from d i f f e r i n g t h e o r e t i c a l r a t i o n a l e s and c h a r a c t e r i z e d by va r y i n g task parameters. C l i n i c a l acceptance of t h i s type of t e s t can be tra c e d to Bender's (1938) e a r l y e x p l o r a t i o n of the copying of v i s u a l g e s t a l t e n to explore c h i l d development, organic b r a i n disease and p s y c h o l o g i c a l d i s o r d e r s . Her observa-t i o n s i n d i c a t e d that the c a p a c i t y to copy geometric forms v a r i e d a c c o r d i n g to the ma t u r a t i o n a l l e v e l , growth p a t t e r n and pathology of the i n d i v i d u a l . The s e n s i t i v i t y of the V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t t e s t to m a t u r a t i o n a l l e v e l and p s y c h o l o g i c a l and n e u r o l o g i c a l d i s o r d e r s has l e a d to a steady i n c r e a s e i n i t s use by c l i n i c i a n s and r e s e a r c h e r s ( K o p p i t z , 1963). Another example of c l i n i c a l a d a p t a t i o n 2 of form copying tasks i s found i n the work of Graham and K e n d a l l (1964), who devised a task r e q u i r i n g the r e p r o d u c t i o n of v i s u a l l y p e r c e i v e d s t i m u l i from memory. T h e i r o b s e r v a t i o n s supported the hypothesis that the memory component of the task e f f e c t i v e l y d i s c r i m i n a t e d s u b j e c t s with o r g a n i c b r a i n d i s o r d e r s from those with non-organic d i s o r d e r s . Form copying tasks are a l s o much i n evidence i n the l i t e r a t u r e on c h i l d development. I l g and Ames (1964) f o r example, have d i s c u s s e d the r e l a t i o n s h i p of form copying a b i l i t y and m a t u r a t i o n a l l e v e l . Expanding on the e a r l i e r work of G e s e l l (1940, 1946, 1947), they p r o v i d e a d e t a i l e d , q u a l i t a t i v e a n a l y s i s of the form copying c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s a s s o c i a t e d with each stage of development of the c h i l d . They view the a b i l i t y to copy geometric forms as a tan-g-ibjle and measurable expr e s s i o n of the dynamic and complex inner processes of the e v o l v i n g c h i l d . W ithin a n e u r o p s y c h o l o g i c a l context, v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l and p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks have been used i n the i n v e s t i g a -t i o n of the e f f e c t s of b r a i n damage on c o g n i t i v e f u n c t i o n i n g . Recent e f f o r t s i n c l u d e L u r i a ' s (1973) work. Through o b s e r v a t i o n of the performance on p e r c e p t u a l tasks by b r a i n damaged s u b j e c t s , he has l o c a l i z e d areas of the 3 b r a i n that appear to a f f e c t s k i l l s a s s o c i a t e d with adequate p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n . A d i r e c t out-growth of L u r i a ' s n e u r o p s y c h o l o g i c a l i n v e s t i g a t i o n s has been the use of v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l and p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks i n rese a r c h on c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g . The work of Das and c o l l e a g u e s (Das, K i r b y & Jarman, 1975; Jarman, 1978a, 1978b, 1978c; Jarman & Das, 1977; K i r b y & Das, 1977) f o r example, has i l l u m i n a t e d the r e l a t i o n s h i p between p e r c e p t u a l motor a b i l i t y and other complex c o g n i t i v e processes, such as r e a d i n g , by i n t e r p r e t i n g them w i t h i n the framework of c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g . The l i t e r a t u r e on human a b i l i t i e s a l s o suggests a r e l a t i o n s h i p between p e r c e p t u a l motor a b i l i t y and o v e r a l l c o g n i t i v e f u n c t i o n i n g . For example, Jensen's (1970) i n c l u s i o n of f i g u r e copying as a measure of L e v e l I I (reasoning) a b i l i t y , i n h i s h i e r a r c h i c a l model of c o g n i t i v e a b i l i t i e s suggests that t e s t s of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a -t i o n may be s i g n i f i c a n t i n the measurement of o v e r a l l cog-n i t i v e f u n c t i o n i n g . Further support f o r t h i s view i s found i n the use of form r e c o g n i t i o n (matching) and form copying tasks i n c o g n i t i v e a b i l i t y measures such as the S t a n f o r d -Binet I n t e l l i g e n c e Scale (Terman & M e r r i l l , 1973), and i n the noted c o r r e l a t i o n s of t e s t s such as the V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t with measures of i n t e l l i g e n c e ( K o p p i t z , 1963). 4 The school readiness and k i n d e r g a r t e n s c r e e n i n g l i t e r a t u r e suggests yet another a p p l i c a t i o n of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n t a s k s . Recent i n t e r e s t i n the e v a l u a t i o n of school r e a d i n e s s , e a r l y d i a g n o s i s of developmental delay and p r e v e n t i o n of p o t e n t i a l l e a r n i n g problems has l e d to fo r m u l a t i o n of a p p r o p r i a t e groups of measurements u s u a l l y r e f e r r e d to as rea d i n e s s or k i n d e r g a r t e n s c r e e n i n g t e s t s (DeHirsch, Jansky & Langford, 1966; I l g & Ames, 1964; Satz, T a y l o r , F r i e l & F l e t c h e r , i n press; Stevenson, Parker, W i l k i n s o n , Hegion & F i s h , 1976). P e r c e p t u a l motor tasks have been used f r e q u e n t l y i n t h i s context due to t h e i r observed maturation s e n s i t i v i t y and repeated f i n d i n g s of t h e i r p r e d i c t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p to subsequent reading achievement (DeHirsch, et a l . , 1966; Satz, et a l . , i n p r e s s ) . The "matu r a t i o n a l l a g " hypothesis of Satz and a s s o c i a t e s (Satz, et a l . , i n p r e s s ; Satz & Sparrow, 1970; Satz & Van Nostrand, 1973) leads them to p o s t u l a t e that the d i a g n o s t i c i n d i c a t o r s of developmental reading d i s a b i l i t y vary with the chronolo-g i c a l age of the c h i l d , and, as the e a r l y developing s k i l l s of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n are i n primary ascendency i n grade K, delays i n those s k i l l s are most l i k e l y to f o r e -c a s t l a t e r problems i n r e a d i n g ; hence the p r e d i c t i v e v a l i d i t y of p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks when administered i n grade K. Several of the t h e o r e t i c a l o r i e n t a t i o n s that have 5 been mentioned have had an impact on the reading d i s a b i l i t y l i t e r a t u r e . The p r e d i c t i v e o r i e n t a t i o n of r e a d i n e s s and k i n d e r g a r t e n s c r e e n i n g s t u d i e s has been mentioned. The l i t e r a t u r e a l s o i n c l u d e s s t u d i e s of reading d i s a b i l i t y i n which attempts have been made to understand the complex v a r i a b l e s a s s o c i a t e d with reading by i d e n t i f y i n g concomit-ant d e f i c i e n c i e s i n other areas of c o g n i t i v e f u n c t i o n i n g , such as s p a t i a l and p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s (Doehring, 1968) v. and c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g (Leong, 1976; Cummins & Das, 1977) i . R e s u l t s of these s t u d i e s have suggested that reading d i s a b i l i t y i s not a u n i t a r y phenomenon, but a c o n d i t i o n with m u l t i p l e e t i o l o g i e s , and with a r e l a t i o n s h i p to other c o g n i t i v e f u n c t i o n s , i n c l u d i n g s p a t i a l and percept-u a l a b i l i t i e s and c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g . In s p i t e of the widespread use of p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks and r e c o g n i t i o n of t h e i r d i a g n o s t i c and p r e d i c t i v e s i g n i f i c a n c e , there i s a l a c k of comprehensive i n v e s t i g a t i o n i n t o the processes i n v o l v e d i n p e r c e p t u a l motor f u n c t i o n i n g ( B i r c h & L e f f o r d , 1967). Noting t h i s , B i r c h and L e f f o r d v a r i e d task demands i n order to explore the processes u n d e r l y i n g the development of the c h i l d ' s a b i l i t y to pe r c e i v e and a c c u r a t e l y copy a v i s u a l l y presented s t i m u l u s . They r e l a t e d changes i n the f a m i l i a r task of copying two-dimensional forms to concurrent a l t e r a t i o n s i n c a p a c i t i e s 6 f o r p e r c e p t u a l d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n ( a n a l y s i s ) and i n t e g r a t i o n ( s y n t h e s i s ) by using segmented geometric forms as s t i m u l i and response c h o i c e s . T h e i r data suggested that d i f f e r -ent a b i l i t i e s may be i n v o l v e d i n the performance of p e r c e p t u a l tasks with v a r y i n g task parameters. A reexamination of p e r c e p t u a l a n a l y s i s and s y n t h e s i s by Greenburg (1972) f a i l e d to support the theory of d i f f e r -e n t i a l p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s a cross v a r y i n g task parameters, c o n f l i c t i n g with the o b s e r v a t i o n s of B i r c h and L e f f o r d . McDaniel (1972) a l s o v a r i e d task demands i n a study of complex p e r c e p t u a l processes, adding yet another task para-meter by p r e s e n t i n g segments of a geometric form i n a temporally ordered sequence. His data d i d not support the hypothesis that d i f f e r e n t p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s are r e q u i r e d i n the performance of complex p e r c e p t u a l tasks with v a r y i n g task parameters, with the p o s s i b l e e x c e p t i o n of s e r i a l i n t e g r a t i o n . With p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks used i n such d i v e r s e c o n t e x t s , the o b s e r v a t i o n that they are l e s s than c o n s i s t e n t across p r e s e n t a t i o n and response v a r i a b l e s ( C h a l f a n t & S c h e f f e l i n , 1969) i s not s u r p r i s i n g . C l i n i c i a n s and r e s e a r c h e r s have used d i f f e r e n t task parameters, thereby suggesting, e x p l i c i t l y or i m p l i c i t l y , that s p e c i f i c task 7 parameters may be d i f f e r e n t i a l l y important i n the measure-ment of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n . Using task para-meters as a b a s i s f o r c l a s s i f i c a t i o n , s e v e r a l c a t e g o r i e s of p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks are seen to emerge. Examination of response v a r i a b l e s r e v e a l s two main response modes: r e c o g n i t i o n (matching) and r e p r o d u c t i o n ( c o p y i n g ) . Examples of p e r c e p t u a l motors tasks I r e q u i r i n g the re p r o d u c t i o n response i n c l u d e the f a m i l i a r V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t t e s t (Bender, 1938), the copy forms task employed by I l g and Ames (1964), and the V i s u a l Motor I n t e g r a t i o n Test (Beery, 1967). Tests r e q u i r i n g the r e c o g n i t i o n response i n c l u d e the D i s c r i m i n a t i o n of Forms subtest of the Stan f o r d B i n e t I n t e l l i g e n c e Scale (Terman & M e r r i l l , (1973), t e s t s of non-verbal reasoning such as the Raven's P r o g r e s s i v e M a t r i c e s (Raven, 1960), and measures designed f o r r e s e a r c h of p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s ( B i r c h & L e f f o r d , 1967). Methods of stimulus p r e s e n t a t i o n appear more d i v e r s e . A d i s t i n c t i o n can be made between the p r e s e n t a t i o n of s t i m u l i contemporaneously with the s u b j e c t ' s response, i . e . , with the stimulus i n f u l l view while the subj e c t forms a response, or non-contemporaneously with response, i . e . , 1 with s t i m u l u s removed a f t e r p r e s e n t a t i o n , r e q u i r i n g a response from memory. An example of stimulus p r e s e n t a t i o n 8 contemporaneously with response Is the V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t t e s t (Bender,j1938), while an example of s t i m u l u s presented non-contemporaneously with response i s Graham and K e n d a l l ' s Memory f o r Designs t e s t (1960). B i r c h and L e f f o r d ' s (196«7j usje^bf^segregated forms i n study of p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s gives r i s e to a second d i s t i n c t i o n among p r e s e n t a t i o n v a r i a b l e s , i . e . , the p r e s e n t a t i o n of segments of geometric forms i n s t e a d of the more f a m i l i a r p r e s e n t a t i o n of whole geometric forms found on t e s t s such as the V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t . Greenburg (1972) and McDaniel (1972) have a l s o made use of tasks i n v o l v i n g the p r e s e n t a t i o n of segregated forms. A recent and as yet only minimally explored parameter i s the p r e s e n t a t i o n of segments of geometric forms i n a temporally ordered sequence, r e q u i r i n g the s u b j e c t to remember the stimulus segments and I n t e g r a t e them over time.,iri order to c o n s t r u c t a response. McDaniel's Successive F i g u r e s task (1972) i s an example of t h i s type of t e s t . I t i s seen, then, that p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks have emerged from d i f f e r i n g t h e o r e t i c a l r a t i o n a l e s , have been used i n a number of contexts and have been de f i n e d by a v a r i e t y of task parameters. In some cases, a given task 9 parameter i s e x p l i c i t l y s t a t e d as a v a r i a b l e of i n t e r e s t and hypothesized to have some d i s c r i m i n a t o r y s i g n i f i c a n c e , f o r example, the motor response on the V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t t e s t . In other cases the t h e o r e t i c a l r a t i o n a l e behind the choice of task parameter i s l e s s than e x p l i c i t , f o r example, the choice of a motor response, r a t h e r than simple matching, on the Memory f o r Designs t e s t . The choice of any given task parameter over a l l p o s s i b l e a l t e r -n a t i v e s c o n t a i n s the i m p l i c i t assumption of the s i g n i f i -cance of that p a r t i c u l a r parameter. The r a t i o n a l e f o r choice of task parameters i n some cases remains unexplained, and the e f f e c t of v a r y i n g task parameters on the measure-ment of p e r c e p t u a l motor a b i l i t i e s has been underexplored. Several of the t h e o r e t i c a l o r i e n t a t i o n s d i s c u s s e d above have r e c e n t l y been brought to bear on the reading l i t e r a t u r e . K indergarten s c r e e n i n g s t u d i e s , i n v e s t i g a t i o n s of s p a t i a l and p e r c e p t u a l processes, n e u r o l o g i c a l theory and c e n t r a l process r e s e a r c h have p a r t i c u l a r i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r the study of reading (Doehfing, 1968; Leong, 1976a&b; Satz, T a y l o r , F r i e l & F l e t c h e r , i n p r e s s ) . The r e l a t i o n -s h i p between p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n processes and complex v a r i a b l e s a s s o c i a t e d with r e a d i n g , observed by these authors, suggests that the study of p e r c e p t u a l motor 10 i n t e g r a t i o n tasks could a p p r o p r i a t e l y be pursued w i t h i n the context of re a d i n g . It i s the purpose of t h i s study, by e x p l o r i n g the parameters of p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks s y s t e m a t i c a l l y a c r o s s p r e s e n t a t i o n and response v a r i a b l e s , to compare the e f f e c t i v e n e s s of v a r y i n g task parameters i n d i f f e r e n t i a t i n g between subject groups. The p a t t e r n s of c o g n i t i v e processes used i n the performance of task v a r i a t i o n s by d i f f e r e n t s u b j e c t groups w i l l a l s o be expl o r e d . A comparative e v a l u a t i o n of the performance of a group of c h i l d r e n with average a b i l i t y and a group of c h i l d r e n who might be expected to experience d i f f i c u l t y with p e r c e p t u a l motor t a s k s , that is,below average readers, w i l l be used f o r t h i s i n v e s t i g a t i o n . 11 CHAPTER 2" REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE A P e r s p e c t i v e At present, t e s t s of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n are c h a r a c t e r i z e d by v a r y i n g task parameters. However, the r e l a t i v e s i g n i f i c a n c e of d i f f e r e n t task parameters i n the measurement of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n has yet to be e s t a b l i s h e d . There i s a " l a c k of d e t a i l e d i n f o r m a t i o n about the normal mechanisms subserving the development of p e r c e p t u a l l y guided motor performance" ( B i r c h & L e f f o r d , 1967, p . l ) . E f f o r t s d i r e c t e d toward e x p l i c a t i n g p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n a b i l i t y can be roughly grouped a c c o r d i n g to two main o r i e n t a t i o n s : f i r s t , those r e s e a r c h e r s that have concentrated on the s p e c i f i c s of the tasks who emphasize, i m p l i c i t l y or e x p l i c i t l y , the s i g n i f i c a n c e of p a r t i c u l a r task parameters i n d i s c r i m i n a t i n g among sub j e c t groups or among d i f f e r e n t p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s ; and secondly, r e s e a r c h e r s that view p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e -g r a t i o n as but one aspect of c e n t r a l c o g n i t i v e f u n c t i o n i n g , who t h e o r i z e that a s i n g l e process u n d e r l i e s performance 12 on v a r i a t i o n s of the task. A well-documented example of t a s k - s p e c i f i c o r i e n t a -t i o n i s r e presented i n the work of Bender (1938), I l g and Ames (1964) , Roach & Kephart-(1966), and Others who'have emphasized the importance of the motor parameter. The d i a g n o s t i c v a l i d i t y of t e s t s r e q u i r i n g the copying of a v i s u a l stimulus has been s u b s t a n t i a t e d , but whether the u n d e r l y i n g i n t e g r a t i v e a b i l i t y hypothesized to be measured by the tasks (Bender, 1938; DeHirsch, Jansky & Langford, 1966) can only be tapped by the demand of a motor response from the s u b j e c t has not been e s t a b l i s h e d beyond q u e s t i o n . Recent v a r i a t i o n s i n method and type of stimulus p r e s e n t a t i o n r e q u i r i n g a high degree of v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l i n t e g r a t i o n ( B i r c h & L e f f o r d , 1967; McDaniel, 1972) suggest a p o t e n t i a l l y s i g n i f i c a n t d i r e c t i o n f o r the i n v e s t i g a t i o n of p e r c e p t u a l i n t e g r a t i o n a b i l i t y without the demand of a motor response. V a r i a t i o n of s p e c i f i c task parameters, i n attempts to i d e n t i f y components of p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s , i n some s t u d i e s have y i e l d e d support f o r a hypothesis of g l o b a l p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t y u n d e r l y i n g task v a r i a t i o n s (Greenburg, 1972; McDaniel, 1972), and i n o t h e r s have y i e l d e d support f o r a hypothesis of d i f f e r e n t p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s ( B i r c h & L e f f o r d ? 1967) . 13 An example of a c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g o r i e n t a t i o n to the e x p l i c a t i o n of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n i s found i n L u r i a (1973). He t h e o r i z e d that a s i n g l e c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g a b i l i t y , simultaneous s y n t h e s i s , u n d e r l i e s the a b i l i t y to perform on v a r i a t i o n s of v i s u a l -p e r c e p t u a l , p e r c e p t u a l c o g n i t i v e and p e r c e p t u a l motor ta s k s . T h i s suggests t h a t , i n normal s u b j e c t s , tasks with v a r y i n g parameters would i n e f f e c t measure the same process. T h i s theory has been pursued by Das and c o l l e a g u e s (Das,CKirby & Jarman, 1975; Jarman, 1978a, 1978b, 1978c; Jarman & Das, 1977; Kirby & Das, 1977). They have found, i n repeated i n v e s t i g a t i o n s , that d i f f e r e n t v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l and p e r c e p t u a l motor t a s k s , such as F i g u r e copying, Memory For Designs and Raven's P r o g r e s s i v e M a t r i c e s load on the same f a c t o r , which they have i d e n t i f i e d as simultaneous s y n t h e s i s . The present review w i l l focus on the emergence of major task parameters i n the l i t e r a t u r e , and the i n f l u e n c e of t h e o r e t i c a l o r i e n t a t i o n on the e x p l i c a t i o n of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n and r e l a t e d phenomena. 14 Task Parameters Motor Response. In d e s c r i b i n g the use of the V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t t e s t to explore growth p a t t e r n s , m a t u r a t i o n a l l e v e l s and psychopathology, Bender (1938, 1967) d e s c r i b e d the g l o b a l nature of g e s t a l t f u n c t i o n and the interdependence of p e r c e p t u a l and motor c a p a c i t i e s . Her ad a p t a t i o n of nine of Wertheimer's (1923) v i s u a l l y p e r c e i v e d g e s t a l t e n f o r d i a g n o s t i c purposes was based on the c o n v i c t i o n that response i s a "motor process of p a t t e r n i n g the pe r c e i v e d g e s t a l t " (1967, p.544) determined by the i n t e g r a t i v e s t a t e of the organism. The hypothesized tendency of a sub j e c t to complete and re o r g a n i z e g e s t a l t e n according to p r i n c i p l e s determined by sensori-motor experience suggests the importance of the motor response i n an e v a l u a t i o n of the inn e r i n t e g r a t i v e s t a t e of the i n d i v i d u a l . The importance of motor a c t i v i t y i n the development of p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s has been i n v e s t i g a t e d by Kephart (1960; Strauss-and^Kephart,.1955) drawing on the e a r l i e r work of Piaget and Hebb. He suggests that percep-t u a l and motor s k i l l s should not be considered as two separate a c t i v i t i e s , but that p e r c e p t u a l motor a b i l i t y should be considered a combined a c t i v i t y . He s t a t e s that p e r c e p t u a l l e a r n i n g depends on p r i o r motor l e a r n i n g f o r 15 i t s f o u ndations, with new p e r c e p t u a l i n f o r m a t i o n being matched to the system of motor i n f o r m a t i o n e s t a b l i s h e d e a r l i e r i n the course of development. T h i s l i n e of reasoning d e r i v e s from the theory that e a r l y , p u r p o s e f u l motor exp l o r a t i o n y a n d m a n i p u l a t i o n of the environment develops w i t h i n the c h i l d a s e r i e s of s t r u c t u r e s , or "schemata" ( P i a g e t , :1952) that form the b a s i s f o r more complex p e r c e p t u a l and higher order c o g n i t i v e processes. Pursuant to t h i s , r e s e a r c h of the r e l a t i o n s h i p of motor f u n c t i o n i n g and academic achievement ( I s m a i l , Kephart & Cowell, 1963) has suggested a r e l a t i o n s h i p between aspects of motor a b i l i t y and achievement. However, as the authors note, an observed r e l a t i o n s h i p does not e s t a b l i s h c a u s a l i t y . The r e l a t i o n s h i p between p e r c e p t u a l motor a b i l i t y and academic performance may simply be due to the two areas developing s i m u l t a n e o u s l y , e s p e c i a l l y i n view of the l a c k of support f o r the theory of t r a n s f e r from p e r c e p t u a l motor t r a i n i n g programs to improved academic performance (Thomas, Chissolm, Stewart & S h e l l y , 1975). Research i n the e v a l u a t i o n of school r e a d i n e s s has employed copy forms tasks (DeHirsch, Jansky & Langford, 1966; I l g & Ames, 1964; Satz, T a y l o r , F r i e l & F l e t c h e r , i n p r e s s ) . DeHirsch et a l . used the V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t 16 t e s t i n t h e i r p r e d i c t i v e b a t t e r y and found i t to be s i g n i f i c a n t l y r e l a t e d to l a t e r reading achievement. They a t t r i b u t e the r e l a t i o n s h i p to the maturation s e n s i t i v i t y of the t e s t , and, i n t e r e s t i n g l y , p o i n t out that i t s p r e d i c t i v e e f f i c a c y depends not on the s p e c i f i c s k i l l s i n v o l v e d so much as the degree to which they measure i n t e g r a t i v e a b i l i t y . F i g u r e copying i s of primary s i g n i f i c a n c e i n the work of I l g and Ames (h96A)i anxthe fevjalua't iaftf of school r e a d i -ness ' i ) » They have found i t to be a v a l i d , measurable ex p r e s s i o n of the matrix of inner developmental processes of the c h i l d , y i e l d i n g s p e c i f i c i n f o r m a t i o n of the c h i l d ' s s t a t e of re a d i n e s s f o r l e a r n i n g . In the d e s c r i p t i o n by Satz, T a y l o r , F r i e l & F l e t c h e r (IhT'press) £.of.caglongitudinal study of r e a d i n e s s , the p r e d i c t i v e v a l i d i t y of p e r c e p t u a l motor t a s k s , such as the V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t t e s t , are seen i n the context of t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p to c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g a b i l i t y , of which p e r c e p t u a l motor s k i l l s are hypothesized to be an e a r l y m a n i f e s t a t i o n . Satz, et a l . have explained developmental reading d i s a b i l i t i e s as " d i s o r d e r s i n c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g , the nature of which v a r i e s a ccording to the c h r o n o l o g i c a l age of the child','. The primacy of developing p e r c e p t u a l motor s k i l l s at Kinder g a r t e n l e v e l make e v a l u a t i o n of p e r c e p t u a l motor 17 s k i l l s i n r e a d i n e s s b a t t e r i e s e f f e c t i v e p r e d i c t o r s of l a t e r reading d i s a b i l i t y . A m a t u r a t i o n a l l a g i n the c e r e b r a l cortex i s hypothesized to be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r both d e f i c i e n c i e s . F u r t h e r support f o r the m a t u r a t i o n a l l a g h ypothesis i s found i n Leong (1976a). The major parameter emerging from the above l i n e s of reasoning i s the c e n t r a l r o l e of motor a c t i v i t y , seen as forming the b a s i s f o r p e r c e p t u a l l e a r n i n g , and as f u n c t i o n i n g i n t e r d e p e n d e n t l y with p e r c e p t i o n . An obvious q u e s t i o n r a i s e d by the use of the motor parameter i n e v a l u a t i o n of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n i s that primary motor d y s f u n c t i o n i n and of i t s e l f could l e a d to d e f e c t i v e performance on a task. Competency i n the performance of the task n e c e s s i t a t e s an adequate l e v e l of motor p r o f i c i e n c y and i t i s d i f f i c u l t to a s c e r t a i n whether d e f e c t i v e task performance o r i g i n a t e s i n the p e r c e p t i o n of the s t i m u l u s , the motor response, or the i n t e g r a t i v e f u n c t i o n . That p u r p o s e f u l motor a c t i o n d i r e c t e d to e x p l o r a t i o n and m a n i p u l a t i o n of the environment has a s i g n i f i c a n t r o l e i n the development of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n a b i l i t i e s (Strauss & Kephart, 1955) i s a reasonable hypo-t h e s i s . However, the d i a g n o s t i c s i g n i f i c a n c e of p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks appears more c l o s e l y a s s o c i a t e d with 18 t h e i r s e n s i t i v i t y to the i n t e g r a t i v e a b i l i t i e s of the organism than t h e i r measurement of e i t h e r p e r c e p t u a l or motor a b i l i t i e s considered s e p a r a t e l y (Bender, 1938; DeHirsch, Jansky & Langford, 1966). The importance of "the motor parameter per se can t h e r e f o r e be seen as r e l a t i v e to i t s c a p a c i t y f o r r e v e a l i n g the i n n e r , i n t e -g r a t i v e processes of the i n d i v i d u a l . R e c o g n i t i o n Response. The development of the a b i l i t y to r ecognize and d i s c r i m i n a t e among forms i s g e n e r a l l y thought to precede the a b i l i t y to copy forms (Strauss & Kephart, 1955) and to be l e s s a f f e c t e d by b r a i n damage ( B i r c h & Lef f ord j »196 7 ) . r^A'?comprehensive examinat i o n * o f the r e l a t i o n between v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s , i n t e r s e n s o r y i n t e g r a t i o n and p e r c e p t u a l motor s k i l l i s found i n B i r c h and L e f f o r d (1967), who recognized a need f o r more d e t a i l e d and systematic i n f o r m a t i o n about the developmental course of f u n c t i o n s u n d e r l y i n g the development of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n . They advanced a theory of p e r c e p t u a l l e v e l s , d i s t i n g u i s h i n g the e a r l y developing a b i l i t y of form r e c o g n i t i o n from the l a t e r developing a b i l i t i e s of pe r c e p t u a l d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n and the a b i l i t y to copy forms. The p o s s i b l e d i f f e r e n t i a l importance of v i s u a l p e r c e p t i o n , v i s u a l d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n , i n t e r s e n s o r y i n t e g r a t i o n and motor s k i l l was s t u d i e d by developing a s e r i e s of tasks ranging 19 from form r e c o g n i t i o n through i n c r e a s i n g l y complex v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s to the copying of geometric forms under v a r y i n g c o n d i t i o n s of p e r c e p t u a l support. V i s u a l a n a l y s i s , d e f i n e d as the a b i l i t y to separate the elements of a g e s t a l t and use them s e l e c t i v e l y , and v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s , d e f i n e d as the a b i l i t y to reorder fragments of forms Into a whole f i g u r e , were hypothesized to tap higher order p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s than the simpler form r e c o g n i t i o n task. The r e s u l t s of the study supported the hypothesis of d i f f e r e n t i a l a b i l i t i e s . P e r c e p t u a l s y n t h e s i s , p e r c e p t u a l a n a l y s i s and motor s k i l l were found to have only weak a s s o c i a t i o n s with each other, although a strong a s s o c i a -t i o n with i n t e r s e n s o r y f u n c t i o n i n g was r e p o r t e d f o r a l l three a b i l i t i e s . Pursuant to the work of B i r c h and L e f f o r d , Greenburg (1972) reexamined the c o n s t r u c t s " v i s u a l a n a l y s i s " and " v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s " . She d e f i n e d v i s u a l a n a l y s i s as the a b i l i t y to p o i n t out s p e c i f i e d l i n e s or angles on whole f i g u r e s , and v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s as the a b i l i t y to r e c o g n i z e a whole geometric f i g u r e a f t e r the p a r t s had been shown and then removed. Her data y i e l d e d a s u b s t a n t i a l c o r r e l -a t i o n between the c o n s t r u c t s , supporting a hypothesis of a s i n g l e a b i l i t y u n d e r l y i n g performance on v a r y i n g 20 p e r c e p t u a l t a s k s , thus c o n t r a d i c t i n g the r e s u l t s of B i r c h and L e f f o r d . A s i g n i f i c a n t aspect of the work of B i r c h and L e f f o r d i s the use of segregated geometric forms as s t i m u l i and response c h o i c e s , r e q u i r i n g the sub j e c t to i n t e g r a t e elements of a v i s u a l l y p e r c e i v e d stimulus i n order to formulate a response. This task v a r i a t i o n may have some s i g n i f i c a n c e i n the measurement of the p e r c e p t u a l i n t e g r a t i v e c a p a c i t y of the i n d i v i d u a l at a more complex l e v e l than form r e c o g n i t i o n , but without the demand of a motor response. Response from Memory. Pa t t e r n s of impairment d i s p l a y e d by s u b j e c t s with b r a i n damage have been observed to i n c l u d e memory (Ch a l f a n t and S c h e f f e l i n , 1969; L u r i a , 1973). The e f f e c t of a memory component on the performance of pe r c e p t u a l motor tasks has been explored by Graham and Kendal l (1960) , whose Memory For Designs t e s t was shown by the authors to d i f f e r e n t i a t e b r a i n - d i s o r d e r e d s u b j e c t s from those without b r a i n d i s o r d e r s . These r e s u l t s f i n d some support i n the l a t e r work of Benton (1974). However the a b i l i t y of the Memory For Designs t e s t to d i s c r i m i n a t e among other subject groups has not been c l e a r l y demon-s t r a t e d (Hunt, 1955). 21 The r o l e of memory may be worth pursuing w i t h i n the context of p e r c e p t u a l motor f u n c t i o n i n g . Jensen (1970) has emphasized the r o l e of memory i n c o g n i t i v e f u n c t i o n i n g i n h i s h i e r a r c h i c a l theory of L e v e l I and L e v e l I I a b i l i t i e s . He has c l a s s i f i e d the task of f i g u r e copying as a measure of reasoning ( L e v e l II) a b i l i t y , . a n d , by d e f i n i t i o n , f u n c t i o n a l l y dependent on the h i e r a r c h i c a l l y lower a b i l i t y of memory ( L e v e l I) f o r i t s completion. An a n a l y s i s of i n c o n s i s t e n c i e s i n t h i s p o s i t i o n and a model f o r i t s r e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n has r e c e n t l y been proposed by Jarman (1978c). Successive P r e s e n t a t i o n of S t i m u l i . In h i s i n v e s t i -g a t i o n of four c o n s t r u c t s hypothesized to be components of more complex p e r c e p t u a l p r o c e s s e s , McDaniel (1972) used motion p i c t u r e f i l m to present segments of geometric forms i n a temporally ordered sequence. T h i s task was designed to measure the c o n s t r u c t " s e r i a l i n t e g r a t i o n " , d e f i n e d as the a b i l i t y to accumulate v i s u a l s t i m u l i over time and organize them i n t o meaningful p a t t e r n s . The r e s u l t s of the study d i d not support the hypothesis of d i f f e r e n t component a b i l i t i e s , but i n s t e a d i n d i c a t e d that a s i n g l e f a c t o r was i n v o l v e d i n the performance of a l l task v a r i a t i o n s i n c l u d e d i n the study. Two of the s e r i a l i n t e g r a t i o n tasks loaded on a second f a c t o r , but McDaniel's 22 c o n c l u s i o n s about the s i g n i f i c a n c e of the s e r i a l i n t e g r a -t i o n component remained t e n t a t i v e . Strauss and Kephart (1955) s t a t e that temporal i n t e -g r a t i o n a i d s i n the p e r c e p t i o n of complex s p a t i a l s t i m u l i by a l l o w i n g the subject to attend to a s u c c e s s i o n of i n d i v i d u a l f e a t u r e s without l o s i n g h i s impression of the whole. The r o l e of temporal i n t e g r a t i o n i n complex p e r c e p t u a l processes a s s o c i a t e d with reading (Bakker, 1972) and language a c q u i s i t i o n (Hearnshaw, 1956; L u r i a , 1973) suggest that i t i s a c o n s t r u c t d e s e r v i n g f u r t h e r i n v e s t i -g a t i o n . C e n t r a l P r o c e s s i n g Although the task parameters d e s c r i b e d above appear d i v e r s e , i t has been suggested that they share a r e l a t i o n -ship to the c e n t r a l process of i n t e r s e n s o r y i n t e g r a t i o n ( B i r c h & L e f f o r d , 1967). Strauss and Kephart (1955) :empha-s i z e d ^ th€ C T c e n t r a l origih'seof t the^percep t u a l process , . des c r i b - -i n g ^ i t as-aa"'complex£ system "of i n tegr at ions ^ between, v a r i o u s sense f i e l d s " (pc.Z78). '. vfhis concept of i n t e r s e n s o r y i n t e g r a t i o n i n p e r c e p t u a l motor f u n c t i o n i n g r e l a t e s to the g e s t a l t concept of the whole being more than the sum of i t s p a r t s , i . e . , the a b i l i t y to i n t e g r a t e v i s u a l with 23 motor f u n c t i o n i n g has more d i a g n o s t i c s i g n i f i c a n c e than e i t h e r v i s u a l or motor f u n c t i o n i n g evaluated s e p a r a t e l y . The fundamental importance of the i n t e g r a t i v e c a p a c i t y of the b r a i n i n p e r c e p t u a l and conceptual c o g n i t i v e p r o c e s s i n g has been explored i n a neuropsycho-l o g i c a l context by L u r i a (1973). Through the study of p a t i e n t s with l e s i o n s i n the c o r t i c a l zone i n f l u e n c i n g i n t r a - s e n s o r y and i n t e r - s e n s o r y i n t e g r a t i o n , he has i d e n t i f i e d d i s t u r b a n c e s i n f u n c t i o n s that appear s i m i l a r to the p e r c e p t u a l motor and i n t e g r a t i v e processes touched on i n the preceding d i s c u s s i o n . The r e c o g n i t i o n of o b j e c t s , the drawing of o b j e c t s both i n d i r e c t r e p r o d u c t i o n and from memory, d i f f i c u l t y with f i t t i n g together the elements of incoming impressions i n t o a s i n g l e s t r u c t u r e , c o n v e r t i n g c o n s e c u t i v e p r e s e n t a t i o n of elements i n t o a simultaneous perception,-and the a c q u i s i t i o n of language s k i l l s are a d v e r s e l y a f f e c t e d by d i s t u r b a n c e s i n t h i s area of the c o r t e x . L u r i a a l s o e x p l i c a t e s the n e u r o l o g i c a l b a s i s f o r the r e l a t i o n s h i p between language (symbolic) d i s t u r b a n c e s and p e r c e p t u a l d i f f i c u l t i e s and p o s i t s that a s i n g l e c o n s t r u c t , "simultaneous ( s p a t i a l ) s y n t h e s i s " , d e s c r i b e s an a b i l i t y that u n d e r l i e s both p e r c e p t u a l motor and l i n g u i s t i c p r o c e s s e s . 24 Further i n v e s t i g a t i o n of L u r i a ' s t h e o r i e s has been c a r r i e d out by Das and c o l l e a g u e s (Das,Kirby & Jarman, 1975; Jarman, 1978a, 1978b, 1978c; Jarman & Das, 1977; Ki r b y & Das, 1977). They note a recent s h i f t from the study of a b i l i t i e s to an i n q u i r y i n t o processes, and propose a model f o r the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of c o g n i t i v e a b i l i t i e s based on L u r i a ' s paradigm of simultaneous and su c c e s s i v e s y n t h e s i s . B r i e f l y , "simultaneous s y n t h e s i s r e f e r s to the pr o c e s s i n g of i n f o r m a t i o n i n i n t e g r a t e d , s e m i s p a t i a l forms, and s u c c e s s i v e s y n t h e s i s r e f e r s to pr o c e s s i n g i n a sequence dependent, temporal-based s e r i e s " (Jarman ,''1978a) . The theory has been o p e r a t i o n -a l i z e d by i n v e s t i g a t i o n s using a b a t t e r y of t e s t s designed f o r t h i s l i n e of r e s e a r c h . In f a c t o r a n a l y s i s of the r e s u l t s of these s t u d i e s , the tasks of form copying, Memory For Designs and Raven's P r o g r e s s i v e M a t r i c e s have loaded r e p e a t e d l y on the same f a c t o r , suggesting the importance of a s i n g l e process i n the performance of a l l three t a s k s . The process was i d e n t i f i e d as simultaneous s y n t h e s i s . Although not a l l e x i s t i n g v a r i a t i o n s of p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks have been explored i n t h i s context, the c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g theory suggests that the process of simultaneous s y n t h e s i s would underly performance on the tasks r e g a r d l e s s 25 of v a r i a t i o n s i n task parameters. A s i g n i f i c a n t aspect of the theory f o r the present i n v e s t i g a t i o n i s that i t suggests the c o n c e p t u a l i z a t i o n of a p p a r e n t l y d i s p a r a t e aspects of p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s w i t h i n the more compre-hensive framework of u n d e r l y i n g c o g n i t i v e processes. C e n t r a l P r o c e s s i n g , P e r c e p t u a l Motor I n t e g r a t i o n and  Reading A p r e d i c t i v e r e l a t i o n s h i p between p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks administered at K i n d e r g a r t e n l e v e l and l a t e r reading a b i l i t y has been observed (DeHirsch, Jansky & Langford, 1966; Satz, T a y l o r , F r i e l & F l e t c h e r , i n p r e s s ) . Satz et a l . have suggested that the r e l a t i o n s h i p may be due to the same c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g f u n c t i o n s u n d e r l y i n g the development of both p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n a b i l i t i e s and reading achievement. The work of Leong (1974, 1976a, 1976b) has y i e l d e d r e s u l t s consonant with those of Satz et a l . Leong (1976b) a l s o suggests the p o t e n t i a l of the L u r i a - Das model of c o g n i t i v e p r o c e s s i n g (Das, K i r b y & Jarman, 1975) f o r i n t e r p r e t i n g p a t t e r n s of impairments i n d i s a b l e d r e a d e r s . Fundamental antecedents to the a c q u i s i t i o n of reading s k i l l i n c l u d e an adequate l e v e l of p r o f i c i e n c y i n the d i s c r i m i n a t i o n of v i s u a l s t i m u l i and subsequent develop-26 ment of more complex v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l c a p a c i t i e s , such as v i s u a l a n a l y s i s ( d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n ) and s y n t h e s i s ( i n t e g r a -t i o n ) ( B i r c h , 1962). Other a b i l i t i e s s i g n i f i c a n t i n the reading process are the s e q u e n t i a l p r o c e s s i n g of s t i m u l i (Doehring, 1968), i n t e r s e n s o r y i n t e g r a t i o n , p a r t i c u l a r l y across the a u d i t o r y and v i s u a l m o d a l i t i e s ( B i r c h and • Belmont, 1962) and temporal i n t e g r a t i o n (Bakker, 1972). Both the d i f f e r e n t i a l e t i o l o g y of reading d i s a b i l i t y (Doehring, 1968; B i r c h , 1972), and some evidence of i t s occurrence not i n i s o l a t i o n , but accompanied by impairment i n s p a t i a l temporal a b i l i t i e s (Doehring, 1968), seem to preclude the treatment of reading d i s a b i l i t y as a u n i t a r y phenomenon. "Heterogeneity of a s s o c i a t e d d i s o r d e r s r a t h e r than any s i n g l e d i s t u r b a n c e has tended to c h a r a c t e r ! the group ( d i s a b l e d r e a d e r s ) " ( B i r c h , 1962, p. 161). Doehring has suggested that the whole matrix of s p a t i a l temporal i n t e g r a t i o n may s u f f e r a degree of impairment i n d i s a b l e d readers. Doehring a l s o s t a t e s that previous s t u d i e s have been narrowly conceived, with a r e s u l t i n g s c a r c i t y of accept-able e x p l a n a t i o n s of reading d i s a b i l i t y d e s p i t e a l a r g e number of i n v e s t i g a t i o n s . He takes the view that reading d e f i c i t s should be considered i n terms of t h e i r c o r r e l -a t i o n s with nonreading d e f i c i t s , and suggests i n v e s t i g a t i o n 27 of s e q u e n t i a l p r o c e s s i n g t a s k s , t a k i n g f u l l cognizance of n e u r o l o g i c a l theory, as a promising d i r e c t i o n f o r fu t u r e r e s e a r c h . A r e l a t i o n s h i p between the a c q u i s i t i o n of reading s k i l l s and a b i l i t i e s a s s o c i a t e d with the development of perceptual,mo t o r a b i l i t i e s i s suggested by these observa-t i o n s . F u r t h e r i n v e s t i g a t i o n of reading d i s a b i l i t y w i t h i n the context of c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g a b i l i t i e s may serve to i l l u m i n a t e the nature of the r e l a t i o n s h i p . A framework f o r t h i s l i n e of i n q u i r y has been proposed by Cummins and Das (1977)• :• Summary _ r i d - ~ '• --•'•.. < Contexts i n which p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n tasks have been used range from the pragmatic o r i e n t a t i o n of c l i n i c a l and e d u c a t i o n a l d i a g n o s i s to more t h e o r e t i c a l r e s e a r c h o r i e n t a t i o n s . The most commonly used and widely researched type of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n t e s t i s the copying of two dimensional forms, as i n the V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t Test developed by Bender, and the copy forms task of I l g and Ames. The observable c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the development of the a b i l i t y to copy forms have'been thoroughly documented, and,together with the theory that 28 has evolved from the work of Bender, I l g and Ames, and o t h e r s , form the b a s i s f o r the d i a g n o s t i c i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of task performance. Several r e s e a r c h e r s have used d i f f e r e n t task demands i n attempts to expl o r e the processes i n v o l v e d i n percep-t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n . E x i s t i n g tasks vary across s e v e r a l parameters. Some tasks demand a r e c o g n i t i o n response ( B i r c h & L e f f o r d ' s V i s u a l Synthesis task) while others demand a motor response ( V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t t e s t ) . Some tasks allow p r e s e n t a t i o n of s t i m u l i contem-poraneously with the response ( V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t t e s t ) while others demand a response from memory (Memory For Designs t e s t ) . Task s t i m u l i may c o n s i s t of whole geometric forms ( V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t t e s t ) or segregated forms ( B i r c h & L e f f o r d ' s V i s u a l Synthesis t a s k ) . Present-a t i o n of segregated stimulus forms may a l s o vary between a contemporaneous d i s p l a y of a l l elements of the form ( B i r c h & L e f f o r d ' s V i s u a l Synthesis task) and p r e s e n t a t i o n of the form elements i n a temporal sequence (McDaniel's Successive F i g u r e s t a s k ) . Most task v a r i a t i o n s have had l i m i t e d use, with a narrower range of a p p l i c a t i o n than t e s t s of the V i s u a l Motor G e s t a l t type. For example, the Memory For Designs 29 t e s t was formulated s p e c i f i c a l l y f o r the d i a g n o s i s of o r g a n i c b r a i n d y s f u n c t i o n , and the tasks developed by B i r c h and L e f f o r d , Greenburg and McDaniel are s t i l l i n the r e s e a r c h stage. Some s t u d i e s d i r e c t e d towards i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of aspects or components of p e r c e p t u a l processes have found support f o r the hypothesis of d i f f e r e n t p e r c e p t u a l and p e r c e p t u a l motor t a s k s . An example of such a study i s B i r c h and L e f f o r d (1967) p o s s i b l y the most compre-hensive i n v e s t i g a t i o n of the s u b j e c t to date. However, subsequent s t u d i e s using s i m i l a r task parameters have f a i l e d to y i e l d c o n s i s t e n t support f o r a hypothesis of separate p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t i e s , but i n s t e a d suggest a more g l o b a l p e r c e p t u a l f u n c t i o n u n d e r l y i n g performance on v a r y i n g tasks (Greenburg, 1972; McDaniel, 1972). The importance* of the ^integrative. 1 process i n p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n has been emphasized through-out the l i t e r a t u r e . Recent r e s e a r c h on c e n t r a l processes has advanced the theory of a c e n t r a l process u n d e r l y i n g performance on v a r i a t i o n s of p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks (Das, K i r b y & Jarman, 1975). The process has been i d e n t i f i e d as simultaneous s y n t h e s i s , and repeated i n v e s t i g a t i o n s have shown task v a r i a t i o n s l o a d i n g on the same f a c t o r , 30 i n d i c a t i n g support f o r the hypothesis (Jarman & Das, 1977; K i r b y & Das, 1977). A l s o , the r e s u l t s of task s p e c i f i c r e s e a r c h suggesting a g l o b a l p e r c e p t u a l a b i l i t y r a t h e r than separate a b i l i t i e s could be construed as supporting a c e n t r a l process theory (Greenburg, 1972; McDaniel, 1972). Recent l i t e r a t u r e i n the area of reading d i s a b i l i t y has suggested r e l a t i o n s h i p s among c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g , p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n a b i l i t i e s and v a r i a b l e s a s s o c i a t e d with r e a d i n g . Impairments accompanying read i n g disability^,have t,b ihx somea cases e; be ens ob served toe i n c l u d e d i f f i c u l t y with s p a t i a l and temporal i n t e g r a t i o n (Doehring, 1968; Bakker, 1972). Satz's ( i n press) o b s e r v a t i o n that c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g d i s o r d e r s may underly both r p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n d e f i c i e n c i e s and reading d i s a b i l i t y i s consonant with the f i n d i n g s of Leong (1976a&b) and the c e n t r a l process r e s e a r c h of Das, Kirby and Jarman (1975) . The use of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n tasks i n the p r e d i c t i o n of reading d i s a b i l i t y has y i e l d e d f u r t h e r i n d i c a t i o n s of a r e l a t i o n s h i p between the two a b i l i t i e s (DeHirsch, Jansky & Langford, 1966). E v a l u a t i o n of the r e l a t i v e merit of v a r i o u s task parameters i n the measurement of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e -g r a t i o n i s made d i f f i c u l t by the l a c k of a systematic 31 i n v e s t i g a t i o n across task parameters. A comprehensive comparison of subject performance across e x i s t i n g task parameters would appear necessary to determine i f c e r t a i n task parameters appear more robust than others i n the measurement of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n , or i f a more g l o b a l a b i l i t y appears to underly performance on a l l v a r i a t i o n s of the task. The l i t e r a t u r e suggests that an e x p l o r a t i o n of p e r c e p t u a l motor task parameters might be a p p r o p r i a t e l y pursued w i t h i n the context of the r e l a t i o n s h i p between p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n and reading a b i l i t y . 32 CHAPTER 3 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM Statement of the Problem Tests of p e r c e p t u a l motor I n t e g r a t i o n have emerged from d i f f e r i n g t h e o r e t i c a l r a t i o n a l e s , have been used i n a v a r i e t y of c o n t e x t s , and have been d e f i n e d by a v a r i e t y of task parameters. By v a r y i n g task demands, c l i n i c i a n s and r e s e a r c h e r s have suggested, e x p l i c i t l y or i m p l i c i t l y , that s p e c i f i c task parameters may be d i f f e r -e n t i a l l y important i n the measurement of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n . However, the r e l a t i v e robustness of d i f f e r e n t task parameters has been underexplored. In s p i t e of the widespread acceptance and use of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n t a s k s , the l i t e r a t u r e i s c h a r a c t e r i z e d by a p a u c i t y of comprehensive i n v e s t i g a t i o n s of the processes i n v o l v e d i n the performance of the tasks across v a r y i n g parameters. It i s the purpose of t h i s study to explore the para-meters of p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks s y s t e m a t i c a l l y across p r e s e n t a t i o n and response v a r i a b l e s . By i n v e s t i g a t i o n of the performance on a systematic b a t t e r y of v i s u a l 33 perceptual and perceptual motor integration tasks, by a group of below average readers and a group of average readers, the study w i l l attempt to answer the following research questions: 1. Do certain categories of v i s u a l perceptual and perceptual motor tasks d i f f e r e n t i a t e average and below average readers more e f f e c t i v e l y than other categories? 2. Do the cognitive processes used in the performance of task variations appear to d i f f e r between average and below average readers? 34 CHAPTER 4 METHOD Subj ec t s E i g h t y grade three c h i l d r e n were i n c l u d e d i n the sample, s e l e c t e d from 11 schools i n areas ranging from lower middle to upper middle socio-economic s t a t u s . Sample s e l e c t i o n i n v o l v e d two phases, beginning with a d m i n i s t r a t i o n of the Gates M a c G i n i t i e Reading Test (Primary C, Form 1) to a l l grade three c h i l d r e n i n the t a r g e t s c h o o l s . The G a i t e s M a c G i n i t i e t e s t i s composed of a vocabulary and a comprehension s u b t e s t , each y i e l d i n g separate standard s c o r e s , p e r c e n t i l e ranks, and grade e q u i v a l e n t s . The average of the standard scores of the two s u b t e s t s y i e l d s a composite standard score. A group of below average readers was i d e n t i f i e d on the b a s i s of composite standard scores of 43 (approximate grade e q u i v a l e n t 2.9, or one year below placement) or below. A group of average readers was i d e n t i f i e d on the b a s i s of composite standard scores of 48 (approximate grade e q u i v a l e n t 3.9, or grade-appropriate) and above, with the m a j o r i t y s e l e c t e d s c o r i n g between 50 and 55. 35 In the second phase of s e l e c t i o n , the Peabody P i c t u r e Vocabulary Test (PPVT) was administered i n d i v i d u a l l y to c h i l d r e n i n each of the above groups. The PPVT c o n s i s t s of a booklet of p i c t u r e s , to which the subject p o i n t s i n response to vocabulary q u e s t i o n s . I t y i e l d s IQ, p e r c e n t i l e rank and mental age scores. On the b a s i s of IQ s c o r e s , 40 below average readers were matched with 40 average reader s. In the r e s u l t i n g sample groups, the below average readers (group 1) c o n s i s t e d of 22 boys and 18 g i r l s , w hile the average readers (group 2) c o n s i s t e d of 14 boys and 26 g i r l s . Sample c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s are summarized i n Table 1. Tasks The tasks were c o n c e p t u a l i z e d w i t h i n the framework of a g r i d formed by the i n t e r s e c t i o n of a task p r e s e n t a -t i o n a x i s and a s u b j e c t response a x i s ( F i g u r e 1.). C l a s s i f i c a t i o n of tasks was based on the f o l l o w i n g task parameters : I > 1. Type of stimulus presented (Whole, Segregated) 2. Method of p r e s e n t a t i o n (Contemporaneous with response; non-contemporaneous with response, i . e . , TABLE 1 Sample C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the Two Reading Groups Measure Below Average Readers Average Readers Mean SD Mean SD Ga t e s - M a c G i n i t i e Standard Scores* PPVT IQ GA (months) 38.72 3.83 92.42 9.91 108.10 4.60 51.32 2.24 93.54 9.33 106.00 3.73 *Note: Mean 50, Standard D e v i a t i o n 10 37 t CONTEMPORANEOUS < 2 RECOGNITION LU to Z o CO REPRODUCTION L U MEMORY T E M P O R A L W H O L E S E G R E G A T E D W H O L E S E G R E G A T E D S E Q U E N C E 1 3 5 7 9 2 4 6 8 1 0 M E T H O D O F P R E S E N T A T I O N Figure 1: Grid for classification of Tasks by presentation and response variables. 38 response from Memory; p r e s e n t a t i o n of stimulus elements i n a Temporal Sequence) 3. Response format ( R e c o g n i t i o n , i . e . matching response; Reproduction, i . e . , motor response) Most c a t e g o r i e s of tasks thus i d e n t i f i e d are represented by e x i s t i n g v a r i a t i o n s of v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l or p e r c e p t u a l motor t a s k s . In cases where no e x i s t i n g t e s t was w i t h i n the parameters of the p a r t i c u l a r g r i d c l a s s i f i c a t i o n , task v a r i a t i o n s were c o n s t r u c t e d , u n t i l each c e l l of the g r i d had a corresponding task. In t h i s way, a b a t t e r y of 10 tasks s y s t e m a t i c a l l y v a r i e d across p r e s e n t a t i o n and response parameters, was assembled f o r the present i n v e s t i g a t i o n . Examples of items from each task are presented i n Appendix A. The tasks are d e s c r i b e d as f o l l o w s : Task 1. Parameters: 1. Whole; 2. Contemporaneous; 3. R e c o g n i t i o n . D e s c r i p t i o n : The Wepman V i s u a l D i s c r i m i n a t i o n T e s t . The c h i l d r e n were presented with a t e s t booklet with f i v e shapes p r i n t e d on each page. The task was to match the stimulus form i n the c e n t r e of the page with the one other shape on the page that was i d e n t i c a l . 39 Task 2 . Parameters: 1. Who1e; 2 . Contemporaneous; 3 . Reproduction. D e s c r i p t i o n : The Beery V i s u a l Motor I n t e g r a t i o n Test (VMI). The c h i l d r e n were presented with a t e s t b o o k l e t with three stimulus forms at the top of each page and corresponding blank spaces below. The task was to copy each form i n the space below. Task 3 . Parameters: 1. Segregated; 2 . Contemporaneous; 3 . Matching. D e s c r i p t i o n : A daptation of B i r c h and L e f f o r d ' s V i s u a l Synthesis task ( c f . Greenburg's V i s u a l C o n s t r u c t i o n ) . Twelve stimulus shapes were used to c o n s t r u c t "the t e s t b o o k l e t . On the top of each page was a whole geometric form, and on the bottom h a l f of each page were four groups of l i n e s i n mixed h o r i z o n t a l and v e r t i c a l o r i e n t a t i o n . The task was to s e l e c t the group of l i n e s that would c o n s t r u c t the shape at the top of the page. Task 4. Parameters: 1. Segregated; 2 . Contemporaneous; 3 . Reproduction. D e s c r i p t i o n : A daptation of Greenburg's V i s u a l Synthesis task. A t e s t booklet s i m i l a r i n format to the Beery VMI (Task 2) was c o n s t r u c t e d . The s t i m u l i were d i s s e c t e d , i . e . , a l l component l i n e s were separated but maintained the 40 o r i e n t a t i o n and r e l a t i v e p o s i t i o n s of the o r i g i n a l form; The task was to draw the f i g u r e that would be made by i n t e g r a t i n g the elements of the stimulus form. Task 5. Parameters: 1. Whole; 2. Memory; 3. R e c o g n i t i o n . D e s c r i p t i o n : The Wepman V i s u a l Memory T e s t . T h i s t e s t was adapted f o r group a d m i n i s t r a t i o n by p l a c i n g the stimulus shapes on s l i d e s and g i v i n g each c h i l d a p r i n t e d response b o o k l e t . S l i d e s of stimulus forms were d i s p l a y e d f o r 3 seconds, then removed. The task was to match the stimulus shape, from memory, from among four a l t e r n a t i v e s . Task 6. Parameters: 1. Whole; 2. Memory; 3. Reproduction. D e s c r i p t i o n : The Memory For Designs T e s t . T h i s t e s t was adapted f o r group a d m i n i s t r a t i o n by p l a c i n g the stimulus • shapes on s l i d e s . Each s l i d e was d i s p l a y e d f o r 3 seconds, then removed. The task was to draw the shape from memory. Task 7. Parameters: 1. Segregated; 2. Memory; 3. R e c o g n i t i o n . D e s c r i p t i o n : Second v a r i a t i o n of Greenburg's V i s u a l Synthesis task. D i s s e c t e d stimulus shapes, d i f f e r e n t from those used i n Task 4, were d i s p l a y e d on s l i d e s f o r 3 seconds, then removed. The task was to s e l e c t , from four a l t e r n a t i v e s , 41 the whole geometric shape that would be formed by i n t e g r a t i n g the segments. Task 8. Parameters: 1. Segregated; 2. Memory; 3. Reproduction. D e s c r i p t i o n : T h i r d v a r i a t i o n of Greenburg's V i s u a l Synthesis task. D i s s e c t e d stimulus forms, d i f f e r e n t from those used i n Tasks 4 and 7, were d i s p l a y e d f o r 3 seconds, then removed. The task was to draw the f i g u r e that would be made by i n t e g r a t i n g the form segments. Task 9. Parameters: 1. Segregated; 2. Temporal Sequence; 3. Recog-n i t i o n . D e s c r i p t i o n : Jarman's S e q u e n t i a l Shapes. T h i s i s a r e c e n t l y c o n s t r u c t e d r e s e a r c h instrument i n which i n d i v i d u a l form segments are o r i e n t e d on a l i n e g r i d , and presented on s l i d e s i n a temporal sequence. Each s l i d e was presented f o r 3 seconds, and at the end of each s e r i e s (elements of one form) the screen was l e f t blank. The task was to choose the i n t e g r a t e d v e r s i o n of the stimulus form from among four response c h o i c e s , a l s o o r i e n t e d on dot g r i d s , i n a p r i n t e d response b o o k l e t . 42 Task 10. Parameters: 1. Segregated; 2. Temporal Sequence; 3. Repro-d u c t i o n . D e s c r i p t i o n : McDaniel's Successive F i g u r e s Task, adapted f o r motor response. T h i s r e s e a r c h instrument presents the elements of d i s s e c t e d forms i n temporal sequence on f i l m . Each segment remains exposed f o r three seconds, and a f t e r each s e r i e s (elements of one form), the screen i s l e f t blank to allow response time. The task was to draw the f i g u r e that would be formed by the elements. Procedure The tasks were administered to small groups of s i x to ten c h i l d r e n each. T e s t i n g s e s s i o n s were 30 to 45 minutes i n l e n g t h , with three or four tasks administered i n random order i n each s e s s i o n . A l l tasks were admin-i s t e r e d and scored by the same person, a graduate student t r a i n e d i n t e s t a d m i n i s t r a t i o n and with c o n s i d e r a b l e experience i n t e s t i n g and conducting r e s e a r c h i n the sc h o o l s . T e s t i n g was done " b l i n d " , i . e . , without p r i o r know-ledge of the group to which a given c h i l d belonged, r e s u l t i n g i n a mixed group of low and average readers i n each a d m i n i s t r a -t i o n s e s s i o n . A l l tasks were given w i t h i n a three week 43 time p e r i o d . When a p u b l i s h e d t e s t was used, the accompanying s c o r i n g c r i t e r i a were the b a s i s f o r e v a l u a t i n g t e s t perform-ance. For unpublished t e s t s r e q u i r i n g a matching response, the t e s t score was simply the number of c o r r e c t responses. The unpublished t e s t s r e q u i r i n g a motor response were scored on c r i t e r i a adapted from the t e s t manual from the Beery V i s u a l Motor I n t e g r a t i o n t e s t . 44 CHAPTER 5 RESULTS Group Mean D i f f e r e n c e s A 2 x 2 non-orthogonal a n a l y s i s of c o v a r i a n c e was performed on the data. Sex x reading group a n a l y s i s of v a r i a n c e , c o v a r i e d f o r CA and IQ, r e v e a l e d no main e f f e c t s f o r sex and no s i g n i f i c a n t i n t e r a c t i o n s f o r sex. The data were c o l l a p s e d , t h e r e f o r e , across sex groups. Means and standard d e v i a t i o n s f o r the raw data on each task are presented i n Table 2. T - t e s t s , c o v a r i e d f o r CA and IQ, were then performed to o b t a i n the adjusted means and s i g n i f i c a n c e l e v e l s presented i n Table; 3. Those tasks that were shown to d i f f e r e n t i a t e between the two groups at a s i g n i f i c a n t l e v e l were Task 2 (Beery V i s u a l Motor I n t e g r a t i o n T e s t ) , s i g n i f i c a n t at the .005 l e v e l ; and Task 3 ( B i r c h & L e f f o r d ' s V i s u a l Synthesis task, c f . Greenburg's V i s u a l C o n s t r u c t i o n ) , Task 8 (Greenburg's V i s u a l S y n t h e s i s ) , Task 9 (Jarman's Se q u e n t i a l Shapes), and Task 10 (McDaiiiel's Successive F i g u r e s ) , a l l s i g n i f i c a n t at the .05 l e v e l . The other two v e r s i o n s of Greenburg's V i s u a l Synthesis task (Tasks TABLE 2 MEANS AND STANDARD DEVIATIONS (RAW DATA) LOW READING GROUP AVERAGE READING GROUP TASK MAXIMUM POSSIBLE SCORE M SD M SD 1 (20) 17.04 2 .20 17. 77 1.86 2 (24) 16.50 2.47 18.17 2 . 37 3 (12) 7.57 1.86 8.57 1.83 4 (18) 11.30 3.44 12.75 3.42 5 (16) 13.30 2.24 13.93 2 . 54 6 (45) 40.90 3.07 41.55 2.43 7 (16) 12 .47 1.81 13.30 2.21 8 (13) 8. 60 3.00 9.85 2.96 9 (20) 15.15 3.25 16.85 3.15 10 (26) 12.80 4.10 15.40 5.42 TABLE 3 ADJUSTED MEANS AND T-TESTS LOW READING GROUP AVERAGE READING GROUP t value p value TASK M M 1 16.99 17.83 3.34 ^071 2 16.46 18.22 10.13 .002 3 7.55 8.60 6.62 .012 4 11.26 12.79 3.87 .053 5 13.22 14 . 00 2.23 .138 6 40.87 41.85 1.27 .263 7 12.43 13.34 3.90 . 052 8 8.48 9.97 5. 20 .025 9 15.15 16.85 5/66 . 019 10 12.64 15.39 7.32 .008 ON 47 4 & 7) approached s i g n i f i c a n c e at the .05 l e v e l (.053 & .052, r e s p e c t i v e l y ) . Those tasks which d i d not d i s c r i m i n a t e between groups at a s i g n i f i c a n t l e v e l were Task 1 (Wepman V i s u a l D i s c r i m i n a t i o n T e s t ) , Task 5 (Wepman V i s u a l Memory Test) and Task 6 (Memory For Des i g n s ) . Task I n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s The c o r r e l a t i o n s among the 10 tasks f o r each reading group are presented i n Table 4. C o r r e l a t i o n s among the c l a s s i f i c a t i o n v a r i a b l e s and tasks are presented i n Table 5. C o r r e l a t i o n a l p a t t e r n s were examined f o r each group to determine r e l a t i o n s h i p s among task performances, p a r t i c u l a r l y between those tasks that had been shown to d i s c r i m i n a t e s i g n i f i c a n t l y between the two groups. With few e x c e p t i o n s , the c o r r e l a t i o n a l p a t t e r n s that emerged were d i f f e r e n t i n each of the two groups, with c o r r e l a t i o n s among the tasks i n the average group being c o n s i s t e n t l y higher than the c o r r e l a t i o n s i n the below average group. In the low group, the h i g h e s t c o r r e l a t i o n was between Tasks 4 and 8 (.53). Task 8 showed the highest number .of s i g n i f i c a n t ^ c o r r e l a t i o n s with other t e s t s i n the low reading group. In the average group, the highest c o r r e l a -t i o n s were between Tasks 6 and 8 (.62) and between Tasks TABLE 4 TASK INTERCORRELATIONS TASK 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 1 .50** .04 .18 .25 .40** .24 .25 .23 .18 2 .13 , ^ •••'•::< .13 .33* .16 .31* .31* .52** .47** .43** 3 .20 .04 .32* .31* .34* -.02 .40** .28 . 32* 4 .15 .08 .45** .05 .45** .33* .49** .06 . 31* 5 .43** .23 .44** .31* .58** .04 .28 . 36* .47** 6 .03 .11 .16 .04 .10 .24 .62** .40** .50** 7 -.15 .17 .24 .21 .13 .02 .40** .18 . 36* 8 .17 .22 .41** .53** . 31* .39** .38* .40** .61** 9 .50** . 30* .21 .14 .40** .10 .12 .17 .53** 10 .18 .18 .28 .08 .36* .34* .25 .30* . 33* Note: Average reading group above the d i a g o n a l ; below average reading group below the d i a g o n a l . * s i g n i f i c a n t at the .05 l e v e l . * * s i g n i f i c a n t at the .01 l e v e l . TABLE 5 CORRELATIONS AMONG C L A S S I F I C A T I O N VARIABLES AND TASKS* LOW READING GROUP AVERAGE READING GROUP CA READ IQ CA READ IQ CA READ -.02 .02 IQ - . 3 9 * * .06 .15 .17 TASK 1 .19 -.15 .16 -.15 .18 -.19 2 .07 -.01 .26 .14 .13 -.16 3 .09 -.26 .24 .07 -.11 .27 4 .15 -.29 .27 -.02 .06 -.02 5 .25 -.10 .17 .14 .18 .22 6 .21 .15 -.09 -.16 .14 .08 7 .07 .20 .11 .18 .14 -.13 8 .41 * * .07 .07 .03 .23 .09 9 -.05 -.15 .18 .12 .21 .23 10 .30* .20 .07 .12 .13 .01 * s i g n i f l e a n t a t t h e .05 l e v e l . * * s i g n i f l e a n t a t t h e .01 l e v e l . 50 8 and 10 (.61). Tasks 6, 8 and 10 showed the h i g h e s t number of s i g n i f i c a n t c o r r e l a t i o n s with the other tasks i n the average group. An examination of c o r r e l a t i o n s among those tasks shown to d i s c r i m i n a t e s i g n i f i c a n t l y between groups, r e v e a l e d that Task 2 (Beery V i s u a l Motor I n t e g r a t i o n ) was not h i g h l y c o r r e l a t e d with Task 3 ( B i r c h & L e f f o r d ' s V i s u a l Synthesis t a s k ) , but was s i g n i f i c a n t l y c o r r e l a t e d with Task 9, (Jarman's S e q u e n t i a l Shapes), and, i n the average reading group, with Task 8 (Greenburg's V i s u a l S y n thesis) and w i t h Task 10 (McDaniel's S u c c e s s i v e F i g u r e s ) . Among the four segregated forms tasks that were shown to d i s c r i m i n a t e between groups at a s i g n i f i -cant l e v e l , c o r r e l a t i o n s between Task 3 and the two temporal sequence tasks (9 and 10) were s u r p r i s i n g l y low, with only the value between Task 3 and Task 10 i n the average group,reaching s i g n i f i c a n c e (.32). Task 8, however, showed s i g n i f i c a n t c o r r e l a t i o n s with Tasks 3, 9 and 10 i n both groups. C o r r e l a t i o n s between the two temporal sequence tasks (9 and 10) were s i g n i f i c a n t at the .05 l e v e l i n the low reading group, and at the .01 l e v e l i n the average group. C o r r e l a t i o n a l values among c l a s s i f i c a t i o n v a r i a b l e s 51 are probably s p u r i o u s l y low due to the r e s t r i c t i o n of range w i t h i n the sample on these three v a r i a b l e s . For example the c o r r e l a t i o n between CA and reading achieve-ment i s only .02 i n each group, sm a l l e r than could be expected i n a sample with a wider range. An e x c e p t i o n i s the r e l a t i v e l y strong negative c o r r e l a t i o n between CA and IQ i n the low reading group (-.39). Another c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the low reading group i s the p a t t e r n of n e g a t i v e c o r r e l a t i o n s between reading achievement and task performance observed on the f i r s t f i v e tasks suggesting that t h i s group scored higher on these tasks than t h e i r reading scores would i n d i c a t e probable. The low readers may have progressed developmentally to the p o i n t where they could s u c c e s s f u l l y deal with the l e s s complex demands of these f i v e t a sks, but not with the more complex demands of the l a s t f i v e t a s k s . Two main f e a t u r e s emerge i n the examination of Table 4. F i r s t the c o r r e l a t i o n a l p a t t e r n s are d i f f e r e n t f o r the two reading groups, as they were i n the task i n t e r c o r r e l a -t i o n matrix. Secondly, the o v e r a l l c o r r e l a t i o n a l values of c l a s s i f i c a t i o n v a r i a b l e s and tasks are higher f o r the low-reading group than f o r the average reading group, the r e v e r s e of the p a t t e r n r e v e a l e d i n the task i n t e r c o r r e l a -t i o n matrix. 52. P r i n c i p a l Components A n a l y s i s E x p l o r a t o r y p r i n c i p a l components a n a l y s i s f o r the 10-task c o r r e l a t i o n a l matrix was performed f o r each group, with a c r i t e r i o n of eigenvalues g r e a t e r than 1.0 given f o r f a c t o r e x t r a c t i o n . The r e s u l t i n g f a c t o r s were then r o t a t e d by Varimax to y i e l d the matrices presented i n Table 6. I n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the f a c t o r l o a d i n g s must be t e n t a t i v e because of the small s i z e of each group (n=40). Below average readers. Four f a c t o r s emerged i n t h i s group. Examination of the parameters of tasks l o a d i n g on each of the f a c t o r s i n d i c a t e d that the f a c t o r s represented p a r a m e t e r - s p e c i f i c performance. For example, the three tasks l o a d i n g on F a c t o r 1 were Task 3, B i r c h and L e f f o r d ' s V i s u a l S y n t h e s i s , Task 4, Greenburg's V i s u a l S y n t h e s i s , and Task 8, the t h i r d v a r i a t i o n of Greenburg's V i s u a l S y n t h e s i s . These tasks share the same type of s t i m u l u s , i . e . , segregated forms, but d i v e r g e on method of p r e s e n t a t i o n (contemporaneous, memory) and response mode ( r e c o g n i t i o n , r e p r o d u c t i o n ) . Factor 1 would appear to represent the performance on tasks with segregated stimulus forms. I n t e r e s t i n g l y , Tasks 3 and 8 were shown to be powerful d i s c r i m i n a t o r s between the two groups, and 5 3 TABLE 6 PRINCIPAL COMPONENTS WITH VARIMAX ROTATION LOW READING GROUP TASK I II I I I IV 1 100 843 009 -162 2 -145 310 124 729 3 765 219 159 -088 4 810 107 -073 064 5 410 647 110 119 6 063 -029 922 -075 7 422 -198 -012 719 8 665 045 415 283 9 033 758 114 287 10 136 299 615 285 % Component Variance 20.85 19.90 14.72 13.49 AVERAGE READING GROUP TASK I II I I I 1 214 734 012 2 246 726 282 3 575 -339 447 4 046 087 863 5 833 069 -075 6 664 227 410 7 -100 538 510 8 445 290 677 9 654 392 003 10 629 285 381 % Component Variance 26.05 18.52 20.62 54 Task 4 approached s i g n i f i c a n c e . The three tasks l o a d i n g on Fa c t o r 2 were task 1, the Wepman V i s u a l D i s c r i m i n a t i o n T e s t , Task 5, the Wepman V i s u a l Memory Tes t , and Task 9, Jarman's S e q u e n t i a l Shapes. These tasks share a response parameter, i . e . , r e c o g n i t i o n response, but diverge on stimulus type (whole, segregated), and method of stimulus p r e s e n t a t i o n (contemporaneous, memory, temporal sequence). F a c t o r 2 appears to represent the r e c o g n i t i o n response. Task 6, the Memory f o r Designs Test and Task 10, McDaniel's Successive F i g u r e s task, loaded on F a c t o r 3. These two tasks share a r e p r o d u c t i o n (motor) response, but diverge across stimulus type and method of stimulus p r e s e n t a t i o n . F a c t o r 3 appears to repr e s e n t the motor response. Factor 4 was made up of the remaining two tasks (2 and 7) that shared no common parameter. Average Readers. Three f a c t o r s emerged i n t h i s group. F i v e tasks ( i . e . , Tasks 3, 5, 6, 9 and 10), r e p r e s e n t i n g d i v e r s e task parameters, and i n c l u d i n g both temporal i n t e g r a t i o n tasks (9 and 10), loaded on F a c t o r 1. T h i s cross-parameter l o a d i n g suggests that F a c t o r 1 repr e s e n t s a process independent of the s p e c i f i c parameters of the 55 ta s k s , that u n d e r l i e s performance on the d i f f e r e n t task v a r i a t i o n s . F a c t o r 1 could be d e s c r i b e d as r e p r e s e n t i n g a process that i s not dependent on s p e c i f i c task para-meters f o r i t s performance. F a c t o r s 2 and 3 could be i n t e r p r e t e d on the b a s i s of task parameters. However, i n each case, tasks l o a d i n g on the f a c t o r s shared not one, but two task parameters with the exception of Task 7, which had s p l i t l o a d i n g s between F a c t o r s 2 and 3. Fa c t o r 2 had i t s main lo a d i n g s from Tasks 1 and 2. Both tasks share the same stimulus type (whole form) and the same method of stimulus present-a t i o n (contemporaneous). They d i f f e r only across response parameters ( r e c o g n i t i o n , r e p r o d u c t i o n ) . F a c t o r 2 appears to represent the r e c o g n i t i o n and r e p r o d u c t i o n of whole, contemporaneously-presented stimulus forms. Tasks 4 and 8, both segregated stimulus tasks r e q u i r i n g a motor response, loaded on Fa c t o r 3. The tasks diverged on the memory - non-memory parameter. F a c t o r 3 appears to represent a motor response to segregated stimulus form. The main c h a r a c t e r i s t i c emerging from the p r i n c i p a l components a n a l y s i s i s the d i f f e r e n t p a t t e r n s of f a c t o r l o a d i n g s between the two groups. F a c t o r s emerging i n the low reading group appears to represent p a r a m e t e r - s p e c i f i c 56 performance, while i n the average group, F a c t o r 1, at l e a s t , appeared to represent a process independent of task parameters. 57 CHAPTER 6 CONCLUSIONS D i s c u s s i o n In addressing the i n i t i a l r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n posed i n the study, i t i s seen that c e r t a i n c a t e g o r i e s of v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l and p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks d i f f e r e n t i a t e d average and below average readers more e f f e c t i v e l y than other c a t e g o r i e s , but that no s i n g l e parameter emerged as uniquely important i n t h i s r e s p e c t . The form copying task was shown to d i s c r i m i n a t e between reading groups at a h i g h l y s i g n i f i c a n t l e v e l . V i s u a l s y n t h e s i s and temporal sequence t a s k s , using both r e c o g n i t i o n and motor response formats, were a l s o shown to d i s c r i m i n a t e at a s i g n i f i c a n t l e v e l . The f i n d i n g that form copying (Task 2) was powerful i n d i f f e r e n t i a t i n g between reading achievement groups i s consonant with e a r l i e r s t u d i e s (DeHirsch, Jansky & Langford, 1966; Kopp i t z , 1963). The v i s u a l d i s c r i m i n a t i o n task (Task 1), however, was not shown to be a powerful d i s c r i m i n a t o r between the groups. These tasks both i n v o l v e d the p r e s e n t a t i o n of whole forms contemporaneously with response, and i t i s probable that the d i f f e r e n c e i n 58 s i g n i f i c a n c e i s due to the parameter across which they diverged, i . e . , the motor response. The segregated forms and temporal sequence tasks that were found to d i f f e r e n t i a t e s i g n i f i c a n t l y between the groups (Tasks 3, 8, 9 and 10) a l s o diverged across the response parameter. However, u n l i k e Tasks 1 and 2, the motor response i n segregated form tasks d i d not appear c o n s i s t e n t l y to i n c r e a s e the l e v e l of s i g n i f i c a n c e of the task. B i r c h and L e f f o r d ' s v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s task (Task 3) was not c o r r e l a t e d s i g n i f i c a n t l y with form copying, a f i n d i n g comparable to B i r c h and L e f f o r d ' s (1967) r e s u l t s , i n which v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s was found to have only a weak a s s o c i a t i o n with motor f u n c t i o n i n g . However, the form copying task was s i g n i f i c a n t l y c o r r e l a t e d to Greenburg's V i s u a l Synthesis task and to both v e r s i o n s of the temporal sequence tasks i n the average group. This apparent c o n t r a d i c t i o n may be at l e a s t p a r t l y e xplained by the observed independence of the d i s c r i m i n a t o r y power of v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s tasks from the motor parameter. It can t h e r e f o r e be concluded that while the motor response adds s i g n i f i c a n t l y to the d i s c r i m i n a t o r y power of tasks using whole, contemporaneously presented v i s u a l s t i m u l i , i t s importance diminishes i n segregated form and temporal 59 sequence t a s k s . Conclusions r e g a r d i n g the s i g n i f i c a n c e of parameters i n d i s c r i m i n a t i n g between groups could be drawn i n e i t h e r a t a s k - s p e c i f i c or a c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g context. A task-s p e c i f i c i n t e r p r e t a t i o n might p o s i t , as some tasks were shown to be s i g n i f i c a n t d i s c r i m i n a t o r s between groups and others were not, that c e r t a i n task parameters are indeed more important than o t h e r s , and that the d i f f e r e n c e between reading groups i n t h i s p a r t i c u l a r study was not wide enough f o r the p a t t e r n to emerge d i s t i n c t l y . The d i f f e r e n t i a l s i g n i f i c a n c e of s i m i l a r segregated forms tasks, with some reaching s i g n i f i c a n c e and others not; the r e l a t i v e l y i n c o n c l u s i v e emergence of f a c t o r s i n the p r i n c i p a l components a n a l y s i s , and the c r o s s - f a c t o r l o a d i n g s of s e v e r a l tasks suggest the p o s s i b i l i t y that a p a t t e r n could be more c l e a r l y d e l i n e a t e d by the use of more d i s p a r a t e sample groups. However, the p o t e n t i a l of a p a r a m e t e r - s p e c i f i c o r i e n t a t i o n f o r generating hypotheses about the u n d e r l y i n g nature of t h i s p a t t e r n i s somewhat l i m i t e d . A c e n t r a l process i n t e r p r e t a t i o n would suggest, as no task parameter was u n i q u e l y important i n d i f f e r e n t i a t i n g between groups, that a s i n g l e process u n d e r l i e s numerous 60 v a r i a t i o n s of v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l and p e r c e p t u a l motor t a s k s . T h i s p o s i t i o n would be supported by the f i n d i n g s of Greenburg (1972) and McDaniel (1972), who both found that a b a s i c v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l process was r e s p o n s i b l e f o r performance on a v a r i e t y of t a s k s . However, n e i t h e r author explored tasks with a motor component. In the present study, the wide v a r i e t y of tasks suggests that the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of t h i s s i n g l e process might be pursued more a p p r o p r i a t e l y i n the context of c e n t r a l p r o c e s s e s , r a t h e r than s p e c i f i c v i s u a l or p e r c e p t u a l p r o c e s s e s . If the c e n t r a l process i n t e r p r e t a t i o n i s adopted, the q u e s t i o n remains of how to e x p l a i n the d i f f e r e n t i a l s i g n i f i c a n c e of c e r t a i n t a s k s . The d i f f e r e n c e s could simply be i d i o s y n c r a t i c to p a r t i c u l a r t a s k s . That i s , s p e c i f i c c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of i n d i v i d u a l tasks may tap extraneous a b i l i t i e s or s k i l l s , or otherwise confound the pure measurement of the u n d e r l y i n g p r o c e s s . A l t e r n a t e l y , the d i f f e r e n c e s could be due to the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of c e r t a i n c a t e g o r i e s of t a s k s . That i s , tasks that not only d i f f e r e n t i a t e p o w e r f u l l y between groups, but a l s o i n t e r c o r r e l a t e s i g n i f i c a n t l y with each other, could be construed as p a r t i c u l a r l y robust with r e s p e c t to the measurement of a c e n t r a l process. For example, Tasks 2, 8, 9 and 10 were shown to be powerful d i s c r i m i n a t o r s 61 and to i n t e r c o r r e l a t e s i g n i f i c a n t l y i n the average group, even though they v a r i e d across every parameter i n c l u d e d i n the study. This suggests that the task v a r i a t i o n s are measuring d i f f e r e n t aspects of the same u n d e r l y i n g process, an o b s e r v a t i o n which i s consonant with the Luria-Das c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g theory ( D a s K i r b y and Jarman, 1975), i n which the process would be i d e n t i f i e d as simultaneous s y n t h e s i s . The balance of the t a s k s , i . e . , those that were not found to be powerful d i s c r i m i n a -t o r s between groups (Tasks 1, 4, 5 and 7), g e n e r a l l y showed lower o v e r a l l c o r r e l a t i o n s with other t a s k s , suggesting the dominance of task-spec i f i c c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s over c e n t r a l process measurement i n these t a s k s . An exception to t h i s p a t t e r n was Task 6. This d i s c u s s i o n r e l a t e s d i r e c t l y to the second r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n posed i n the study, i . e . , whether c o g n i t i v e processes used i n performance of the tasks d i f f e r between the groups. D i s p a r a t e task I n t e r c o r r e l a -t i o n matrices and f a c t o r a n a l y t i c r e s u l t s between groups suggest that d i f f e r e n t p a t t e r n s of c o g n i t i v e processes were used i n the performance of the tasks by the two reading groups. The temporal sequence tasks appeared to have p a r t i c u l a r s i g n i f i c a n c e i n the performance of the average group, w h i l e v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s and, to a l e s s e r extent, 62 temporal sequence t a s k s , appeared s i g n i f i c a n t w i t h i n the low reading group. The average readers tended to use a s i m i l a r process across a v a r i e t y of t a s k s , while the low readers tended to be i n f l u e n c e d more s t r o n g l y by the s p e c i f i c demands of a given task. In the average reading group, a r e l a t i v e l y high number of s i g n i f i c a n t task i n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s suggest that a s i m i l a r process was used across the task s . This observa-t i o n i s supported by the cross-parameter l o a d i n g s of f i v e tasks on Fa c t o r 1 i n the p r i n c i p a l components a n a l y s i s f o r the average group. It could be suggested that average readers possess a f a c i l i t y i n t h i s process that enables them to perform a v a r i e t y of d i v e r s e tasks ranging from v i s u a l - p e r c e p t u a l through p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n and temporal sequencing to complex c o g n i t i v e t a s k s , such as r e a d i n g , with a s i m i l a r degree of success. T h e i r performance could be d e s c r i b e d as "process-dominant", c h a r a c t e r i z e d by a high degree of g e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y among.^tasks and^QQhs^stentlychigh-rates of'success; The l o a d i n g of both tempoxal"sequencing tasks on Fa c t o r 1 i n the average group suggests that tasks of t h i s type may be e s p e c i a l l y u s e f u l i n the measurement of c e n t r a l process a b i l i t y . T h i s i s supported by the high number of s i g n i f i c a n t task i n t e r -63 c o r r e l a t i o n s shown by the temporal sequence t a s k s , e s p e c i a l l y Task 10. In the low reading group, r e l a t i v e l y few s i g n i f i -cant task i n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s suggest that d i f f e r e n t processes were used by t h i s group across task v a r i a t i o n s . T h i s i s supported by the f a c t o r loadings i n the p r i n c i p a l components a n a l y s i s f o r the low reading group, which suggests that t a s k - s p e c i f i c demands appear to become dominant over the c e n t r a l process f u n c t i o n i n t h i s group. The group could be d e s c r i b e d as "stimulus-bound", that i s , responding to each task i n a way d e f i n e d by the parameters s p e c i f i c to that p a r t i c u l a r task, and c h a r a c t e r -i z e d by a l a c k of the f a c i l i t y , d i s p l a y e d by the average reading group, of a p p l y i n g general p r i n c i p l e s to the performance of d i v e r s e tasks ranging from v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l to complex c o g n i t i v e t a s k s . This f a c i l i t y i n the performance of tasks v a r y i n g i n type of demand and i n l e v e l s of complexity could be i n t e r p r e t e d w i t h i n the context of human a b i l i t i e s (Jensen, 1970) or, more r e c e n t l y , w i t h i n the context of s t r a t e g i e s (Jarman, 1978c). The l o a d i n g s of three v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s tasks that d e f i n e d F a c t o r 1 i n the low reading group suggest that v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s tasks may be p a r t i c u l a r l y robust i n 64 the measurement of c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g a b i l i t y with t h i s group. T h i s i s supported by the high number of s i g n i f i -cant task i n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s f o r Task 8 ( V i s u a l S y n t h e s i s ) , i n the low reading group. A l s o , the s i g n i f i c a n t c o r r e l a -t i o n of c h r o n o l o g i c a l age with Tasks 8 and 10 ( S u c c e s s i v e F i g u r e s ) suggest that v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s and temporal sequencing may be more c l o s e l y a s s o c i a t e d with matura-t i o n a l f a c t o r s i n low readers than i n average readers. I t i s seen, then, that the s h i f t from the dominance of t a s k - s p e c i f i c demands to the dominance of c e n t r a l process f u n c t i o n i n g i n task performance i s concurrent with the change i n l e v e l of r e a d i n g achievement of the two groups. Some cur r e n t t h e o r i e s about the r e l a t i o n -ship of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n , c e n t r a l p r o c e s s i n g and reading performance provide an i n t e r p r e t i v e context f o r t h i s o b s e r v a t i o n . Leong (1976b) s i m i l a r l y found d i f f e r e n t " s t r u c t u r e s " , or p a t t e r n s of performance, shown by d i s a b l e d and non-d i s a b l e d r e a d e r s . His r e s u l t s showed'disabled readers to be d e f i c i e n t i n the use of " s t r a t e g i e s " , i . e . , the under-standing and use of r u l e s , i n s o l v i n g tasks antecedent to reading. Cummins and Das (1977), d i s c u s s i n g reading a b i l i t y w i t h i n the context of the Simultaneous and 65 Successive s y n t h e s i s model, suggest that methods of i n f o r m a t i o n p r o c e s s i n g are d i f f e r e n t i a l l y important i n reading depending on both the s u b j e c t ' s r e a d i n g a b i l i t y and the s p e c i f i c s of the task, thus viewing the observed d i f f e r e n c e s between reading groups as due to the p a t t e r n i n g and l e v e l of e f f i c i e n c y of c e n t r a l processes. Cummins and Das (1977) a l s o suggest viewing reading d i s a b i l i t y as one aspect of a more p e r v a s i v e sequencing d e f i c i t . Other authors (Doehring, 1968; Bakker, 1972) have a l s o noted the importance of sequencing a b i l i t y , or temporal order p r o c e s s i n g , i n the reading p r o c e s s . These o b s e r v a t i o n s are consonant with the f i n d i n g s i n the present study that average readers tended to perform b e t t e r on the temporal sequence tasks than the low r e a d e r s . Temporal sequencing a l s o emerged i n the present study as a s i g n i f i c a n t measure of c e n t r a l process f u n c t i o n i n g i n the average group, with Task 10 (McDaniel's Successive F i g u r e s ) showing s i g n i f i c a n t c o r r e l a t i o n s with e i g h t of the other tasks i n the study. McDaniel (1972) s i m i l a r l y found that the Successive Figures task almost always showed s i g n i f i c a n t c o r r e l a t i o n s with the other t e s t s i n h i s v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l b a t t e r y , 6 6 and c o n s i s t e n t l y loaded on Factor 1 i n h i s study. The p a t t e r n of lower o v e r a l l task i n t e r c o r r e l a t i o n s i n the low reading group has been d e s c r i b e d as suggesting the dominance of t a s k - s p e c i f i c demands over a s i n g l e process i n performance of the tasks by t h i s group. An e x c e p t i o n to the p a t t e r n was Task 8 ( V i s u a l - S y n t h e s i s ) , t which showed a number of s i g n i f i c a n t c o r r e l a t i o n s with other t a s k s . I t i s i n t e r e s t i n g to note that the c o r r e l a t i o n between c h r o n o l o g i c a l age and performance on Task 8 and Task 10 ( S u c c e s s i v e F i g u r e s ) accounted f o r the o n l y s i g n i -f i c a n t c o r r e l a t i o n s between c l a s s i f i c a t i o n v a r i a b l e s and task performance, and o c c u r r e d o n l y i n the low r e a d i n g group. These o b s e r v a t i o n s suggest that v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s and, to a l e s s e r extent, temporal sequencing t a s k s , may be e s p e c i a l l y important i n a s s e s s i n g c e n t r a l process f u n c t i o n i n g i n below average r e a d e r s . Within a n e u r o p s y c h o l o g i c a l context, the i n t e r a c t i o n between v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s , temporal sequencing, and r e a d i n g could be i n t e r p r e t e d as r e l a t e d to the f u n c t i o n of the c o r t i c a l zone i n f l u e n c i n g i n t r a - s e n s o r y and i n t e r - s e n s o r y i n t e g r a t i o n , shown by L u r i a (1973) to a f f e c t v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l , s p a t i a l , temporal sequencing and language a b i l i t i e s . Satz and a s s o c i a t e s (Satz & Sparrow, 1970; Satz, T a y l o r , F r i e l & F l e t c h e r , i n p r e s s ; Satz & Van Nostrand, 1973) have p o s t u l a t e d that a m a t u r a t i o n a l l a g 67 i n the development of the c e r e b r a l cortex i s r e s p o n s i b l e f o r impaired performance i n these areas. The s i g n i f i c a n t d i f f e r e n c e i n form copying a b i l i t y between the low and average readers at the age l e v e l represented i n t h i s study (grade three) c o n t r a d i c t s the suggestion by Satz, et a l . ( i n press) that poor readers catch up to t h e i r average c o u n t e r p a r t s i n p e r c e p t u a l motor' a b i l i t y by grade t h r e e . The c o r r e l a t i o n between c h r o n o l o g i c a l age and v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s a b i l i t y i n the'low reading group does, however, suggest some r e l a t i o n s h i p between maturation and taskaperformance i n t h i s group. The memory parameter, per se, d i d not emerge as a s i g n i f i c a n t d i s c r i m i n a t o r between groups, suggesting that a h i e r a r c h i c a l i h t a r p r e t a t i o n of group d i f f e r e n c e s based' on Jensen's (1970) theory i s i n a p p r o p r i a t e . D i f f e r e n c e s i n c o r r e l a t i o n a l and f a c t o r a n a l y t i c p a t t e r n s between the two achievement groups are, however, consonant with the c e n t r a l process r e s e a r c h of Das and c o l l e a g u e s (Cummins & Das, 1977; Das, K i r b y & Jarman, 19 75; Jarman & Das, 1977; K i r b y & Das, 1977) who c o n c e p t u a l i z e the d i f f e r e n c e s i n terms of d i f f e r e n t p a t t e r n s of c o g n i t i v e processes. 68 The r e s u l t s of the present i n v e s t i g a t i o n s t r o n g l y suggest the p o t e n t i a l u s e f u l n e s s of v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s and temporal sequence tasks i n both t h e o r e t i c a l and a p p l i e d contexts. In r e s e a r c h , the tasks could be a p p r o p r i a t e l y used i n f u r t h e r i n v e s t i g a t i o n of the complex processes u n d e r l y i n g the a b i l i t y commonly r e f e r r e d to as p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e g r a t i o n , and i n s t u d i e s of v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l and c o g n i t i v e p r o c e s s e s . The i m p l i c a t i o n s of the tasks f o r c l i n i c a l and e d u c a t i o n a l d i a g n o s i s may a l s o be important. The s i g n i f i c a n c e of v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s and temporal sequence tasks i n the concurrent e v a l u a t i o n of reading d i f f i c u l t i e s and c e n t r a l process f u n c t i o n i n g i s suggested by the r e s u l t s of the present i n v e s t i g a t i o n . However, the p r e d i c t i v e e f f i c a c y of the tasks cannot be determined from the present data. Nonetheless, the a b i l i t y of the tasks to d i s c r i m i n a t e between average and below average readers, and the s i g n i f i c a n t c o r r e l a -t i o n s of form copying a b i l i t y to v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s and temporal i n t e g r a t i o n t a s k s , suggest that the l a t t e r tasks may a l s o be good p r e d i c t o r s of reading achievement. L i m i t a t i o n s The i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of these r e s u l t s must take i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n c e r t a i n l i m i t a t i o n s of the study. 69 Sample s i z e ( n=40 i n each group) di d not allow a d e f i n i t i v e p r i n c i p a l components a n a l y s i s , with r e s u l t i n g c o n c l u s i o n s about the nature of d i f f e r i n g processes between the two groups being t e n t a t i v e , at b e s t . In sample s e l e c t i o n , the c r i t e r i a f o r i d e n t i f y i n g low and average readers may have been more a p p r o p r i a t e l y based on subtest scores of the G a i t e s M a c G i n i t i e t e s t , o r , on an examination of t a r g e t p o p u l a t i o n p e r c e n t i l e ranks, i n s t e a d of the p u b l i s h e d t e s t norms. Mean IQ's c l o s e r to 100 would have in c r e a s e d g e n e r a l i z a b i l i t y . No c o n t r o l s f o r socio-economic s t a t u s and c u l t u r a l background were used, although those c h i l d r e n who could not score w i t h i n the Low Average range on the Peabody P i c t u r e Vocabulary Test were excluded, i n d i c a t i n g some degree of f u n c t i o n a l homogeneity i n o r a l language among the s u b j e c t s . Aside from sampling c o n s i d e r a t i o n s , problems attendant upon the c o n s t r u c t i o n of new r e s e a r c h instruments, such as r e l i a b i l i t y of the measures, must be addressed as a l i m i t a t i o n on i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of r e s u l t s . Means and standard d e v i a t i o n s , however, suggested that the newly con s t r u c t e d instruments had an a p p r o p r i a t e l e v e l of d i f f i c u l t y f o r the p o p u l a t i o n represented by t h i s sample. 70 Suggestions f o r F u r t h e r Research The r e s u l t s of t h i s e x p l o r a t o r y i n v e s t i g a t i o n suggest that f u r t h e r study of the problem i s warranted. The present wide a p p l i c a t i o n of p e r c e p t u a l motor i n t e -g r a t i o n tasks suggests s i m i l a r l y e x tensive i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r f u t u r e r e s e a r c h . The emergence of v i s u a l s y n t h e s i s and temporal sequence tasks as s i g n i f i c a n t d i s c r i m i n a t o r s between su b j e c t groups not only has immediate i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r r e s e a r c h , but a l s o long range s i g n i f i c a n c e f o r c l i n i c a l and e d u c a t i o n a l p r a c t i c e . Future s t u d i e s could be conceived along l i n e s s i m i l a r to the present study, but rendered more powerful by i n c r e a s i n g sample s i z e , and c o n t r o l l i n g extraneous v a r i a b l e s more s t r i n g e n t l y . Studies could be s t r u c t u r e d to i n c l u d e c h i l d r e n of the same age, as i n the present i n v e s t i g a t i o n ; a c r o s s - s e c t i o n of ages, as i n B i r c h and L e f f o r d ' s (1967) study, o r , most p o w e r f u l l y , a l o n g i t u d i n a l study a l l o w i n g a f u l l i n v e s t i g a t i o n of processes as they emerge i n the developing c h i l d . Comprehensive, systematic i n v e s t i g a t i o n of the processes i n v o l v e d i n the performance of v a r i a t i o n s of v i s u a l p e r c e p t u a l and p e r c e p t u a l motor tasks should serve to enhance our understanding of c o g n i t i v e 71 f u n c t i o n i n g i n g e n e r a l , and c o n t r i b u t e to the i n c e p t i o n of new d i r e c t i o n s i n r e s e a r c h . 72 'REFERENCES Bakker, D. J . Temporal order i n d i s t u r b e d r e a d i n g . Rotterdam: Rotterdam U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1972. Beery, K. E. Developmental t e s t of v i s u a l motor i n t e - g r a t i o n . Chicago: F o l l e t P u b l i s h i n g Co., 1967. Bender, L. A. A v i s u a l motor g e s t a l t t e s t and i t s c l i n i c a l use. Research monograph No. 3, American O r t h o p s y c h i a t r i c A s s o c i a t i o n , New York, 1938. Bender, L. A. The v i s u a l motor g e s t a l t f u n c t i o n i n 6-and 7-year-old normal and s c h i z o p h r e n i c c h i l d r e n . In J . Zubin and G. A . J e r v i s (Eds.), Psychopathology  of mental development. New York: Grune & S t r a t t o n , 1967 . Benton, A. L. Revised v i s u a l r e t e n t i o n t e s t . New York: The P s y c h o l o g i c a l C o r p o r a t i o n , 1974. B i r c h , H. G. D y s l e x i a and the maturation of v i s u a l f u n c t i o n . In J . Money (Ed.).Reading d i s a b i l i t y . B a l t i m o r e : The Johns Hopkins Press, 1962. B i r c h , H. G. & Belmont, J . A u d i t o r y - v i s u a l i n t e g r a t i o n i n normal and r e t a r d e d readers. American J o u r n a l of O r t h o p s y c h i a t r y , 1964 , J34, 852-861 . B i r c h , H. G. & L e f f o r d , A. V i s u a l d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n , i n t e r -73 sensory i n t e g r a t i o n , and v o l u n t a r y motor c o n t r o l . 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American J o u r n a l of Mental D e f i c i e n c y , 1 9 7 8 , 82, 344-348.(a) Jarman, R. F. Cross-modal and intra-modal matching: R e l a t i o n s h i p s to simultaneous and s u c c e s s i v e syntheses and l e v e l s of c o g n i t i v e performance among three i n t e l l i g e n c e groups. The A l b e r t a J o u r n a l of E d u c a t i o n a l Research, 1978 , 2j4, ( 1 0 0 - 1 1 1 . (b) Jarman, R. F. L e v e l 1 and L e v e l 2 a b i l i t i e s : Some t h e o r e t i c a l r e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s . B r i t i s h J o u r n a l of Psychology, 1 9 7 8 , 69_, 2 5 7 - 2 6 9 . ( c ) . Jarman, R. F. & Das, J . P. Simultaneous and s u c c e s s i v e s y n t h e s i s and i n t e l l i g e n c e . I n t e l l i g e n c e , 1977 , 1_, 1 5 1 - 1 6 9 . Jensen, A. R. H i e r a r c h i c a l t h e o r i e s of mental a b i l i t y . In B. D o c k r e l l (Ed.), On i n t e l l i g e n c e . Toronto, Canada: Ontario I n s t i t u t e f o r Studies i n Education, 1970. Kephart, N. C. The slow l e a r n e r i n the classroom. Columbus: Charles E. M e r r i l l Books, 1969 . * "5 • " • K i r b y , J . R. & Das, J . P. Reading achievement, IQ and 76 simultaneous-successive p r o c e s s i n g . J o u r n a l of  E d u c a t i o n a l Psychology, 1977 , 69_, 564-570. Kopp i t z , E. M. The bender g e s t a l t t e s t f o r young  c h i l d r e n . New York: Grune & S t r a t t o n , 1963. Leong, C. K. L a t e r a l i z a t i o n i n s e v e r e l y d i s a b l e d readers i n r e l a t i o n to f u n c t i o n a l c e r e b r a l develop-ment and s y n t h e s i s of i n f o r m a t i o n . In R.M. Knights and D.J. Bakker, (Eds.).The neuropsychology of  l e a r n i n g d i s o r d e r s : t h e o r e t i c a l approaches. B a l t i m o r e : U n i v e r s i t y Park P r e s s , 1976.(a) Leong, C. K. C o g n i t i v e p r o c e s s i n g u n d e r l y i n g reading d e f i c i t . 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APPENDIX A Examples o f Items from each T a s k 80 TASK 1 WEPMAN VISUAL DISCRIMINATION 81, TASK 2 BEERY VISUAL MOTOR INTEGRATION 82 TASK 3 BIRCH AND LEFFORD'S VISUAL SYNTHESIS (Modified) TASK 4 GREENBURG'S VISUAL SYNTHESIS (Modified) TASK 5 WEPMAN VISUAL MEMORY TEST (Modified) 84 SLIDE: RESPONSE: / / / \ \ / / v 7 85 -TASK 6 MEMORY FOR DESIGNS (Modified) SLIDE; RESPONSE: 86 TASK 7 GREENBURG'S VISUAL SYNTHESIS (Modified) SLIDE: C } RESPONSE: o o o O TASK 8 GREENBURG'S VISUAL SYNTHESIS (Modified) SLIDE: RESPONSE: TASK 9 JARMAN'S SEQUENTIAL SHAPES SLIDE 1 SLIDE 2 RESPONSE: 89 TASK 10 McDANIEL'S SUCCESSIVE FIGURES (Modified) FILM: 

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