Visual-spatial attention in developmental dyslexia

Andrea Facoetti, Pierluigi Paganoni, Massimo Turatto, Valentina Marzola, Gian Gastone Mascetti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Orienting and focusing of visual attention are two processes strictly involved in reading. They were studied in a group of dyslexic children and normal readers. Shifting of attention by both peripheral and central visual cues was studied by means of the covert orienting paradigm. Focusing, consisting in the ability to control the size of the attentional focus, was investigated using simple reaction times in central vision. Results showed that dyslexics had a specific disability in the shifting of attention caused by a peripheral cue at short SOAs, and were also able to maintain attention focused for short periods of time only, presumably not long enough for efficient visual processing. Our results support the suggestion that visual selective attention deficits in disabled readers may be due to a specific difficulty in orienting and focusing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)109-123
Number of pages15
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2000


  • Dyslexia
  • Focusing
  • Orienting
  • Reaction time
  • Spatial attention
  • Specific reading disorder

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Neuroscience(all)


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