Consistency of spelling error patterns : an investigation into the consistency of children's spelling errors using error analysis
Master of Arts
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This research investigated the consistency of children's spelling errors across three grade levels, two to four, five and six, and seven and eight. Diagnoses of children's weaknesses in academic subjects are starting to incorporate error analysis as a means of identifying and remediating specific weaknesses. Research is necessary to see if certain error types are normally consistent for children over time, or with different grade and/or ability levels. This research consisted of dictated word lists, repeated five times over thirteen weeks. Errors were collected from these samples and classified according to an expanded Spache classification system covering twenty-one error types. A Multivariate Analysis of Variance (MANOVA) was conducted to assess the effects of time, grade level, sex and ability on individual error types. While grade level did show a significant effect, ability was by far a greater factor in the number of phonetic and non phonetic vowel and consonant substitutions. Results are discussed in light of models of children's acquisition of spelling that take developmental/maturational and/or information processing factors into account.