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Reading performance in Portuguese children from second to tenth grade with the MNREAD reading acuity test

  • Baskaran, Karthikeyan
  • Calabrèse, Aurélie
  • Hernandez-Moreno, Laura
  • Santos, Diana
  • Macedo, Antonio Filipe
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2023
DOI: 10.1016/j.optom.2023.05.003
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Purpose To assess reading performance and report normative values for normal sighted Portuguese schoolchildren using the Portuguese version of the MNREAD reading acuity chart. Methods Children in the 2nd, 4th, 6th, 8th, and 10th grade in Portugal were recruited for this study. One hundred and sixty-seven children from 7 to 16 years of age participated. The Portuguese version of the printed MNREAD reading acuity chart was used to measure reading performance in these children. The non-linear mixed effects model with negative exponential decay function was used to compute maximum reading speed (MRS) and critical print size (CPS) automatically. Reading acuity (RA) and reading accessibility index (ACC) were computed manually. Results The mean MRS in words-per-minute (wpm) for the 2nd grade was 55 wpm (SD = 11.2 wpm), 104 wpm (SD = 27.9) for the 4th grade, 149 wpm (SD = 22.5) for 6th grade, 172 wpm (SD = 24.6) for 8th grade and 180 wpm for the 10th grade (SD = 16.8). There was a significant difference in MRS between school grades (p < 0.001). Participants’ reading speed increased by 14.5 wpm (95% CL: 13.1–15.9) with each year of increase in age. We found a significant difference between RA and school grades, but not for CPS. Conclusions This study provides normative reading performance values for the Portuguese version of the MNREAD chart. The MRS increased with increasing age and school grade, while RA shows initial improvement from early school years and gradually stabilizes in the more mature children. Normative values for the MNREAD test can now be used to determine reading difficulties or slow reading speed in, for example, children with impaired vision.

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