References of "Schiltz, Christine 50003015"
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See detailImpact of learning to read in a mixed approach on neural tuning to words in beginning readers
van de Walle de Ghelcke, Alice; Rossion, Bruno; Schiltz, Christine UL et al

in Frontiers in Psychology (2020), 10

The impact of learning to read in a mixed approach using both the global and phonics teaching methods on the emergence of left hemisphere neural specialization for word recognition is yet unknown in ... [more ▼]

The impact of learning to read in a mixed approach using both the global and phonics teaching methods on the emergence of left hemisphere neural specialization for word recognition is yet unknown in children. Taking advantage of a natural school context with such a mixed approach, we tested 42 first graders behaviorally and with Fast Periodic Visual Stimulation using electroencephalographic recordings (FPVS-EEG) to measure selective neural responses to letter strings. Letter strings were inserted periodically (1/5) in pseudofonts in 40 s sequences displayed at 6 Hz and were either words globally taught at school, that could therefore be processed by visual whole-word form recognition (global method), or control words/pseudowords eliciting graphemephoneme (GP) mappings (phonics method). Results show that selective responses (F/5, 1.2 Hz) were left lateralized for control stimuli that triggered GP mappings but bilateral for globally taught words. It implies that neural mechanisms recruited during visual word processing are influenced by the nature of the mapping between written and spoken word forms. GP mappings induce left hemisphere discrimination responses, and visual recognition of whole-word forms induce bilateral responses, probably because the right hemisphere is relatively more involved in holistic visual object recognition. Splitting the group as a function of the mastery of GP mappings into “good” and “poor” readers strongly suggests that good readers actually processed all stimuli (including global words) predominantly with their left hemisphere, while poor readers showed bilateral responses for global words. These results show that in a mixed approach of teaching to read, global method instruction may induce neural processes that differ from those specialized for reading in the left hemisphere. Furthermore, given their difficulties in automatizing GP mappings, poor readers are especially prone to rely on this alternative visual strategy. A preprint of this paper has been released on Biorxiv (van de Walle de Ghelcke et al., 2018). [less ▲]

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See detailThe effect of grade retention on reading skills of immigrant children in multilingual elementary school. A longitudinal study.
Ertel Silva, Cintia UL; Alieva, Aigul; Hornung, Caroline UL et al

Presentation (2019, November 06)

In a longitudinal study the effect of grade retention on reading skills of immigrant children in multilingual elementary school was investigated. The study was conducted between 2013 and 2017 and thirty ... [more ▼]

In a longitudinal study the effect of grade retention on reading skills of immigrant children in multilingual elementary school was investigated. The study was conducted between 2013 and 2017 and thirty-four per cent of the sample was lost due to grade retention. These children had been followed from kindergarten to grade 3 of elementary school. To observe differences among promoted and retained students, we assessed them using various language and socioeconomic measures. We also compared a subgroup of promoted students, scoring lower in grade 2 than the mean of retained students in reading comprehension. The current study revealed four main findings. Firstly, there were no significant differences between promoted and retained students in their first language vocabulary (Portuguese). Secondly, there was a significant difference in second and third language vocabularies (Luxembourgish and German) and in German reading tasks (the language of instruction) from kindergarten to grade 2, with promoted students scoring higher than retained students. Thirdly, and most importantly, retained students did not catch up with promoted students in the language of instruction (German) measures even after grade retention, but they did in language of socialisation (Luxembourgish). Fourthly, and in contrast to retained students, the low-achieving promoted students improved significantly in German reading comprehension by grade 3.The last two findings underline that grade retention does not lead to improvement in children’s reading comprehension. As vocabulary is one of the main predictors of reading comprehension, programs that improve poor readers’ vocabulary knowledge may be more efficient than grade retention. The present findings corroborate previous studies reporting that grade retention is not beneficial and that low-achieving students promoted to the next grade show better academic outcomes later than retained students. [less ▲]

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See detailImpact of teaching methods for reading on neural tuning to words in young poor readers
Lochy, Aliette UL; van de Walle de Ghelcke, Alice; Schiltz, Christine UL

Poster (2019, September)

The impact of teaching methods on the left hemispheric (LH) specialization for reading in children remains unknown. We tested 42 first graders (mean age: 6.08 years) from schools using both a phonic and a ... [more ▼]

The impact of teaching methods on the left hemispheric (LH) specialization for reading in children remains unknown. We tested 42 first graders (mean age: 6.08 years) from schools using both a phonic and a global method in parallel, behaviorally and with Fast Periodic Visual Stimulation using electroencephalography. 40-sec strings of pseudofonts were displayed at 6Hz, in which were periodically displayed (1.2Hz) either words taught at school with whole-word form rote-learning (global method) or control pseudowords eliciting grapheme-phoneme mappings (phonic method). Control pseudowords elicited LH responses whatever the reading ability. For global words, a difference emerged as a function of group: in good and average readers, responses were stronger in the LH, while in poor readers, global words elicited an atypical bilateral neural pattern due to reduced response amplitude in the LH. These results suggest that difficulties in automatizing GP mappings induce reliance on an alternative visual strategy when available. [less ▲]

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See detailWeaker neural responses to lexicality and word frequency in dyslexic adults: an EEG study with Fast Periodic Visual Stimulation.
Lochy, Aliette UL; Collette, Emilie; Schelstraete, Marie-Anne et al

Scientific Conference (2019, September)

Dyslexia, a persistent reading disorder, is characterized by different brain activation patterns when reading. Here, we used a Fast Periodic Visual Stimulation paradigm during EEG recordings to assess the ... [more ▼]

Dyslexia, a persistent reading disorder, is characterized by different brain activation patterns when reading. Here, we used a Fast Periodic Visual Stimulation paradigm during EEG recordings to assess the sensitivity of dyslexics to fine-grained psycholinguistic variations of letter strings: lexicality, lexical frequency, and orthographic regularity. Dyslexic and non-dyslexic students watched 60-seconds streams of stimuli presented at 10Hz, in which deviant items are inserted periodically (1/8, at 1.25Hz). Results show discrimination responses at 1.25Hz over left posterior occipito-temporal regions, reduced in dyslexics. Group differences were significant for discrimination of word lexicality and frequency, but not for word regularity. These results show that FPVS response amplitude distinguishes normal from pathological population. Since explicit reading is prohibited by the fast rate, results suggest differences of automatic and implicit word processing in dyslexics. The lack of group difference for regular/irregular words is interpreted post-hoc as reflecting the life-long drill of dyslexics to irregular words. [less ▲]

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See detailAre dates processed like words rather than like numbers? A study of transposition priming effects
Lochy, Aliette UL; Golinvaux, Fanny; Schiltz, Christine UL

Poster (2019, May)

Neuropsychological case-studies suggested that dates and encyclopedic numbers may be processed differently than unknown numbers. However, this issue was not yet investigated in reading in healthy ... [more ▼]

Neuropsychological case-studies suggested that dates and encyclopedic numbers may be processed differently than unknown numbers. However, this issue was not yet investigated in reading in healthy participants, so that it is unclear if dates are read like words and processed as lexical items, or like numbers where each position strictly defines the digit value in a base-10 system. Here, we compared processing of known dates to unknown numbers in a group of 26 experts (students and teachers in History). Participants performed an explicit recognition task on dates (e.g., 1789, 1945, …) and on acronyms (e.g., FNRS, HDMI, …), half known and half unknown. They were preceded by an identical prime (e.g., 1945-1945), a transposed-character prime (e.g., 1495-1945) or a substituted-character prime (e.g., 1635-1945). Results show that for dates, there is a significant transposition gain (-57ms), while for unknown numbers as well as for acronyms (known and unknown), the transposed-character prime induced a cost (from +17 to +257ms) rather than a gain. The facilitation due to transposed characters found here on dates is similar to what is observed in studies of lexical decision on words. Therefore, it suggests that dates may be processed with similar types of orthographical mechanisms than words. [less ▲]

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See detailA minority pulls the sample mean: on the individual prevalence of robust group-level cognitive phenomena - the instance of the SNARC effect
Cipora, Krzysztof; van Dijck, Jean-Philippe; Georges, Carrie UL et al

Presentation (2019, January)

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See detailLateralization for faces in prereaders depends on the perceptual processing level: An EEG Fast Periodic Visual Stimulation study
Lochy, Aliette UL; Schiltz, Christine UL; Rossion, Bruno

Poster (2019, January)

The developmental origin of human adults’ right hemispheric lateralization to face stimuli is unclear, in particular because young infants’ right hemispheric advantage in face perception is no longer ... [more ▼]

The developmental origin of human adults’ right hemispheric lateralization to face stimuli is unclear, in particular because young infants’ right hemispheric advantage in face perception is no longer present in preschool children, before written language acquisition. Here we used fast periodic visual stimulation (FPVS) with scalp electrophysiology to test 52 preschool children (5 years old) at two levels of face processing (i.e., faces vs. objects, or discrimination between individual faces). While the contrast between faces and nonface objects elicits strictly bilateral occipital responses in children, discrimination of faces on the basis of identity in the same children is associated with a strong right hemispheric lateralization over the occipito-temporal cortex. Inversion of the face stimuli does not modulate right lateralization but significantly decreases the discrimination response. Furthermore, there is no relationship between right hemispheric lateralization in individual face discrimination and preschool levels of letter recognition. These observations suggest that right lateralization for face perception is essentially driven by the necessity to process faces at the level of identity. Overall, they also challenge the view that the adult right hemispheric lateralization for face perception emerges late and slowly during childhood due to increased competition with left lateralized posterior network for reading. [less ▲]

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See detailLateralized neural responses to letters and digits in first graders.
Lochy, Aliette UL; Schiltz, Christine UL

in Child Development (2019), 90(6),

The emergence of visual cortex specialization for culturally acquired characters like letters and digits, both arbitrary shapes related to specific cognitive domains, is yet unclear. Here, 20 young ... [more ▼]

The emergence of visual cortex specialization for culturally acquired characters like letters and digits, both arbitrary shapes related to specific cognitive domains, is yet unclear. Here, 20 young children (6.12 years old) were tested with a frequency-tagging paradigm coupled with electroencephalogram recordings to assess discrimination responses of letters from digits and vice-versa. One category of stimuli (e.g., letters) was periodically inserted (1/5) in streams of the other category (e.g., digits) presented at a fast rate (6 Hz). Results show clear right-lateralized discrimination responses at 6 Hz/5 for digits within letters, and a trend for left-lateralization for letters. These results support an early developmental emergence of ventral occipito-temporal cortex specialization for visual recognition of digits and letters, potentially in relation with relevant coactivated brain networks. [less ▲]

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See detailMaGrid: A Language-Neutral Early Mathematical Training and Learning Application
Pazouki, Tahereh UL; Cornu, Véronique UL; Sonnleitner, Philipp UL et al

in International Journal of Emerging Technologies in Learning (2018), 13(08), 4-18

Given that the use of educational technologies is increasingly popular in kindergarten and among young students, these technologies have been shown to be able to solve the difficulties (existing in school ... [more ▼]

Given that the use of educational technologies is increasingly popular in kindergarten and among young students, these technologies have been shown to be able to solve the difficulties (existing in school) that are either not possible to be solved in traditional schooling or cost a lot of time and resources. In this paper, we present a pedagogical training and learning application called MaGrid (Math on Grid), which has been developed to foster early mathematical skills in pre-schoolers. MaGrid is a tablet-based application, which provides a wide range of training tasks targeting fundamental mathematical concepts for the preschool level. The language-neutral property of MaGrid is an innovative aspect that makes MaGrid different from existing mathematical training applications. This property may reduce the barrier of language from mathematical education for second language learners encountered in multilingual school settings. MaGrid allows individual learning in an interactive way and provides real-time feedback. Moreover, MaGrid is capable of recording students’ activities while working on the training tasks, which can help teachers and parents keep track of a student’s progress in different tasks and observe potential training-related improvements over time. Finally, we describe a series of experiments carried out using the MaGrid application during special training and assessment sessions in several preschools in Luxembourg. [less ▲]

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See detailProject NUMTEST: Assessing basic number competence without language
Greisen, Max UL; Hornung, Caroline UL; Schiltz, Christine UL

Poster (2018, June 28)

Although numerical skills are essential in modern societies, 5- 7 % of the population suffer from mathematical learning disabilities. Due to the hierarchical nature of mathematical knowledge, screening ... [more ▼]

Although numerical skills are essential in modern societies, 5- 7 % of the population suffer from mathematical learning disabilities. Due to the hierarchical nature of mathematical knowledge, screening during the earliest stages of learning is essential to intervene efficiently. While different screening tools exist, they rely on verbal instructions and task content, hampering their usefulness in linguistically heterogeneous young school populations. We developed a computerized task that requires subjects to encode both auditory and visual numerical information to successfully respond to the task’s demands. For task instruction, participants were presented a video showing a person correctly solving three easy items of the task, before moving on to a practice session of three different items. If any item was solved incorrectly, the entire practice session was repeated for the participant. We administered the task to a sample of first grade students and collected participant’s performance in standardized addition, subtraction and number comparison (1 & 2-digit) tasks. A multivariate analysis with practice repetition as between-subject factor on the four standardized control measures revealed that participants that repeated the practice session scored significantly lower in three out of four dependent measures. These results suggest that the immediate understanding (i.e. practice items solved correctly on the first try) of our task, requiring deductive reasoning and an abstract, format-independent representation of quantity, is able to differentiate between high and low performers on standardized measures of basic math competence non-verbally at an early stage of learning. Implications and limitations will be discussed. [less ▲]

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See detailTaking Language out of the Equation: The Assessment of Basic Math Competence Without Language
Greisen, Max UL; Hornung, Caroline UL; Baudson, Tanja Gabriele UL et al

in Frontiers in Psychology (2018)

While numerical skills are fundamental in modern societies, some estimated 5–7% of children suffer from mathematical learning difficulties (MLD) that need to be assessed early to ensure successful ... [more ▼]

While numerical skills are fundamental in modern societies, some estimated 5–7% of children suffer from mathematical learning difficulties (MLD) that need to be assessed early to ensure successful remediation. Universally employable diagnostic tools are yet lacking, as current test batteries for basic mathematics assessment are based on verbal instructions. However, prior research has shown that performance in mathematics assessment is often dependent on the testee’s proficiency in the language of instruction which might lead to unfair bias in test scores. Furthermore, language-dependent assessment tools produce results that are not easily comparable across countries. Here we present results of a study that aims to develop tasks allowing to test for basic math competence without relying on verbal instructions or task content. We implemented video and animation-based task instructions on touchscreen devices that require no verbal explanation. We administered these experimental tasks to two samples of children attending the first grade of primary school. One group completed the tasks with verbal instructions while another group received video instructions showing a person successfully completing the task.We assessed task comprehension and usability aspects both directly and indirectly. Our results suggest that the non-verbal instructions were generally well understood as the absence of explicit verbal instructions did not influence task performance. Thus we found that it is possible to assess basic math competence without verbal instructions. It also appeared that in some cases a single word in a verbal instruction can lead to the failure of a task that is successfully completed with non-verbal instruction. However, special care must be taken during task design because on rare occasions non-verbal video instructions fail to convey task instructions as clearly as spoken language and thus the latter do not provide a panacea to non-verbal assessment. Nevertheless, our findings provide an encouraging proof of concept for the further development of non-verbal assessment tools for basic math competence. [less ▲]

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See detailAutomatic discrimination of digits and letters in first graders and adults: an EEG Fast Periodic Visual Stimulation study.
Lochy, Aliette UL; Schiltz, Christine UL

Poster (2018, June)

Both letters and digits are arbitrary visual shapes that are distinguished into categories only after cultural acquisition. The observation that digits are easier to identify than letters has been ... [more ▼]

Both letters and digits are arbitrary visual shapes that are distinguished into categories only after cultural acquisition. The observation that digits are easier to identify than letters has been repeatedly reported in the literature (Shubert, 2017). In the present study, we used a Fast Periodic Visual Stimulation approach with EEG recordings to assess the automatic discrimination of letters and digits from each other in 1st grade children (N=17) and in adults (N=18). Participants viewed 40 sec sequences (3 repetitions per condition) of frequent stimuli (letters or digits) at a fast periodic rate (adults: 10Hz, children: 6Hz), in which rare stimuli (the other category of alphanumeric symbols) were periodically inserted (every five items, e.g., adults: at 2Hz, children: at 1.2Hz). Results showed discrimination responses in both groups in posterior occipito-temporal regions with clear changes in lateralization patterns. In children, stimuli contained only single elements. Responses were right-lateralized for digits among letters, and revealed a trend for left-lateralization for letters among digits. In adults, when stimuli contained only 1 character, both letters and digits gave rise to responses in the RH. However, when strings of characters were presented, then letters were discriminated from digits in the LH. These findings show a developmental pattern where single elements in children seem to be processed like strings of elements in adults. [less ▲]

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See detailOvercoming language barriers in early mathematics instruction with “MaGrid” - a language-neutral training tool for multilingual school settings
Cornu, Véronique UL; Pazouki, Tahereh UL; Schiltz, Christine UL et al

Poster (2018, April 08)

Mathematical knowledge at the onset of formal schooling paves the way for children’s achievement in formal mathematics (e.g. Duncan et al., 2007; Watts et al., 2014). Hence, it is crucial to equip ... [more ▼]

Mathematical knowledge at the onset of formal schooling paves the way for children’s achievement in formal mathematics (e.g. Duncan et al., 2007; Watts et al., 2014). Hence, it is crucial to equip children with sound basic mathematical competencies by deploying effective teaching interventions during preschool years. However, multilingual school settings, such as Luxembourg (65% of the pupils are second language learners) pose a special challenge for instruction. Non-native pre-schoolers perform lower on early mathematics tests than their age-matched peers (Bonifacci et al., 2016; Kleemans et al., 2011). This gap is most likely due to missing out on learning opportunities, as a result of lower proficiency in the language of instruction. To provide equal access to early mathematics education for all children, we developed a language-neutral early mathematics training tool, the “MaGrid”-app. This innovative training tool has been evaluated, so far, in two studies in multilingual Luxembourg. In a first study, children from five classrooms (N = 68) used the tool to train visuo-spatial abilities, an important predictor of mathematical abilities (see e.g. Mix et al., 2016), over ten weeks (2x20min/week). At post-test, significant gains in the visuo-spatial domain were observed, compared to children from “teaching-as-usual” classrooms (N = 57). In a second study, we elaborated a comprehensive language-neutral early mathematics intervention, with “MaGrid” at its core. Findings from both training studies will be presented in detail and the importance of domain-specific versus domain-general precursors, as well as practical implications, will be discussed. [less ▲]

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See detailSurmonter les barrières linguistiques avec « MaGrid » - un outil de formation de pré-mathématiques pour un contexte scolaire multilingue
Cornu, Véronique UL; Pazouki, Tahereh UL; Schiltz, Christine UL et al

Scientific Conference (2018, January 11)

Le contexte scolaire luxembourgeois est caractérisé par le multilinguisme et une population scolaire hétérogène, ce qui nécessite la mise en place de pratiques pédagogiques qui prennent en compte ... [more ▼]

Le contexte scolaire luxembourgeois est caractérisé par le multilinguisme et une population scolaire hétérogène, ce qui nécessite la mise en place de pratiques pédagogiques qui prennent en compte l’hétérogénéité des élèves. Dans le domaine des mathématiques, qui semble être non-verbal à première vue, des résultats scientifiques montrent que les enfants dont la langue maternelle est différente de la langue d’instruction, atteignent sur des tests d’aptitudes pré-mathématiques des résultats significativement inférieurs à ceux de leurs camarades natifs. Ceci est d’autant plus inquiétant, sachant que ces aptitudes pré-mathématiques sont prédictives des apprentissages ultérieurs. Par conséquent, nous avons développé l’outil de formation de pré-mathématiques non-verbale « MaGrid ». « MaGrid » permet à chaque enfant de bénéficier pleinement d’une instruction préscolaire en mathématiques, indépendamment de ses compétences langagières. Cet outil se caractérise par sa nature visuelle et il est implémenté sur tablette tactile. Jusqu’à présent, nous avons implémenté et évalué « MaGrid » lors de deux études scientifiques. Les résultats quantitatifs des évaluations empiriques sont prometteurs, comme ils montrent des effets positifs sur les habilités entraînées chez les enfants ayant utilisé cet outil comparé à un groupe contrôle. Dans une première étude, l’outil a été utilisé auprès de cinq classes durant 10 semaines, comprenant deux séances de 20 minutes par semaine. Les résultats lors de petites épreuves spécifiques ont été comparés aux résultats d’élèves de cinq classes n’ayant pas d’entraînement spécifique, et des effets d’intervention ont été observés. Dans une deuxième étude, nous nous sommes focalisés sur un groupe d’enfants de langue minoritaire (le portugais). « MaGrid » a été utilisé lors d’un programme d’intervention de pré-mathématiques s’étendant sur les deux années scolaires de l’école préscolaire. Les analyses préliminaires ont abouti à des résultats positifs. Des effets bénéfiques se sont manifestés sur différentes mesures de pré-mathématiques chez les enfants ayant suivi notre programme par rapport aux enfants du groupe contrôle. [less ▲]

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