Can the Baddeley and Hitch model of working memory account for learning to spell using multisensory spelling strategies?

Awarding institution
  • University of Strathclyde
Date of award
  • 2009
Thesis identifier
  • T12361
Qualification Level
Qualification Name
Department, School or Faculty
  • This study had two aims. The first was to examine the relationship between working memory and spelling. The second was to explore how multisensory spelling strategies might support learning to spell within the framework of the working memory model of Baddeley and colleagues (Baddeley, 1986,2000; Baddeley and Hitch, 1974). The sample comprised 124 children (mean age 9 years 4 months). In study 1, children's verbal short-term memory, visuospatial memory, verbal working memory, and spelling were assessed. Regression analyses showed that only verbal short-term memory was a significant predictor of children's spelling scores. In study 2, the children learned to spell words using three different study strategies: their normal spelling strategy; a Look Say, Cover, Write Check strategy; and a simultaneous oral spelling strategy. Results showed that the children spelled significantly more words at post-intervention compared with pre-intervention but that no one spelling strategy was significantly more effective than another. Regression analyses exploring relationships between children's working memory scores and new words learned suggested that different multisensory strategies may draw upon different working memory components. Implications for practice are considered as well as suggestions for further research.
Advisor / supervisor
  • Boyle, Jim
Resource Type