Self-concepts and psychological health in children and adolescents with reading difficulties and the impact of assistive technology to compensate and facilitate reading ability
Journal article, 2019
This study investigated self-image, psychological health, and the impact of Assistive Technology (AT) on self-concept and psychological health in 137 children and adolescents with reading difficulties during a systematic intervention program and in a one-year follow-up. Participants were randomly assigned to a control or an intervention group. The interventions aimed to teach participants how to understand texts using AT. The control group received no intervention. To investigate self-esteem, self-image, anxiety, and depression, all participants were assessed with the Cultural Free Self-Esteem Inventory, 3rd edition (CFSEI-3) before intervention and one year post-interventions. Forty-one participants were also assessed on the Beck Youth Inventory (BYI). The AT was found to have no impact on participants' self-esteem. The CFSEI-3 showed similar values for self-esteem in a norm group and the study groups at pre-intervention, which made an increase from using AT less expected. The results are discussed in terms of contextual explanatory factors, such as educators' increased knowledge of reading difficulties and dyslexia. The results on the BYI were somewhat inconclusive since the younger group of participants showed more anxiety than the norm group, but the adolescent group did not. This may be due to small sample size, so further research is recommended.