Spelling skills of children in whole language and phonics classrooms

Maggie Bruck, Rebecca Treiman, Marketa Caravolas, Fred Genesee, Marie Cassar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


The spelling skills of grade 3 children who had received whole language instruction since they began to learn to read were compared with those of grade 3 children attending a phonics program. The children were asked to spell a list of words and nonwords. Overall, the phonics group produced more accurate word spellings than the whole language group. In addition, the phonics children's spellings of nonwords included more conventional, phonologically accurate patterns. There were no group differences on measures of orthographic acceptability or on preservation of skeletal structure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)669-684
Number of pages16
JournalApplied Psycholinguistics
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 1998
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Psychology(all)


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