Matthew Effects in Reading: Some Consequences of Individual Differences in the Acquisition of Literacy

Stanovich, Keith E. (1986). Matthew effects in reading: Some consequences of individual differences in the acquisition of literacy. Reading Research Quarterly, 22, 360-407.

The Matthew Effects are not only about the progressive decline of slow starters, but also about the widening gap between slow starters and fast starters. In reading, the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. This report presents a framework for conceptualizing development of individual differences in reading ability that emphasizes the effects of reading on cognitive development and on "bootstrapping" relationships involving reading. It uses the framework to explain some persisting problems in the literature on reading disability and to conceptualize remediation efforts in reading.

"I'm wondering what to read next." — Matilda, Roald Dahl