Predicting reading comprehension academic achievement in late adolescents with velo-cardio-facial (22q11.2 deletion) syndrome (VCFS): A longitudinal study

K. Antshel, B. Hier, W. Fremont, S. V. Faraone, W. Kates

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Scopus citations


Background: The primary objective of the current study was to examine the childhood predictors of adolescent reading comprehension in velo-cardio-facial syndrome (VCFS). Although much research has focused on mathematics skills among individuals with VCFS, no studies have examined predictors of reading comprehension. Methods: 69 late adolescents with VCFS, 23 siblings of youth with VCFS and 30 community controls participated in a longitudinal research project and had repeat neuropsychological test batteries and psychiatric evaluations every 3 years. The Wechsler Individual Achievement Test - 2nd edition (WIAT-II) Reading Comprehension subtest served as our primary outcome variable. Results: Consistent with previous research, children and adolescents with VCFS had mean reading comprehension scores on the WIAT-II, that were approximately two standard deviations below the mean and word reading scores approximately one standard deviation below the mean. A more novel finding is that relative to both control groups, individuals with VCFS demonstrated a longitudinal decline in reading comprehension abilities yet a slight increase in word reading abilities. In the combined control sample, WISC-III FSIQ, WIAT-II Word Reading, WISC-III Vocabulary and CVLT-C List A Trial 1 accounted for 75% of the variance in Time 3 WIAT-II Reading Comprehension scores. In the VCFS sample, WISC-III FSIQ, BASC-Teacher Aggression, CVLT-C Intrusions, Tower of London, Visual Span Backwards, WCST Non-perseverative Errors, WIAT-II Word Reading and WISC-III Freedom from Distractibility index accounted for 85% of the variance in Time 3 WIAT-II Reading Comprehension scores. A principal component analysis with promax rotation computed on the statistically significant Time 1 predictor variables in the VCFS sample resulted in three factors: Word reading decoding/Interference control, Self-Control/Self-Monitoring and Working Memory. Conclusions: Childhood predictors of late adolescent reading comprehension in VCFS differ in some meaningful ways from predictors in the non-VCFS population. These results offer some guidance for how best to consider intervention efforts to improve reading comprehension in the VCFS population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)926-939
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Intellectual Disability Research
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2014



  • 22q11 deletion
  • Developmental disorder
  • Reading comprehension
  • Velo-cardio-facial syndrome (VCFS)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rehabilitation
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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