Head and Coordination


  • Dr. Nadine Malstädt



01/2009 - 06/2014

Project MEMO

Working Memory Influences on Rehearsal-Strategy Development in Dyslectic Children

The project MEMO analyzed verbal rehearsal-strategy development in children with and without dyslexia or dyscalculia.

In addition to task-specific skills in school, memory strategies contribute both to the acquisition and storage of knowledge and to the solution of a broad range of tasks in the school context. The Project MEMO focused on the development of verbal memory strategies in children with reading, writing and arithmetic problems. Verbal memory strategies are adopted to enhance memory performance and are used when information is supposed to be taken in. A multitude of studies has shown that there is progressive development of the competent use of strategies from kindergarten age to primary school age and beyond. However, some studies highlight the close relationship between a reduced capacity to learn and to memorize, and the use of memory strategies, respectively. Accordingly, children with learning impairments seem to be less efficient in the use of such strategies. Hence, MEMO aimed to answer the question of whether problems in school areas, such as reading and writing and arithmetics, coincide with impairments in basic verbal strategic capabilities; or whether the former and the latter are independent of each other. We were additionally interested in whether children with reading, writing and arithmetic problems are able to use verbal memory strategies as efficiently as their unimpaired peers. Finally, we assessed the role of the working memory on verbal memory strategy development.

Selected Publications

Lehmann, M., & Hasselhorn, M. (2009). Entwicklung von Lernstrategien im Grundschulalter. In F. Hellmich, & S. Wernke (Eds.), Lernstrategien im Grundschulalter. Konzepte, Befunde und praktische Implikationen (pp. 25-41). Stuttgart: Kohlhammer.

Lehmann, M., & Hasselhorn, M. (2010). The dynamics of free recall and their relation to rehearsal between 8 and 10 years of age. Child Development, 81, 1006-1020.doi:10.1111/j.1467-8624.2010.01448.x

Malstädt, N., Hasselhorn, M., & Lehmann, M. (2012). Free recall behaviour in children with and without spelling impairment: The impact of working memory subcapacities. Dyslexia, 18, 187-198. doi:10.1002/dys.1446