The effect of saccadic training on early reading fluency

Clin Pediatr (Phila). 2014 Aug;53(9):858-64. doi: 10.1177/0009922814532520. Epub 2014 May 1.


Background: Eye movements are necessary for the physical act of reading and have been shown to relate to underlying cognitive and visuoattentional processes during reading. The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of saccadic training using the King-Devick remediation software on reading fluency.

Methods: In this prospective, single-blinded, randomized, crossover trial, a cohort of elementary students received standardized reading fluency testing pre- and posttreatment. Treatment consisted of in-school training 20 minutes per day, 3 days per week for 6 weeks.

Results: The treatment group had significantly higher reading fluency scores after treatment (P < .001), and posttreatment scores were significantly higher than the control group (P < .005).

Conclusion: Saccadic training can significantly improve reading fluency. We hypothesize that this improvement in reading fluency is a result of rigorous practice of eye movements and shifting visuospatial attention, which are vital to the act of reading.

Keywords: eye movements; reading fluency; remediation; saccades.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Humans
  • Prospective Studies
  • Reading*
  • Saccades*
  • Single-Blind Method
  • Software