Neuroanatomy of Handwriting and Related Reading and Writing Skills in Adults and Children with and without Learning Disabilities: French-American Connections.


  • Longcamp Marieke
  • Richards Todd L
  • Velay Jean-Luc
  • Berninger Virginia W

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In this article, we present recent neuroimaging studies performed to identify the neural network involved in handwriting. These studies, carried out in adults and in children, suggest that the mastery of handwriting is based on the involvement of a network of brain structures whose involvement and inter-connection are specific to writing alphabet characters. This network is built upon the joint learning of writing and reading and depends on the level of expertise of the writer. In addition, a part of this graphomotor network is also brought into play during the identification letters during visual reading. These skills are also the basis for the development of more complex language activities involving orthographic knowledge and composition of texts. The studies presented cover two perspectives: that of neuroscience and that of cognitive psychology, as both are necessary to understand a complex process of writing and both depend on natural interactions and the influence of educational exposure.

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