Relationship between body functions and Arabic handwriting performance at different acquisition stages

Abeer Salameh-Matar, Naser Basal, Naomi Weintraub*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Background.: The written languages and handwriting acquisition stages place different demands on the writer. Therefore, the relationship between body functions and handwriting performance may vary in different languages and acquisition stages; yet these demands have not been studied in the Arabic language. Purpose.: We examined the relationship between linguistic, visual-motor integration (VMI), and motor coordination (MC) functions and Arabic handwriting at two handwriting acquisition stages. Method.: This study used a cross-sectional and correlative design. Second- (n = 54) and fourth-grade (n = 59) students performed tasks examining reading, handwriting automaticity, VMI, MC, and copying a text. Findings.: Handwriting automaticity significantly explained the variance in handwriting speed in both grades, in addition to the VMI in second grade and the MC in fourth grade. Enhanced performance in the VMI increased the likelihood of having good legibility in second but not in fourth grade. Implications.: Similar to other languages, the body functions related to Arabic handwriting vary at the different acquisition stages. Handwriting evaluation should be adjusted to students’ acquisition stage.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)418-427
Number of pages10
JournalCanadian Journal of Occupational Therapy
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© CAOT 2019.


  • Automaticity
  • Occupational therapy
  • Schools
  • Visual-motor skills


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