The relationship between handwriting style and speed and legibility

Steve Graham*, Naomi Weintraub, Virginia W. Berninger

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Scopus citations


The relationship between handwriting style and handwriting speed and legibility was investigated. Three samples of writing (narrative, expository, and copying) were collected from 600 students in Grades 4-9. The copying task provided a measure of handwriting speed, and all 3 writing samples were scored for handwriting style (manuscript, cursive, mixed-mostly manuscript, and mixed-mostly cursive) and legibility. The handwriting of students who used a mixed style was faster than the handwriting of the students who used either manuscript or cursive exclusively. In addition, papers written with mixed-mostly cursive letters generally received higher ratings for legibility than papers written with the other 3 styles did. There were no differences between manuscript and cursive in terms of legibility or speed.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)290-297
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Educational Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 May 1998

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by Grant 2.595843 from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.


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