Handwriting fluency and visuospatial generativity at primary school

Paolo Stievano, Silvia Michetti, Shawn M. McClintock, Gabriel Levi, Teresa Gloria Scalisi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Handwriting is a complex activity that involves continuous interaction between lowerlevel perceptual-motor and higher-level cognitive processes. All handwriting models describe involvement of executive functions (EF) in handwriting development. Particular EF domains associated with handwriting include maintenance of information in working memory, inhibition of prepotent responses, and shifting and sustaining of attention. Generativity, an EF domain that has not been extensively studied, may play a role in the acquisition and automation of handwriting. We hypothesized that neuropsychological performances and handwriting fluency would be mutually associated, and that visuospatial generativity could have a specific role in handwriting speed. We enrolled 96 children who completed a comprehensive neuropsychological battery. The study found that handwriting speed was associated with visuospatial fluency, which involves behavioural execution and initiation. In learning and performing handwriting, there is an inherent non-exclusive role of fine motor skills.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1497-1510
Number of pages14
JournalReading and Writing
Issue number7
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016


  • Executive functions
  • Handwriting fluency
  • Visuospatial generativity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Education
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Speech and Hearing


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