Children with a variety of language-related problems, including dyslexia, experience difficulty processing the acoustic speech signal, leading to proposals of diagnostic entities known as auditory processing deficits. Although descriptions of these deficits vary across accounts, most hinge on the idea that problems arise at the level of detecting and/or discriminating sensory inputs. In this article, the author re-examines that idea and proposes that the difficulty more likely arises in how those sensations get organized into service for auditory comprehension of language.

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