No Evidence of Creative Benefit Accompanying Dyslexia: A Meta-Analysis

Florina Erbeli, Peng Peng, Marianne Rice

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Research on the question of creative benefit accompanying dyslexia has produced conflicting findings. In this meta-analysis, we determined summary effects of mean and variance differences in creativity between groups with and without dyslexia. Twenty studies were included (n = 770 individuals with dyslexia, n = 1,671 controls). A random-effects robust variance estimation (RVE) analysis indicated no mean (g = −0.02, p =.84) or variance (g = −0.0004, p =.99) differences in creativity between groups. The mean summary effect was moderated by age, gender, and creativity domain. Compared with adolescents, adults with dyslexia showed an advantage over nondyslexic adults in creativity. In addition, a higher proportion of males in the dyslexia group was associated with poorer performance compared with the controls. Finally, the dyslexia group showed a significant performance disadvantage in verbal versus figural creativity. Regarding variance differences, they varied across age and creativity domains. Compared with adults, adolescents showed smaller variability in the dyslexia group. If the creativity task measured verbal versus figural or combined creativity, the dyslexia group exhibited smaller variability. Altogether, our results suggest that individuals with dyslexia as a group are no more creative or show greater variability in creativity than peers without dyslexia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)242-253
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Learning Disabilities
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • compensatory mechanisms
  • creativity
  • dyslexia
  • individual differences
  • meta-analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Education
  • Health Professions(all)


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