This study addressed the validity of using a five-stage multifaceted approach to defining reading disabilities. The selection criteria generally represented key features of the reading disability concept (e.g., intraindividual differences, low achievement, exclusionary criteria). The sample consisted of 204 reading disabled and 203 normally achieving Form 2 (junior high) students from New Zealand. Comparison of these two groups on motivational, cognitive, and metacognitive variables demonstrated the validity of the approach adopted in the current study for defining reading disabled children. Discriminant analyses revealed that 96.1% of the reading disabled and 95.1% of the normally achieving children were correctly classified. It is envisaged that the multifaceted working model discussed here for defining reading disabled individuals should stimulate renewed discussion as well as further refinement of the selection criteria.