Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Understanding, educating, and supporting children with specific learning disabilities: 50 years of science and practice. - PsycNET


Grigorenko, E. L., Compton, D. L., Fuchs, L. S., Wagner, R. K., Willcutt, E. G., & Fletcher, J. M. (2020). Understanding, educating, and supporting children with specific learning disabilities: 50 years of science and practice. American Psychologist, 75(1), 37–51. https://doi-org.ezp2.lib.umn.edu/10.1037/amp0000452


Specific learning disabilities (SLDs) are highly relevant to the science and practice of psychology, both historically and currently, exemplifying the integration of interdisciplinary approaches to human conditions. They can be manifested as primary conditions—as difficulties in acquiring specific academic skills—or as secondary conditions, comorbid to other developmental disorders such as attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. In this synthesis of historical and contemporary trends in research and practice, we mark the 50th anniversary of the recognition of SLDs as a disability in the United States. Specifically, we address the manifestations, occurrence, identification, comorbidity, etiology, and treatment of SLDs, emphasizing the integration of information from the interdisciplinary fields of psychology, education, psychiatry, genetics, and cognitive neuroscience. SLDs, exemplified here by specific word reading, reading comprehension, mathematics, and written expression disabilities, represent spectrum disorders, each occurring in approximately 5% to 15% of the school-aged population. In addition to risk for academic deficiencies and related functional social, emotional, and behavioral difficulties, those with SLDs often have poorer long-term social and vocational outcomes. Given the high rate of occurrence of SLDs and their lifelong negative impact on functioning if not treated, it is important to establish and maintain effective prevention, surveillance, and treatment systems involving professionals from various disciplines trained to minimize the risk and maximize the protective factors for SLDs. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved)

Kevin S. McGrew, PhD
Educational & School Psychologist
Institute for Applied Psychometrics (IAP)

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