Up to 10 per cent of children are affected by specific learning disabilities, such as dyslexia, dyscalculia and autism, translating to two or three in every classroom, according to research. This is from the Times…
The study also shows that children are frequently affected by more than one learning disability. The findings, published in the journalScience, could help to clarify the underlying causes of learning disabilities and the best way to tailor teaching for affected individuals.
Specific learning disabilities arise from atypical brain development with complicated genetic and environmental causes that can lead to conditions such as dyslexia, dyscalculia, autism spectrum disorder and attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
While these conditions in isolation already provide a challenge for educators, a further problem is that specific learning disabilities also co-occur far more often than would be expected. For example, in children with ADHD, 33 to 45 per cent also suffer from dyslexia and 11 per cent from dyscalculia.
Brian Butterworth, a neuroscientist from University College London, who led the study, said: “We now know that there are many disorders of neurological development that can give rise to learning disabilities, even in children of normal or even high intelligence.”