The cognitive profiles for different samples of mathematical learning difficulties and their similarity to typical development: Evidence from a longitudinal study
Number of pages
SourceJournal of Experimental Child Psychology, 214, (2022), article 105288
Article / Letter to editor
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SW OZ BSI OLO
Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
SubjectLearning and Plasticity
Several cognitive deficits have been suggested to induce mathematical learning difficulties (MLD), but it is unclear whether the cognitive profile for all children with MLD is the same and to what extent it differs from typically developing (TD) children. This study investigated whether such a profile could be distinguished when cognitive skills and math performance are compared between TD children and children with MLD. This was accomplished by employing two-way repeated-measures analyses of covariance in 276 10-year-old participants (60 with MLD) from fourth and fifth grades. In addition, we investigated whether more restrictive selection criteria for MLD result in different mathematical and cognitive profiles by means of independent-samples t tests. Results revealed that cognitive mechanisms for math development are mostly similar for children with MLD and TD children and that variability in sample selection criteria did not produce different mathematical or cognitive profiles. To conclude, the cognitive mechanisms for math development are broadly similar for children with MLD and their TD counterparts even when different MLD samples were selected. This strengthens our idea that MLD can be defined as the worst performance on a continuous scale rather than as a discrete disorder.
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