ERIC Number: ED389101
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Mar
Learning Disabilities and the American Public: A Look at American's Awareness and Knowledge.
Roper Starch Worldwide Inc.
This study examined 1,200 adults' understanding of and attitudes toward learning disabilities, through a telephone survey. Additional objectives included the identification of various information sources and testing of potential messages about learning disabilities. Halfway through each telephone interview, a definition of learning disabilities was provided, thus allowing both a "blind" discussion and a "pre-test/post-test" structure. Among major findings are the following: (1) 3 in 10 Americans claim direct experience with learning disabilities; (2) most Americans believe nine conditions (such as blindness and mental retardation) are associated with learning disabilities; (3) most Americans believe learning disabilities should be identified as early as preschool; (4) Americans' primary information sources about learning disabilities are schools, doctors, and libraries; (5) the term "learning differences" is seen as more acceptable than learning disabilities; (6) Americans were evenly split on whether more resources should be devoted to children with learning disabilities or to basic services for all children; (7) funding discussions cannot be framed as a zero-sum game if increased spending to teach these children is to be supported; (8) increasing knowledge about learning disabilities is associated with greater support for increased spending; and (9) most Americans agree that adults with learning disabilities suffer injustices. Results are detailed in chapters on personal experience, relationship of education to learning disabilities, knowledge level, schools and teaching, information sources, and messages. An appendix details the methodology and provides the questionnaire. (DB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Emily Hall Tremaine Foundation, Inc., Hartford, CT.
Authoring Institution: Roper Starch Worldwide Inc.