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ERIC Number: EJ1008417
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-May
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0891-4222
Developmental Dyscalculia and Low Numeracy in Chinese Children
Chan, Winnie Wai Lan; Au, Terry K.; Tang, Joey
Research in Developmental Disabilities: A Multidisciplinary Journal, v34 n5 p1613-1622 May 2013
Children struggle with mathematics for different reasons. Developmental dyscalculia and low numeracy--two kinds of mathematical difficulties--may have their roots, respectively, in poor understanding of exact non-symbolic numerosities and of symbolic numerals. This study was the first to explore whether Chinese children, despite cultural and linguistic factors supporting their mathematical learning, also showed such mathematical difficulties and whether such difficulties have measurable impact on children's early school mathematical performance. First-graders, classified as dyscalculia, low numeracy, or normal achievement, were compared for their performance in various school mathematical tasks requiring a grasp of non-symbolic numerosities (i.e., non-symbolic tasks) or an understanding of symbolic numerals (i.e., symbolic tasks). Children with dyscalculia showed poorer performance than their peers in non-symbolic tasks but not symbolic ones, whereas those with low numeracy showed poorer performance in symbolic tasks but not non-symbolic ones. As hypothesized, these findings suggested that dyscalculia and low numeracy were distinct deficits and caused by deficits in non-symbolic and symbolic processing, respectively. These findings went beyond prior research that only documented generally low mathematical achievements for these two groups of children. Moreover, these deficits appeared to be persistent and could not be remedied simply through day-to-day school mathematical learning. The present findings highlighted the importance of tailoring early learning support for children with these distinct deficits, and pointed to future directions for the screening of such mathematical difficulties among Chinese children. (Contains 2 figures and 1 table.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 1
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: China