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ERIC Number: EJ1057402
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 45
ISSN: ISSN-0022-2194
Identifying Learning Disabilities through a Cognitive Deficit Framework: Can Verbal Memory Deficits Explain Similarities between Learning Disabled and Low Achieving Students?
Callinan, Sarah; Theiler, Stephen; Cunningham, Everarda
Journal of Learning Disabilities, v48 n3 p271-280 May-Jun 2015
Traditionally, students with learning disabilities (LD) have been identified using an aptitude--achievement discrepancy or response to intervention approach. As profiles of the cognitive deficits of discrepancy-defined students with LD have already been developed using these approaches, these deficits can in turn be used to identify LD using the discrepancy approach as a benchmark for convergent validity. Australian Grade 3 (N = 172) students were administered cognitive processing tests to ascertain whether scores in these tests could accurately allocate students into discrepancy-defined groups using discriminant function analysis. Results showed that 77% to 82% of students could be correctly allocated into LD, low achievement, and regular achievement groups using only measures of phonological processing, rapid naming, and verbal memory. Furthermore, verbal memory deficits were found, along with phonological processing and rapid naming deficits, in students that would be designated as low achieving by the discrepancy method. Because a significant discrepancy or lack of response to intervention is a result of cognitive deficits rather than the other way around, it is argued that LD should be identified via cognitive deficits.
SAGE Publications and Hammill Institute on Disabilities. 2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320. Tel: 800-818-7243; Tel: 805-499-9774; Fax: 800-583-2665; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 3; Primary Education; Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Raven Progressive Matrices