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ERIC Number: EJ914123
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1937-6928
Understanding Mathematical Learning Disabilities: A Case Study of Errors and Explanations
Lewis, Katherine E.
Learning Disabilities: A Contemporary Journal, v8 n2 p9-18 2010
When solving basic number fact problems (e.g., 4x5=20), students with mathematical learning disabilities (MLDs) make qualitatively different kinds of errors than both typically achieving and low-achieving students. This study explores the origin of these qualitative differences through a detailed analysis of one student with an MLD. Data were drawn from a longitudinal study of weekly videotaped tutoring sessions during the student's eighth through twelfth grade years. An error analysis was conducted on the student's responses to a computerized multiplication fact program (Math Master), which confirmed that she demonstrated a similar error profile to that documented in students with MLDs. A microgenetic analysis of a subset of tutoring sessions (19 sessions total) focused on the student's math fact usage while she was engaged in more complex problem solving, specifically fraction reduction. Although her math fact errors appear on the surface to be unrelated, the detailed analysis revealed the origin of these errors to be her atypical and cognitively cumbersome strategy for solving multiplication problems. An intervention, which functioned to decrease the cognitive load of her multiplication strategy, increased her accuracy on fraction reduction problems. This research suggests that a detailed analyses of students' problem solving can reveal the origins of the qualitative differences that typify MLD, and provide information that can contribute to strategies for remediation. (Contains 7 figures and 2 footnotes.)
Learning Disabilities Worldwide, Inc. P.O. Box 142, Weston, MA 02493. Tel: 781-890-5399; Fax: 781-890-0555; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 10; Grade 11; Grade 12; Grade 8; Grade 9
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A