Maths Disorder (otherwise known as “dyscalculia”) is a learning difficulty presumed to be of neurological origin. Maths Disorder is a specific learning disability affecting the acquisition of arithmetic skills in an otherwise typically developing child (Westwood, 2004 pg 121).
The following characteristics can be typically of a child with Maths Disorder:
- poor concept development
- lack of understanding of mathematical terms/signs
- confusion over printed symbols
- poor procedural skills
- inability to determine which process to use in solving problems
- poor bookwork with misaligned columns and figures
- weak multiplication skills (Westwood, 2004 pg 122)
Assessment for Maths Disorder may encompass both formal and informal testing. This may be through diagnostic interview, assessment of the student’s understanding of every mathematics words, signs and symbols, examining work books, direct observation of the student’s work and discussion with parent, child and teacher. Appropriate support and strategies can then be formulated for intervention purposes.