The use of standardised testing as a means of identifying learners with specific difficulties in arithmetic: application difficulties and constraints


Voutsina, Chronoula and Ismail, Qaimah (2009) The use of standardised testing as a means of identifying learners with specific difficulties in arithmetic: application difficulties and constraints. In, Fostering Communities of Learners (EARLI 2009), Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 25 - 29 Aug 2009.

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Description/Abstract

The paper presents findings from a project which focused on identifying 7-year old children with specific difficulties in learning arithmetic and potentially having dyscalculia. The construct ‘dyscalculia’ is still today a highly controversial term because of the lack of understanding of what exactly ‘dyscalculia’ entails and also because of the implications for children and the tools for identifying the specific learning difficulty. For the purposes of this project, the Dyscalculia Screener was used as a tool for identifying such cases of learners. The Dyscalculia Screener is a computer based, standardised test designed to diagnose dyscalculia in children aged between 6 and 14 years and to distinguish this condition from other issues that can affect performance in mathematics such as difficulties in communication and interaction, behavioural, emotional and social development. Sixty 7 year old children from four primary inner city schools in South England were screened. Data from observations of each child as he/she worked on the tests were also gathered. The paper presents the aggregated results of the children’s mathematics abilities and discusses the case of one child and her approach to the standardised computer-based test. The discussion of the specific issues that this case raises, aims to instigate reflection on the enabling and restricting features of such tests and on their efficacy in informing those who use them.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Related URLs:
Keywords: learning difficulties, arithmetic
Subjects: L Education > LC Special aspects of education
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1501 Primary Education
Q Science > QA Mathematics
Divisions: University Structure - Pre August 2011 > School of Education > Mathematics and Science Education
ePrint ID: 79767
Date Deposited: 19 Mar 2010
Last Modified: 27 Mar 2014 19:02
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/79767

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