Identifying Children with Persistent Developmental Dyscalculia from a 2-min Test of Symbolic and Nonsymbolic Numerical Magnitude Processing

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© 2020 International Mind, Brain, and Education Society and Wiley Periodicals LLC Developmental dyscalculia (DD) is a mathematical learning disability that occurs in around 5%–7% of the population. At present, there are only a handful of screening tools to identify children that might be at risk of developing DD. The present study evaluated the classification accuracy of one such tool: The Numeracy Screener, a 2-min test of symbolic (Arabic numerals) and nonsymbolic (dot arrays) discrimination ability. A sample of 222 children who demonstrated persistent deficits (n = 55), inconsistent deficits (n = 51), or typical performance (n = 116) on standardized tests of math achievement over multiple observations was tested. The Numeracy Screener correctly classified children in all three groups. Notably, the symbolic condition has greater sensitivity in discriminating children with persistent DD from the other two groups. Screening tools that assess early numeracy skills may be promising for identifying children at risk for developing severe mathematical difficulties.

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Mind, Brain, and Education



First Department

Graduate Psychology and Counseling