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What is a Specific Learning Disability?
Specific Learning Disabilities
The term "Specific Learning Disability" has a number of definitions, but a standard adopted by many, including U.S. Legislation, is:
A "deficit performance standard" has been widely adopted to more precisely quantify Child Learning Disabilities, and to qualify students for federal special education funds and services. Deficit performance standard is a model that measures a student's general IQ score, and tests their academic performance using a variety of achievement tests. If the actual achievement level is 2 or more years behind expected level (based on the IQ score), a specific learning disability is presumed to be present and the cause of the deficit.
These definitions and their application as described often may lead to vague and arbitrary classification of a student as LD (Learning Disabled). The classification alone does little or nothing to guide treatment or uncover the real cause of the learning struggle.