There are 4 types of learning disabilities, which probably seems odd since there are so many big words describing them. Since learning disabilities are problems associated with the way the brain processes information, there really can only be four types of learning disabilities.
Information first flows in – input. There are two ways information typically flows in an education environment. It’s either by the eyes or the ears. Problems with processing these input methods are referred to as auditory and visual perception problems. An example of an auditory problem would be the brains inability to distinguish between individual sounds, and visually might be difficult seeing letters.
The second learning disability type would be the organization of that information once it enters the brain. This is referred to as an integration problem. To fully understand something the brain first has to put the information in order, then it must seek out the literal, abstract, and contextual meaning. And finally the brain must organize the information into complete thoughts. The brain may have problems at any step in this process.
The third type of learning disability deals with memory. Often times the brain has troubles storing information like reading the words in a sentence individually and at the same time understanding the full sentence. Besides that working memory, the brain should be able to retain short term information, long term information and on-going information. Brains really have to be smart, don’t they?
Finally, that information that was input, organized and remembered must at some point be communicated back out – output. This is the type you’ve most likely heard about as it involves writing, drawing, gesturing, and speaking. This is really the only learning disability that specifically involves muscles in the body. Not only does the brain have to remember what an E looks like, but also how to hold the pencil and how to move the hand in the shape of an E.
People with LD may have problems with just one or several of them at once. It is critical that you get tested to determine which of these types is yours. They are extremely specific strategies for overcoming all of them. Feel free to call us to talk about these tests. Let us get you going in the right direction.
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