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Developmental dyscalculia: A deficit in the approximate number system or an access deficit?
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Psychology. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Education, Teaching and Learning. Linköping University, Faculty of Educational Sciences.
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Psychology. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
2016 (English)In: Cognitive development, ISSN 0885-2014, E-ISSN 1879-226X, Vol. 39, p. 154-167Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Developmental dyscalculia (DD), a pervasive learning difficulty, affects 5-6% of the population. The current study sought to identify the underlying deficits by contrasting third graders (10-year old) performance against predictions made by two main hypotheses; the preverbal ANS and/or OTS and the access deficit. Through a mathematical and general cognitive screening, identified DD children were compared to individually matched controls on experimental tasks containing non-symbolic and symbolic tasks. DD children showed impairment on almost all symbolic tasks. Results on the non-symbolic tasks showed that DD children had poorer ANS acuity and reduced subitizing range. Most of the results were in support of the defective preverbal ANS and OTS hypothesis. However, as the effect sizes for the symbolic tasks were greater than for the non-symbolic, results indicate that the DD group was more impaired on the symbolic tasks. (C) 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
ELSEVIER SCIENCE INC , 2016. Vol. 39, p. 154-167
Keyword [en]
Dyscalculia; Approximate number system (ANS); Object tracking system (OTS); Access deficit; Non-symbolic and symbolic processing; Subitizing
National Category
Psychology (excluding Applied Psychology)
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-131713DOI: 10.1016/j.cogdev.2016.04.006ISI: 000381955000014OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-131713DiVA, id: diva2:1010240
Note

Funding Agencies|Swedish Council for Working Life and Social Research [Dnr 721-2011-2872]; Swedish Research Council [421-2007-1881]

Available from: 2016-10-03 Created: 2016-09-30 Last updated: 2018-01-10
In thesis
1. “Count on me!”: Mathematical development, developmental dyscalculia and computer-based intervention
Open this publication in new window or tab >>“Count on me!”: Mathematical development, developmental dyscalculia and computer-based intervention
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Alternative title[sv]
”Räkna med mig!” : Matematisk utveckling, dyskalkyli och datorbaserad intervention
Abstract [en]

A “sense” of number can be found across species, yet only humans supplement it with exact and symbolic number, such as number words and digits. However, what abilities leads to successful or unsuccessful arithmetic proficiency is still debated. Furthermore, as the predictability between early understanding of math and later achievement is stronger than for other subjects, early deficits can cause significant later deficits. The purpose of the current thesis was to contribute to the description of what aspects of non-symbolic and symbolic processing leads to later successful or unsuccessful arithmetic proficiency, and to study the effects of different designs of computer-programs on pre-school class aged children. The cognitive mechanisms underlying symbolic number processing and different arithmetic skills were mapped to discover their contributions to children’s proficiency. Findings show that the non-symbolic system continues to contribute to arithmetic performance, and that the general cognitive abilities’ contributions might vary with development. Moreover, more advanced mathematical skills were supported by less advanced. In order to investigate the underlying core deficit in DD, performance was contrasted with an individually matched control group on general cognitive abilities. Findings indicate that DD children are impaired on both nonsymbolic and symbolic processing, the most impairment on the symbolic measures. Furthermore, the results indicated subgroups. In order to investigate the effects of early intervention, three theoretically different designs of computer programs, designed in accordance to hypotheses of number processing were compared to a passive control group. Results revealed that even brief, daily arithmetic training utilizing theoretically different designs impacted different aspects of symbolic processing. The presented findings indicate that the non-symbolic system is the foundation for the symbolic system, and that DD is caused by a non-symbolic deficit. The present thesis also adds evidence that formal arithmetic is founded on precise representations, rather than approximate.

Abstract [sv]

En ”känsla” för antal finns hos flera arter, men enbart människan berikar denna med ett exakt och symboliskt system, t.ex. siffror. Det debatteras dock fortfarande vilka kognitiva förmågor som leder till mer eller mindre lyckad aritmetisk förmåga. Förutsägbarheten mellan tidig förståelse och senare matematikförmåga är dessutom starkare än för andra skolämnen. Tidiga nedsättningar kan således orsaka senare signifikanta nedsättningar. Syftet med avhandlingen var att bidra till beskrivningen av vilka aspekter av icke-symboliskt och symboliskt processande som bidrar till aritmetisk förmåga, samt att studera effekterna av olika teoretiskt designade datorbaserade träningsprogram på förskoleklassbarn. De kognitiva mekanismerna som ligger till grund för symboliskt nummerprocessande och olika aritmetiska förmågor kartlades för att upptäcka deras respektive bidrag hos barn med relativt välutvecklade symboliska system. Fynden visar att det icke-symboliska systemet fortsätter att bidra till aritmetik, och att de domän-generella kognitiva förmågornas bidrag kan variera med utveckling. Därtill, mer avancerade matematiska förmågor stöddes av mindre avancerade. I syfte att undersöka dyskalkylis underliggande orsak jämfördes dessa barn med en kontrollgrupp, individuellt matchad på domän-generella kognitiva förmågor. Resultaten visar att barnen med dyskalkyli uppvisade nedsättning på såväl icke-symboliska som symboliska mått, men störst nedsättning på de symboliska. Därtill indikerade resultatet subgrupper. I syfte att undersöka effekterna av tidig intervention jämfördes tre datorprogram, olikt designade i enlighet med nummerprocessande, med en passiv kontrollgrupp. Till och med kort, daglig aritmetisk träning gav effekt. De teoretiskt olika datorprogrammen påverkade olika symboliska mått. Avhandlingen indikerar att det icke-symboliska systemet ligger till grund för det symboliska, och att dyskalkyli orsakas av en icke-symbolisk nedsättning. Avhandlingen stödjer att formell aritmetik grundas på exakta representationer, snarare än approximativa.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2018. p. 71
Series
Linköping Studies in Arts and Science, ISSN 0282-9800 ; 728Linköping Studies in Behavioural Science, ISSN 1654-2029 ; 204
Keyword
mathematical development, symbolic number processing, Approximate number system, developmental dyscalculia, computer-based intervention, matematisk utveckling, symboliskt nummerprocessande, Approximativa nummersystemet, dyskalkyli, datorbaserad intervention
National Category
Psychology (excluding Applied Psychology)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-144196 (URN)9789176854099 (ISBN)
Public defence
2018-01-19, KEY1, Hus Key, Campus Valla, Linköping, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2018-01-10 Created: 2018-01-10 Last updated: 2018-01-12Bibliographically approved

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