Learning Disabilities And Disorders Essay

1680 words - 7 pages

Behavior among youth, specifically adolescents, has often been stereotyped as rebellious and problematic. The first formal studying of adolescence, in psychology, didn't even occur until 1904 (Hall, 1904). This makes adolescence psychology fairly new but our understanding of behaviors and cognitive development during this age has come a long way; especially in our knowledge and research into adaptive behaviors and learning disabilities/disorders. These disorders range from the well-known, such as autism, ADHD, dyslexia, and Asperger's syndrome to the less known, such as William's Syndrome and Dyspraxia. There is a lot of research that has been done over the years on all these ...view middle of the document...

Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders are shown to cause growth retardation, cognitive retardation, craniofacial dysmorphology (disfigured skull shapes), and neurobehavioral deficits (Molteno, 2013). They have strong effects on cognitive abilities to children and adolescents. This disorder impairs intellectual development and greatly impairs social development; directly affecting adaptive behaviors. Adaptive behavior is the term used for the broad science of psychology (Perrin & Klein, 1926). This includes the social problems faced with children and adolescents in problem behaviors. This new definition is very crucial because it is in fact an age related idea. Lacking the necessary cognitive abilities to develop socially and intellectually has strong effects on youth as shown in these studies. Most studies with FASD required timeline follow-back techniques which include remembering "accurately" the amounts of X drug consumed in a given time period (Schry, 2013). This obviously has much criticism for its validity.
These and several other learning disorders have long been studied with adaptive behavior. The first study of adaptive behavior that I found was an article written in 1926 as an introductory course into psychology (Perrin & Klein, 1926). They describe this as the “science of adaptive behavior”. While this is a crude term by today’s standards it was a stepping stone for studies into disorders and how they affect this topic. This definition has evolved to and now is known as the performance of an individual in daily activities which are involved in personal and social functioning (Tan, 2012). This idea has been consistently researched among these varying disorders. There are also studies on effective "treatments" involving varying techniques.
A study done by Molteno et al. (2013) they used the method of timeline follow-back to conduct a study on FAS both partial and diagnosed infants. This technique was used to get a range of alcohol abuse while the mother was pregnant. This study was done from 85 mothers living in Cape Coloured. Their infants were recorded during free play or feedings at 6 and half months of birth on 127 different occasions. At 13 months infant temperament was assessed using a survey of 119. Some of the confounds associated with this study include iron deficiency, sociodemographic, and psychological correlates. The children were then diagnosed with FAS/PFAS at 5 years, cognitive and affective function at 5-9years. It is assumed that this was a proper diagnosis because the study includes that it was done by an expert dysmorphologist. By taking these variables together they assessed that the direct link to infant affective function was the prenatal alcoholism. The primary variable here was nothing manipulated by the researchers as they could only use a questionnaire to find out the degree of alcohol abuse during pregnancy. This effects on IQ at varying ages was very disturbing and the temperament issues...

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