Learning Disabilities And Cognitive Development Essay

1337 words - 6 pages

Learning disabilities and cognitive development

Effects of learning disabilities on cognitive development
Within our society today people are forced to realize that others learn in a variety of different methods. One aspect that many people do not take into account however is the impact of learning disabilities have on the cognitive development of an individual. According to the National Center for Learning Disabilities, there are around 2.4 million students that have diagnosed learning disabilities that are receiving special education services [ (Team, 2014) ]. This accounts for approximately 4-5% of the total number of students being taught in schools today. With such a significant ...view middle of the document...

Piaget outlines the third stage of cognitive development as the concrete stage. During this stage children develop the use of logical thinking and an awareness of externalized stimuli. The fourth stage presented by Piaget is the formal operational stage, and is the point in the development process in which a person is able to utlize multiple different facets of learning and information to form educated opinions and guesses about the world around them. Piaget outlines each stage to accompy an approximate age range that a person would experience these levels of development. The sensorimotor stage begins at birth and goes through about 2 years in age, followed by the preoperational stage lasting from about age 2 to age 7. The concrete operational stage typically begins developing around age 7 and lasts through age 11, and the formal operational stage goes from adolescence thru adulthood. With the stages of cognitive development outlined, and with a numerical age assigned to the approximation of these stages, it is important to know what the milestones and risk factors are during each of these stages in order to monitor the cognitive development of an individual.
With the wide variety of different learning disabilities that effect people today, it is important to understand the different risk factors and milestones that are associated with each of the different stages of cognitive development as presented by Piaget. According to an article released by the National Joint Committee on Learning Disabilities, the four main catagories of risk factors include perinatal conditions, genetic/environmental conditions, developmental milestones, and attention and behavior (Gartland & Strosnider, 2007). Under the developmental milestones portion of the list, Gartland and Strosnider specifially mention three separate indicators under cognitive skills that could be result of a learning disability. An inability to demonstrate object permanence is the first one listed, and is a direct point in Piagets development model for the sensorimotor stage of cognitive development. This could be indicitive of a learning disability being present from early on in the life of an individual, and would potentially have a long lasting effect on the overall cognitive development of that individual. The second risk indicator listed under delayed cognitive skills refers to the means-ends relationship, and is something that is developed during the preoperational stage of development. Also in the preoperational stage of development is the third risk indicator of a lack of symbolic play behaviors (Gartland & Strosnider, 2007). Considering only these three risk indicators that are listed, it is easy to see that learning disabilities can be present at even very young ages. Many of the other risk factors that are outlined can also have direct impacts on the cognitive development of an individual.
With the understanding of what cognitive development is, and some of the risk factors that...

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