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Lecture 1

PSY240H5 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Bsc Young Boys, Dextroamphetamine, Behaviour Therapy

Course Code
Norman Farb

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Learning Disorders – developmental
omeans the situation in which the childs achievement is lower than that
expected from his or her scores on the IQ tests
oFirst identified in the nineteenth century (healthy but can not read)
oReading disorders stem from a core deficit in phonological processing. (modern)
oIn Canada, the Education Act (1990) included the term learning disability to
define a subset of students that required special education programming.
DSM and Diagnostic Issues
oA Specific Learning Disorder is termed Neurodevelopmental Disorder.
oThere are four features for diagnosis:
1. Persistent difficulties learning despite the interventions that try to help with
the difficulties.
2. Performance of academic skills that are well below average age for the skill
3. Appearance of the learning difficulties in the school years
4. A recognition that learning difficulties are not attributable to other
neurological conditions or intellectual disabilities
oThe DSM-5 focuses on impairment in learning key academic skills including
reading single words accurately and fluently, reading comprehension, written
expression and spelling, arithmetic calculation, and mathematical reasoning.
oAccording to the DSM-5 Learning Disorder reflects a disruption to the normal
oThe DSM-5 does not focus on the underlying cognitive or psychological
processes for impairments in academic learning.
oAccording to the current Learning Disorders model a learning difficulty is not a
learning disability or disorder one have a very low IQ.
o This model has been challenged as a “waiting to fail” approach.
Specific Impairments:
oImpairment in Reading:
o Dyslexia difficulties in the recognition and compre thehension of
oFrom 2 to 8 % of children in the elementary grades have dyslexia.
oImpairment in Mathematics.

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o Known as dyscalculia problems with recognizing and understanding
numerical symbols, sequencing problems, and attention deficits.
o6 % of school-aged children have mathematical disorder.
oImpairment of Written Expression:
o Least well understood and most controversial
oNonverbal Learning Disabilities:
o “social perception” disabilitychildren have average verbal intelligence
but show impairments in reading facial expressions and body language,
interpreting maps, and learning to tell time.
oLearning disorders affect 8 percent of the general population
oImpairment of Reading are the most common and account for nearly 80 percent of
learning disorders, with more boys than girls.
oDyslexia show altered patterns of asymmetry in the language areas of the brain
and minor malformations of the cortex.
oThere is some evidence that dyslexia may be inherited
o Mode of transmission remains unclear
Social Factors
oSocial and Emotional Well-Being of Children With Learning Disorders:
oChildren and adolescents with learning disorders experience greater peer
victimization and bullying, social rejection, and more impoverished peer
oThey are also at greater risk for associated mental health problems,
including depression.
oLearning Disorders Across Cultures.
o Neurodevelopmentally based learning disorders are recognized globally,
supporting the observation that core deficits in cognitive processing are
How does temperament manifest early in development? (different theories)
Theories of attachment: Bowlby

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Interpersonal relationships can be understood in the
context of parent-child interactions.
Mother-infant relationship provides a secure base.
Theories of attachment: Harlow
Mechanisms of attachment in non-
human primates
Monkey experiement
Theories of attachment: Ainsworth
Strange situation paradigm.
Three attachment styles:
Disorganized attachment(Possible 4th attachment style? )
Developmental disorders: Attachment disorders
Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD).
Disinhibited Social Engagement Disorder.
Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD).
Occurs due to inadequate care.
Two clinical patters:
oEmotionally withdrawn/inhibited type
oIndiscriminately social/disinhibited type
Problem for clinicians:
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