Textbook Notes (280,000)
CA (160,000)
UTSG (10,000)
PSY (3,000)
Chapter 9

psy341 - chapter 9 intellectual disability.doc

Course Code
Ross Hetherington

This preview shows pages 1-3. to view the full 9 pages of the document.
Chapter 9: Intellectual Disability (Mental Retardation)
- intellectual disability characterized by significant limitations in both intellectual
functioning and adaptive behaviour beginning before age 18
- mental retardation not a mental disorder; medical disorder instead
oaxis II of DSM-IV-TR (stable condition)
Intelligence and Mental Retardation
- late 18th c:
oVictor (“wild boy of Aveyron”)
ohumanitarian efforts against oppressed or neglected groups
- mid 19th c:
oHowe: training and educating the “feeble-minded” was a public
Opened first humanitarian institution in North American for
persons with mental retardation
- 1940s: parents forming organizations to increase care
- 1950: National Association for Retarded Children
- the Eugenics Scare
oevolutionary degeneracy theory (19th c) – intellectual and social problems
of children with mental retardation due to regression to earlier period in
human evolution
“missing link” between humans and lower species
Down: evolutionary throwback to the Mongol race
Explanation for insanity, mental deficiency, and social deviance
oEugenics – the science which deals with all influences that improve the
inborn qualities of a race
ofocus on society’s needs: must be protected from people with MR
MR = lack of moral fibre (“moral imbecile” or “moron”)
Defining and Measuring Children’s Intelligence and Adaptive Behaviour
- Binet and Simon (1900)- developed first intelligence tests to measure judgement
and reasoning
oStanford-Binet scale
-General intellectual functioning – defined by IQ, based on assessment with one
or more of the standardized, individually administered intelligence tests (WISC-
IV, SB5, or KABC-II)
oVerbal, visual-spatial skills, reasoning, similarities and differences,
mathematical concepts
-adaptive functioning – how effectively individuals cope with ordinary life
demands, and how capable they are of living independently and abiding by
community standards

Only pages 1-3 are available for preview. Some parts have been intentionally blurred.

osome adapt well despite low IQ = not considered to have MR
The Controversial IQ
- intelligence relatively stable over time (scored according to peer group)—largely
innate but can be shaped by environment
ocorrelation high between IQ at age 4 and 12
ovirtually no correlation between before first birthday and age 12
- developmental delays and MR
oIQ more stable from infancy to adulthood
- proper environmental stimulus needed to help children reach fullest potential
oinfancy through early childhood most significant opportunity for
influencing intellectual ability due to rapid brain development and
response to environmental stimulation
- the “Flynn effect” – IQ rising over last few decades (3 IQ points per decade)
orising standards of living, better schooling, better nutrition, medical
advances, more stimulating environments, influence of computer games
and complex toys?
oPermissive and child-focused parenting style may give children greater
facility with language and stronger overall cognitive capacity
oCultural differences between successive generations
oDownside: test scores drop an average of 5.6 points among persons with
borderline and mild MR—impact on eligibility for educational placement
- IQ differences between ethnic groups
oEnvironment and culture? SES? Inequality?
Features of Intellectual Disabilities
- widest variation in cognitive and behavioural abilities of any childhood disorder
- see lecture notes on MR
- definition somewhat inaccurate and arbitrary since largely based on statistical
concept (IQ cutoff)
omild diagnosis common but hard to pin-down
oalso depends on environment in which child’s intellect is being matched
Degrees of Impairment
- based primarily on IQ (see lecture notes)
- mild mental retardation
otypically not identified until early elementary years
ooverrepresentation of minority group members
omodest delays in expressive language
ominimal or no sensorimotor impairment
oengage with peers readily
ocan acquire academic skills up to approximately 6th-grade level

Only pages 1-3 are available for preview. Some parts have been intentionally blurred.

oadequate social and vocation skills in adulthood for minimum self-support
but may need supervision, assistance
ousually live in community
- moderate mental retardation
oidentified during preschool years
oentering school: communicate through combination of single words and
self-care and motor skills similar to 2-3 year old
oDown syndrome
oRequire a few supportive services to function on a daily basis; some
throughout life
oPractical communication skills by age 12
oUnlikely to progress beyond 2nd-grade academic level
oDifficulty recognizing social conventions
oTypically adapt well enough to live in community
- severe mental retardation
omost suffer from organic causes—genetic defects
oself-care acquired by age 9
oproblems with physical mobility, health related problems(respiratory,
heart, etc)
ospecial assistance required throughout life
oacademic and adaptive abilities similar to 4-6 year old
olive in group homes or with families; require specialized nursing
- profound mental retardation
oconsiderable impairments in sensorimotor functions
oare able to learn rudiments of communication
orequire intensive training to learn basic eating, grooming, toileting, and
dressing behaviour
oage 4 = responsiveness of a 1-year old
oorganic causes
oco-occurring medical conditions—congenital heart defect or epilepsy
often lead to death in childhood or early adulthood
orequire very close supervision
Level of Needed Support
- AAIDD categorizes persons with MR according to need for supportive services
oIntermittent, limited, extensive, pervasive (see lecture notes)
oEmphasis on interaction between person and environment in determining
level of functioning (not IQ like DSM)
Race, Sex, and SES Prevalence
- 1-3% of population
- 2M:1F (but decreasing to 1.5:1 among severe forms)
oMay be artefact of identification and referral patterns
You're Reading a Preview

Unlock to view full version