Important Dyscalculia Screening Tests For Adults You Must Know About

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Dyscalculia is not a disease that can be cured. It is a biological disorder emerging from a differently constituted neurological framework in people. Young learners tend to drop out of school due to their inability to express discomfort with numbers. Also, they find it taxing to deal with the peer comparison, for which they are not prepared. It is estimated that more than 3% of the population could have dyscalculia. Since there was no such term in use, no screening test or solution was possible either. Thankfully, now people can be assessed systematically for this disorder and provided with relevant solutions.

What are Dyscalculia Screening tests for Adults?

Dyscalculia Screening tests meant for adults are a battery of tests through which the severity of the problem can be assessed to offer relevant solutions. These tests comprise screening of mathematical aptitude, psychometry, and operational fluency[1], and serve purposes such as:

  • Mathematical aptitude screening test: Ascertains presence of conditions like math anxiety and discomfort with numbers
  • Operational fluency test: This test helps find out memory issues and difficulty level faced while remembering numers, deriving number sense and performing numeric calculations
  • Psychometry test: With the help of psychometry screening test, experts assess the suitability of learning interventions as per the discomfort that adultys display towards numbers and operations.

Standard tests as per the recommendations of Trinity College Dublin that can help screen all aspects of Dyscalculia are – The Adult Reading Test, Wide Range Achievement Test (WRAT), Woodcock Reading Mastery Revised (WRMT-R), and Weschler Adult Intelligence Scale – Third Edition.

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Online Dyscalculia Screening Tests for Free

Apart from standardized screening and evaluation methods like WJ-IV, WIAT-III tests, and sub-tests, there are several informal ways that can help adults self-test themselves. These self-test tools are available in the form of web applications. An adult can find and understand the gap in cognition ability, numeric calculation ability, and several other learning-focused truths about themselves through these informal web app tests.

Uses of screening procedures for adult dyscalculics

You must know that screening and evaluation are two different procedures designed keeping specific outcomes in mind. The purpose of screening dyscalculics, unlike evaluation, is not to pinpoint any learning disability, but to understand requirements for designing the workplace.

Also, the mandates laid out by relevant UN Conventions are to be employed in making modifications in places of public importance (to avoid accidents) and also for modifying qualifying criteria (alternative to checking arithmetic proficiency). The idea is to make feasible working conditions for adults everywhere so that their intelligence and creativity can be utilized too. These matters can be handled well by collecting screening data through tests designed for adults.

Why Screening Tests Are Recommended

What adults suffer from is developmental dyscalculia and learning disability caused due to traumatic injury of the brain. They exhibit symptoms like poor spatial reasoning, inability to manage money or follow multiple instructions; in addition, there is terrible math anxiety too. Despite all these issues, the creativity and intelligence of dyscalculics are undisputable[2]. Hence, screening tests are a must as these deliver the following benefits:

  • Screening tests allow knowing about test designs or interview contents which can enable a dyscalculic to pass the mandatory requirements of a job where they can employ their positives and contribute as per the ability.
  • Dyscalculia in adults can be the result of many issues. E.Klein, et al, studied various researches done by past in their study and attributed dyscalculia to brain impairments like problem in number processing area, difficulty in language processing, etc. Screening tests help find out the problem so that the most effective interventions can be made.
  • Correct screening is essential to avoid development of mental illness’s symptoms. It causes socioeconomic issue as a sizable workforce is forced to give up opportunities due to inability to work like others. Denial to jobs and fair chances hits dyscalculics mentally; managing it hits countries’ economy in dual manner. First, the deserving individuals don’t get opportunities to work. Secondly, mental illness management is itself a huge cost to bear[3]. Thus, correct screening at right time can help adults find the way around dyscalculia.
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Summing up,

Dyscalculia got recognition as a learning disability, and eventually various laws to make education, occupations, etc. inclusive came into force. All these changes could not be brought without correct assessment or screening tests. Now the only challenge that remains is to encourage people to open up and communicate the problems they face. Thankfully, with initiatives like National Dyslexia Awareness Month, involved entities work together on ways to bridge the gap and create inclusive models of living suitable for people with learning disabilities.

References

  • Screening for Dyscalculia within HE, Nigel Beacham & Tott, MSOR Connections Journal, Loughborough University, 2005
  • Creative Thinking and Dyscalculia: Conjectures About a Still Unexplored Link, An Opinion Article by Sara, et al, 2021, Department of Psychology, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Milan, Italy
  • The Diagnosis and Treatment of Dyscalculia, Stefan Haberstroh, et al, Dtsch Arztebl Int. 2019 Feb; 116(7): 107–114.

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