General Reading

Dyscalculia IELTS Reading with Answers

Practice Dyscalculia IELTS Reading Passage with Answers

READING PASSAGE – 2

Dyscalculia

dyscalculia ielts reading

Dyscalculia is defined as difficulty in acquiring basic arithmetic skills that is not explained by low intelligence or inadequate schooling. About 5 percent of children in primary schools are affected, which is a relatively constant figure across the countries of the world. Children with dyscalculia are likely to struggle in maths lessons, which often leads to anxiety and low self-esteem. Numeracy problems impact more negatively on job prospects than literacy problems, so dyscalculia is very likely to affect people into adulthood.

Dyscalculia is often associated with mental disorders, but the causes of it are not clearly understood. There is, however, evidence to suggest that dyscalculia may have a genetic component. If one identical twin has the condition, there is a chance of around 70 percent that the other twin will also be dyscalculic. For non-identical twins, who have less genetic material in common than identical twins, yet also share the same environment, this chance is lower, at around 55 percent.

Difficulty in learning arithmetic, like difficulty in learning to read and write, is a common learning disorder in childhood. Many affected children acquire a negative approach to counting and arithmetic, which, in turn, often develops into a specific mathematics anxiety or even a generalised school phobia. Unless specifically treated, dyscalculia persists into adulthood and it can lastingly impair personality development, schooling, and occupational training. Dyscalculia is also an economic issue, as adults with poor arithmetic skills suffer a major disadvantage in the job market.

The mental disorders commonly associated with dyscalculia are expensive to treat. Thus, the early recognition and differential identification of learning disorders are an important matter, not just for child psychiatrists, who must often deal with the secondary conditions that arise from these disorders, but also for general practitioners and pediatricians, as the delayed acquisition of prescholastic skills in the nursery and kindergarten years may already be an early sign of a problem.

The process of developing number skills requires some knowledge of cognitive neuroscience. Functional imaging studies have shown that, with increasing practice and expertise, number skills are centered in multiple brain areas. Number-words are processed in the speech areas of the left brain region and Arabic numerals in the back of the brain. Basic numerical representations and the numerical-spatial representations that develop later on are processed on both sides of the brain, and these latter processes become increasingly functionally specialised as a child grows older and acquires more education.

The development and maturation in children of these domain-specific brain functions depend on the maturation of numerous domain-specific or multi-domain functions, including attention and working memory language, sensorimotor function and visuospatial ideation. This development also depends on a child’s learning over time and the type of teaching methods used on the child. Clearly, at any time in a child’s development, many different factors could disturb or delay the maturation of these neural networks, causing clinically evident manifestations of various kinds, including dyscalculia.

When dyscalculia is suspected, a detailed diagnostic evaluation is needed in order to take proper account of the complexity of this learning disorder and to produce an accurate picture of the affected child’s particular strengths and weaknesses in the area of numbers and calculations. The diagnostic instruments used for this purpose are of two main types: the curricular and the neuropsychological.

As the affected children often perform far below grade level on numerical and calculating tasks, the use of curricular tests related to grade alone may not yield a complete picture of the actual performance deficit. This can, in turn, lead to inappropriate interventions with little promise of efficacy, because the child’s performance is not really at the level for which the intervention was designed.

Some experts have questioned whether it is practical from an educational point of view to distinguish dyscalculic people from others with low maths ability. Others suggest that such differentiation is important because dyscalculic people need training on very simple number concepts which other people, including those who have low maths ability for other reasons, take for granted.

The effective treatment of dyscalculia demands special expertise, which is most likely to be found among graduates of specialised training, and continuing-education programs that have been certified by recognised professional associations. Recently, bachelor’s and master’s degree programs for specific training in learning therapy targeting dyscalculia have been initiated at universities and professional training institutes.

Learning therapies can be carried out either in school, in conjunction with school, or outside school. As a rule, interventions can succeed only when they are ecologically valid, i.e., when they can take effect in the setting of the child’s everyday life.

A further role for the treating physician or psychologist may be to point out that an established legal framework exists (dependent on country) for giving the affected persons special means to compensate for their learning difficulty in situations calling for high performance, including situations where their performance will be evaluated. Whatever opportunities of this kind are available should be tried out in the individual case and made use of where appropriate.

In summary, the main roles of the treating pediatrician or family physician centres are on the early recognition of dyscalculia and directing the child’s parents and other carers towards appropriate counseling regarding diagnostic and therapeutic measures. Early recognition largely depends on information provided by the child’s parents or other carers.

Depending on the age of the child, specific questions should be asked about his or her understanding of quantity, counting skills, and mathematical performance in school to date. The history should also include questions about any secondary disturbances that might be present, for example, dislike of school, mathematics anxiety, and school phobia.

Questions 14 – 20
Complete the summary using the words in the box below. Write your answers in boxes 14 – 20 on your answer sheet.

Dyscalculia

Dyscalculia (problems with arithmetic, but not due to aptitude or education) sufferers can exhibit stress or reduced (14)_______________ from childhood to adulthood. The causes are unknown, but there are proven links to (15)_______________. Child sufferers can develop a bad (16)_______________ to mathematics and even a fear of (17)_______________ itself. Without treatment, dyscalculia does not go away and can affect character and job prospects.

Prompt (18)_______________ is vital for stakeholders, as slow progress at school will be evident from early on. Cognitive neuroscience explains the mechanics of number skills are processed by the different areas of the brain. The (19)_______________ areas of the brain develop specialization as a child ages. The development of child is dependent on a variety of factors and is also affected by the child’s experience and the (20)_______________ used on the child.

Diagnosis Scores Inheritance Pollution
Attitude Forward Lateral Society
Education Confidence Isolation Pedagogy

Questions 21 – 26
Do the following statements agree with the views of the writer of the text?
In boxes 21 – 26 on your answer sheet write:

YES – if the statement agrees with the writer’s views
NO – if the statement doesn’t agree with the writer’s views
NOT GIVEN – if it is impossible to say what the writer thinks about this

21. Neuropsychological diagnostic tests for dyscalculia are not appropriate when a child is also suffering from dyslexia.
22. Age-specific tests exploring a child’s dyscalculia can easily not be suitable due to the child’s lower educational performance.
23. Teachers often include differentiated approaches in mainstream classes where dyscalculic children are integrated.
24. Universities have just started offering courses designed to address problems relating to dyscalculia.
25. In order to be effective, dyscalculia treatment should be done away from where a child spends most of his/her time.
26. It should not be a doctor’s role to recommend how the parents of dyscalculic children obtain advice.


Dyscalculia IELTS Reading Answers

14. CONFIDENCE

15. INHERITANCE

16. ATTITUDE

17. EDUCATION

18. DIAGNOSIS

19. LATERAL

20. PEDAGOGY

21. NOT GIVEN

22. YES

23. NOT GIVEN

24. YES

25. NO

26. NO

Also Check: Bioremediation IELTS Reading with Answers General

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button
error: Content is protected !!