This paper describes two myths that circulate widely about the potential of students with Learning Disabilities to learn mathematics: (1) that students with Learning Disabilities cannot benefit from inquiry-based instruction in mathematics, and only from explicit instruction; and (2) that students with Learning Disabilities cannot construct their own mathematical strategies and do not benefit from engaging with multiple strategies. In this paper, I will describe how these myths have developed, and identify research that counters these myths. I argue that these myths are the unintended consequences of deficit constructions of students with Learning Disabilities in educational research. Using neurodiversity to frame disability as diversity rather than deficit, I assert that students with Learning Disabilities can learn mathematics to the highest levels, and that these limiting mythologies hold them back.
Lambert, R. (2018). “Indefensible, illogical, and unsupported”; Countering deficit mythologies about the potential of students with learning disabilities in mathematics. Education Sciences, 8: 72. doi: 10.3390/educsci8020072
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