Academic achievement and progress status associated factors in minimally brain injured children

Date

1970

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Abstract

The study was an investigation of academic achievement and factors associated with differences in academic progress in minimally brain injured children. Data for the study were obtained from file records of the Houston Independent School District Special Services Center on pupils enrolled In special education classes for minimally brain injured children. Such children, in spite of apparent normal or above normal intellectual potential, were unable to adjust to or profit from the regular school program, presumably because of neurologically-based learning and/or behavior problems, and, therefore, had been placed in special education classes. A Criterion Instrument was developed, as part of the study, to delineate academic achievement criteria to be used to identify the "poor progressor" and "good progressor" children in the special education program. This instrument was designed to include information of classroom grade level performance, educational achievement test grade level status, and specific professional comments and recommendations indicative of academic progress status. Such criteria were found to be meaningful and reliable indications of pupil academic progress status. The poor progressors and good progressors classified on this basis showed significant differences on the individual Criterion Instrument item measures. The poor progressor and good progressor groups, classified on the basis of the Criterion Instrument assessment of progress status, were then matched for age, IQ, sex, race, special education experience, and socio-economic status. Forty matched pairs were selected; twenty pairs each were assigned at random to form the equated initial and cross-validation samples for the Predictor Indices investigation. The Predictor Indices were developed and used in the study to investigate factors related to the progress status of minimally brain injured children. These Indices included items concerned with physical history, family and home situation, school history, learning asset and liability patterns, and behavioral symptoms. The Predictor Indices factors that showed the anticipated significant relationship to poor academic progress status in the cross-validation or combined Initial and cross-validation samples are as follows: (a) greater physical defect incidence and degree of significance for school performance, (b) greater incidence of somatic complaints unrelated to neurological involvement, (c) greater need for medical attention significantly related to school performance, (d) greater frequency of EEG evidence of neurological involvement, (e) greater number of children in the home, (f) higher incidence of parent physical and emotional health problems, (g) greater frequency of less parent educational achievement, (h) greater incidence of parent-child relationship disturbance, (1) higher frequency of leniency and Inconsistency in child management and parental rejection, overprotection, and lack of cooperation with professional school personnel, (j) greater Incidence of grade repetition prior to special class enrollment, (k) less personal educational special services received prior to MBI class placement, (1) lower grade status at the time of special class placement, (m) fewer liabilities and greater assets evidenced In learning modality functioning prior to special education placement, and (n) lower activity level and less general expressive behavior prior to special class enrollment. These findings suggest that the Predictor Indices have value for practical application. The indices may be helpful in selecting pupils who are likely to benefit from special class placement. A preliminary Indices evaluation would also aid in detecting negative influences that require correction or modification before proper academic achievement can be effected.

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Keywords

Academic achievement, Slow learning children

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