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Resources for students


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Joined: Jul 09, 2006
Posts: 1
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Posted Jul 09, 2006 at 6:00:44 AM
Subject: Resources for students

Hello, im a student at the Art Institute of Seattle, and im looking for resources to find out if my school or an organization will help pay for an evaluation to find out if i have a learning disability or if i have ADHD.

Im new to the atmosphere of LD and ADHD lifestyle but im trying to find alternatives to my problem.

Some problems im seeing that come up are:

1. I have a block of concentration. A thousand things go off in my mind, yet i cannot focus on simple ideas.
2. I will specifically ask more questions than usual to clarify an idea or thought. Yet my mind is cluttered because of too much information. Theres too much information and its not clear enough.
3. I have a hard time with memory and remembering simple ideas in my mind.
4. I get easily frustrated over simple ideas.
5. I avoid reading and writing tasks. I browse by pictures and shapes.
6. I have trouble summarizing
7. I have trouble with open-ended questions on tests
8. I have difficulty adjusting to new settings
9. I have to work slowly
9. I have poor grasp of abstract concepts
10. I either pay too little attention to details or focus on them too much
11. I misread information
12. I have a hard time focusing when music is playing

If anyone has any similar situations please respond to the topic or email me at archmail@gmail.com i would really appreciate it.

Thanks for your time.

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itsmethere
Joined Jul 07, 2005
Posts: 48

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Posted:Jul 09, 2006 2:03:56 PM

I am a 22 year old female college student (have one more year of college remaining if all goes well)and I am diagnosed with a Nonverbal Learning Disability and a reading disorder (reading comprehension).

Almost all the difficulties that you have described jive with me. Since I have experienced a neuropsychological evaluation (LD testing or neuropsych for short)once-- it was a year ago and that's when I got diagnosed, I gather that anyone who has consistent difficulties of a cognitive sort gets diagnosed with a learning disability on testing (though many people who would otherwise get diagnosed don't get tested). However, since the difficulties that you've described are very generic for people with learning difficulties, I don't think anyone on this forum can predict what you will be labeled with, and I deeply believe that the name of learning disorder doesn't really matter. Since distinct glitches in the brain can yield overlapping symptoms, sharing a label doesn't mean that the problems are absolutely identical. Those labels are, for the most part, shortcuts for symptoms.

Usually, initial neuropsych is very comprehensive and emphasizes breadth over depth. (This is true also because that's what it should be like for the documentation to be considered valid for accomodations). Thus you will be tested on things that are your strength as well as on things that are your weakness and although you may want the testing to focus more on strengths, it just tests a little of everything.

Specifically, the domains the neuropsych will cover are:

--IQ test ( almost certainly WAIS III, which itself tests diverse and distinct abilities--you may do great on some subtests and poor on others. Your overall IQ is basically an average of your performance in different cognitive areas; basically an overall ability which is an average of many abilities).
--Academic Achievement (Reading, Writing and Math) and will certainly include timed fluency measures)
--Memory and Acquisition of new Information (stuff like your memory for a word list, for a story, etc. will be tested).
--Visual-spatial-organizational skills (WAIS III has subtests which test that, so you may or may not have additional visual-spatial tests)
--Executive Function (ability to plan and control thought processes--certain WAIS III subtests may be considered evaluations of that or you may be given separate tests for this area as well.

The neuropsych should not yield any surprises--you know what your strengths and weaknesses are--it will just highlight and emphasize them; it is also common for your weaknesses to look weaker on testing than they are in reality since your weaknesses are being put under a microscope while in real life, you aren't in a high pressured testing situation, also your strengths compensate for your weaknesses. A neuropsych is primarily good because it gets you accomodations (like extended time on tests, etc.) Just don't let it destroy your self-esteem. Another well-meaning piece of advice: research about the WAIS and other common neuropsych tests. If it's online, it's totally legal and going for your neuropsych cold is likely to make you look weaker than you are. I've made that mistake; I had no clue what's going on, what tests I am being administered and thus I feel I underperformed in several areas relative to my true ability.

I am a financial aid student at a top private liberal arts college so it paid a huge chunk of my neuropsych fee. I kept going to my college's Learning and Teaching/Disability center telling them I have difficulites and have thus managed to get referred for a neuropsych testing and, again, since I am a financial aid student, the college paid a substancial portion of the fee. The neuropsychologist who tested me charged $1054 total; the college paid $ 740 of that price, while my parents paid $ 314. I don't know whether your institution does the same, so you will need to find out that yourself. And good luck with everything. If you have any more questions, feel free to ask.
[Modified by: itsmethere (itsmethere) on July 09, 2006 03:14 PM]

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