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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Inhibition Performance in Children with Math Disabilities

  • Author(s): Winegar, Kathryn Lileth
  • Advisor(s): Swanson, H. Lee
  • et al.

This study examined the inhibition deficit hypothesis in children with math disabilities (MD). Children with and without MD were compared on two inhibition tasks that included the random generation of numbers and letters. The results addressed three hypotheses. Weak support was found for the first hypothesis which stated difficulties related to inhibition are significantly related to math performance. I found partial support for this hypothesis in that inhibition was related to math problem solving, but not calculation. Further, only global measures of inhibition predicted math problem solving accuracy. Support was found for the second hypothesis which stated that performance for children with MD varies significantly from children without MD students on inhibition tasks. Deficits for children with MD were isolated to global performance on the random generation tasks. No support was found for the third hypothesis that inhibition deficits were isolated to number tasks among subgroups with math disabilities. The expected outcome for this study was that children identified with MD will exhibit greater inhibition difficulties than the non-MD group. This was obtained, however, it was specific to one inhibition measure, random letter generation, and solely to the math subgroup that showed more pervasive math deficits.

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