Published online before print April 7, 2010,...
FULL TEXT can be viewed 'free' by signing in. http://ldx.sagepu...5.abstract Spatial Working Memory and Arithmetic Deficits in Children With Nonverbal Learning Difficulties
Irene Cristina Mammarella
University of Padova, Department of Developmental Psychology, Italy,
University of Padova, Department of Developmental Psychology, Italy
University of Padova, Department of General Psychology, Italy
Visuospatial working memory and its involvement in arithmetic were examined in two groups of 7- to 11-year-olds: one comprising children described by teachers as displaying symptoms of nonverbal learning difficulties (N = 21), the other a control group without learning disabilities (N = 21). The two groups were matched for verbal abilities, age, gender, and sociocultural level. The children were presented with a visuospatial working memory battery of recognition tests involving visual, spatial-sequential and spatial-simultaneous processes, and two arithmetic tasks (number ordering and written calculations). The two groups were found to differ on some spatial tasks but not in the visual working memory tasks. On the arithmetic tasks, the children with nonverbal learning difficulties made more errors than controls in calculation and were slower in number ordering. A discriminant function analysis confirmed the crucial role of spatial-sequential working memory in distinguishing between the two groups. Results are discussed with reference to spatial working memory and arithmetic difficulties in nonverbal learning disabilities. Implications for the relationship between visuospatial working memory and arithmetic are also considered.
Edited by justfoundout on February 05 2011 01:23 AM