Magazine article University Business

Help in Addressing Learning Disabilities

Magazine article University Business

Help in Addressing Learning Disabilities

Article excerpt

ANY ADMINISTRATOR KNOWS THAT STUDENTS WHO struggle academically are more likely to drop out. While colleges and universities might have programs in place to address these challenges, another perspective is always helpful. "I think the presidents and deans are looking at it as a retention problem, not a learning problem," suggests Steve Fadden, a vice president at Landmark College (Vt.). Serving students with AD/HD, anxiety disorders, Asperger's syndrome, and other "invisible disabilities" is Landmark's mission, and now Landmark is providing workshops and training to K-20 educators to help them better serve this population through the Landmark College Institute for Re search and Training. "We go to individual institutions and help them identify what they are doing well and where they need to improve," Fadden says, adding that the Institute "helps raise awareness about what we are doing, but also raise the issue that 'learning disabilities' aren't unique to students with labels."

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He says that, as medical science becomes better at diagnosing and labeling these challenges, it is easier for educators to address them, such as through teaching strategies like Universal Design, which are meant to address learning challenges and will often benefit the general population, as well. …

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