[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
May 1971

Profile of the Disadvantaged Child With Learning Disorders

Author Affiliations

From the departments of pediatrics (Drs. Kappelman and Ganter) and community medicine (Miss Luck), Sinai Hospital of Baltimore; University of Maryland School of Medicine and Johns Hopkins University, School of Medicine (Dr. Kappelman), Baltimore.

Am J Dis Child. 1971;121(5):371-379. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1971.02100160041002

An analysis has been made of the first 100 disadvantaged children who were referred to a community hospital multidisciplinary Learning Disability Clinic. Of particular importance in this population were organic perceptual handicaps (33%) with preponderance of visual-motor difficulties, and the functional area of psychosocial disorders (35%). Secondary diagnoses of overlay psychosocial disorders were made in an additional 34% of the population studied necessitating intervention. Boy:girl ratio was over 2:1 in the overall group, 3:1 in the psychosocial group, and equal among the mentally retarded. The study attempts to define "learning disabilities" and categorize specific etiologic causes for this major educational problem, and discusses the psychometric test results as well as the birth and health factors of the children in each diagnostic category. Family adequacy and family motivation studies are reviewed. Of the 100 children referred, 52 are realizing significant progress.