Evaluation of Children with Reading Difficulties - Article

ABSTRACT: Reading difficulties are common and are associated with poor long-term academic achievement. Evaluation of a child's developmental, educational, and family histories in conjunction with standardized screening tests (e.g., Ages and Stages Questionnaires, Parents' Evaluation of Developmental Status, Safety Word Inventory and Literacy Screener) can increase recognition of risk factors for reading difficulties. Validated, office-based, standardized screening tests and school-administered standardized achievement tests (e.g., California Achievement Tests, Iowa Tests of Basic Skills, Metropolitan Achievement Tests, Stanford Achievement Test) can be used to assess school-age children with reading difficulties. Reading difficulties in children often are caused by environmental and organic risk factors. However, many children have reading or learning disabilities and will have lifelong difficulties with reading despite adequate intervention. Children with substantial reading difficulties should receive a full educational assessment. There is good evidence that individualized instruction emphasizing increased phonologic awareness can have a favorable long-term effect on academic achievement.

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