Learning disability is a neurological disorder of psychological or language processing resulting from abnormalities in the cerebral cortex of the cerebrum. Our cerebral cortex houses many different cognitive functions, such as attention, encoding of new information, retention of newly learned material, word knowledge, reasoning, processing speed, reading, math computation skills, writing, comprehension of verbal instructions, and many others. These cognitive functions allow us to communicate with others, learn new information, understand requests and questions, express our thoughts and questions, and solve daily problems. However, some children do not develop these cognitive abilities at the rate their peers do. As a result, their thinking, language, and learning skills are not as strong as those of other children and prevent them from acquiring academic skills and daily living skills.
Not all cognitive skills are necessarily weak in this case and each child develops his/her own pattern of cognitive weaknesses and strengths. As a neuropsychologist, it`s my job to assess and examine the pattern of cognitive strengths and weaknesses in each child. It helps tremendously to know which cognitive skills are strong and which are weak in order to decide which therapies, remediation and educational services a child needs in order to learn better.
When I talk about learning styles and academic difficulties with parents, they always ask what might have caused these learning problems and cognitive weaknesses. Most children are born with congenital cognitive weaknesses. Some children acquired these problems as a result of seizures, brain injuries, neonatal strokes, and other neurological conditions.
After many years of research, neuroscientists have now determined that many children with nonverbal learning disabilities have underdeveloped or dysfunctional white matter regions of the brain”.1 Also, dyslexia has been linked to abnormalities in the size and function of the left hemisphere, which is involved in language processing; to lower brain activation during auditory processing; and to smaller corpus callosum. We still have a lot to study about the brain, but these are the first hard facts that tell us that the root of all learning disorders is in the malformation of the brain.
Hoping that you have keenly read and understood the above content, never again wonder on what causes learning disabilities.