Identification and assessment of learning difficulties – problems, models and new guidelines Dr. Lidija Magajna
Summary: There are complex and current problems of identifi cation and assessment of learning diffi culties, in particular the differential assessment of specifi c learning disabilities and the more severe form the so-called defi cits in specifi c learning areas. Despite interesting debates and polemics in many countries as well as in Slovenia have been going on for several decades and some consensus among researchers has been achieved so far, there are many important questions which still are not solved. The presence of different defi nitions and different perspectives only adds to the complexity of problems. The aim of the paper is to present some frequent problems in the area of identifi cation and diagnostic assessment of learning disabilities, describe some traditional models of identifi cation of individuals with learning disabilities (aptitude-achievement discrepancy, low achievement, intraindividual differences), a more recent model of response to instruction/intervention and two hybrid models of identifi cation that aim toward the integration of previous approaches and include also the detection of learning diffi culties in the wider population as well as on-going monitoring and evaluations.