The Defining Learning Characteristics of PMLD and SLD
This chapter represents a critique of the view that all learners learn along a continuum, and can therefore be taught using the same pedagogy and the same curriculum as everybody else. A detailed examination of the terms severe learning difficulties (SLD) and profound and multiple learning difficulties (PMLD) reveals their true educational meaning and examines what children within these spectrums cannot do by definition. One of the reasons for the systemic educational failure of learners with SLD and PMLD in inclusive educational models is because either insufficient, or more commonly, no thought has been given to pedagogical considerations. The authors fully accept that their views are principled and political. They recognise that there is very little research into the learning of those with SLD and PMLD which might uphold their views, but that is because there is very little research into the learning of those with SLD and PMLD to uphold any views about anything.