chapter  19
12 Pages

Mild intellectual disability

This chapter considers a broad definition of intellectual disability before looking at mild intellectual disability specifically. In the DSM-5 (American Psychiatric Association) intellectual disability is characterised by deficits in general mental abilities such as reasoning, problem solving, planning, abstract thinking, judgement, academic learning, and learning from experience. These deficits lead to impairments in adaptive functioning. In England, a similar classification includes learning difficulty which can be moderate, severe or profound. Broadly, mild intellectual disability is parallel to moderate learning difficulties. Moderate to severe intellectual disability corresponds to severe learning difficulties. Profound intellectual disability is equivalent to profound learning difficulties. In England, to be entitled to special educational provision, a student has to have a disability or a difficulty in learning that hinders learning. Students having mild intellectual disabilities have particular difficulty in grasping concepts. Curriculum content for students with mild intellectual disabilities extends beyond the usual mainstream school curriculum flexibilities.