Handbook of Educational Psychology and Students with Special Needs provides educational and psychological researchers, practitioners, policy-makers, and graduate students with critical expertise on the factors and processes relevant to learning for students with special needs. This includes students with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, other executive function difficulties, behavior and emotional disorders, autism spectrum disorder, intellectual disabilities, learning disabilities, dyslexia, language and communication difficulties, physical and sensory disabilities, and more. With the bulk of educational psychology focused on "mainstream" or "typically developing" learners, relatively little educational psychology theory, research, measurement, or practice has attended to students with "special needs." As clearly demonstrated in this book, the factors and processes studied within educational psychology—motivation and engagement, cognition and neuroscience, social-emotional development, instruction, home and school environments, and more—are vital to all learners, especially those at risk or disabled.

Integrating guidance from the DSM-5 by the American Psychiatric Association and the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10) by the World Health Organization, this book synthesizes and builds on existing interdisciplinary research to establish a comprehensive case for effective psycho-educational theory, research, and practice that address learners with special needs. Twenty-seven chapters by experts in the field are structured into three parts on diverse special needs categories, perspectives from major educational psychology theories, and constructs relevant to special needs learning, development, and knowledge building.

chapter 1|14 pages


Educational Psychology and Students with Special Needs
ByAndrew J. Martin, Kristie J. Newton, Rayne A. Sperling

part I|224 pages

Students with Special Needs and
Educational Psychology

chapter 2|33 pages

Specific Learning Disabilities as
a Working Memory Deficit

A Model Revisited 1
ByH. Lee Swanson

chapter 3|23 pages

Identifying and Supporting Students with Affective Disorders in Schools

Academic Anxieties and Emotional Information Processing
ByJerrell C. Cassady, Christopher L. Thomas

chapter 4|20 pages

The Importance of Self-Determination and Inclusion for Students with Intellectual Disability

What We Know and What We Still Need to Discover
ByIva Strnadová

chapter 5|21 pages

The Roles of Executive Functions in Learning and Achievement

ByD. Jake Follmer, Rayne A. Sperling

chapter 6|24 pages

Language Impairments

Challenges and Opportunities for Meeting Children’s Needs and Insights from Psycho-Educational Theory and Research
ByJulie E. Dockrell, Geoff Lindsay

chapter 7|33 pages

Understanding the Development and Instruction of Reading for English Learners with Learning Disabilities 1

ByColby Hall, Philip Capin, Sharon Vaughn, Grace Cannon

chapter 8|24 pages

Developmental Disability

ByJeff Sigafoos, Vanessa A. Green, Mark F. O’Reilly, Giulio E. Lancioni

chapter 9|23 pages

Child Maltreatment

Pathways to Educational Achievement through Self-Regulation and Self-Regulated Learning
ByCarlomagno C. Panlilio, Catherine Corr

chapter 10|19 pages

Behavioral Disorder

Theory, Research, and Practice
ByMing-tak Hue

part II|218 pages

Perspectives from Major Educational 
Psychology Theories

chapter 11|19 pages

Social Cognitive Theory, Self-Efficacy, and Students with Disabilities

Implications for Students with Learning Disabilities, Reading Disabilities, and Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
ByDale H. Schunk, Maria K. DiBenedetto

chapter 12|30 pages

Self-Determination and Autonomous Motivation

Implications for Students with Intellectual, Developmental, and Specific Learning Disabilities
ByMichael L. Wehmeyer, Karrie A. Shogren

chapter 13|23 pages

Using Self-Regulated Learning to Support Students with Learning Disabilities in Classrooms

ByNancy E. Perry, Silvia Mazabel, Nikki Yee

chapter 15|24 pages

Using Cognitive Load Theory to Improve Text Comprehension for Students with Dyslexia

ByAndré Tricot, Geneviève Vandenbroucke, John Sweller

chapter 18|31 pages

Control-Value Theory and Students 
with Special Needs

Achievement Emotion Disorders and Their Links to 
Behavioral Disorders and Academic Difficulties
ByReinhard Pekrun, Kristina Loderer

part III|239 pages

Special Needs and Constructs Relevant to 
Psycho-Educational Development

chapter 19|26 pages

Improving Learning in Students with Mathematics Difficulties

Contributions from the Science of Learning
ByNancy C. Jordan, Christina Barbieri, Nancy Dyson, Brianna Devlin

chapter 20|23 pages

Writing and Students with Learning Disabilities

BySteve Graham, Karen R. Harris

chapter 21|24 pages

Reasoning Skills in Individuals with Mathematics Difficulties

ByKinga Morsanyi

chapter 22|23 pages

Interpersonal Relationships and Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Perspectives from Theory of Mind and Neuroscience
ByRobyn M. Gillies

chapter 23|27 pages

Student Engagement and Learning

Attention, Behavioral, and Emotional Difficulties in School
ByKayleigh C. O’Donnell, Amy L. Reschly

chapter 25|23 pages

Cultural and Sociocultural Influences 
and Learners with Special Needs

ByAngus Macfarlane, Sonja Macfarlane, Helen Mataiti

chapter 26|30 pages

Technology and Its Impact on Reading for Students with Learning Disabilities

ByCynthia M. Okolo, Ralph P. Ferretti

chapter 27|29 pages

The Relevance of Neuroscience 
to Understanding Achievement in 
Special Needs Children

ByJames P. Byrnes, Jenifer Taylor Eaton

chapter 28|12 pages


Future Directions in the Application of Educational 
Psychology to Students with Special Needs
ByAndrew J. Martin, Kristie J. Newton, Rayne A. Sperling