ESP. 351 Meanings of Intelligence and Adaptive Behavior BY Biodegraded Meanings of Intelligence and Adaptive Behavior David Baker Grand Canyon University Characteristics of Intellectual Disability ESP.-351 May 20, 201 5 Introduction: Although it might not seem to be a difficult task, one of the most highly debated issues in special education is the determination of a child’s eligibility into a special education program. One of the main reasons for this debate is determining intelligence, and what a child’s adaptive behavior is. For the purposes of this paper, the teacher candidate interview Mrs..
Angier Cooler, a special education teacher who works with students who have been determined to have an intellectual disability. During this discussion, Mrs.. Cooler shared many of her experiences, as well as some of her personal thoughts on intelligence, adaptive behavior, problems assessing students, and finally some of the characteristics of her students that resulted in them being eligible for special education services. Intelligence: What is intelligence? How can it be defined, when it seems to be an individualistic characteristic?
These are Just a couple of questions in the debate over intelligence. The biggest misconception about intelligence is that it can be measured through an IQ test. While IQ tests are valuable pieces of information to have, they can’t specifically measure intelligence solely. Adam Hampshire, a PhD, psychologist, at the Brain and Mind Institute Natural Sciences Centre, London, Ontario, Canada says, “There are multiple types of intelligence, and It is time to move on to using a more comprehensive set of tests that can measure separate scores for each type of intelligence” (Mann, 2012).
His belief is that tests that measure these different types f intelligence should be used in making the determination of intelligence, because in one area of the brain and individual may show intelligence, but in another they may not, so the confusion becomes, are they intelligent or not (Mann, 2012)? In speaking with Mrs.. Cooler she indicated her belief about intelligence is much the same as Dry. Hampshire. She believes each child is intelligent in some way in their own understanding (A. Cooler, personal communication, May 19, 2015).
She views intelligence as something that can’t always be measured by a test, because she as witnessed students in her own class who don’t test out well in all areas, but in certain areas they do show intelligence (A. Cooler, personal communication, May 19, 2015). There is more to an individual than meets the eye in most cases and this is why intelligence tests are not the only source of determination of intelligence, and whether an individual is eligible to receive special education services. Another important piece of making the decision about the eligibility of special education services for a student is their adaptive behavior.
Adaptive behavior is fined as domains and skills that people need to function independently at home, at school, and in the community (Colorado Dept. Education, September 2013). Mrs.. Cooler indicated she believes that how an individual is able to adapt to an ever changing environment is more of a key indicator than cognitive tests (A. Cooler, personal communication, May 19, 2015). Adaptive behavior is especially important for students with intellectual disabilities, because the skills involved deal with communication, self-care, home living, social, motor, practical academics, and community.
Acquisition of adaptive behavior skills can impact a person’s daily life, level of independence and affect his or her ability to respond to particular situations or to the environment throughout their lives. Adaptive behavior skills are as important to a student’s success as are academic skills (CEDE, September 2013). Mrs.. Cooler believes that determining these adaptive skills of a student is essential, because it is determining how they will be able to live their lives. She feels that an educator’s Job is to set them up for success in their lives, and this means giving them fife skills to succeed in being the best they can be (A.
Cooler, personal communication, May 19, 2015). Adaptive behavior skills are as important, if not more important too student’s success as academic skills are. Issues with Assessing Students with Intellectual Disabilities: There are many issues surrounding the assessment of individuals with intellectual disabilities. It is most important to remember these students are individuals, and should be treated as such. As Mrs.. Cooler said, “It is very easy to look at a bunch of reports and assessment scores of a child, and to lose sight of the individual they are A. Cooler, personal communication, May 19, 2015).
Another issues in assessing a student with intellectual disabilities, are other disabilities that may accompany ID, such as visual impairment, hearing impairment, speech and language impairment, or brain injury to name a few. These impairments may interfere, and cause for the need for additional supports for the child. Any medicines the child may be on needs to be a consideration as well, because those may have an effect on the chemical makeup of the individual and can have a definite impact on their ability to be tested properly. Finally, the external and internal characteristics of an individual must be taken under consideration.
Race, sex, religion, and community background may all have a direct impact on the ability to get accurate measurements through testing, because these things are what have made the individual who they are. Characteristics of Individuals with ICC)-Eligibility for Special Education: The characteristics of a child requiring special education services are those students who don’t respond well to academic challenges, and have adaptive behavior issues that cause them to fall behind in school. This can be particularly difficult, because so many disabilities can share some of the same characteristics of intellectual disabilities.
Mrs.. Cooler said, “My students are in need of extra care in order to learn how to live as a part of the community’ (A. Cooler, personal communication, May 19, 2015). She shared that she wanted to make it clear that all of her students are capable of learning in some way, and that they do make a contribution to the world through their presence. Her Job is to give them the skills to use the gifts they do have to the best of their ability, and to prepare them for the world outside of the lassoer (A. Cooler, personal communication, May 19, 2015). Mrs..
Cooler spends most of her day teaching life skills to students, and the academic component is present as well, but she is careful to look at the individual needs of the students in her class, and work to those abilities. Conclusion: In conclusion, every individual has not only the right to an education, but all students are capable of learning in their own way. While individuals with intellectual disabilities may present some challenges to educate them, with proper observation and assessment, these individuals are capable of not only learning, but becoming reductive members of society.
Intelligence doesn’t measure the makeup of an individual, and it doesn’t determine who they are, and who they can become. An educator’s Job is to take the things an individual brings to the table, and to enhance them to achieve to the best of their ability. Taking into consideration the ability of each individual separately, observing the individual, and making the right decisions for the individual through proper assessment can set them up for a life time of greatness and achievement. Reference: Colorado Department of Education. (2013, September).