Case Studies

Serena - visual sequential memory difficulties

Serena shows no problems of auditory information processing; in fact, her phonological awareness (Rhymes) and auditory discrimination (Wock) are both quite good (see Figures 36a and 36b). But she has clear weaknesses in visual sequential memory (Rabbits, Crayons and Letters). Her associative memory is reasonably satisfactory (Toybox and Letter names). Serena would be expected to have problems building up visual word recognition skills. Confusion of letter order (e.g. ‘was’ vs. ‘saw’) is likely. Since her associative and auditory memory are satisfactory and she has good phonological awareness and auditory discrimination skills, a phonically-based approach to reading is indicated with, ideally, a multisensory strategy. Later difficulties must also be anticipated and catered for – e.g. expected problems in spelling (especially irregular words) and in rapid word recognition and text processing.

 

Figure 36a. Case study – Serena

Figure 36b. Case study – Serena

Olivia - general sequencing difficulties

Olivia’s problems (see Figures 37a and 37b) are with sequencing, in both auditory and visual modes (note results for Rabbits, Crayons, Letters and Races). There is a weakness in associative memory, too (see Toybox and Letter names), but note that phonological awareness (Rhymes) and auditory discrimination (Wock) skills are quite competent. Olivia would be expected to have problems not only in acquiring effective phonic skills, but also have some difficulties in building up visual word recognition skills. She would have particular problems in spelling and writing, with sequencing errors being common. The recommendations would be that a highly structured multisensory phonic approach to literacy learning would be essential with ample practice to compensate for memory weakness. Structured learning software which facilitates practice of both auditory and visual sequencing in reading and writing would be especially useful, and regular word processing activities (especially with a talking word processor) would be a great help.

 

Figure 37a. Case study – Olivia

Figure 37b. Case study – Olivia