Dysgraphia is a specific learning difficulty implicated in the ability to transcribe. It is characterized by an impairment in handwriting skills, processing written letters into words and finger sequencing. A child whose written expression and writing skills are below the expected, given a person’s age measured through intelligence and age appropriate education may have dysgraphia.

It is associated with other conditions as ADHD, speech and language disorders and developmental coordination disorder. People having dysgraphia can often write but may lack some other fine motor skills, they may find tasks such as tying shoes difficult. They usually have unusual difficulty with handwriting and spelling which in turn can tiredness when writing. Such children avoid having to take notes in class. They may also lack basic grammar and spelling skills (difficulties writing the letters p, q, b, and d), and will often write the wrong word when trying to formulate their thoughts on paper.

Children with dysgraphia usually present with the following signs:

    • Cramping of fingers while writing short entriesdysgraphia student
    • Odd wrist, arm, body, or paper orientations
    • Excessive mistakes while writing
    • Mixed upper case and lower case letters
    • Inconsistent form and size of letters, or unfinished letters
    • Misuse of lines and margins
  • Inefficient speed of copying
  • Inattentiveness over details when writing
  • Frequent need of verbal cues
  • Referring heavily on vision to write
  • Poor legibility
  • Handwriting abilities that may interfere with spelling and written composition
  • Having a hard time translating ideas to writing, sometimes using the wrong words altogether

This writing difficulty stems from dysfunctions in other cognitive processes as outlined by Dr. Mel Levine which are found below:

COGNITIVE PROCESS WRITING CHALLENGE THAT CAN RESULT
Attention
  • Difficulty planning, initiating and completing writing task.
  • Mental fatigue from writing.

Spatial ordering
Challenge in organizing letters, words, or sentence on a page.
Sequential ordering and A hard time determining the correct or logical order of letters, ideas etc.
Memory
  • Difficulties remembering what should be automatic in the writing process, such as recalling, spelling, grammar, and punctuation rules.
  • Trouble recalling prior knowledge and organizing ideas.
Language Difficulties using language and improving language abilities
Higher-ordering cognition A hard time bringing original thought, creativity, or critical thinking skills to the writing task.
Graphomotor Trouble coordinating the small muscles of the fingers to manipulate writing instruments.

By using Neurofeedback and Brain Training strategies, dysgraphia and its associated learning difficulties can be resolved.

Research by Walker (2012) has shown the effectiveness of neurofeedback in treating dysgraphics. During his research procedure, twenty-four individuals with refractory dysgraphia went through a quantitative electroencephalogram (QEEG) to determine abnormalities of critical writing areas (left frontal and central). These abnormalities were trained consequently with 5–10 sessions of neurofeedback. This was done to decrease excessive slow or fast activity in those areas. All 24 experienced significant improvement in handwriting. Two individuals who stopped the training did not improve over a similar time period.

Walker J. E.,(2012). QEEG-Guided Neurofeedback for Remediation of Dysgraphia. Biofeedback:

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Fall 2012, Vol. 40, No. 3, pp. 113-114

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