The effect of an augmented input intervention on subtraction word-problem solving for children with intellectual disabilities: a preliminary study

17 Jun 2021

Children with intellectual disabilities experience well-documented challenges in the development of problem-solving, particularly related to mathematical word-problem solving. Such challenges are related to both linguistic and conceptual skills. While interventions to assist children in developing conceptual skills are well reported, linguistic interventions within the mathematical field are limited. This study aimed to determine the effect of an augmented-input intervention, on subtraction word-problem solving for children with intellectual disabilities. A multiple baseline across behaviours design was used and replicated across the seven participants. Intervention was provided in three tiers (one week each) for change, combine, and compare subtraction word-problems. Intervention was withdrawn for a four week period and followed by a maintenance phase. Results suggested that for older participants with higher receptive language and numerical operation scores, the augmented-input intervention provided significant gains across all three types of word-problems. Overall, four of the seven participants showed improvement in subtraction word-problem solving. Augmented input may provide language supports for subtraction word-problem solving for some children with mild intellectual disability.