Advertisement

HomeLearning DifficultiesAssistive Technology

Evaluating Products & Services for Your Child With LD or AD/HD

An expert explains how to be an informed consumer when selecting services and products for your child with learning or attention problems.

GreatSchools Blog

By Marshall Raskind, Ph.D.

As public awareness and understanding of learning and attention problems have increased in recent years, so have the number of therapies, treatments, programs, and products aimed at alleviating these difficulties. Unfortunately, not all of these interventions are effective, and in some cases they provide little or no benefit to children struggling with learning and/or attention problems. Regardless, many are widely marketed to the public before there is any scientific evidence about their effectiveness.

What to Watch For

  • Terms like "Research-based" and "scientifically proven" might be used to describe a service or product, when there's no science to back up the claim. Such products can be a waste of your precious time and money and may even hurt your child's learning and self-esteem.
  • Testimonials from customers who claim satisfaction with a particular product or service are not enough to tell you if a product is effective.
  • Interventions that are scientifically based may prove effective for one child, but be of little value to another. Each child has his own strengths, weakness, interests, and experiences that must be taken into consideration when choosing an intervention.

With all this in mind, we strongly encourage you to be an informed consumer when selecting services and products for your child. Remember, there are no "magic bullets", cures, or quick fixes for learning and attention difficulties. You'll do well to approach potential interventions for your child with a critical, skeptical, and cautious eye. Keep in mind that old saying, "Buyer beware!" 

Marshall H. Raskind

Ph.D. is a learning disability researcher. He is a frequent presenter at international learning disability conferences and is the author of numerous professional publications on learning disabilities. He is well-known for his research in assistive technology and longitudinal studies tracing LD across the lifespan.

GreatSchools.org has a strict policy of separation between editorial and advertising content. We do not allow advertisers to influence our editorial content. Read the full policy here.

© 2008 GreatSchools Inc. All Rights Reserved. Originally created by Schwab Learning, formerly a program of the Charles and Helen Schwab Foundation (February 2008).

Marshall H. Raskind, Ph.D., is a learning disability researcher. He is a frequent presenter at international LD conferences and is the author of numerous professional publications on learning disabilities. He is well-known for his research on assistive technology and longitudinal studies tracing LD across the life span.

Comments from GreatSchools.org readers

01/30/2009:
"This was very very useful information thanks"
03/18/2008:
"Since Schwab have designed this organized research for parents with children with Learning D. and AD/HD. I beleive that it is very informative for us as parents. To be honest I feel very much understanding by others in this websites , because I thought it was just me or a few other with kids with this Deseases. I do feel closer to so many parents that are going through the same as me. Even situations or circumstances are different we all have the at the same time something in common. (Our love , unconditional Love for our kids). Thanks a lot for all your researches and so much information we can look and be aware. I do love to see that it is up to us the parents to look for help for our kids, and specially it is very rewarded that there is help for them, and comfort/peace of mind for some of us. God Bless you all. Happy Easter.!!!"
03/13/2008:
"MY CHILD HAS BEEN STRUGGLING DAILY SINCE KINDERGARDEN, IVE HELD HE BACK ASK FOR HELP,SHES ADHD. HAS NO INTEREST IN SCHOOL OTHER THAN FREINDS OR AS LEAST THATS MY PERSECPTION. THEY SAY THEY ARE TESTING HER BUT YEAR AFTER YEAR ITS SUMMER SCHOOL. I GO TO THE PARENT MEETINGS THEY ALL SAY SHES DOING OK BUT WHEN THE REPORT CARDS COMES ITS NOT WHAT I EXPECTED WHAT DO I DO? PLEASE HELP IM SO WORRIED ABOUT HER. SHES IN THE FOURTH GRADE I CANT CONTINUE TO HOLD HER BACK SHES ALREADY THE TALLEST ONE IN HER CLASS.(SUPPOSE TO BE IN THE 5TH)"
03/5/2008:
"Thank you for all of the excellent information you provide. I am the mother of a child with Central Auditory Processing Disorder. She is currently mainstreamed in a regular classroom in the fourth grade and doing well with mostly B's and C's, and occasional A's. I have held her back one grade (3rd) in the public school sector after attending a private school for LD children for third grade. I realized after a short time that it was not the panacea I had hoped for. You are correct when you say there are no 'magic Bullets' or cures for LD. I would like to hear from you if you have any updates on programs for children with CAPD, especially computer software for remediation. Thank you again for you time. Penny Martinez, BBA, RNC"
02/14/2008:
"What have you heard good or bad about PACE therapy?"
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT