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LDA Student Award Winner, 2008: Narrowing the Gap--A Report on the "Quicksmart" Mathematics Intervention

Australian Journal of Learning Difficulties Volume 14, Number 2, ISSN 1940-4158


This article focuses on the cognitive factors that impact on students in the middle school years experiencing learning difficulties in basic mathematics. It begins with a review of selected literature providing information about the learning difficulties in mathematics. Focus then shifts to an implementation of the "Quicksmart" intervention. "Quicksmart" is a basic academic skills intervention designed for persistently low-achieving middle-years' students. In this small-scale study, 12 middle school students experiencing learning difficulties participated in the "Quicksmart" mathematics program. Comparisons are made between the mathematics progress of the intervention group and eight average-achieving peers. The results indicate that on measures of response speed and accuracy "Quicksmart" participant students were able to narrow the gap between their performance and that of their average-achieving peers. Further, on standardized tests of more general mathematical knowledge, participant students improved significantly from pre-test to post-test. Implications are drawn regarding the importance of interventions that emphasize automaticity in basic mathematics for middle years students with learning difficulties. (Contains 2 figures and 1 table.)


Bellert, A. (2009). LDA Student Award Winner, 2008: Narrowing the Gap--A Report on the "Quicksmart" Mathematics Intervention. Australian Journal of Learning Difficulties, 14(2), 171-183. Retrieved March 25, 2023 from .

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