Disabilities Due to Head Trauma
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
How post head trauma characteristics may affect student participation:
- Decreased attention span
- Frustration with schoolwork or task performance that posed no problem before injury
- Poor information retrieval
- Difficulty in acquisition of new knowledge
- Possibility of exhibiting inappropriate or impulsive actions
- Longer processing time requirement
- Lowered motivation, organization and comprehension
- Difficulty with concentration and memorization
Helpful strategies for instructing students with post head trauma characteristics:
- Help students to follow lectures with three steps: preview, lecture, review.
- Provide lecture outlines and other handouts.
- Use a multi-sensory approach when providing information to students. Increased learning
can occur when material is presented simultaneously in a variety of ways, e.g. visual
images with auditory descriptions.
- Gain student's attention when highlighting significant points by using eye contact,
voice inflection, and body gesturing.
- Provide concrete examples and practical applications of material whenever possible.
- Review important points several times during the lecture.
- Give assignments both orally and in written format to avoid confusion.
- Develop a positive student-teacher relationship.
- Increase one on one instruction outside of class.
- Teach mnemonics for memory assistance.
From a student with a traumatic head injury, Spring 2012:
"The most helpful thing a teacher did for me was get to know me, and let me answer
some questions out loud when I couldn't organize my thoughts."