Student Ability Profile: William


Student Abilities Profile 

Narrative:

William is an 18-year-old senior who has Tourette's Syndrome. He exhibits frequent and inappropriate loud verbalizations during class, especially when in stressful situations. William is an athlete. He is 6' 3" tall and weighs over 200 pounds. His presence can be intimidating to others. He is being medicated for his condition. He can be manipulative and may use his disability to avoid work. William's outbursts may affect the entire classroom atmosphere, but his peers tolerate his outbursts and tend to cover for him.

Task/Assignment:

Complete mathematics activities in an algebra class.

Equipment: (lab equipment, furniture, protective clothing, chemicals, etc.)

Textbook, paper, pencils, chalkboards, and chalk are the primary pieces of equipment for this class. Occasionally, 3-D manipulatives are used.

Environment: (facility, fumes, odors, dust, temperature, noise, lighting, etc.)

Math assignments are completed individually and in groups.

Physical Challenges

  1. Frequent verbal outbursts.

Potential Strategies / Accommodations

  • When reasonable, ignore outbursts and avoid singling him out.
  • Invite William to explain Tourette's Syndrome to the class, with your assistance as appropriate.
  • Reduce stressful situations as much as possible.

Resources

  • Obtain curriculum suggestions from special education teacher and/or therapist.
  • Talk with the student about accommodations.
  • Explore AccessSTEM site at http://www.washington.edu/doit/Stem/ for information on accommodation and adaptive equipment.

Sensory Challenges

None.

Potential Strategies / Accommodations

None.

Resources

Not applicable.

Cognitive Challenges

  1. Easily distracted.
  2. Difficulty paying attention.

Potential Strategies / Accommodations

  • Talk to William about learning conditions that work best for him, try his suggestions, and together evaluate the results.
  • Hold William's attention when instructing the class.
  • Repeat instructions directly to him.
  • Avoid group work that is distracting to William.
  • On some group assignments, it may be best for William to work in a quiet area.
  • Allow him to take exams in a quiet location with a proctor.

Resources

Physical, Sensory, and Cognitive Issues and Challenges 

Physical Issues

Think of the required physical aspects of the task. What will make the environment accessible, keep the student safe and allow him/her to be an active participant? What lab equipment must be manipulated?

Physical Challenges

  1. lift / carry
  2. stamina / endurance
  3. push / pull
  4. kneel / squat
  5. reach
  6. repetitive tasks
  7. fine motor: pinch / grasp
  8. fine motor: manipulate / maneuver
  9. gross motor
  10. sit in chair
  11. walk / stand
  12. balance
  13. bend / twist
  14. stoop / crouch
  15. other

Sensory Issues

Think of room temperature, noise, fumes, dust, odors, and allergies. Also consider the ability to speak and/or communicate, and the visual aspects of the task or assignment.

Sensory Issues

  1. vision
  2. hearing
  3. touch
  4. smell
  5. taste
  6. oral communication
  7. temperature
  8. fumes
  9. external stimuli
  10. lighting
  11. other

Cognitive Issues

Is the assignment done with a group, partner or individually? What memory and communication skills are needed? What is the level of complexity of the task.

Cognitive Challenges

  1. short term memory
  2. long term memory
  3. task complexity
  4. reading
  5. writing
  6. spelling
  7. string of numbers (math)
  8. paying attention
  9. visual, auditory, or kinesthetic learner.
  10. self-esteem / advocacy issues
  11. behavior issues / acting out
  12. other