Medical and psychological conditions are diagnosed by a variety of doctors, often using The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM –V), published by the American Psychiatric Association in 2013. The DSM-V provides criteria for the diagnoses of all mental health disorders for children and adults, along with common treatments.
While every student has unique learning needs, you will find in this section a collection of effective teaching strategies for a variety of common conditions, including some common instructional, environmental and assessment strategies to act as a starting point for supporting the individual needs of diagnosed students. You can also find additional information and resources for each condition.
Scroll down to see the full list of medical and psychological conditions addressed on this website:
Medical and psychological conditions are diagnosed by a variety of doctors, often using The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM –IV), published by the American Psychiatric Association. The DSM-IV provides criteria for the diagnoses of all mental health disorders for children and adults, along with common treatments. Link to a search engine for a range of conditions not listed here. A diagnosed condition involving heightened feelings of tension and worry, often resulting in physical symptoms, behaviours and distortions in thinking. A medical condition, affecting girls, resulting from only having one intact X chromosome. Characteristics of Turner Syndrome include short stature, drooping eye lids and abnormal bone development. A medical, inherited condition, resulting in hearing and vision loss. A diagnosed condition of the nervous system, characterized by a variable expression of unwanted movements and noises (tics). Rett syndrome is a neurodevelopmental condition characterized by the loss of spoken language and hand use. Rett syndrome is no longer included in the DSM nor as part of the autism spectrum. Students with Rett syndrome have typical receptive language and intelligence. Needs include significant apraxia, expressive language and physical disabilities. Access to speech-generating devices improves success at school. A diagnosed condition that occurs in boys who have an extra X chromosome in most of their cells. Klinefelter’s Syndrome is also referred to as XXY. The syndrome can affect different stages of physical, language and social development. A medical, inherited condition, causing developmental disabilities. A diagnosed condition of the nervous system, characterized by a variable expression of unwanted movements and noises (tics). A diagnosed medical condition that occurs when a serious birth abnormality in the spinal cord occurs, leaving the spinal cord lacking in its usual protective skeletal and soft tissue coverings. A diagnosed medical condition, characterized by recurrent seizures that may include repetitive muscle jerking called convulsions, caused by a disruption of the brain's normal electrical activity. A diagnosed condition in which an individual cannot or will not speak, in specific situations that usually contain conversation. A formal exceptionality, identified by an Identification Placement and Review Committee (IPRC), in the category of Intellect, based on a psychological diagnosis characterized by below-average intelligence. A diagnosed condition, where a problem with social interaction occurs because a child's basic physical and emotional needs have been neglected, particularly when the child is an infant. A diagnosed genetic condition, caused by the absence of chromosomal material. Characteristics include developmental impairments, poor muscle tone, short stature, small hands and feet, abnormal sexual development and distinguishing facial features. Insatiable appetite is a feature of PWS, and this can lead to health problems with obesity and with the consumption of non-food items. A diagnosed anxiety condition that can develop after exposure to any event which results in psychological trauma. One of the three Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and one of the five conditions in the category of Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD) as outlined in the DSM-IV. PDD-NOS is characterized by severe and persistent impairments in social interaction skills, communication skills, with stereotypical behaviour, but do not meet the criteria for another PDD disorder. A diagnosed anxiety disorder condition, based on unreasonable thoughts, fears and/or worries (obsessions) that make the sufferer perform routines (compulsions), in an attempt to manage the anxieties. Cognitive therapy is suggested to help deal with OCD. A diagnosed psychological condition that hinders the acceptance of authority and is characterized by rebellious disobedience. A professional will diagnose the disorder based on the established criteria, including symptoms, for at least six months. A diagnosed condition, where damage to the nervous system has resulted in the loss of some physical or mental functions. A neurological disability may affect a person's capacity to move or manipulate things, or the way they act or express their feelings. A diagnosed condition for a group of inherited disorders in which strength and muscle bulk gradually decline over time. A formal exceptionality, identified by an Identification Placement and Review Committee (IPRC), in the category of Communication. Learning Disabilities are also a diagnosed psychological condition. A diagnosed inherited condition, caused by a 'fragile' or broken site on the X chromosome, resulting in mental and physical impairment. A diagnosed condition, related to the numerous neurological problems that can result when a child is exposed to alcohol before birth. A diagnosed medical condition, characterized by recurrent seizures that may include repetitive muscle jerking called convulsions, caused by a disruption of the brain's normal electrical activity. A diagnosed medical condition, caused by extra genetic material, resulting in impaired development, both mentally and physically. It affects about one in every 800 babies. A diagnosed psychological condition, characterized by chronic sadness and feelings of inadequacy A diagnosed condition, where there is a complete loss of the ability to hear from one or both ears. A diagnosed condition that impairs the body's ability to move salt and water in and out of cells, which causes the lungs and pancreas to secrete thick mucus, blocking passageways and preventing proper function. A diagnosed psychiatric condition, characterized by a pattern of behaviour where the rights of others or social norms are violated. Symptoms include verbal and physical aggression toward others and/or animals, destructive behaviour, lying, truancy, vandalism, and stealing. One of the five Pervasive Developmental Disorders, as outlined in the DSM-IV. Childhood Disintegrative Disorder is characterized by normal development until the age of two, and then a significant loss of social and communication skills, with a development of restricted and repetitive behaviours occurring before the age of ten. A diagnosed condition, affecting body movement and muscle co-ordination, resulting from an anomaly during brain development. A diagnosed receptive language disorder, which makes it difficult to process sounds in speech. Medical and psychological conditions are diagnosed by a variety of doctors, often using The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM –IV), published by the American Psychiatric Association. A medical condition of the eyes that involves a severe impairment in vision, not corrected by glasses. A diagnosed medical condition that involves intense phases of depression and mania that impair daily functioning. One of the three Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), as outlined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual (DSM-IV), and one of the five conditions of the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) category. Autistic Disorder is characterized by severe impairment in social interaction, communication (could be non-verbal) and repetitive and restrictive patterns of behaviour that are non-functional. A diagnosed condition that is life long. The characteristics of AD/HD include inattention, impulsivity and over-activity problems. The condition affects somewhere between five to eight percent of children still in school. A diagnosed genetic condition that mainly affects the nervous system. Related characteristics include delayed development, intellectual deficits, severe communication problems and difficulty with movement and stability (ataxia). A diagnosed condition, related to the numerous neurological problems that can result when a child is exposed to alcohol before birth. Coming soon. Coming soon. A diagnosed medical condition of damage to the brain, resulting from a traumatic or non-traumatic injury, occurring after birth. Traumatic brain injuries involve an external force, like a fall, hit or motor vehicle accident. Non-traumatic brain injuries could result from loss of oxygen, a brain lesion, toxins or illness like meningitis. Temporary or permanent cognitive, emotional, behavioural or physical impairments are symptoms of acquired brain injuries. Acquired brain injuries do not include degenerative conditions like Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s Diseases or Multiple Sclerosis (MS), nor congenital conditions like Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS).
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Links to strategies for numerous conditions
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition
Links for various medical conditions with symptoms and strategies