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Executive Function in Education: From Theory to Practice / Edition 1

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This uniquely integrative book brings together leading researchers and practitioners from education, neuroscience, and psychology. It presents a theoretical framework for understanding executive function difficulties together with a range of effective approaches to assessment and instruction. Coverage includes executive function processes in specific disorders-language-based learning disabilities, nonverbal learning disabilities, and autism spectrum disorder-as well as ways to support all students in developing vital skills for self-directed learning. Specific teaching methods are discussed for reading, writing, and math. Scholarly and authoritative yet highly practical, the book provides guidelines for intervening at the level of the individual child, the classroom, and the entire school.
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Editorial Reviews

Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Christopher J Graver, PhD, ABPP-CN(Madigan Healthcare System)
Description: The executive functions of the human brain are integral in our daily functioning and absolutely critical for optimizing the educational process. Unfortunately, they are fragile and can be affected in a multitude of ways by various diseases and developmental problems.
Purpose: In this book, the author endeavors to focus on the role of executive function in education, the ways in which executive functions are often disrupted, and ways to work with children to compensate for executive deficits.
Audience: An appropriate audience clearly would include educators, school counselors, psychologists, and speech and language therapists. In major measure, the contributing authors are gathered from the staff at the Institute for Learning and Development and surrounding institutions. While experienced in their respective areas, the list of contributing authors has missed key areas of expertise, including neuropsychology and adolescent psychiatry.
Features: The book is divided into three main sections: a theoretical overview, executive functions in specific diagnostic groups, and interventions. The chapters have been organized to convey a logical progression of knowledge acquisition and are interconnected in a fluid manner. Individual authors refer to other chapters when expanding concepts and further illustrating ideas. The inclusion of a chapter on the unrecognized syndrome of nonverbal learning disabilities is especially thoughtful. The final section on interventions contains a mix of general and specific practical suggestions for remediation and enrichment of executive functions in the classroom. The one major weakness is the fact that the chapter authors sometimes refer to obstacles in assessments, interventions, etc., but these are not genuine obstacles; rather, they stem from the chapter authors' lack of expertise in particular areas. Furthermore, the editor has irresponsibly revealed privileged information about how to complete assessment instruments that render them useless and does a serious disservice to the evaluators and children who rely on these tests to make accurate diagnoses and recommendations.
Assessment: This represents a unique look at how executive functions fit into educating students and the ways in which this can be problematic in certain diseases and developmental problems. There is competent coverage of the issues and helpful suggestions for managing executive difficulties in students. Nevertheless, a broader representation of key fields involved in this topic area would make this a much richer text and it could do without exposing critical information regarding assessment instruments.
Schooldays Magazine

"This is a very useful book for specialists working with children and adolescents as it brings together research and practice in a readable format."--Schooldays Magazine
From the Publisher

"From an impressive list of contributing authors, this book goes well beyond the traditional 'frontal lobe metaphor' in describing the executive function construct, challenging its conceptualization as a static, unitary skill. In doing so, the contributors consider the unique roles of brain development, personal experience, and the changing demands and supports in the classroom setting. Not only do Meltzer and colleagues explain the role of executive dysfunction in the classroom, they provide explicit strategies for intervention, with clear teaching examples. Hence, this volume will be a welcome resource for educators, psychologists, and other practitioners."--E. Mark Mahone, PhD, Kennedy Krieger Institute, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

"Meltzer has put together a much-needed text addressing the skills involved in high-order thinking. This is a timely volume that speaks to the array of issues in executive processing. The book assembles an excellent cross-section of researchers and clinicians with expertise in both theoretical issues and classroom instruction. This text succeeds in its quest to bridge the gap between research and educational practice."--H. Lee Swanson, PhD, Graduate School of Education, University of California, Riverside

"Finally, a book that clearly describes the significant role that executive function plays in learning! More importantly, this book presents very practical suggestions for effectively teaching students to use their executive functions. The contributing authors are among the leading experts in the field. This book provides a level of specificity on how to improve executive function through the teaching process that is not available in any other source."--Donald D. Deshler, PhD, Center for Research on Learning, University of Kansas

"This timely and much-needed book focuses on executive function (EF) from an educational perspective. While acknowledging that aspects of EF remain poorly understood, the book succeeds in offering practical guidelines and clear examples of how to teach and promote students' use of EF across the curriculum. Clearly, instruction in EF is essential for some students with special educational needs, but emphasis is also given to how EF instruction will benefit all students within inclusive classrooms. This volume will be an excellent addition to the libraries of teachers and psychologists. It will serve as an invaluable resource for discussion in graduate courses in education, educational psychology, clinical psychology, educational neuroscience, and developmental psychopathology."--Rosemary Tannock, PhD, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education and Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto; Program in Neuroscience and Mental Health, Hospital for Sick Children

Schooldays Magazine

This is a very useful book for specialists working with children and adolescents as it brings together research and practice in a readable format.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781593854287
  • Publisher: Guilford Publications, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/10/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Lynn Meltzer, PhD, is Co-Founder and Co-Director of the Institute for Learning and Development (ILD) and ResearchILD in Lexington, Massachusetts. She holds appointments as an Associate in Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and as an Adjunct Associate Professor at the Tufts University Department of Child Development. Dr. Meltzer's clinical practice, research, publications, and presentations have focused on understanding the complexity of learning and attention problems using a multidimensional model to bridge the gap between theory, research, and practice. A fellow and past president of the International Academy for Research in Learning Disabilities, she is the founder and chair of the national Learning Differences Conference.

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Table of Contents

I. Executive Function: Theoretical and Conceptual Frameworks
1. Executive Function: Binding together the Definitions of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and Learning Disabilities, Martha Bridge Denckla
2. "Hill, Skill, and Will": Executive Function from a Multiple-Intelligences Perspective, Seana Moran and Howard Gardner
3. Executive Capacities from a Developmental Perspective, Jane Holmes Bernstein and Deborah P. Waber
4. Connecting Cognitive Science and Neuroscience to Education: Potentials and Pitfalls in Inferring Executive Processes, Kurt W. Fischer and Samantha G. Daley
II. Executive Function Difficulties in Different Diagnostic Groups: Challenges of Identification and Treatment
5. Executive Function Difficulties and Learning Disabilities: Understandings and Misunderstandings, Lynn Meltzer and Kalyani Krishnan
6. Nonverbal Learning Disabilities and Executive Function: The Challenges of Effective Assessment and Learning, Judith A. Stein and Kalyani Krishnan
7. Executive Dysfunction in Autism Spectrum Disorders: From Research to Practice, Sally Ozonoff and Patricia L. Schetter
III. Interventions to Address Executive Function Processes
8. Executive Function in the Classroom: Embedding Strategy Instruction into Daily Teaching Practices, Lynn Meltzer, Laura Sales Pollica, and Mirit Barzillai
9. Executive Control of Reading Comprehension in the Elementary School, Irene West Gaskins, Eric Satlow, and Michael Pressley
10. Addressing Executive Function Problems in Writing: An Example from the Self-Regulated Strategy Development Model, Steve Graham, Karen R. Harris, and Natalie Olinghouse
11. The Strategic Math Classroom: Executive Function Processes and Mathematics Learning, Bethany N. Roditi and Joan Steinberg
12. Teaching Metacognitive Strategies That Address Executive Function Processes within a Schoolwide Curriculum, Irene West Gaskins and Michael Pressley
13. Deficits in Executive Function Processes: A Curriculum-Based Intervention, David Rose and Katherine Rose

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