Diagnosis of Visual-Spatial Processing Issues

This is part 2 of a series of 6 posts about Visual-Spatial Processing Issues (and other related learning differences). Links to the other posts in this series are found at the bottom of this post.

Diagnosis of Visual-Spatial Processing Issues–and other learning differences

Remember that if your child has other “special needs,” the adaptations suggested in these posts may also be very helpful for your child’s particular issues.

See the first post in this series for a list of possible markers or symptoms of visual-spatial processing issues.


Some of the issues we have discussed in the previous post about visual-spatial processing issues can be related to other causes including physical problems and other problems. If you notice that your child seems to be having a number of symptoms of visual-spatial processing, you will want to get professional advice and direction. Such help may be available through your child’s school, or from a private educational psychologist. You may be asked to have a physical examination done first to eliminate eyesight or other issues. If your child is in school, the school team (teacher, EAs, school psychologist, etc.) will also be involved in the process of determining a diagnosis and deciding what adaptations are most useful.

ADHD and Anxiety Disorders:

Does my child have ADHD or anxiety disorders as well?
Realise that attention and behavioural problems may actually be related to the frustrations of your child’s SLD (severe learning disability); don’t just assume your child is ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). Be patient; solving the visual-spatial issues may, in turn, solve these other issues.

Likewise, realise that learning struggles can cause anxiety and “fight or flight” responses, and thus these are not necessarily indicative of an anxiety disorder. When a child lacks confidence with academic work, anxiety and frustration can emerge when feeling overwhelmed.

If your child seems to have some of the markers for Visual-Spatial Processing issues, but also other problems that don’t seem to be listed, it is possible that other learning differences are also involved. Again, it is important to work with your school team and/or qualified professionals!

In the posts in this series, we look at:
the definition and symptoms of visual-spatial processing issues
diagnosis of visual-spatial processing issues–and other learning differences
some general suggestions to help a child with visual-spatial processing issues
reading adaptations for children with visual-spatial processing issues
writing and spelling adaptations for children with visual-spatial processing issues
– math adaptations for children with visual-spatial processing issues

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