Case study

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The development of the first adult screening tool for Development Coordination Disorder

Condition affecting co-ordination can impact on many aspects of everyday life

What is the issue?

Despite increasing evidence that DCD is a lifelong condition affecting around 3% of adults there were no tools to help identify individuals in order to provide appropriate support.

Adults with DCD have co-ordination difficulties impacting on many aspects of their life including difficulties learning to drive a car and with handwriting. Self-esteem, social confidence, physical and psychological wellbeing are often affected. Without identification and support the result can be lower education and employment attainment despite having ability, and some have difficulties with independent skills-a cost to society.

What is the university action?

Professor Kirby’s interest in developing tools was from both personal and professional perspectives. Having an adult son with DCD, and following many children who had grown up with DCD at the Dyscovery Centre, a part of the University of South Wales over a 15-year period.

What is the impact?

The development of the first screening tool for DCD in adults has provided greater understanding about the condition. The screening tool has been translated into a number of languages including Brazilian, Portugese, Taiwanese, Hebrew and Welsh. It is used in to identify students that may need support; in Welfare to Work settings; and within the Criminal Justice System.

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