Språkstörning och matematiksvårigheter
: några gymnasieelevers upplevelser och erfarenheter

  • Mirjam Västskär

Student thesis: Professional degree, Advanced level


The research problem in this thesis concerns mathematical difficulties in pupils with specific language impairment (SLI) in upper secondary school. A large amount of research shows that there is a connection between specific language impairment and mathematical difficulties and a report from SPSM (2018) states that routines concerning pupils with SLI in upper secondary school are deficient. The purpose of the thesis is to make this group more visible by examining how some pupils with SLI in upper secondary school experience, and have experienced, their mathematical difficulties. Since the study is based on the student perspective, semi-structured interviews were chosen as a method. The five participants have all been diagnosed with SLI and attend upper secondary school.

       The students' stories and experiences are discussed based on the model of attribution theory, which describe how we attribute our adversities and successes. It appears that all the students have been struggling with mathematics throughout their schooling. Students explain their difficulties predominantly with stable, i.e. unchanging, factors, external as well as internal. Neither the students themselves nor the teachers they encountered have linked the mathematical difficulties with the diagnosis SLI.

       Based on the results, the importance of more knowledge among mathematics teachers about the relationship between SLI and mathematical difficulties is discussed, as well as the importance of collaboration between mathematics teachers and special education teachers. Furthermore, organizational changes that could facilitate this student group are discussed and moreover that one should consider how repeated failures result in reduced motivation. This is particularly relevant for students, who explain their setbacks with stable, unchanging factors, as it reduces the ability to take advantage of their capacity.

Date of Award2019-Jun-11
Original languageSwedish
SupervisorSofia Lindberg (Supervisor) & Carin Roos (Examiner)

Educational program

  • Special Education Teacher Programme

University credits

  • 15 HE credits

Swedish Standard Keywords

  • Pedagogy (50301)


  • mathematical difficulties
  • sli
  • specific language impairment
  • pupil perspective
  • upper secondary school

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