Cognitive Impairment


Federal Definition:

R 340.1705(1) Cognitive Impairment Determination:  Cognitive impairment shall be manifested during the developmental period and be determined through the demonstration of all of the following behavioral characteristics: (a) Development at a rate at or below approximately 2 standard deviations below the mean as determined through intellectual assessment. (b) Scores approximately within the lowest 6 percentiles on a standardized test in reading and arithmetic. This requirement will not apply if the student is not of an age, grade, or mental age appropriate for formal or standardized achievement tests. (c) Lack of development primarily in the cognitive domain. (d) Impairment of adaptive behavior. (e) Adversely affects a student's educational performance. (2) A determination of impairment shall be based upon a comprehensive evaluation by a multidisciplinary evaluation team, which shall include a psychologist.

National Organizations/Resources

The ARC   
The Arc of the United States advocates for the rights and full participation of all children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

CDC - Mental Retardation   
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is one of the 13 major operating components of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), which is the principal agency in the United States government for protecting the health and safety of all Americans and for providing essential human services. This site presents information and resources on mental retardation.

Division on Developmental Disabilities (DDD)   
A Division of the Council for Exceptional Children, the Division on Developmental Disabilities' mission includes enhancing the competence of persons who work with individuals with cognitive disabilities/mental retardation, autism, and related disabilities and advocating on behalf of individuals with developmental disabilities.

KidsHealth is the largest and most visited site on the Web providing doctor-approved health information about children from before birth through adolescence. KidsHealth has separate areas for kids, teens, and parents - each with its own design, age-appropriate content, and tone. There are literally thousands of in-depth features, articles, animations, games, and resources - all original and all developed by experts in the health of children and teens.

Mental Retardation -- National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities   
The National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities serves the nation as a central source of information on: disabilities in infants, toddlers, children, and youth, IDEA, which is the law authorizing special education, No Child Left Behind (as it relates to children with disabilities), and research-based information on effective educational practices.

The President's Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities   
The Committee acts in an advisory capacity to the President and the Secretary of The Department of Health and Human Services on matters relating to programs and services for persons with intellectual disabilities.