Learning Disabilities:

Practical Information for the Classroom Teacher


Instructor Name:          Dr. Karen Lea

Phone:                         509-891-7219

Office Hours:               8 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST Monday - Friday

Email:                          karen_lea@virtualeduc.com

Address:                      Virtual Education Software

                                    23403 E Mission Avenue, Suite 220F

                                    Liberty Lake, WA 99019

Technical Support:       support@virtualeduc.com


Learning Disabilities: Practical Information for the Classroom Teacher, is an interactive computer-based instruction course, that provides an introduction to the field of Learning Disabilities for special education teachers, general classroom teachers, integration teachers and related professionals, especially those working in the areas of language, psychology and counseling.


This computer-based instruction course is a self-supporting program that provides instruction, structured practice, and evaluation all on your home or school computer.  Technical support information can be found in the Help section of your course.

Course Materials (Online)
Title:                Learning Disabilities: Practical Information for the Classroom Teacher

Instructor:        Dr. Karen Lea

Publisher:         Virtual Education Software, inc. 2001, Revised 2002, Revised 2010, Revised 2013, Revised 2016, Revised 2019


Academic Integrity Statement

The structure and format of most distance-learning courses presume a high level of personal and academic integrity in completion and submission of coursework. Individuals enrolled in a distance-learning course are expected to adhere to the following standards of academic conduct.


Academic Work

Academic work submitted by the individual (such as papers, assignments, reports, tests) shall be the student’s own work or appropriately attributed, in part or in whole, to its correct source. Submission of commercially prepared (or group prepared) materials as if they are one’s own work is unacceptable.


Aiding Honesty in Others

The individual will encourage honesty in others by refraining from providing materials or information to another person with knowledge that these materials or information will be used improperly.


Violations of these academic standards will result in the assignment of a failing grade and subsequent loss of credit for the course.

Expected Learning Outcomes

As a result of this course, participants will demonstrate their ability to:

·         Identify warning signs of learning disabilities

·         Implement modifications and accommodations for individuals with learning disabilities

·         Collaborate in assessment to determine existence of a learning disability

·         Collaborate with parents, guardians, and the community to provide effective teaching


Course Description

This course will provide you with a foundational knowledge of learning disabilities and practical ways you can help students with disabilities in your classroom.


Chapter 1: Definition & Characteristics

This section focuses on the foundational knowledge of learning disabilities. At the end of this section, students will be able to:


Chapter 2: Assessment

Assessment is an integral part of the identification and education of children with learning disabilities. As such its main purpose is to improve learning. This section of the course will look at both the discrepancy model and the RTI model used for assessing and identifying learning disabilities. At the end of this section, students will be able to:

·         Articulate a foundational knowledge of assessing for learning disabilities

·         Assess strategies in classroom scenarios


Chapter 3: Adaptions & Modifications

This section focuses on accommodations and modifications educators can make in the classroom. We will look at general teaching techniques that will actually raise the quality of teaching in the classroom and are beneficial when used for the whole class. Then we will look at accommodations and modifications for specific learning disabilities. Your objectives for this section are to: 1. Analyze classroom situations to decide the best accommodation and/or modification to be used, and 2. Analyze your own teaching to raise the quality of teaching by integrating general teaching techniques.


Chapter 4: Parent & Specialist Collaboration

Collaborating, or working well as a team, is vital to meeting the needs of all students, but especially students with learning disabilities. In this last section of the course we will look at general educators collaborating with specialists and parents. Included will be a discussion on IEP meetings, and handling conflict. Your objectives for this course are to: 1. Understand the principles of collaborating with others, and 2. Understand the importance of handling conflict.


Student Expectations 

As a student you will be expected to:

·         Complete all four information sections showing a competent understanding of the material presented in each section.

·         Complete all four section examinations, showing a competent understanding of the material presented.  You must obtain an overall score of 70% or higher, with no individual exam score below 50%, to pass this course.  *Please note: Minimum exam score requirements may vary by college or university; therefore, you should refer to your course addendum to determine what your minimum exam score requirements are.

·         Complete a review of any section on which your examination score was below 50%.

·         Retake any examination, after completing an information review, to increase that examination score to a minimum of 50%, making sure to also be achieving an overall exam score of a minimum 70% (maximum of three attempts). *Please note: Minimum exam score requirements may vary by college or university; therefore, you should refer to your course addendum to determine what your minimum exam score requirements are.

·         Complete a course evaluation form at the end of the course.



At the end of each chapter, you will be expected to complete an examination designed to assess your knowledge. You may take these exams a total of three times. Your last score will save, not the highest score.  After your third attempt, each examination will lock and not allow further access.  Your final grade for the course will be determined by calculating an average score of all exams.  This score will be printed on your final certificate.  As this is a self-paced computerized instruction program, you may review course information as often as necessary. You will not be able to exit any examinations until you have answered all questions. If you try to exit the exam before you complete all questions, your information will be lost. You are expected to complete the entire exam in one sitting.


Instructor Description

Karen Lea holds a Ph.D. in education, has TEFL certification, and is Project Management Professional certified.  Dr. Lea has fifteen years’ experience teaching at the K–12 level and another seventeen years’ experience teaching education and leadership courses at the undergraduate and post-graduate levels.  Currently she is an Assessment Developer at Western Governor's University.  Dr. Lea has been professionally published over fifteen times and has served on more than a dozen panels and boards, including serving on the NCATE (CAEP) Board of Examiners.

Contacting the Instructor

You may contact the instructor by emailing karen_lea@virtualeduc.com or by calling (509) 891-7219 Monday through Friday. When calling during office hours messages will be answered within 24 hours. Phone conferences will be limited to ten minutes per student, per day, given that this is a self-paced instructional program. Please do not contact the instructor about technical problems, course glitches, or other issues that involve the operation of the course.

Technical Questions

If you have questions or problems related to the operation of this course, please try everything twice. If the problem persists please check our support pages for FAQs and known issues at www.virtualeduc.com and also the Help section of your course.


If you need personal assistance then email support@virtualeduc.com or call (509) 891-7219.  When contacting technical support, please know your course version number (it is located at the bottom left side of the Welcome Screen) and your operating system, and be seated in front of the computer at the time of your call. 


Minimum Computer Requirements

Please refer to VESi’s website: www.virtualeduc.com or contact VESi if you have further questions about the compatibility of your operating system.


Refer to the addendum regarding Grading Criteria, Course Completion Information, Items to be Submitted and how to submit your completed information. The addendum will also note any additional course assignments that you may be required to complete that are not listed in this syllabus.


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Course content is updated every three years. Due to this update timeline, some URL links may no longer be active or may have changed. Please type the title of the organization into the command line of any Internet browser search window and you will be able to find whether the URL link is still active or any new link to the corresponding organization's web home page.


3/27/19 JN