Measures and References: Symbolic Number

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Numerous measures exist to gain a full picture of a student's learning strengths and challenges. Following are examples of measures used to assess this Learner Factor. These measures should be administered and interpreted by experienced professionals.

Two-Minute Magnitude Comparison Test (Nosworthy et al., 2013): Assesses students' ability to compare Symbolic and Non-symbolic Number magnitudes


De Smedt, B., & Gilmore, C. K. (2011). Defective number module or impaired access? Numerical magnitude processing in first graders with mathematical difficulties. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 108(2), 278-292.

Geary, D. C., & vanMarle, K. (2016). Young children's core symbolic and nonsymbolic quantitative knowledge in the prediction of later mathematics achievement. Developmental Psychology, 52(12), 2130-2144.

Holloway, I. D., & Ansari, D. (2009). Mapping numerical magnitudes onto symbols : The numerical distance effect and individual differences in children's mathematics achievement. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 103(1), 17-29.

Honore, N., & Noel, M.P. (2016). Improving preschoolers' arithmetic through number magnitude training: The impact of non-symbolic and symbolic training. PLoS ONE, 11(11), 1-22.

Kolkman, M. E., Kroesbergen, E. H., & Leseman, P. P. M. (2014). Involvement of working memory in longitudinal development of number-magnitude skills. Infant and Child Development, 23(1), 36-50.

Linsen, S., Verschaffel, L., Reynvoet, B., & De Smedt, B. (2014). The association between children's numerical magnitude processing and mental multi-digit subtraction. Acta Psychologica, 145, 75-83.

Mix, K. S., Prather, R. W., Smith, L. B., & Stockton, J. D. (2014). Young children's interpretation of multidigit number names: From emerging competence to mastery. Child Development, 85(3), 1306-1319.

Moore, A. M., & Geary, D. C. (2016). Kindergartners' fluent processing of symbolic numerical magnitude is predicted by their cardinal knowledge and implicit understanding of arithmetic 2 years earlier. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 150, 31-47.

Noel, M., & Rousselle, L. (2011). Developmental changes in the profiles of dyscalculia: An explanation based on a double exact-and-approximate number representation model. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 5, 1-4.

Nosworthy, N., Bugden, S., Archibald, L., Evans, B., & Ansari, D. (2013). A two-minute paper-and-pencil test of symbolic and nonsymbolic numerical magnitude processing explains variability in primary school children's arithmetic competence. PLoS ONE, 8(7).

Rousselle, L., & Noel, M. (2007). Basic numerical skills in children with mathematics learning disabilities: A comparison of symbolic vs. non-symbolic number magnitude processing. Cognition, 102, 361-395.

Vanbinst, K., Ansari, D., Ghesqui, P., & De Smedt, B. (2016). Symbolic numerical magnitude is as important to arithmetic as phonological awareness is to reading. PLoS ONE, 1-11.

Vukovic, R. K., & Lesaux, N. K. (2013). The relationship between linguistic skills and arithmetic knowledge. Learning and Individual Differences, 23, 87-91.