Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

Living Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan

Academic Skills

  • Christina ZafirisEmail author
  • Rachel Losoff
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-56782-2_1432-2


Academic skills refer to a student’s ability to perform age-appropriate school activities related to reading, writing, and mathematics. Reading skills include the five building blocks skills of phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. These are listed in hierarchical order, as the ultimate goal is comprehending whatever one reads (National Reading Panel 2015). Writing skills begin with the basic skill of letter formation and progress to the more advanced skills of fluency (production of simple sentences), syntactic maturity (production of increasingly complex sentences), semantic maturity or vocabulary use, organization of thought or content, and conventions (including grammar, spelling, and punctuation) (Howell and Nolet 2000). Math skills include the general skills of basic fact fluency (i.e., addition, subtraction, multiplication, division), math computation and operations (e.g., multi-digit addition, fractions), and math application/problem-solving. Math skills can further be categorized by the ten common core math standards: counting and cardinality, operations and algebraic thinking, numbers and operations in base 10, numbers and operations-fractions, measurement and data, geometry, ratios and proportional relationships, the number system, expression and equations, functions, and statistics and probability (Common Core Standards Initiative 2016). These three academic skills of reading, writing, and math allow for the acquisition of other content area school subjects. For example, social studies and history require reading and writing, while science and technology require math and reading (and often writing). These academic skills are differentiated from academic enabler skills, which enable the acquisition of academic skills and include motivation, interpersonal skills, engagement, and study skills (DiPerna et al. 2001).


References and Readings

  1. Common Core State Standards Initiative. (2016). Common core state standards for mathematics. Retrieved from http://www.corestandards.org/Math/
  2. DiPerna, J. C., Volpe, R. J., & Elliot, S. N. (2001). A model of academic enablers and elementary reading/language art achievement. School Psychology Review, 31(3), 298–312.Google Scholar
  3. Howell, K. W., & Nolet, V. (2000). Curriculum-based evaluation: Teaching and decision making (3rd ed.). Belmont: Wadsworth.Google Scholar
  4. National Reading Panel. (2015, March 17). National Reading Panel. Retrieved from https://www.nichd.nih.gov/research/supported/Pages/nrp.aspx

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Applied Psychology and Counselor EducationUniversity of Northern ColoradoGreeleyUSA
  2. 2.School PsychologyThe Chicago School of Professional PsychologyChicagoUSA