Introduction: understanding motor behaviour in Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD)

Hill, Elisabeth L. and Barnett, Anna. 2019. Introduction: understanding motor behaviour in Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD). In: Anna Barnett and Elisabeth L. Hill, eds. Understanding Motor Behaviour in Developmental Coordination Disorder. Abingdon: Routledge, pp. 1-7. ISBN 9781315268231 [Book Section]

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Abstract or Description

Some developmental disorders have been recognised and subjected to scientific research for many decades. For example, Dyslexia and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are familiar terms to lay people and psychologists have developed and tested theories to help understand the mechanisms that underlie the behavioural characteristics of these disorders.

Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) has been less well known and only more recently attracted significant research interest. In the last decade awareness of this condition (sometimes referred to as ‘Dyspraxia’) has increased enormously in the general public and among health and educational professionals. There has been an explosion of research into the biological, cognitive and motor characteristics as well as the impact of the condition on the physical and psychological well-being of children and adults. This growing interest has been evident in the increased number of research papers published on the topic, growth of the national and international conferences on DCD and recently published European guidelines. Despite this growing interest in and understanding of the condition, the research in this area often fails to draw fully on our broader knowledge of motor behaviour, which is central to understanding DCD and an area of research itself which has a much longer history.

The aim of this text is to present chapters from international experts to give an overview of current theoretical and methodological issues relating to various aspects of motor behaviour. This includes motor development, motor control, skill acquisition, the influence of biological factors and education and therapy. For each topic area we present a companion chapter on DCD outlining and evaluating the literature in each of these areas to reflect on our current understanding of DCD.

This approach is designed to (a) encourage those interested in motor behaviour more generally to learn about DCD; (b) consider DCD in the context of current knowledge of motor behaviour; and (c) encourage new directions for research in the field of DCD.

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Book Section


developmental coordination disorder, dyspraxia, typical motor coordination development

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13 March 2019Published

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Date Deposited:

18 May 2020 11:20

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18 May 2020 11:20


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