Information Processing Disorder

Information processing disorder is a disorder characterized by a deficiency in the ability to use the information gathered by our five senses efficiently. This condition differs from a type of cognitive or intellectual deficit, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, impaired vision, or hearing loss.


Information processing in children is similar to information processing in computers. The brain collects information through touch, taste, sight, smell, and hearing. Then, the brain has to recognize, understand, and store the information. Finally, we have to respond to processed information. Information processing allows children to do everything from tying their shoes to reading a book.


The two most common types of information processing disorder are visual processing disorder and auditory processing disorder.

Visual Processing Disorder

Visual processing disorder may present itself as difficulties with:

Visual discrimination

Visual sequencing

Visual memory

Visual motor processing

Visual closure

Spatial relationships

Auditory Processing Disorder

Types of auditory processing disorders include struggling with:

Auditory discrimination

Auditory memory

Auditory sequencing


Possible signs of auditory processing disorder include difficulty with reading and language development, such as struggling to anticipate how a speaker will end a sentence. Possible signs of visual processing disorder include difficulty with math, reading, and/or writing. Examples include struggling to distinguish between similar looking letters like “n” and “h”.


Some diagnostic test for information processing disorder focus on evaluating basic skills such as reading and math to identify possible attention or learning issues. Others try to identify possible issues which impact basic skills children use while learning.

Some children may struggle with processing skills (understanding or remembering information). Others have difficulties with motor skills (running or holding a pencil). Finally, a child may have difficulties with language skills such as communicating or forming words.

Beery-Buktenica Developmental Test of Visual Motor Integration

The Beery-Buktenica developmental test of visual motor integration measure visual and motor skills by asking children to copy geometric designs. Low scores may indicate difficulties with hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills.

NEPSY Developmental Neuropsychological Assessment-II

The NEPSY developmental neuropsychological assessment-II measures a wide array of problem-solving and thinking skills. To measure these skills, children are tested in the seven areas which impact learning – attention, sensory/motor, spatial reasoning, memory, language skills, and learning abilities. The test also assesses how children understand social situations. Low-scoring sections can lead professionals to certain areas where a child may need help.

Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure Drawing

The Rey-Osterrieth complex figure drawing test measures a child’s perception of figures and geometric objects and their relationship to each other in memory and space. To test this perception, children are given flash cards which depict pictures. Then, they are asked to first copy the figure in front of them and then draw the figure from memory. Poor performance on this test indicates a child struggles to perceive objects in space.

Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test-IV

The Peabody picture vocabulary test-IV measures a child’s ability to understand what is being said. It is tested by an examiner describing one of four pictures shown to a child. The child then is asked to point out the picture that matches the description. The score reflects how well children comprehend the spoken language and may explain difficulties in school.

Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals (CELF-5)

The CELF-5 measures a child’s ability to understand language and verbally express thoughts and feelings. This is tested by asking children to verbally respond to pictures they are shown. Scores that deviate from average for the age of the child may point to issues with expression and language comprehension.


If you feel your child suffers from information processing disorder, schedule your initial consultation with us today. For information on any of our services, please do not hesitate to call 800-Novomed (800-668-6633).