908-439-3456 ext. 1
THE UNDERACHIEVER
The Puzzle
for
Parents and Educators

Under achievement is a puzzle because many  
different causes can lead to the same self-
defeating
behavior pattern.   

        When students encounter frustration,
        Underachievers decrease their effort,
             Achievers
increase their effort.

Many students with attention disorders and learning
disabilities go undiagnosed as late as high school or
college.

One surprising reason for this delay of diagnosis is that
many of these underachievers are VERY SMART.

In the lower grades they were able to compensate for their
unknown disability with their superior intelligence, In time
these young people find themselves more and more
frustrated and less and less successful.

The growing academic challenges overwhelm
their compensatory strategies.

 SHRINKING FROM THE CHALLENGES OF
SCHOOL AND LIFE,
OTHER HIDDEN CAUSES:
  • Depression: gradually dulls motivation and drains
    confidence
  • Anxiety: in its many guises can paralyze a learner during
    tests and even stop them from asking a question.
  • Earlier Trauma: can create intense anxiety and even more
    serious symptoms that isolate a learner
  • Drugs: can, at first, be a students "solution" to failure,
    anxiety, or frustration, leading to unpredictable behavior

THE GOOD NEWS ABOUT SOLVING THIS PUZZLE

  • All of the patterns of under achievement mentioned here
    are treatable and many can resolve rapidly

  • A team approach is essential. The professionals in the
    schools are in the perfect position to identify
    underachievers early and guide them to help.

  • The school's counselors, parent teacher committees, and
    child study teams will identify and resolve most of these
    problems.

  • When a referral is necessary, whether to assist in
    diagnosis or to help families turn good intentions into a
    process of change, the professionals at Oldwick
    Associates in Psychotherapy are there to help.

  • Exciting advances in the technologies of diagnosis and
    approaches to treatment are continuing to occur. The
    professionals at OAP are constantly updating their tools
    and skills.

J. Lawrence Farmer, PsyD
We have seen
the difference

a team
approach
can
make in the
lives of
children and
adolescents.
We can help
you put the
pieces together
Specializing in individual and family therapy
by
Dr. Larry Farmer