Brian Butterworth

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Brian Butterworth is on a crusade to understand the number deficit called dyscalculia — and to help those who have it.

Brian Butterworth FBA is Emeritus Professor of Cognitive Neuropsychology in the Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience at University College London and founding editor of the academic journal, Mathematical Cognition.  Professor Butterworth is the UK’s leading authority on dyscalculia and is currently working with colleagues in many countries on the neuropsychology and the genetics of mathematical abilities.

 ‎Professor Butterworth has made two keynote contributions to our conference. In 2009 he helped launch the inaugural conference and he returned in 2015 for our 7th National Dyscalculia and MLD Conference.

Click here to download his 2009 keynote slides: Dyscalculia: causes, identification, intervention and recognition

Click here to download his 2015 keynote slides: What Dyscalculia is and is not

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Website Links

Recommended Reading

  • The Mathematical Brain
  • Educational Neuroscience

Click here to purchase these titles


  • Semenza, C, et al (2014). A new clinical tool for assessing numerical abilities in neurological diseases: numerical activities of daily living
  • Callaway, E. (2013). Dyscalculia: Number games
  • Reeve, R. et al (2012). Stability and change in markers of core numerical competencies
  • Butterworth, B. and Walsh, V. (2011). Neural basis of mathematical cognition
  • Butterworth, B. et al (2011). Dyscalculia: From Brain to Education
  • Butterworth, B. (2005). The development of arithmetical abilities
  • Landerl, K, et al (2004). Developmental dyscalculia and basic numerical capacities: a study of 8–9-year-old students
  • Butterworth, B. (2004). Developmental Dyscalculia
  • Butterworth, B. (1999). From fear of fractions to the joy of maths


Click here to download a zipped folder of the articles




  • Dyscalculia Screener Manual

Click here to download the resource

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Professional Summary

Professor Butterworth taught at Cambridge and has held visiting appointments at the universities of Melbourne, Padua and Trieste, MIT and the Max Planck Institute at Nijmegen. His research interests lie in the domains of cognitive psychology, the ‎neuropsychology of numbers and arithmetic, neural network models of reading and arithmetic ‎and reading and acquired dyslexia in English, Japanese and Chinese.‎

Professor Butterworth is interested in how the brain processes numerical information and he published in 2003 the Dyscalculia Screener. This is a computer-based assessment for teachers that indicates dyscalculic tendencies by measuring pupils' response times as well as the accuracy of their answers.

 His research ‎employs many different approaches from many different disciplines. These include fMRI, ‎functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy, TMS, twin studies, studies of Australian aboriginal ‎learners, studies of both typically and atypically developing learners (including those with ‎dyscalculia, Turner Syndrome and Williams Syndrome), and patterns of dissociation in ‎neurological patients, as well as normally competent adults.

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