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Question for dyslexia assessors re: reading and spelling

Discussion in 'Special educational needs' started by prawnicle, Jan 10, 2020.

  1. prawnicle

    prawnicle New commenter

    Hi. Just wondering if you would consider giving a dyslexia diagnosis if reading accuracy and spelling standard scores were in the high nineties. I’m thinking about a child who clearly displays dyslexic type difficultIt’s in her writing, has very slow processing speed and weak phonological awareness.
  2. Flanks

    Flanks Senior commenter

    Not unless there was a strong history of literacy specific intervention which would explain the reading/spelling scores. For that you will need a report/questionnaire response from school.

    The primary behavioural outcome of dyslexia is a weakness in single word spelling and single word reading, so the absence of this needs to be explained. Otherwise you fall in to the trap of 'all low scores = dyslexia' which is far too prevalent.
  3. scorpio12

    scorpio12 New commenter

    Unlikely to give the full diagnosis if both reading accuracy and spelling are not an issue as they are key features of dyslexia. However, I would discuss the areas of difficulty e.g. processing speed.
  4. moonpenny

    moonpenny Occasional commenter

    I would find it difficult to comment on this particular child as usually when you assess someone there is detailed background information from parents and teachers as well as observations during the assessment and a wide range of scores.

    A child may get an average single word reading score based on only a small amount of words read correctly yet when they complete the reading comprehension assessment , they may really be struggling to decode words which is then obviously going to make it more difficult for them to access passages of text. They may have working memory problems meaning they find it difficult to process and retain the information contained within the text. Similarity, a child may get an average score for spelling based on a small amount of high frequency words which they may have been already taught and which are now secure in their long term memory - they may also have a good visual memory which helps them to picture how those words look. Yet when they try to write, the spelling difficulties may be more obvious leading to difficulties with writing. This can be very frustrating when so much of the curriculum depends on writing and especially if a child actually has a very good understanding of what’s going on in lessons but struggles to acutely represent this in their writing, The phonological processing/ awareness/ memory scores give quite a lot of information about what is going on, as do the processing speed scores and the short-term memory scores.Plus the non verbal and verbal test scores information give further context.

    So I would not like to generalise.
  5. moonpenny

    moonpenny Occasional commenter

    Sorry for the typos - that’s what happens when you are dyslexic and try to multitask while writing at speed :)
  6. prawnicle

    prawnicle New commenter

    Thanks for all advice.

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