What Should I Do if I Suspect Dyslexia?
Signs of Dyslexia
Although the best age to diagnose dyslexia is around 7 years of age, the signs of dyslexia can be quite noticeable much earlier. Questions to ask are;
Is there dyslexia in the family?
Was the birth at full term?
Were the normal developmental milestones reached? Walking / riding a bike etc.
Were nursery rhymes picked up easily?
Can your child sequence the alphabet, know the days of the week /days of the month in order?
Any letter reversals e.g. b’s and d’s or numbers 6 and 9?
Any difficulties remembering verbal instructions -particularly if there are more than one?
Is your child disorganised and/or have difficulty telling the time or understanding the concept of time?
Any problems learning the times tables?
Pre- Assessment Child Questionnaire
If you have answered Yes to most of these questions further investigation would be prudent.
Don’t forget to discount any other difficulties first e.g. check hearing and eyesight. This must always be done before any assessment. Always ask your child if the print is moving around on the page as this could be indicative of a visual difficulty such as Irlen Syndrome. This should be checked out by an Optometrist ( not a high street Optician). Not hearing the pure sounds of letters can be affected by a history of ear infections or grommets being fitted so, do bear that in mind also.
Children can be tested earlier than 7 but we generally say from 7/8 onwards is optimum. We at Positive Dyslexia will always give you an honest reason why you should be tested or why a full assessment isn't always necessary. Do email us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any queries.
For post 16 year olds
Many have had the difficulties above and found coping strategies to hide their dyslexia.
They may have additional difficulties such as;
Reading at speed
Writing at speed
Poor self confidence
If you about to go to University you may be eligible for Disabled Students Allowance and a full diagnostic assessment will allow them to access further support such as a laptop, additional resources and extra time in exams. A post 16 report is needed for this even if you had extra time in exams or access arrangements for GCSE. Always see if your University can provide the diagnostic assessment first - they are often cheaper! Go to their Disability Services and check
For more information about DSA, click here to visit the DSA website
What happens in an assessment? Step by Step
Before the assessment takes place you will be sent a questionnaire which will ask you about you or your child’s specific difficulties e.g. Speech and Language, Maths, National Curriculum levels etc. If you have any previous reports they are sent ahead to the assessor also. A school questionnaire will be provided for children . This needs to be filled out prior to the assessment .
A full diagnostic assessment can take around 3 hours. For younger children this may take place over a couple of sessions. Breaks are always given.
If you wear glasses or use a coloured overlay bring it with you. If you are normally on any (relevant) medication tell the assessor and take it as usual.
A range of tests will then be given - Underlying cognitive ability - Verbal and Non Verbal, Attainment ( Reading , Spelling , Comprehension) and Diagnostic (Memory, Phonological Awareness). You or your child will do better in some than others and this is to be expected. Some are timed and some are not.
The assessor will try to give some feedback at the end of the session but will return the completed report to you within 15 working days. If an employer has paid for the assessment then they get a Summary Report which removes test scores and the employee gets the full report . This is because it is inappropriate for an employer to know Cognitive Ability scores for example. A follow up session is always offered - this can be in person, on the phone or by Zoom/Teams. Support is always available even after the assessment..
Recommendations for the school or employer are included. This might be around books /resources, or for adults a Work Place Needs Assessment, to see which Assistive Technology might be useful. Access to Work can then be applied for which may pay for these additional resources and some work based coaching.
If you have any questions do fill out the Contact Us page and we will answer them for you by return. If you wish to book an assessment have a look at the bottom of the page on how to do so, or go straight to the Booking Form on the Menu section.
How do I book?
We now have new assessors and trainers nationally so we hope to be able to find you a date within the near future. We normally book 6-8 weeks in advance due to demand.
Child Questionnaire to be sent with Booking Form
Our Prices from April 1st 2023 exclude VAT
Screening from: £125 ( can be redeemed against full assessment )
Full diagnostic Assessment: £550 ( discount for children on free school meals)
Terms and Conditions
1. The Booking Form must be signed and submitted to us before the assessment. Dates can only be provisionally held for 24 hours.
2. Assessments/Training cannot be guaranteed to be rescheduled to a later date and may be charged if cancelled.
3. A full assessment usually lasts around 3 hours for adults but may be shorter for children . Testing for Access Arrangements will be shorter.
4. For an assessment the results will be analysed and a detailed report will be sent to you at your address within 15 working days of the appointment.
5. Payment by BACS or cash must be made at the time of the appointment or in advance. The report will not be released until payment is made.
6. Positive Dyslexia reserve the right not to accept a referral, to terminate an assessment or not circulate a report if: the referral appears to be outside of their area of expertise the client fails to cooperate with the requirements of the assessment procedure in such a way that may compromise the validity of the assessment the client fails to comply with the terms and conditions outlined above.