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E801: Action 3.3

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E801: Action 3.3: A Closer Look at Defining Dyslexia

1. Purposes for definitions of dyslexia (Reid, 2009, p.3/4)

British Dyslexia Association Definition (2009)

  • Explanation: Explaining to teachers and professionals how they may identify and intervene

International Dyslexia Definition (2008)

  • Research: To provide a tidy and discrete sample for researchers
  • Explanation: Explain to teachers and professionals how they may identify and intervene

British Psychological Society (1999)

  • Understanding: To help parents and the individual with dyslexia understand

Scottish Government (2009)

  • Allocation
  • Explanation
  • Understanding

Reid (2009, p.4)

  • Explanation
  • Understanding

2. In a university setting I would find the BDA definition useful as a concise, basic explanation for both students and staff. It gives a medical definition concentrating on deficiencies but also gives a positive slant on the individual's cognitive abilities and positive ideas for interventions.

3. Looking at the Scottish definition, I would consider the good points to be the comprehensive coverage of the difficulties but the positive slant that moves this away from a deficiencies model towards a social model. I especially like the acknowledgement of the emotional difficulties that can result from lack of identification. My criticism of the definition is that it is very lengthy and does not give much guidance for intervention.


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