Dyslexia is one of several distinct learning disabilities. It is a specific language based disorder of constitutional origin characterized by difficulties in single word decoding, usually reflecting insufficient phonological processing abilities. These difficulties in single word decoding are often unexpected in relation to age and other cognitive and academic abilities; they are not a result of generalized developmental disability or sensory impairment. Dyslexia is manifested by variable difficulty with different forms of language, often including, in addition to problems in reading, a conspicuous problem with acquiring proficiency in writing and spelling.


  • problems in learning the names of the letters of the alphabet
  • difficulty in learning to write the alphabet correctly in sequence
  • difficulty in learning and remembering printed words
  • reversal of letters or sequences of letters
  • difficulty in learning to read
  • difficulty in reading comprehension
  • cramped or illegible handwriting
  • repeated erratic spelling errors
  • losing ground on achievement or intelligence tests
  • delay in spoken language
  • difficulty in finding the “right” word when speaking
  • late in establishing preferred hand for writing
  • late in learning right and left and other directionality components
  • problems in learning the concept of time and temporal sequencing
  • family history of similar problems
  • late in learning to talk
  • delay in motor milestones
  • slow reading speed
  • error proneness in reading
  • difficulty in foreign language for older students
  • word substitutions in oral reading

Profile under Bulletin 1903

  • Lack of phonological awareness
  • Common error patterns in reading and learning behaviors, such as:
    • Reading decoding inaccuracies in single words and nonsense words (e.g., detached syllables)
    • Slow reading rate
    • Omissions of or substitutions of small words (e.g., a/the, of/for/from, three/there)
    • Reduced awareness of patterns in words
    • Difficulties generalizing word and language patterns
  • Language (oral or written, receptive or expressive) is simplistic or poor in relation to other abilities
  • Errors in spontaneous spelling
  • Spontaneous written language is very simple or poor in comparison to spoken language
  • Spontaneous written expression shows poor organization and mechanics

General Instructional Accommodations and Modifications

  • Opportunity for increased response time
  • Preferential seating
  • Directions given in more than one way (visual, auditory, written, re-explain)
  • Paraphrasing information (repeating, summarizing)
  • Extended time to complete assignments
  • Shortened, modified, fewer, or taped assignments
  • Reduced or altered assignments (homework)
  • Taped answers for homework
  • Homework completed on computer
  • Reduced pencil/paper tasks
  • More frequent opportunity for review
  • Cooperative learning/peer assistance
  • Taped lectures
  • Peer assistance for note taking/assignment keeping
  • Peer note taker
  • Outline or partial outline provided
  • Photocopied teachers notes
  • Taped textbooks
  • Highlighted textbooks
  • Assignment notebook/calendar