Guide Focus

What are Learning Disabilities?

Role of Formal Assessment

LD Students in Your Composition Classroom

LD Students in a Writing Center Tutorial

Teacher Resources

An Introduction to Resources for Disabled Students

Annotated Bibliography

Relevant Web Sites

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Authors & Contributors

Appendix 16: Dyslexia and Dysgraphia

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Dyslexia, generally, is not a "syndrome" but a multifaceted problem. For the most part, dyslexia affects the student's ability to make sense of printed material (note that this includes the notes you write on the overhead and chalkboard!). Most of us think of backward letters when we think of dyslexia, but there are more serious problems than simply switching the letters "d" and "b." These reversals also happen at the sentence level: "to go the store" for "go to the store," and at the conceptual level: the student might start with the "middle" part of what she wanted to say, then end with an unfinished sentence, the "start" of the concept she intended.

Students who have dyslexia tend to:


The concept of dysgraphia includes any serious problem with writing, including spelling problems, coherence and organization problems, problems copying down what one sees, and the inability to write ideas down at all. A student with a form of dysgraphia probably has a hard time maneuvering the complicated process of writing. This student tends to: