Testing for dyslexia is usually sought for a variety of reasons.
For adults or young people aged 16-18 years not in education, it could be to find out all/any of the following:
- If they are dyslexic or not.
- What support they might need in further and higher education.
- What they might need for support in the workplace - dyslexia is considered a disability under the law and therefore reasonable adjustments would be appropriate.
- Information that can be passed to relevant people to better support them.
Parents seeking an independent dyslexia assessment do so for a number of reasons:
- It can be because their child's school won't formally identify the challenges their child is facing.
- The school assessment process is taking too long and their child is falling behind.
- They may be looking for an independent view about what their child needs in the way of support.
- There might be a difference of opinion as to whether the problem the child is experiencing is dyslexia or not.
- Most importantly, the child sometimes needs to know why they are experiencing challenges and how they can be supported.
How do I organise a test for dyslexia?
If your child is in a mainstream school we would advise that you speak to your school first. Most operate a staged intervention system which can include a classroom-based contextualised process to identify a child's additional support needs, and it is free.
However, as a parent you have the right to choose if you want your child to be assessed independently of the school. If you want to have a chat about independent assessments, you should call the Dyslexia Scotland Helpline on 0344 800 8484.
If your child is in an independent school, speak to the Support for Learning Teacher. It may well be that they have recommended that you obtain an independent assessment, in which case, do just give us a call to discuss this further. But if you haven't had any discussions with them, you might like to do that first. Find out more about assessment in school.
For adults, or young people aged 16-18 years not in education, there are no free dyslexia assessment services available in Scotland at the moment. Here is Dyslexia Scotland's visual route for adult assessments. Currently, the only available option is to pay for a private assessment. Dyslexia Scotland holds a list of specialist assessors located in different areas of Scotland. If you would like us to send you this list, do get in touch with our helpline.
Many enquiries to our helpline ask about free/low cost options. There are a number of websites which offer online testing services but it should be noted that these are only screening tests. They cannot provide a robust and valid identification of dyslexia. However they are a good starting point particularly if cost is an issue. Please note, these online screening tests are not Dyslexia Scotland products. If you experience any problems with them, contact either Pico or Do-It directly for assistance.
- QuickScreen for Individuals (Suitable for ages 17+) (cost is approx £34.50) - This screening test is produced by Pico Education Systems. If you have any difficulties with accessing the site, payment or a query about the report you should contact Pico Education Systems directly on 0208 674 9571 or email: [email protected]
DO-IT Personal Profilers (costs start from £20+) - These dyslexia profiles are suitable for workplace, children, and students. There is also a Personal Profiler for Dyspraxia/DCD. The screening tests are produced by Do-It Solutions. If you have any difficulties with accessing the site, payment or a query about the report you should contact the company directly on 020 33 22 55 36 or email: [email protected]
What happens at an assessment?
Click on Dyslexia Scotland's YouTube video, to watch Dr. Jennie Guise describe what to expect during an assessment.
What does an assessment report, Post-16/Adults look like?
The way in which an assessment report is written and laid out can vary from assessor to assessor. Those assessors on Dyslexia Scotland's recommended list are asked to follow the report template formats as provided by SpLD Assessment Standards Committee (SASC - www.sasc.org.uk).
Dyslexia Scotland has created a post-assessment pack for adults providing a wealth of links to useful documents and resources.
Dyslexia Scotland Helpline - 0344 800 8484 to discuss any queries regarding dyslexia and assessments.