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The Dyslexic Adult: Interventions and Outcomes - An Evidence-based Approach, 2nd Edition

ISBN: 978-1-119-97394-2
336 pages
April 2013, Wiley-Blackwell
The Dyslexic Adult: Interventions and Outcomes - An Evidence-based Approach, 2nd Edition (1119973945) cover image


A definitive and evidence-based guide for psychologists, teachers, coaches, HR personnel and all professionals who must understand and work with dyslexic adults.
  • The only book to look at dyslexia within the context of life span developmental psychology, including the factors that contribute to success - now fully revised and updated
  • Combines an accessible style with a strong focus on evidence-based practice and a sound theoretical model on which to base assessment, counselling, teaching and training
  • Provides a clear guide to the kinds of assessment that can be conducted and the ways in which dyslexic adults can be supported in selection, training, education and employment
  • Includes coverage of overlapping syndromes such as dyspraxia and dyscalculia, and up-to-date check lists for syndromes that can be used as part of the assessment process
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Table of Contents

Preface to the Second Edition xv

Preface to the First Edition xvii

Acknowledgements xix

Prologue xxi

1 Dyslexia in the Adult Years 1

Introduction 1

History 5

Terminology 6

Defining Dyslexia 6

Evidence-based Practice 8

The Nature of Dyslexia: Behavioural Characteristics 10

Observable Behavioural Characteristics 11

Affective Characteristics 12

Positive Characteristics 13

Behavioural Characteristics: Empirical Evidence 15

Explaining Characteristics 15

Biology and Neurology 15

Cognition 17

Dyslexia: AWorking Memory Model 19

Explaining Positive Characteristics 23

Explaining Affective Characteristics 26

AWorking Definition 28

Dyslexia and Other Syndromes 28

Dyspraxia 29

Dyscalculia 30

Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder 31

Asperger’s Syndrome 31

Visual Stress 32

Degrees of Dyslexia 32

The Prevalence of Dyslexia 33

Summary 34

2 Interventions 35

Introduction 35

Psychological Development in the Adult Years 35

Transitions 37

Successful Adjustment 38

Risk and Resilience 38

Learning in Adulthood 40

Types of Intervention 41

The Role of the Tutor/Coach 44

Key Skills 44

The Development of Metacognitive Skills 46

Skill Development, Compensation and Accommodation: An Integrated Framework for Development 47

Alternative Interventions 49

Summary 51

3 Identification and Assessment 52

Introduction 52

Information Gathering 53

Interviews 54

Screening 57

Checklists 57

Computer-based Tests 58

LADS – Plus Version 58

StudyScan and QuickScan 58

Individually Administered Tests 59

York Adult Assessment Battery 59

Dyslexia Adult Screening Test (DAST) 60

Scholastic Abilities Test for Adults (SATA) 60

Formal Diagnosis 61

Testing Intelligence 62


Verbal Tests 64

Working Memory Tests 64

Perceptual Reasoning Tests 64

Processing Speed 64

The Global Composite – Full Scale IQ 64

The Specific Composite – Index Scores 65

The Sub-test – Level WAIS-IV as an Ipsative Test 65

The Item Level and Task Cognitive Capacities 66

Abbreviated Scales 67

Tests for Teachers 68

Further Psychological Testing 68

Phonological Processing and Naming Speed 68

Memory Ability 69

Executive Functioning 70

Achievements in Literacy and Numeracy 71

Reading 71

Reading Levels 71

The Components of a Reading Assessment 73

Decoding 73

Comprehension 74

Listening Comprehension 75

Speed of Reading 75

The Assessment of Metacognition in Reading 76

The Assessment of Reading Skills and Information Technology 77

Writing and Spelling 77

Numeracy 79

Measuring Affective Characteristics 80

Self-Esteem 80

Anxiety 80

Re-assessment 81

Diagnosis and English as an Additional Language 81

Diagnosis and Other Syndromes 83

Dyspraxia/DCD 84

Dyscalculia 84


Asperger’s Syndrome 85

Visual Stress 85

Pretending to Have a Learning Difficulty 86

Feedback to Client 86

ReportWriting 87

Summary 88

Appendix A: Sample Report 95

Appendix B: A Guide through the Maze of Assessments 97

4 Counselling 100

Introduction 100

Aims of Counselling 101

Issues in Counselling Dyslexic People 101

Approaches to Counselling 102

Couple Counselling 110

Referring On 110

Summary 111

5 Personal Development 112

Introduction 112

Self-understanding 112

The Nature of the Difficulty 113

Interpreting Dyslexia 113

Abilities and Strengths 116

Metacognition 123

The Importance of Metacognition to Learning andWorking 124

A Metacognitive Technique 127

Issues in Personal Development 128

Self Advocacy 129

Personal Organisation 129

Goal Setting 130

Prioritisation 130

Memory Skills 132

Social Skills 133

A Dyslexic Person’s Perspective 135

A Case History – C 138

Summary 140

6 Literacy for Living 141

Introduction 141

Prose Literacy 142

Document Literacy 142

Quantitative Literacy 142

Lifelong Learning 142

Planning a Programme 144

Information Processing and Literacy 145

Improving Levels of Literacy 147

Improving Reading Accuracy 147

Improving Reading Comprehension 151

The Pass Reading Strategy 151

Improving Spelling 153

ImprovingWriting 154

Improving Quantative Literacy 156

A Dyslexic Person’s Perspective 158

Coaches Comment 160

Summary 160

7 Academic and Professional Learning Skills 162

Introduction 162

The Keys to Success in Higher and Professional Education 164

The Importance of Metacognition 164

Self-understanding and Self-reflection 164

Self Reflection Attribution and Self Efficacy 165

Learning andWorking Styles 166

Cognitive Learning Differences 166

Behavioural Learning Styles 166

Time Management 167

Organisation ofWork 167

Reading 168

Critical Reading Skills 170

Comprehending Diagrammatic and Tabular Formats 171

EssayWriting 172

Understanding the Task – Question Analysis and Process Words 173

Proofreading 174

Grammar and Punctuation 175

Spelling 175

Listening Comprehension 176

Note Taking 177

Note Making 179

Revision and Memory Skills 180

Examinations 182

Statistics 184

Presentations 185

Working in a Group 186

Tutorials 187

The Role of the Tutor 188

The Role of the Student 189

The Keys to Success 189

The Responsibilities of Colleges and Universities 190

Study Skills Course Outline 190

A Dyslexic Person’s Perspective 192

Sample Assessment Report 193

Summary 201

8 Career Development and Guidance 203

Introduction 203

Approaches to Counselling and Development 204

Career Guidance: A Decision Making Model 205

Career Guidance and the Dyslexic: A Model 206

Case Example 214

Career Development 215

A Dyslexic’s Perspective: Dyslexia and Journalism 216

Summary 218

9 Dyslexia AtWork 219

Introduction 219

TheWhole Organisation: Awareness Training 220

Disclosure: To Tell or Not To Tell 224

Goodness of Fit 224

Recruitment and Selection 225

Recruitment 225

Selection 226

TheWorkplace Assessment/Consultation 226

The Manager’s Role 227

Challenges Facing Dyslexic People 228

Metacognitive Skills atWork 230

Transfer of Skills 230

Evaluation and Reflection 230

Changes and Transitions atWork 230

Support in theWorkplace 231

Tutoring Training, Coaching and Mentoring 231

A Coaching Example 232

Programme Length 233

Mentoring 234

Addressing Challenges 234

Organisation 234

Time Management andWork Prioritisation 235

Organisation ofWork and theWork Space 236

Memory 237

Reading atWork 237

Reading for Information 238

Reading Complex Material 238

Specific Visual Difficulties 239

Performance Issues 239

WrittenWork in the Office 240

Record Keeping 240

ReportWriting 241

Numeracy 242

Proofreading and Checking 243

Listening Skills atWork 243

Minute and Note Taking 244

Meetings 244

Working in a Team 245

Interviews 247

A Note on the Use of Technology 248

Workplace Consultancy Report 248

A Coaching Course Outline 254

Summary 256

10 Advocacy 257

Introduction 257

The Legislative Framework 259

Dyslexia as a Mental Impairment 259

Adverse Effects which are Substantial 260

Long-Term Substantial Effects 260

Normal Day-to-Day Effects 260

Reasonable Adjustments 261

Individual Needs 262

Integrated Experience 262

Essential Requirements of the Job/Course 263

An Undue Financial or Administrative Burden 263

Adjustments in Recruitment, Selection and Promotion 263

Types of Test Accommodations/Adjustments 264

Disclosing Dyslexia 267

When to Say Something 268

Whom to Tell 268

What to Say 268

Policy and Practice in Employment 270

Legislation in Education and Training 270

Policy in Higher Education 270

Self-Help and Self-Help Groups 271

Dyslexia and Criminal Law 272

Summary 272

Epilogue 274

Appendix A Sample Interview Schedule 275

Appendix B Useful Contact Addresses 278

References 280

Index 305

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Author Information

David McLoughlin is a Visiting Professor in Psychology at the University of Buckingham. He is Director of Independent Dyslexia Consultants, a UK organisation which has worked with dyslexic adults and children for 25 years.

Carol A. Leather is training director at Independent Dyslexia Consultants and a researcher at Surrey University. She has been instrumental in developing strategic approaches to support dyslexic employees in sectors including the emergency services, banking and the civil service.

Together, David and Carol edited the 2010 edition of the British Dyslexia Association's prestigious Dyslexia in Employment Handbook.

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Dyslexia is a lifelong condition which does not disappear once a person leaves school but continues to present challenges in adulthood. This book contains a wealth of evidence-based information and resources for professionals working to support adults with dyslexia. The strategies detailed in the book will enhance practitioners’ ability to teach the skills that are needed to meet these challenges.—Nicola Brunswick, Senior Lecturer in Psychology at Middlesex University.

David McLoughlin and Carol Leather continue to breathe fresh air into our understanding and support for dyslexic adults. The book offers real insight into dyslexia at an academic and practical level. As someone who is dyslexic I found myself identifying with many of the examples and at the same time being kept up to date with the latest research and viewpoints.  For anyone interested in this subject it is a ‘must read’.—Judi Stewart, former CEO British Dyslexia Association.

Adult Dyslexia - Interventions and Outcomes, in its second edition, continues to provide up-to-date information in an area of dyslexia that is now rapidly changing. It is quite comprehensive and very much "in tune" with the best thinking and effective practices of both researchers and clinicians in the field.—Paul J. Gerber, Professor of Special Education and Disability Policy, Virginia Commonwealth University and the Ruth Harris Professor of Dyslexia Studies.


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