Learning: Dyslexia and Et Al.

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Literature Review: An International Perspective on
Dyslexia

* Table of Contents

Table of Contents2
Executive Summary2
Background2
Methodology4
Findings4
1.Introduction10
2.International Definitions12
3.Causes and Characteristics of Dyslexia19
4.Identification of Dyslexia24
4.1Dyslexia Early Screening Test (DEST)25
4.2Cognitive Profiling System (CoPS)32
4.3Wechsler Intelligence Test for Children (WISC)34
4.4Response to Intervention (RTI)35
5.Intervention and Support39
6.Long-Term Prospects of Dyslexics56
7.Language and Dyslexia60
7.1The Impact of Orthographic Consistency on Dyslexia61
7.2The Impact of Alphabetic and Logographic Language Systems on Dyslexia63
8.Conclusions67
9.References69
APPENDIX 1-other tests available to identify dyslexic individuals84
APPENDIX 2-other commercial intervention programs86
APPENDIX 3-summary of issues raised during peer review process86

* Executive Summary
* Background
Literacy is one of the competencies necessary for effective participation in modern life and is a prerequisite for the achievement of many other essential competencies, both generic and specific. It underpins access to all learning areas across the curriculum. New Zealand has a good reputation for the literacy achievement of its students, but it also has a system where a number of learners are not achieving well by international standards2. There is a group of students who experience persistent and on-going difficulties in literacy, and recently there have been particular questions as to whether the current education system is meeting the needs of a group of students with specific learning disabilities (SLD), in particular those commonly referred to as dyslexia. Dyslexia is an often misunderstood, confusing term for reading difficulties, but despite the many confusions and misunderstandings the term dyslexia is commonly used by a number of medical personnel, researchers and the general public. Identifying an individual as 'dyslexic' can help them to understand their experiences but this label does not give any information or direction on how to support and teach this individual to read and write. For this reason the term dyslexia is often avoided in educational contexts with preference given to the terms ‘learning disability’, ‘specific learning disability’ or ‘specific learning difficulty’. However, the continued use of the term dyslexia in research and by many members of the general public means that these phrases are often used interchangeably, as will be the case in this review. The purpose of this literature review is to examine available international research and information over the last decade on dyslexia, with particular attention to the students that have been identified as “dyslexic”, the tools commonly used to identify these students, the support services that are available to these students and who provides these services. The overarching goal is to gather evidence on the effectiveness of interventions used to improve literacy levels of dyslexic students or students at risk of dyslexia in order to inform evidence based policy development within the New Zealand Ministry of Education. As part of the peer review process for this literature review, James Chapman and Bill Tunmer from the College of Education at Massey University, Palmerston North were asked to provide feedback on the literature review in respect of the methodology, structure and comprehensiveness of the review; strengths of the review and/or any obvious gaps in terms of literature related to dyslexia; and the usefulness of the review. A summary of the issues raised during the peer review process can be found in appendix 3.

* Methodology
Over the last decade there has been a considerable...
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