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What is Dyslexia?

Dyslexia is the most common cause of reading/spelling/writing difficulties. Of people with poor reading skills, 70-80% are likely dyslexic. One in five (20%) of the population has dyslexia affecting nearly the same percentage of males/females. About 3/4 of children showing early difficulties with basic reading skills can overcome these difficulties with early identification and effective intervention.

“Dyslexia is a specific learning disability that is neurobiological in origin. It is characterized by difficulties with accurate and/or fluent word recognition and by poor spelling and decoding abilities. These difficulties typically result from a deficit in the phonological component of language that is often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities and the provision of effective classroom instruction. Secondary consequences may include problems in reading comprehension and reduced reading experience that can impede growth of vocabulary and background knowledge.”

Adopted by the IDA Board of Directors, Nov. 12, 2002. This Definition is also used by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD). Many state education codes, including New Jersey, Ohio and Utah, have adopted this definition. Learn more about how consensus was reached on this definition: Definition Consensus Project.

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