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Dyslexia and other difficulties

Student looking at laptopSpecific learning difficulties like dyslexia and dyspraxia are more common among university students than might be thought. Many students will already have been assessed before coming to university. Others will only begin to suspect that they might have a problem when they have difficulty with the more complex and extensive studies they are expected to undertake at university. For some students with well-developed learning strategies, difficulties may not arise until they are attempting postgraduate study.

If you think you may have dyslexia or dyspraxia

You might find it helpful to book an individual confidential advice session with a Study Adviser for an initial chat. We can talk to you about study strategies, explain the 'reasonable adjustments' available to students with dyslexia or dyspraxia, and give you some information about the assessment process.

The Disability Advisory Service can provide more detailed information about assessment availability, costs and the assessment process itself.

Dyscalculia and AD(H)D

It may also be possible to arrange assessments for these difficulties. Contact the Disability Advisory Service directly to ask about this.

If you have already been assessed elsewhere

Make sure you get any 'reasonable adjustments' that you may be entitled to by submitting a copy of your assessment to the Disability Advisory Service as soon as possible. Don't wait until just before exams to do this - it can take some time to get adjustments put in place, especially at busy periods.

Do also come and have a chat with a Study Adviser - even if you have good strategies that have been effective through school and college, you are likely to need to develop them for university study.

Asperger Syndrome

If you have been diagnosed with, or think you may have Asperger Syndrome, contact the Disability Advisory Service for more advice. Click here for more information.

Postgraduate students

Postgraduate students assessed with a specific learning difficulty may still be eligible for reasonable adjustments, even if they do not have exams. These are usually decided on a case-by-case basis. You may find it helpful to talk to a Study Adviser about what might be most useful for you.

Using the Library

Matthew Holtby is the Library's Disability Co-ordinator. Contact him to arrange a meeting and find out how to get the most out of the University Library. For more details, see Information for dyslexic users.

For more information

See more detailed pages on dyslexia, dyspraxia and AD(H)D.

There is more information on Asperger Syndrome here.

Adult Dyslexia Access is a really useful site with targeted advice for students in higher education.

BRAINinHE is a comprehensive resource on dyslexia and other specific learning difficulties at university. Includes detailed definitions and suggested strategies.

British Dyslexia Association has general information and advice on dyslexia.

Study Skills for Dyslexic Students - a useful set of pages from the University of Sheffield.

Things to do now


Contact us

  • Telephone:
    +44 (0)118 378 4242
  • In person: Room 103, 1st floor, The Library (front desk staffed 10-4 in termtime)
  • Comments and feedback
We are happy for you to link to these pages for educational use but, if you are not from the University of Reading, please let us know.

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Our next Study Advice seminar is on:

Don't just Google it! Finding the reading you need

Wed 10 Feb, 2.00-3.00

URS 2n13

It's so easy to just Google a topic and hope you'll find the information you need for your assignment - but wait! Google will give you a million results and few will be appropriate to support academic writing.

This friendly seminar will discuss ways of researching for your assignments without resorting to Google (well, hardly ever...).

No need to book!


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