Testing and Evaluation

  • The article, "Testing and Evaluation" from the International Dyslexia Association website is a holistic and powerful guide on testing and evaluations to help identify dyslexic students. (Click on title to redirect to article).

  • SLD/Dyslexia Assessment Resource Guide from the CT Department of Education. Describes testing and evaluations to help identify dyslexic students. These tests help identify core deficits, so appropriate research-based interventions can be used for students with dyslexia.

How can districts improve their methods for identifying dyslexic students and provide an appropriate and scientifically based intervention?

  • K-2 literacy should focus on structured literacy. A systematic, explicit, and multisensory approach to reading through the teaching of phonics.
  • Conduct informative PD sessions on the signs and symptoms of Dyslexia. Knowledge is power!
  • Highly trained teachers using researched-based interventions with fidelity will lead to literacy for all.
  • Use a dyslexia symptoms checklist as part of the RTI (Response to Intervention) referral Process. RTI remediation strategies often lead to a "wait to fail" reality for dyslexic students. If teachers understood dyslexia and the symptoms, effective Tier 3 interventions can be easier to implement (intensive systematic multi-sensory intervention).
  • Provide Universal Screens at specific grade that include phonemic awareness as well as Rapid Automatic Naming (schools do not have to wait until 3rd grade to do this).
  • Review Child's developmental history.
  • Consider family history of struggling students. Dyslexia runs in families.
  • Use the recommended diagnostic tests to identify dyslexia (Note: there is no single dyslexic test! Evaluations should include testing, classroom observations, and curriculum based class work. They all play an important part in identifying a dyslexic student).
  • Evaluations for Dyslexia should include: intelligence, oral language skills, word identification, decoding, spelling/encoding, phonological processing, automaticity/fluency skills, reading comprehension, vocabulary (reading and listening task). (Source: IDA)
  • Embrace a multi-sensory approach to reading for all K-2 students. Best practices can assist all learners. This approach to reading meets the diverse learning needs of all students.
  • Invest in teacher training for a researched-based structured literacy program.
  • Teachers can work with literacy interventionists and instructional coaches to meet the needs of their dyslexic students.