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Understanding Learning Difficulties: A Guide for Parents (Revised Edition) Now Available Online

A web version and a downloadable PDF of Understanding Learning Difficulties: A Guide for Parents...

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Dyslexia is a specific learning disability* that is neurological 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 the growth of vocabulary and background knowledge.

This definition has been adopted by both the IDA and the NICHD. AUSPELD believes it best reflects current research evidence on the defining features of dyslexia. More on defining dyslexia...

*Other SLDs: dysgraphia, dyscalculia.


The ULD Guide for Parents has been designed and produced to provide parents and carers with current information about the nature of learning disabilities in children, and to offer practical guidance on the most appropriate identification, intervention and support. Copies of the guide can be purchased through AUSPELD and it is also available to download from the ULD for Parents website. The website includes additional content including videos and further reading.

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  • Additional Updates to SPELD Services

    Over the past few months, state SPELD associations have responded to the COVID-19 context by adapting their service delivery models to include online clinical services, professional development, and tutoring. As restrictions start to ease in some parts of the country, some state SPELDs have begun to return to face to face service delivery while online […]

    Posted on 24th Jun 2020 0 comments
  • Emily Hanford’s exploration of the science of reading

    Journalist Emily Hanford (author of Hard Words: Why aren’t kids being taught to read) recently presented an online keynote presentation as part of the PaTTAN Literacy Symposium. The presentation focuses on Emily’s exploration of the science of reading. She shares some important take-home messages about changing the way the message of effective evidence-informed instruction is […]

    Posted on 17th Jun 2020 0 comments
  • Interview with Dr. Jack Fletcher

    This video interview with esteemed child neuropsychologist Dr. Jack Fletcher is a must-watch! Dr. Fletcher is the Principal Investigator of the Texas Centre for Learning Disabilities and is a former member of the NICHD National Advisory Council and the President’s Commission on Excellence in Special Education. In the video, he explains the importance of early […]

    Posted on 3rd Jun 2020 0 comments