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How to Detect and Manage Dyslexia

A Reference and Resource Manual
By Philomena Ott

About the book

  • Could you identify the early warning signs of dyslexia?
  • How to recognise and overcome reading, writing and spelling difficulties
  • What advice can be given to dyslexic adults and their employers?

Written by one of the most highly regarded practitioners in the field, this book provided authoritative information on this complex and emotive subject.

This reference and resource manual is essential reading for Special Needs Coordinators, specialist and non-specialist teachers, parents, adults with SpLD and all others involved in helping individuals to overcome dyslexia.

In the foreword, Sir Jackie Stewart OBE describes how he has managed to overcome his own problems fighting this hidden handicap. He gives hope and encouragement to all by his own achievements.

Book details
ISBN 0 435 10419 5
Pages  416
Publisher Heinemann Educational

by Sir Jackie Stewart OBE

'It is therefore enormously important that more people, both professionally in the education system, and in the homes of young people who have dyslexia, more fully understand the condition. It is imperative that dyslexia is detected at the earliest possible age, then managed in a manner which will allow the young person to grow and develop in order to reach his or her true potential in life.'

Sir Jackie Steward OBE

Extracts from the foreword by Sir Jackie Stewart OBE

'The large majority of people will never know the anguish, the deep pain and the suffering which goes on in the mind of a young person in our own schools, where he or she may be mentally abused because they have a learning disability. These youngsters can be healthy, energetic, many of them highly intelligent and desperately seeking to escape from the mental prison to which their minds seem to have so unfairly shackled them. Even in their own home, parents and family members 'do not understand' and may accuse them of not listening, not paying attention, not concentrating.'

'Historically the large majority of our education systems have not recognized a specific learning disability as quickly as it might be identified these days. I was one who was never diagnosed as dyslexic until I was 42 years old! I left school at the age of fifteen having been mostly identified as stupid, dumb or 'thick'...'

'I sincerely hope this book will encourage not only people of today, but also of tomorrow, to be more understanding of the problems that currently exist with dyslexia, and to use all possible endeavours and skills to build for the future.'

Sir Jackie Stewart OBE




  1. A century of delay and debate
    Defining dyslexia
    Historical perspective
  2. Early Identification
    Screening tests
    Who is responsible for the assessment of special educational needs?
    Early warning signs
  3. Spoken Language
    Identifying the problem
    How parents and teachers can help
  4. Reading
    Tests and assessment by teachers and SENCOs
    The multi-sensory teaching of reading
    How to overcome the dyslexic reader’s problems
  5. Handwriting
    How and why to teach cursive writing
    Practical suggestions to help the dyslexic
    How to manage the specific needs of the left hander
  6. Spelling
    Classification and analysis of spelling errors as a means of detection
    Structured approaches to teaching spelling
  7. Mathematics
    Identification and assessment
    The problems encountered by the dyslexic mathematician
    Strategies and techniques to help
  8. Adolescence
    Study skills and examinations
    Preparation hurdles, including modern foreign languages
    How to obtain concessions from examination boards
  9. Further and Higher Education
    Choosing the right college and courses
    Completing the UCAS form
    How to maximise the help available
  10. Computers
    Technology to assist and empower the dyslexic
    Guidelines on choosing the most appropriate technology
    Use in examinations
  11. Music
    The implications of dyslexia for the musician
    How to help the dyslexic musician
  12. The adult dyslexic
    Guidelines on identifying dyslexia in an adult
    Guidelines for adult literacy and learning support tutors
    The implications of dyslexia for employer and employee
  13. Educational Legislation
    Special Educational Needs Code of Practice
    Statementing and Tribunal appeals
  14. The eyes
    Their significance and importance in the dyslexia debate
    Visual factors: eye movements, reference eye, coloured lenses
  15. Towards a better understanding

Useful addresses
Useful words in learning to read
100 most often mis-spelled words


‘I know of no other book which aims at being a resource manual of this kind in the area of dyslexia…Is it too far-fetched to draw a comparison with Dr Spock?’
Professor TR Miles, MA PhD, Emeritus Professor, University of Wales, Bangor

‘I’ve read lots of books on the subject…[this] is the one I’ve always been looking for. I hope it finds its way into every school in the country.’
Sue Palmer, Times Educational Supplement

‘An impressive compendium of information…This book is packed with facts…It is a valuable tool for everyone working in the field [of dyslexia]. The author should have a huge gold star.’
British Dyslexia Association, Contact Magazine

‘This book will be a valuable resource and reference for all those involved with dyslexia in a professional capacity and also to parents.’
Alison Rideal, Dyslexia Review

‘To my mind the most practical and useful book [about SEN] to be published for a long time.’
Editor, Special Needs Information Press

‘[It] will be found useful; intelligent and well-researched…Excellent referencing through-out with practical suggestions, relevant theoretical explanations, and supporting documentation.’
The Teacher, Journal of the National Union of Teachers

‘For those with a dyslexic family member this book is essential. It would be a useful inclusion in any bench library.’
Wally Morgan, The Magistrate, The Journal of the Magistrates' Association

‘It provides a wealth of information…This is a user friendly book, clearly set out.’
PATOSS, Professional Association of Teachers, Students, with SpLD

‘This book should be in every study and a copy in each common room…clearly written and full of advice.’
SATIPS, Professional Support for Staff in Independent Schools

'The best book I've read in the UK and the US - should be available internationally.'
Amazon review

'She has infectious enthusiasm, elegance of expression and above all great compassion which informs her intellectual judgements.'
Amazon review