Improving learner outcomes

My dyslexia diagnosis. Hannah's Story

Hannah's story

Author Jacqui Webber-Gant

Date 4th Oct 2018


What comes to mind when you hear the word dyslexia? Mixing up the letters b and d? Reading and spelling problems? Perhaps you think of famous dyslexics, like Richard Branson, Keira Knightley and Jamie Oliver, who’ve excelled in their chosen careers.

Dyslexia is real and it creates real barriers to learning. We'd like you to meet Hannah. On the face of it, she's a highly accomplished young woman, but her story mirrors that of countless young people who have an undiagnosed learning need and feel like they are running to stand still.

My dyslexia diagnosis

Diagnosis is a relief. Hannah was able to see that there was a reason for her difficulties and could go easier on herself. She also needed to see what adjustments were available so that she could not just compensate but find more effective ways to study. So, what specific support was offered, and did it help?

Study Support at university

Most of us reading this are in the education business. We are committed to inclusion and work hard to help all of our students and intervene as early as possible to get the right supports in place. So why wasn’t this picked up? Were there early indications that were missed? Hannah looks back on her time in school and reassesses her progress and the struggles and challenges experienced recognising that it all pointed towards her learning difference. She offers advice to students who are finding their grades are slipping despite every effort to do their best.

Early signs of dyslexia at school
Hannah doesn’t hold anything against her teachers. She knows they were committed to her success and is aware that dyslexia can be difficult to detect, particularly with best performing students whose abilities mask their difficulties.

My message to teachers
Hannah is resilient and strong. She is positive, and solution focused, and tells us how she’s found short cuts and work arounds. She shares how her natural abilities and strengths have emerged as she has compensated for her deficits and found creative solutions.

My advice to dyslexic students
Late diagnosis may come as both a relief and a surprise for many. Here Hannah shares advice for students who believe they may be dyslexic.

Thank you, Hannah, for sharing your story.

In our next video blog, we’ll meet Hannah’s mum, a primary school SENCo, and hear her thoughts on Hannah’s experiences and what she’s doing to support dyslexic learners in her school.

OnlineTraining Dyslexia course

If you’d like to know more about dyslexia and be more effective in providing practical individual adjustments for your learners, then join our supported learning course. Through our course you can learn how to make a real difference to the Hannah in your class with practical assessment ideas and intervention strategies. The course is CPD certified for 20 hours of learning.


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