Business Psychology, Executive Selection & Work Performance Experts

Adult Dyslexia Diagnosis and Screening


The word ‘dyslexia’ derives from two Greek words that roughly translated mean ‘difficulty with words’.  Although there are many definitions of the term ‘dyslexia’, in reality, it’s all about information processing.  A dyslexic person may have difficulty processing and remembering information and this can impact on their learning and acquisition of literacy skills.

Dyslexia isn’t something that can be ‘cured’ and nor is it anything to do with being stupid – even very intelligent people can be dyslexic.  It occurs in all types of people, irrespective of race, educational background, social background or level of intelligence.  The difficulties are not the same for each dyslexic person, each having their own set of strengths and weaknesses.

Our experience is that many dyslexic adults have invested extra time since leaving school to improve their literacy and/ or numeracy skills to a good standard.  However, those same neurological deficits that led to the key skill problems at school are still present and can impact on day-to-day work unless managed through, for example, reasonable adjustments.

  • Dyslexia has significant implications for educational achievement and work performance.
  • Dyslexic employees often need what are known as ‘reasonable adjustments’ to work at their full potential and maximise their performance at work.  Dyslexia is covered by the Equality Act 2010 and employers have a duty to make reasonable adjustments.
  • Students who are dyslexic may be entitled to extra time in exams, or other adjustments so that they can fairly compete with their peers.
  • Some dyslexic students may be eligible to apply for the Disabled Student Allowance (DSA) and will need a formal diagnosis to support their application.
  • Dyslexia can underpin poor performance at work, which may be exacerbated by other factors, including the attitude of colleagues or management; for example, this could mean a lack of support for the dyslexic individual leading to bullying.
  • Sometimes, performance issues or stress at work can be a result of undiagnosed dyslexic difficulties.
  • Some careers, such as the Police or Fire Service may require applicants to pass a range of tests and this can be more difficult for those who are dyslexic. They may be entitled to extra time in these tests, or other adjustments so that they can compete fairly with their peers.

We can offer full diagnostic assessment and dyslexia screening for adults.  This involves an interview to take some general background information on the individual, including education, work history, current health status, problems experienced in work or education etc.  This is followed by tests of cognitive function to determine whether a dyslexic pattern exists, and is combined with various tests to examine reading and literacy.  Which tests, and what level of assessment will be determined by the consultant who does the interview.  The two options are:

  • Full dyslexia assessment to diagnose the condition and extent – this would be carried out by a Chartered and Registered Occupational Psychologist and would last about 3.5 hours.  This is the assessment that would be necessary for securing reasonable adjustments or funding.
  • The second option is a dyslexia screening test, lasting about 90 minutes.  The Dyslexia Adult Screening Test (DAST) is a good first step in quantifying the risk that someone is dyslexic.  It’s also a useful indicator of whether a more formal diagnosis by one of our psychologists is required, however it does not provide much detail on how the dyslexia manifests itself in the individual.
  • The first step is to identify what the problem is so that it can be appropriately adjusted for and the individual with dyslexia can be properly supported.
  • Dyslexia can be managed in the workplace or in education by identifying appropriate reasonable adjustments – this is something our experts can advise on (training sessions can also be delivered to your staff/team).
  • We are experts at assessing people in the workplace and those entering the workplace and have the experience necessary to undertake a workplace assessment or job analysis to determine how someone’s existing job can be adjusted to accommodate the dyslexic person.
  • We can provide one-to-one coaching individuals, often working at a senior level, who want to learn to manage their dyslexia so that they can maximise their functioning in the workplace.

Assessments can be carried out in our offices in Tunbridge Wells, Kent (also occasionally available in Bristol, Exeter and London), or on-site for organisations and employers.

For individuals, the cost of a full diagnostic assessment is £500 and the cost of a dyslexia screening test is £195.

For employers and organisations, the cost of a full diagnostic assessment is £650 + VAT and travel, to include a discussion with the employer and making recommendations to the organisation.

As Expert evidence for the Courts/Tribunals, the cost of a full diagnostic assessment is £950 + VAT, to include review of any relevant medical, employment evidence.

Contact us for further information

We regret that we are unable to undertake assessment or screening on children under 16.