Dyslexia is very common and up to 20% of people have symptoms of dyslexia.  Dyslexia is often referred to as a “hidden disability.”  It is not a disease and it cannot be diagnosed in the same way that a medical condition is determined. There is no blood test or medical scan that determines dyslexia and a diagnosis is the determination of a qualified professional. Though commonly considered a childhood disorder, dyslexia can be screened/diagnosed in adults as well.



The purpose of screening for dyslexia risk is very different from the purpose of diagnosing dyslexia, but both have value.  Regardless of whether you do a screening or a formal diagnostic, the first step toward helping with reading difficulty is to identify areas of struggle.


  • SCREENING is generally a short, informal test that is used to determine whether further intervention may be needed.  Screening for the risk of dyslexia may be undertaken at an early age before school entry.  As of 2018-2019 school, the Oregon Department of Education dyslexia legislation (OAR 581-022-2445) requires schools to screen for the risk factors of dyslexia in kindergarten.


  • DIAGNOSTIC/EVALUATION assessment, diagnosis or identification of dyslexia requires a more comprehensive, time-consuming, and (often) expensive evaluation and should only be done and interpreted through the judgment of an experienced and appropriately qualified professional.  Also, note that parents will often do both a school evaluation and a private evaluation.


Free Resources for Parents | Self-Assessment

There are a number of free screening tools available to help you determine whether a child has risk factors for dyslexia. If you suspect a child has dyslexia and may need further evaluation, speak with the teacher, special education administrator, and school counselor at the child’s school, consult with a psychologist, or reach out to your state’s International Dyslexia Association branch for assistance.

  • The International Dyslexia Association has free online screeners for all ages.
  • Lexercise also offers a free dyslexia screener for general audiences.  This program is accredited by IDA.

The following are additional resources that are available but not accredited by IDA.


Universal Screening: K–2 Reading





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