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Monday 24th October 2016

Test for dyslexia launched

23rd January 2007

27072006_childreading1.jpgParents can detect dyslexia early in their children thanks to a new test launched on Tuesday.

The 10-minute test checks for a range of language disorders, including dyslexia, by assessing grammatical and pre-reading skills in pre-schoolers.  The results help parents assess whether their child has dyslexia or risks developing it and will help care-givers prepare children for school.  The test was developed at University College London (UCL) by Professor Heather van der Lely who funded the project herself.  Professor van der Lely, who is the university’s director of the Centre for Developmental Language Disorders and Cognitive Neuroscience, has named her test GAPS (Grammar and Phonology Screening), and plans to charge parents £50 to buy it.

GAPS uses an alien character called Bik to analyse how well a child puts sentences together and vocalises words.  The test is quick and simple meaning it can be used by both educational professionals and parents. It is hoped the test will identify language problems early in children in order to stop them from slipping through the education system. Professor van der Lely said she was motivated by seeing how a failure to diagnose dyslexia has such a detrimental effect on young children.  She added that, “In most cases, once diagnosed, these language disorders can be helped or overcome with the right treatments and professional help.?

The charity Dyslexia Action estimates that about 10% of the population is affected by dyslexia to some degree. Dyslexic people usually find it difficult to analyse and work with the sounds of spoken words, and many have difficulties with short-term memory, sequencing and organisation. This means that it is more difficult for them to learn how spoken sounds map onto letters, which affects the ability to spell and the ability to decode or ‘sound out’ words.   Dyslexia is not the same as a problem with reading. Many dyslexic people learn to read, but have continuing difficulties with spelling, writing, memory and organisation.


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ann gibbons

Thursday 25th January 2007 @ 0:26

How and when will the gaps test for dyslexia be available please?

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