Common Characteristics of Dyslexia

Some of the characteristics of dyslexia are:

  • Appears bright, highly intelligent and articulate, however, unable to read, write or spell  at grade level.
  • High in IQ, yet doesn’t perform well in tests
  • Feels stupid; has poor self-esteem
  • Easily frustrated and emotional about school, reading or testing.little-schoolgirl-worried-in-stress-studying-for-exam-000047245362_Small
  • Can be a class clown, troublemaker, or too quiet and keen to please.
  • Seems to “zone out” or daydream; gets lost easily
  • May omit, reverse or substitute words
  • Has low reading comprehension
  • Loses track of time; time has no real meaning
  • Easily frustrated and emotional about school, reading or testing.
  • Trouble with writing or copying.
  • Handwriting varies or is illegible
  • Talented in art, drama, music, sports, story-telling, building, engineering, architecture.

No two dyslexics are ever the same, and present with different characteristics.

  • While some may be talented athletes
  • others may have very poor coordination and be clumsy. (Dyspraxia)
  • Others may have difficulty gathering their thoughts or forming words,
  • while some have a talent for speaking on their feet.
  • Some will find writing difficult or particular fonts challenging (Dysgraphia)Young lady who has dyslexia
  • Others will have excellent and legible writing – seeing it more as design, patterns and drawing – and love investigating different fonts.
  • still others may have difficultly with concentration,
  • hearing may be either acute or poor
  • Gifts and talents can be in a range of areas: from the creative or a fascination with the natural world and all things scientific; to an affinity with all things technological, mechanical or even mathematical.

Adapted from the article at “37 Common Characteristics of Dyslexia” © 1992 by Ronald D. Davis.

See the mind map for a quick visual overview.