What is dyslexia?

Dyslexia is a hereditary condition which makes reading, writing and spelling in one’s native language extremely difficult, despite average or high intelligence, good education and adequate sociocultural conditions.

A learning disability?

The term “learning disability” is non-specific; it encompasses many conditions that impede knowledge acquisition. The following definition is used only for legislative, financial and pedagogical purposes. It is not a definition of dyslexia, which is more defined as a specific learning disability.

Neurobiological causes

Dyslexia stems from a neurological difference, i.e., a different functioning of the brain. Dyslexic people have a larger right cerebral hemisphere than “normal” readers. This can explain the fact that dyslexic people often display talent in fields associated with the right hemisphere, such as the arts, sports, mechanics, music, 3D visualisation, creative problem solving and intuition in human relationships.

Characteristics of dyslexia

People with dyslexia do not all have the same characteristics but the following are the most common.

  • Reading difficulties
  • Spelling difficulties
  • Note-taking difficulties
  • Writing difficulties
  • Speaking difficulties
  • Listening difficulties
  • Math difficulties
  • Organization skills difficulties

The following document provides in detail each difficulties, and the performance of dyslexic students during tests and examinations

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Phonemic Awareness

The renowned researchers at the National Institutes of Health say the following:


“Phonemic awareness is more highly related to learning to read… than tests of general intelligence, reading readiness, and listening comprehension.”

Persons with phonemic awareness difficulties have challenges in distinguishing between or manipulating the different sounds that make up syllables or spoken words.


They are therefore unable to perform the following exercises: