To help you feel prepared for your postgraduate studies, we’ve gathered together a range of course related activities including suggested reading, useful websites and some great things to do right now. Read on for more information.
You will be given more information about which textbooks to read and introduced to the University Library, as well as the many ebooks we have for you to access, when you begin your studies.
In the meantime, you may want to prepare with by reading:
- The Rose Report (2009) ‘Identifying and Teaching Children and Young People with Dyslexia’
You may find it useful to take a look at the following online resources:
Your pre-course task
Your pre-course task asks you to look into some background research and reflection in preparation for your first session on the course. This will help you to engage with the course and reflect on what you already know. It will involve independent research using the British Dyslexia Association website.
Dyslexia should not be viewed through a deficit lens. It brings opportunities and possibilities to learn differently. As her Royal Highness Princess Beatrice says of those with dyslexia “You have magical brains; they just process differently. Don’t feel like you should be held back by it.”
Your task to complete
There are many misconceptions that surround dyslexia. Visit the British Dyslexia Association webpage and watch the short video ‘What is Dyslexia’, and read the definition also given on that page.
You should also read the stories from real life dyslexia successes
Reflect on what you have watched and read as well as your own personal knowledge and experience. Use the questions below to prepare for your first session. There will be opportunity at your first session to share your answers with your tutor and peers.
- Why have you taken the course?
- What do you hope to gain from the course?
- What do you aim to do in the future using your skillset from the course?
- Have you got experience of supporting people with dyslexia?
- What misconceptions are there about Dyslexia?
- What is your initial view on Dyslexia – is it a hinderance or a gift and why?
- Why is it important for people to be able to be diagnosed with Dyslexia?
- What challenges are there surrounding diagnosis of Dyslexia?
Task schedule and time
Your task should be completed before starting your course in September. And it should take up to two hours to complete.
Sharing your completed task
In your first session on campus, you’ll be invited to share some of your thoughts and reflections.
During group discussions surrounding this work your tutor will reflect on key themes and address your points. Please bring the completed work with you ready to share. It can be a typed document or handwritten notes.
Diagnostic Assessment Information
To successfully complete module two of the PG SpLD Cert (Dyslexia) course, you’ll need to have or have access to a range of diagnostic assessments. These are required to undertake a full diagnostic assessment of dyslexia.You’ll find information on where to purchase these tests from a range of suppliers listed below.
As a student, you’ll be responsible for sourcing and purchasing your own diagnostic assessments. The costs outlined below were correct as of May 2023 and are inclusive of VAT. Supplier prices may be subject to change and could increase.
|Assessment Type||Acronym||Asessment Name||Author / Edition||Cost|
|Ability||WRIT||Wide Range Intelligence Test||Glutting, J., Adams, W., and Sheslow, D. (2000) Wide Range Intelligence Test (WRIT) Wilimington: Wide Range Inc.||£580|
|Single word Reading||WIAT III Teacher edition||Wechsler Individual Achievement Test Third Edition UK Teachers edition||Wechsler , D (2018) The WIAT-lll Third UK edition for Teachers (WIAT-IIl UK-T)||£422|
|Wechsler Individual Achievement Test Third Edition UK Teachers edition||Wechsler , D (2018) The WIAT-lll Third UK edition for Teachers (WIAT-IIl UK-T)||–|
|Wechsler Individual Achievement Test Third Edition UK Teachers edition||Wechsler , D (2018) The WIAT-lll Third UK edition for Teachers (WIAT-IIlUK-T)||–|
|Non word reading||TOWRE 2||Test of Word Reading Efficiency||Torgesen, J., Wagner, R. and Rashotte, C. (2012) Test of Word Reading Efficiency Second Edition (TOWRE-2), Austin, Texas: Pro-Ed.||£422|
|Word reading fluency||TOWRE 2||Test of Word Reading Efficiency||Torgesen, J., Wagner, R. and Rashotte, C. (2012) Test of Word Reading Efficiency Second Edition (TOWRE-2), Austin, Texas: Pro-Ed.||–|
|Phonological Processing||CTOPP 2||Comprehensive Test of Phonological Processing||Wagner, R., Torgensen, J. and Rashotte, C. A. (2013) Comprehensive Test of Phonological Processing Second Edition (CTOPP2), Austin, Texas: Pro-Ed.||£393|
|Memory||TOMAL||Test of Memory and Learning||Reynolds, C.R. and Voress, J.K. (2007) Test of Memory and Learning Second Edition (TOMAL-2), Austin, Texas: Pro-Ed.|
Please note for the purpose of the course you don’t need to buy the full kit. You will only need:
– Examiners manual (£101)
– Examiner record booklets (£102)
– Profile summary forms (£69)
(under 16 only)
|DASH||Detailed Assessment of Speed of Handwriting||Barnett, A., Henderson, S., Scheib, B., and Shultz, J. (2007) Detailed Assessment of Speed of Handwriting (DASH), Harlow: Pearson Education||£177|
Assessments for over 16
If you wish to focus on assessing learners post 16, you will need to use the AAB to replace WIAT IIIT and the DASH 17+ to replace the DASH. Prices are listed below:
|Assessment Type||Assessment Acronym||Assessment Name||Author/Edition||Cost|
|Word Reading/Comprehension/Spelling and Writing||AAB|
|Academic Achievement Battery||(2014) Psychological Assessment Resources Inc, USA||£698|
|Writing||DASH 17+||Detailed Assessment of Speed of Handwriting 17+||Barnett, A., Henderson, S., Scheib, B., and Shultz, J. (2010) Detailed Assessment of Speed of Handwriting 17+ (DASH 17+), Harlow: Pearson Education||£172|
If you work with learners over 24 you will need to use the AAB to replace WIAT III T and the DASH 17+ to replace the DASH as listed above. The CTOPP is only for up to 24 years and as such it can be used for qualitative information only and cannot be used for standardised scores.
Assessment supplier websites
There may be alternatives available so please speak to your Module Tutor or Course Leader.
Edge Hill follows the SpLD Assessment Standards Committee (SASC) guidance on suitable publications to use and as such they can change as guidance changes.
If you choose to go on to study for the Post Graduate Diploma in Dyscalculia there will be additional materials to buy and the FAM full assessment package would be needed, not just the screener. This would make it more cost effective to buy the whole package if you’re also planning to study for the full Diploma. And, if you are looking to study on the Post Graduate Certificate Dyslexia course, many of the items are used from this list.
Frequently asked questions
What is the BDA?
British Dyslexia Association.
What does the BDA do?
The British Dyslexia Association (BDA) is a national charity with an overall vision of a dyslexia friendly society that enables dyslexic people of all ages to reach their full potential. The BDA also provide advice on dyscalculia.
What is an LDA?
Local Dyslexia Associations (LDAs) are independently registered charities – with help lines, befrienders and computer co-ordinators. They regularly hold meetings with speakers, workshops and courses. LDAs know of the local facilities for assessment and tuition.
What is AMBDA?
Associate Membership of the British Dyslexia Association (AMBDA) is a specialist status for working with children in primary and secondary school.
AMBDA FE/HE is a specialist status for working with learners in college or higher education. AMBDA needs to be renewed every three years via the BDA via evidence of continual professional development log (CPD). The Joint Council for Qualification (JCQ) approves AMBDA. This means that it is an accepted qualification for teachers to assess and make recommendations for provisions for external examinations. The accreditation board underpins the highest level of work of the BDA (British Dyslexia Association).
Why is it important?
Dyslexia friendly practice is central to all the BDA’s work. The BDA believes that changing practise to accommodate individuals with dyslexia results in good practice for everyone.
What is ATS?
Approved Teacher Status is a specialist status for working with children, recognised by Local Authorities and employers, supported by the British Dyslexia Association. Accredited Teacher Status (ATS) is an accreditation for those who hold QTS, Qualified Teacher Status or QTLS, Qualified to Teach in the Lifelong Learning Sector, and have successfully completed a BDA accredited course for teaching learners with specific learning difficulties/dyslexia. Holders of ATS are recognised as specialist teachers and are able to conduct informal, curriculum-based assessments and deliver specialist teaching programmes to learners with SpLD/dyslexia.
How do I get ATS?
ATS is awarded to teachers on successful completion of a BDA accredited course:
Module 1 of the PG Cert SpLD (Dyslexia) course.
What is APS?
Approved Practitioner Status is a specialist status for working with children, which is recognised by Local Authorities and employers for practitioners (non-teaching). Accredited Practitioner Status (APS), is an accreditation for those who do not hold Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), and have successfully completed a BDA accredited course for teaching learners with specific learning difficulties/dyslexia.
Holders of Accredited Practitioner Status are recognised as specialist teachers and are able to conduct informal, curriculum-based assessments and deliver specialist teaching programmes to learners with SpLD/dyslexia.
How do I get APS?
APS is awarded to practitioners on successful completion of a BDA accredited course:
Module 1 of the PG Cert SpLD (Dyslexia) course.
Who is the AMBDA course for?
All teachers and support staff working in educational settings for early years, primary or secondary.
Who is the AMBDA, FE/HE course for?
All teachers and support staff working in colleges of further or higher education.
How much will this programme cost?
The programme is a 3-module master’s level programme. Please refer to the Course Fees FAQs for cost information for the academic year you are considering.
The fee for module 1 and 2 will be invoiced in year 1 and module 3 will be invoiced in year 2 at the fee rate applicable to the year of entry.
You will then have the option to either pay your invoice in full, or to split your payments into three equal instalments on standard pre-set dates throughout each payment year.
Why should I do this course?
If you complete the full course you will be awarded AMBDA status and achievement of the PG Cert SpLD (Dyslexia), which will also mean you will be a specialist teacher of Dyslexia with the opportunity of supporting other schools in the local area. You can also apply for an APC (Assessment Practising Certificate). An Assessment Practising Certificate (APC) recognises the knowledge and skills of specialist teachers who have followed an appropriate course of study (e.g. an AMBDA accredited course or a course recognised by SASC) and can demonstrate their professional competence in the assessment of specific learning difficulties/dyslexia.
As reports conducted at any age may be used for DSA purposes, it is recommended that all assessors should hold an APC, to future proof reports for dyslexic individuals so that no further assessment will be required.
An APC is valid for three years from the date of issue and has to be updated in line with BDA/PATOSS guidelines.
The aim of the course is to increase the participation of pupils with Dyslexia, to raise their achievement and improve their well-being. Specialist teachers may need to support staff in more than one school and will need to take a strong monitoring and training role in supporting other teachers, including in relation to effective strategies for inclusion.
Gaining this qualification in Dyslexia would be really important not only for your own professional development, but you would also make a real difference to pupils, other practitioners in your own provision and schools in your local area to support children with specific learning needs.
Once qualified you will be able to complete diagnostic assessments and where appropriate diagnose Dyslexia. You will have a very clear understanding of psychometric assessments and be skilled at their use and interpretation.
The qualification of AMBDA will allow you to assess for Access Arrangements in line with the Joint Qualification Council (JCQ) guidance.
Is AMBDA status sufficient to assess pupils for extra time by Exam Boards?
If you have AMBDA status, this is sufficient to assess and make access arrangements for examinations.
What is involved in the ATS /APS accredited course?
The course enables candidates to achieve the following outcomes of module one:
- Demonstrate an understanding of the nature of dyslexia and identify children with specific learning difficulties in the classroom
- Make an appraisal based on observation, assessment of attainment test findings and demonstrate an understanding of the reports of other professionals
- Demonstrate an understanding of structured, sequential, multi-sensory teaching and design teaching programme to meet specific individual needs
- Construct, deliver and evaluate the teaching programme
- Review classroom organisation to facilitate individual learning within the national Curriculum Framework or equivalent
- Communicate effectively with teachers, parents and other professionals – verbal and written reports on the needs and achievements of learners with dyslexia
- Demonstrate an understanding of the contribution of ICT in the screening and teaching of specific learning difficulties/dyslexia and a knowledge of the range of relevant technical aids to teaching
You will need to attend at least 40 hours of lectures, seminars, tutorials and study time. There are eight face-to-face lectures and four online teaching days over the 18-month duration of the course.
You will also need to carry out at least 20 hours of evaluated specialist teaching, of which 12 hours must be with the same pupil (the remaining eight hours may be with two different pupils, one of which could be taught in a group).
You will be observed and assessed by a tutor who holds AMBDA for at least two hours of teaching.
How do I get the full AMBDA qualification?
You will need to complete the full course to be awarded AMBDA – module one, module two and module three make up the complete PG Cert in SpLD (Dyslexia). The programme is designed so that participants will cover the requirements for ATS by meeting the learning outcomes for Module 1 and full AMBDA status on successful completion of the 3 Modules and achievement of the PG Cert SpLD (Dyslexia).
What if I already hold ATS status and I want to continue to the full AMBDA status?
Initially you must provide a copy of your ATS certificate and complete an RPL (Recognition of Prior Learning) application form. Your RPL application will be reviewed at panel and if accepted you will be able to begin your studies at module two.
It is, however, advisable that you work through the online learning seminars for module one to familiarise and update yourself ready to begin module two.
What are the modules?
- Module one: ‘Identification, Assessment and Intervention for Students with Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLDs)’. This consists of four face-to-face days and two online teaching days.
- Module two: ‘Dyslexia Specialist Work-Based Practice’. This consists of four face-to-face days and two online teaching days.
- Module three: ‘Theories and Dilemmas of Dyslexia’. This is taught purely online.
How is the course assessed?
The course is assessed via the submission of a portfolio, rooted in practice for each module:
- A (4000-word equivalent) case study, including a rationale and evaluation, which makes critical reference to literature/research for the use of a multi-sensory programme with the child/children chosen in your setting
- A holistic profile and a series of annotated lesson plans focusing on the child/children
- Feedback from two observed teaching and learning support session with an associated personal reflection
- Detailed lesson plans and evaluations for 20 hours of teaching and learning support session with an associated personal reflection
- Reflection on assessment
- Annotated observations of diagnostic assessments
- Diagnostic assessments reports
- A (4000-word equivalent) reflective case study
- Feedback from a one hour observed session of assessment delivery
- A (4000-word equivalent) case study including the design, delivery and evaluation of a programme in relation to the assessed needs of a dyslexic pupil, making reference to current theory and research
- Detailed lesson plans and evaluations for 20 hours of specialist teaching
- Feedback from one observed teaching and learning support session with an associated personal reflection
Through the assessments and activities, participants have the opportunity to analyse their current practise, reflect and utilise current research and debate and bring about change with clear impact
What assessments will I carry out in module two?
You will carry out diagnostic assessments using a range of assessment materials for example Wide Range Intelligence Test (WRIT), Wechsler Individual Achievement Test Teachers Edition (WIAT III) and Comprehensive Test of Phonological Processing 2 (CTOPP2) as well as a variety of others assessments. It is essential to purchase these for your setting as you will need them when you are a qualified specialist teacher. You cannot complete the course without these. Please refer to the equipment cost information sheet and contact the Course Leader if you need further information.
How long will the course take?
The modules run in succession and the PG Cert SpLD (Dyslexia) programme will last for 18 months.
ATS (module one) teaching and learning will complete in two terms.
When will I need to submit my portfolio?
There will be case study hand-in dates scheduled for the beginning of all modules. The module tutor will give you plenty of time and support to complete your portfolio reflections.
Remember your portfolio is a continuous work-based task – you will already be carrying out many of these tasks as part of your current teaching role. The final submission date of your portfolio will be clearly stated in your Programme and Module Handbooks.
What should my portfolio look like?
Every teacher’s portfolio will be individual and will support and enhance the impact on outcomes for the child/children in your setting.
Refer to the previous section on ‘How is the course assessed?’
What if I start the programme and my work commitments change?
The team at Edge Hill University will support you as best we can – face-to-face, online and by arranging personal tutorials and work-based support. Please let us know as soon as possible if you are struggling to meet any of the requirements or when your circumstances change.
We also have an extensive student support services accessible online for all our students.
How much work will I have to do for the course each week?
You will need to set aside at least an hour per week for your evaluated lessons, over the course of the programme. Remember that you are required to complete 12 hours of annotated, evaluated teaching with one pupil and 18 hours with other pupils either in small groups or individually. You will also need to carry out three diagnostic assessments and plan for three hours of your teaching to be observed and assessed.
How will I be taught on this course?
A key aspect of this programme is the teaching and learning strategies that engage teachers in practical learning situations alongside opportunities to discuss with other professionals the strengths and weaknesses of particular strategies to support pupils with dyslexia in their own setting. Teaching and learning will include:
- Work based learning
- Group seminars and presentations led by specialists to introduce and discuss key concepts and areas of debate
- Coaching, group discussions to discuss impact evidence
- Directed online tasks, including practical observations, action research and observed teaching
- Small group/individual tutorial support
- Supported self-study using a range of resources made available by the university
- On-line expert led sessions and seminars
Who will my tutors be?
A team of tutors who all hold the AMBDA status will teach you. Our tutors are very experienced and knowledgeable about dyslexia and specific learning difficulties/differences in various age ranges, in many different settings from early years to higher education. Tutors teaching on module two will also hold APC(Assessment practising Certificate)
When will I start the course?
Course start dates are January and September.
Where will I study for this course?
Edge Hill University will be delivering the course at various centres across the country, as well as supporting students online.
To find out where your nearest centre will be contact [email protected]
What technology will I require to participate on this course?
You will need access to a computer with a connection to the Internet that has an up-to-date web browser installed on it e.g. the latest version of Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox or Safari.
Find more information on the VLE and Blackboard on our website.
I have another question who can I contact?
Please contact the Primary Support Team at [email protected]
Your online induction
Your induction will take place online on Monday 11 September 2023, 4pm – 6pm.
Please log onto the session via blackboard collaborate using the button below.
Your session will include:
- Introduction to Collaborate (a system to facilitate online face to face sessions)
- An overview of the programme
- Introduction to our Virtual Learning Environment (Learning Edge) and the online library catalogue
- Introduction to Learning Services