How to make learning interventions which support dyslexic trainees in classroom and workplaces
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The two main outputs from this project are a guide for trainees, tutors, training advisers and employers outlining strategies to improve learning outcomes for trainees with dyslexia. And, a proposed ‘wraparound’ support model to guide decision-making about good practice interventions which effectively support trainees with dyslexia.
The report concludes with recommendations for future work including the development of targeted learning and teaching resources and the provision of more professional development workshops for practitioners.
About the project
Dyslexia is a real, but often hidden, issue among the farming community. Some researchers estimate that one in five rural residents may be affected by the condition, which usually manifests itself in reading, spelling and arithmetic problems. The Primary ITO has taken steps to support those learners. This project built on that work by investigating:
- how trainees with dyslexia can be supported in workplaces and classrooms; and
- how they can be assisted with the transition between these two environments.
Trainees, tutors, training advisers and employers were interviewed and the data analysed to explore:
- the challenges of dyslexia;
- the impact of dyslexia on the trainee’s learning; and
- strategies to support the dyslexic trainee in their learning.
Most trainees with dyslexia had developed different types of compensatory strategies, including avoidance of problematic tasks. The most significant challenges to learning were the classroom environment, time constraints and assessment requirements.
The training advisers emphasised the value of individual planning conversations with trainees as a way of personalising the learning journey and being proactive about predicting and meeting their needs. They noted the need for more training in how to use diagnostic tools and alternative teaching and learning approaches for greater accessibility by trainees with dyslexia.
What tutors found worked best related to relationship-building through one-to-one tutoring/mentoring sessions, ensuring ample time allocations for tasks and assessments, and making learning material available through a range of options, such as DVDs and online, for subsequent re-viewing.
Employers were aware of dyslexia and the types of support the trainee needed to be successful in the job. They identified a number of practical solutions to day-to-day challenges.
The findings attest to the ongoing needs of this target learner group, both in the classroom and in the workplace, as well as the strong practices and solid foundation already established at the Primary ITO.
- Marianne Farrell, Primary Industry Training Organisation.
- Mike Styles, Primary Industry Training Organisation
- Dr Lesley Petersen, Petersen Consulting
Completed: June 2016
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