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Title: Dyslexia : experiencing label-learning from the positive experiences of young people with dyslexia in mainstream education
Author: Sims, Rebecca
ISNI:       0000 0004 2701 6395
Awarding Body: University of East London
Current Institution: University of East London
Date of Award: 2010
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The research used a case study approach to explore the perspectives of six dyslexic learners, who had been identified as succeeding in school. The research took a Positive Psychology approach by seeking to distil the key factors contributing to the dyslexic learners' success. Semi-structured interviews, using a solution focussed approach, enabled pupil perspectives to be gathered. The interview questions related to how the pupils made sense of the label of dyslexia, what personal strengths and interests they had, how they had been supported within school and outside of school and ways in which this could be improved. The complementary method of a focus group was also used to gather the perceptions of the same group of dyslexic learners, regarding how support could be improved. Thematic analysis of the interview and focus group transcripts revealed four main themes. The first theme was dyslexia being a learning difference, which exists on a spectrum of need and impacts on dyslexic learners in different ways. The second theme was the importance of friendships and a desire to learn. The third theme was the belief that the school system should be inclusive and effective and finally, the fourth theme was that parents were viewed as a major source of emotional and practical support. The implications of this research project were that dyslexic learners should be construed as a heterogeneous group, with varying needs. Accompanied with this was the importance for such pupils to learn with their peers and for individual support to be age appropriate and sensitively provided. Protective factors were present in the form of key personal strengths, which were also desired in teaching and support staff. This was discussed within the Positive Psychology character strengths and virtues framework, which was found to be an effective way in which to discuss and identify personal strengths. The key interesting findings were the presence of a range of protective factors supporting the dyslexic learners in their learning. In addition, the research revealed that the learners did not want to be defined by the label of dyslexia. The implications for future research and educational psychology were discussed.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Ed.Ch.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available