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University of London International Programmes

Supporting children with difficulties in reading and writing

University of London International Programmes via Coursera

This course may be unavailable.


This course is for teachers to learn why some children have so much difficulty with reading and writing, often called 'dyslexia', and to learn more about best practice in teaching literacy to all in light of recent scientific discoveries.

Participation in or completion of this online course will not confer academic credit for University of London programmes


  • An overview
    • Writing systems; models of reading acquisition (the ‘decoding’ and ‘direct’ paths); the importance of automatization; bilingualism
  • Definitions and identification of dyslexia
    • Causes; identification; numerous activities include simple methods of observation (not formal diagnosis)
  • 'Co-morbidity', and psychological and social aspects
    • The ‘dys’-constellation (dyspraxia, dyscalculia etc); audition; vision; loss of self-esteem; long-term effects of school drop-out and antisocial behaviour – evidence from Canada; ‘positive’ aspects of dyslexia and unusual aptitudes; discussion around pros and cons of ‘labelling’ a child
  • Practical teaching approaches Part 1
    • General principles of inclusion; structured, multisensory, phonics-based and metacognitive approaches; summaries of recent influential reports of best practice from France, the UK and USA; applying these approaches across the curriculum; learning styles; reading, spelling, comprehension and composition; visualization and mind-mapping
  • Practical teaching approaches Part 2
    • Multisensory teaching in practice illustrated; comprehension, composition
  • Study skills, aids and accommodations
    • Attention, memory and organization; technological aids especially for reading and writing; examples of accommodations for formal assessments and examinations

Taught by

Gill Brackenbury


4.7 rating, based on 3 Class Central reviews

Start your review of Supporting children with difficulties in reading and writing

  • This course is very helpful, but it is targeted toward early learners and primary school teachers. Some of the peer review projects were hard for me to do since I am not actively teaching in first through 5th grade.
  • Anonymous
    Amazing course! Very engaging with numerous practical exercises which makes it easier to apply its content in real life. A hands-on approach to dyslexia, with a fine balance between theory and practice. Varied resources including those professionals use in their daily work with dyslexic students. Engaging instructors, one with more focus on research and the other one on practice. I loved every moment of it and have learnt a lot! I truly recommend it to anyone who would like to become a better teacher, and no matter whom they teach!
  • Neda Milosevic
    Great course! It’s a good way to understand dyslexia and how to help children who have problems in reading and writing.

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