Specific Learning Difficulties

A learning difficulty is not a learning disability! The two are quite different.  

A learning disability is a significant, lifelong condition that affects the way a person understands information and how they communicate. Around 1.5m people in the UK have one. This means they can have difficulty:  

  • Understanding new or complex information
  • Learning new skills 
  • Coping independently

A learning difficulty is any learning or emotional problem that affects, or substantially affects, a person’s ability to learn, get along with others and follow convention.

Difficulty = obstacle
Disability = something that incapacitates


Dyslexia is a lifelong challenge. This language-based processing disorder can hinder reading, writing, spelling and sometimes even speaking. Dyslexia is not a sign of poor intelligence or laziness or the result of impaired hearing or vision. 


Dyscalculia refers to a wide range of lifelong learning disabilities involving math. There is no single type of math disability. Dyscalculia can vary from person to person, and it affects people differently at different stages of life. 


Dysgraphia is a learning disability that affects writing, which requires a complex set of motor and information processing skills. It can lead to problems with spelling, poor handwriting and putting thoughts on paper. People with dysgraphia might have trouble organising letters, numbers and words on a line or page.

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