Dyslexia research continues to focus on discovering causes and intervention techniques, but more recently there has been a shift to also examine the various abilities/strengths dyslexics possess. A recent New York Times article, The Upside of Dyslexia, discusses findings from several experiments showing that people with dyslexia tend to have distinctive perceptual abilities. The article also reminds us that some innate strengths enable them to excel in artistic and scientific fields.

The experiments involved peripheral vision in a letter recognition task, pattern detection in visually intensive fields of science, and responses to visual simplified Escher-like pictures. Those with dyslexia outperformed typical readers. For more details on each study, read Anne Murphy Paul's article on nytimes.com. Continuing to identify abilities like visual perception will help to understand the intricacies of dyslexia as well as lead to advancements in how we can better educate children with dyslexia.

Have you noticed dyslexics having strong perceptual skills? Are there other strengths you've come across in working with dyslexics? Feel free to share those with us! Also, you can find more information on teaching to students' strengths and interests on our site.