Is Dyslexia an Advantage? A Different Look at the Difference


  • Catarina Mangas ESECS, CICS.NOVA.IPLeiria – iACT, CI&DEI, Politécnico de Leiria, Portugal



Specific Learning Difficulties, Dyslexia, Adults, Positive Aspects


Dyslexia is a Specific Learning Difficulty associated mainly with weaknesses in reading skills, although other obstacles are recognized as arising from this disorder. The negative aspects are, in fact, those most explicitly found in the research carried out in this area. However, we know that dyslexia is responsible for promoting divergent thinking, which enhances additional abilities compared to non-dyslexic peers, bringing multiple benefits to daily life. The study sought to understand the conceptions of adults with dyslexia about the positive factors associated with it. For this purpose a qualitative and an exploratory-descriptive study was followed. The participants, 17 adults diagnosed with dyslexia, of various ages and different personal, academic and  employment backgrounds, responded to a questionnaire survey, essentially with open questions. The texts collected through this instrument were dissected using the content analysis technique, focusing this article on the fourth category of analysis and its subcategories (Positive aspects associated with dyslexia - Overcoming strategies; Advantages).  The results obtained reiterate the perspective identified in the literature, since, dyslexia has mostly become  a characteristic with harmful consequences for these people. Nevertheless, the participants consider that the difficulty enabled them to develop important skills that they would not otherwise have achieved. They are strongly determined and motivated people, who focus on finding the best solutions to achieve the desired results, through strategies for controlling anxiety and maintaining attention/concentration on tasks, useful factors for quality academic or professional performance.


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How to Cite

Catarina Mangas. (2021). Is Dyslexia an Advantage? A Different Look at the Difference. New Trends in Qualitative Research, 9, 302–311.