Since 1995, the Cooper Learning Center has been in the forefront of the region in implementing a range of assessment and intervention for children and young adults who show signs of mild, moderate and severe dyslexia/reading disability. Under the direction of Dr. Richard Selznick, thousands of children have come through the center many of whom show the classic signs of dyslexia that fit the NICHD definition.
As a part of the learning center, the Cooper Dyslexia Assessment & Treatment Program is grounded in research and theory following a model of understanding the normal stages of reading/writing development. This model is applicable to all children, but particularly important to understand relative to those who are struggling with reading, spelling and writing as a result of their dyslexia/reading disability.
All of the services offered within the Cooper Dyslexia Assessment & Treatment Program are personalized and individualized. Following an initial consultation with parents, specific assessments are tailored to meet the needs of the individual child. Programs that follow are geared to the child's level of development and their level of need.
Dyslexia Workshops & Training
Various trainings have also been conducted with parents and schools. A sampling of some of the titles and trainings includes some of the following topics:
- Myths and Realities of Dyslexia
- Identifying Shut-Down Learners
- Managing ADHD and Dyslexia
- Importance of Early Reading Development
Parents are given specific guidance on how to manage dyslexia at home and they are welcomed to be a part of the process in terms of working with their children in the most appropriate ways.
Teacher training has been conducted in various school districts over the years. Training has included methods of helping teachers to recognize dyslexia, screenings for dyslexia easily, target phonemic awareness and decoding for skill training, among other topics.
Dyslexia Assessment Services
- Dyslexia Screenings are appropriate for a young children as a “snap shot” to identify children who are seen to be at risk for showing a reading disability in the early grades. The screening can be administered at all levels, but particularly beneficial for targeting young children and beginning a program of multisensory, language-based remediation.
- Mid-level dyslexia assessment is appropriate for those children with whom there are more involved questions regarding language functions and some aspects of attention and concentration. Mid-level assessments also assess reading under different conditions, utilizing instruments that "tease out" various aspects of functioning. This level assessment also involves more involved writing as part of the evaluation.
- Psychoeducational assessment is typically offered when a more involved cognitive profile is deemed to be important to answer fundamental questions that have been raised in the initial consultation.
Dyslexia Intervention Services
- Intervention services are research-based and directly linked to the assessments.
- Children's skills are identified within a zone of proximity regarding their functional skill levels which then determines the most appropriate emphasis they will receive in the intervention. For children that are showing the classic signs of dyslexia including difficulty with phonemic awareness, phonological decoding, word attack and reading fluency, they receive direct instruction utilizing structured, multisensory, language-based remediation.
- Remediation is individual and focused on the child's specific needs.
- Frequent reassessments help to determine progress. Parents are formally and informally apprised of children's progress.
- The program recognizes the importance of the emotional components of discouragement underlying dyslexia. Remedial interventions are quite therapeutic in terms of their impact on the child's self-esteem and skill development.