Dyslexia can be your super power as a nurse. Learn how to succeed in nursing school and unlock your superpower.
First of all, you are NOT alone. In fact, 8% of NURSING.com users have dyslexia - with countless success stories.
"Dyslexia is characterized as trouble with reading despite normal intelligence. Different people are affected to different degrees. Problems may include difficulties in spelling words, reading quickly, writing words, "sounding out" words in the head, pronouncing words when reading aloud and understanding what one reads."
It is clear why nursing school (and school in general) is so difficult for those with dyslexia.
Schools love to measure how well students can read and write . . . from an early age, rather than receiving accommodations, many young students with dyslexia are labeled as "lazy" or "stupid".
Many educators (and society in general) misunderstand and/or do not diagnose these students - leaving them struggling.
Unfortunately, nursing school is overflowing with excessive reading. There is so much to learn and overwhelmingly, that learning is done through assigned readings.
In fact, it would take an average reader 41 hours/week of reading to read an entire Med-Surg book in a semester (seriously, I did the math).
Sadly 😔 . . .
This would be an unachievable task for many with dyslexia.
Even though in school you might have been labeled as stupid or lazy and you struggle to keep your head above water, let me tell you that the world NEEDS MORE DYSLEXIC nurses.
Dyslexia impacts up to 10-20% of the population yet society is drastically behind in helping those who struggle.
And sadly 😢 . . . only about 3-8% of nurses report having dyslexia. We need to do a better job at getting these amazing individual into the profession.
The empathy you have gained from clawing your way through the education system can be applied in your nursing practice in a way that reaches all patients who feel lost and alone.
This is YOUR SUPERPOWER 🦸♀️ 🦸♂️
Understanding how some people struggle to learn - can be your strength as you take care of vulnerable populations.
There isn't a medication you can get to "cure" your dyslexia. However, there are accommodations and tactics that you can employ to make the journey more manageable.
Here are some tips:
These are the first tips we provide because only about 24% of students with dyslexia ever disclose this to their college. Please. Disclose and seek full accommodations.
Minority Nurse has a good article on how to get accommodations in nursing school for dyslexia.
Yale provides some great tips for college students as well - some are outlined below:
Many students with learning differences have come before you and successfully graduated, passed the NCLEX®, and are now practicing nurses.
I want to share one story in particular of Elle who is a member of the NURSING Family here at NURSING.com. She has struggled with ADHD and dyslexia since being diagnosed in the third grade - she recently passed the NCLEX® and is now a practicing RN.
Tips Elle shares that helped her pass nursing school with ADHD & dyslexia:
Your learning difference is simply that . . . a difference in HOW you learn. At NURSING.com, we believe strongly in learner equity. Because of that, we've designed our platform to enable all nursing students to achieve success - and we understand that for some - that might mean adjustments for how they learn differently.
Specifically, our videos are clear and concise - most videos are under 10 minutes and get right to the point so you can get the "meat and potatoes" without sitting there for hours. Lessons are also highly visual with world-class practicing nurses drawing the entire time.
Lesson outlines are bullet points instead of tons of text - making it easier to digest.
This visual platform carries over into beautiful images and cheatsheets that call out the critical details. Even the practice questions have videos and image rationales.
Here is how Elle used NURSING.com to study for Med-Surg:
You CAN do this!