Written by Katrina Eastwood
BA (Hons) Economics
The weird part was, just after finding out that I have Dyslexia, I thought of the primary school rumour ‘if you can’t spell Dyslexia then you have it’. In that moment, I couldn’t. PANIC.
I never seriously considered if I could have a ‘Specific Learning Difficulty’, which is why it all came as a massive shock. I simply knew that something was not right. I submitted myself to be assessed based on my A Level results. I studied for my exams all day every day and thought I was more than prepared for them but, when results day came from both AS and A2 I was shocked with the results. I got a D in the subject that I originally chose to study at university. Because, at this time I was unaware that I was actually suffering from Dyslexia I was extremely angry at myself, confused with the system and deeply disheartened because I was rejected from all five of my UCAS choices. Luckily, for me, Bournemouth University took into account my UCAS score not my individual grades and therefore accepted me through clearing.
I went to the physiological assessment, what an emotional rollercoaster that was! I was happy to finally find out why I had been getting such poor results. I have always had to put in twice the amount of effort that other students do which I found very frustrating. I can’t help the way I am, I just learn differently, however I have always just thought it was a personal trait. But no, I have Dyslexia. Saying that make me feel empowered.
However, in reality, it doesn’t because of the societal name surrounding Dyslexia. Most people believe it is people that are stupid. A more accurate description would be someone who has difficulties with reading, writing and spelling but whose intelligence has nothing to do with the specific learning difficulty in which they have.
Of course I was upset, confused and frustrated with the fact that I have Dyslexia, who wouldn’t be at first. However, with the support of my family I have come to realise that actually it doesn’t define your success. There is tonnes of support for people like me, especially at Bournemouth University. I have been reassured that I will find the correct way of learning so that I can fulfil my potential. I am now relieved to know that I will receive help and advice to deal with my difference whilst studying and in exams.
After all, there are plenty of famous Dyslexic people that are successful. For example, Albert Einstein was Dyslexic. I would like to think that our different way of thinking is what makes us stand out from the crowd. I have recently learnt that most people with Dyslexia are often the best people at problem solving and verbal communications.
It will take me some getting used to being treated differently to the rest of my class mates during exams but, I will soon be credited for my hard work and determination. After all, I made it to University without receiving support with my difference. Who knows what I can achieve with the correct support.
I am so proud of myself for having the courage to stand up and ask for help.
By Katrina Eastwood