Nursing studies

When you don’t fit the nursing student ‘ideal’: overcoming academic barriers

We need to re-evaluate how we support and assess students with a specific learning difficulty  
Illustration of a stick man on some pens and paper. Dyspraxia is a developmental coordination disorder which affects the way you memorise, process and organise information. Picture: iStock

Why we need to re-evaluate how we support and assess students with a specific learning difficulty

I have spent my school and college years – and most of my nursing degree – struggling with academic work.

I never understood why until six months ago, when I was diagnosed with dyspraxia. It was a relief to be able to put a name to my difficulties and my love-hate relationship with these academic challenges.

Disorder affects how people memorise and process information

A specific learning difficulty (SpLD), dyspraxia is a developmental coordination disorder that affects the way I am able to memorise, process and organise information. This means I am not able to read an academic text, or any book for that matter, and take in the information fully. I can read for hours and still be none the wiser.

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