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What Is Dysgraphia?

By Anna Witkin |
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Dysgraphia has been estimated to affect 7-15% of school-aged children, but diagnostic ambiguity makes it difficult to ascertain the true prevalence (Hawke et al., 2009). While studies suggest dyslexia and dysgraphia may be equally common, there is much less awareness of and research devoted to dysgraphia.

The DSM-5 does not define dysgraphia but defines an SLD in writing as an impediment to the ability to learn writing.

To meet the criteria for this SLD, the impairment must be sufficient to cause the student to perform significantly behind their grade level in writing for at least 6 months and persist even after receiving targeted help. These difficulties must not be better explained by a lack of proper instruction, other developmental disabilities, or other neurologic or sensory deficits.

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Anna Witkin

Anna Witkin is a contributing writer for Polygon. Anna holds a BA from UC Berkeley, a Masters in Biomedical Science from Tufts, and researched dyslexia, ADHD, and other learning differences during her time at Dartmouth School of Medicine studying for her MD.