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The Difficulty of Getting Learning Disability Evaluations as an Adult

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I was first diagnosed with learning disabilities including dyslexia back in the third grade. Since then I have received academic accommodations such as extended test time, reading assistance and others. My last evaluation (psychological and educational) was completed my freshman year in college, around 2007.

Fast forward to today. I am 30 years old and starting my MBA, and because of how much time has passed since my last evaluation, it has “expired.” I’ve been told I need to get a new evaluation so I can receive academic accommodation again.

First, I think it’s ridiculous that I need a new one in the first place. It’s not like my dyslexia is going to disappear. I have learned some strategies to help minimize the effect my disabilities have on my academics and daily life, but I still struggle, especially with reading and math.

Secondly, while many organizations and clinics offer testing, they cater to children and young adults. Even though the evaluation is similar, many don’t provide evaluations to adults past the “usual” college age. This has caused me to call over 30 places trying to find someone who will evaluate me.

Finally, the price to get this evaluation done is extremely high. I am very fortunate to have a job with insurance that provides good coverage and it will mostly cover the psychological part of the evaluation. However, it will not cover the educational portion. This is common, I have learned. But even with insurance it can cost a lot of money. The cheapest I have been able to find in my area is a little over $900. It can cost $5000+ without insurance, so I am very grateful for the insurance I have.

This whole experience has caused me to second guess my ability to complete my schooling and the whole idea of getting my MBA or any other degree. The process should be easier! Your age shouldn’t matter. Testing should all be covered, regardless if it’s categorized as psychological, medical, behavioral or educational.

Getty image by Chinnapong.

Originally published: September 3, 2019
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