Each individual has a different cognitive profile with differing cognitive skills, for many these profiles overlap enough that the typical ways of learning and working are productive and effective. For some, there are more varied differences so typical ways of learning and working are less useful.

The PSWS is pleased to offer an expanded service of assessment, reporting and specialist support for Dyslexia, Dyspraxia and attentional difficulties. The assessment will be conducted by a member of our Learning Differences team who can provide specialist follow up support.

Am I Eligible?

The PSWS can offer screening, assessment and follow up support as appropriate for trainees that are in the following situations:

Have failed a postgraduate exam, membership or fellowship, in which neurodiversity may be a factor (also note we offer one to one coaching support for exam preparation and anxiety).

Have been given an outcome 2 or 3 at ARCP where neurodiversity may be a factor impacting on progress.

In the judgement of an educator there may be neurodiversity factors impacting progress – an educator referral can be completed with the trainee consent and understanding.

What to Expect

Once the referral form has been received, one of our Case Management team will be in touch. They will send a dyslexia screening exercise to the trainee and arrange an initial, virtual meeting. This meeting will explore the context and plan to have the right support in place at the right time. This may include further assessment by our Learning Differences team as appropriate.

Following the initial meeting, the trainee will receive a summary of the meeting content and the plan moving forwards and they will be asked to confirm the content is accurate. If they were referred by an educator, this summary will also be shared with them, so the trainee should ensure they are happy for the content to be shared with their educator or make any adjustments they feel necessary.  

If further assessment by the Learning Differences team may be appropriate, the trainee will be contacted by them for an initial meeting where the need for follow up assessments and reports will be determined. The team will produce a report for the trainee to share with their College as appropriate for relevant adjustments to be made.  

Educators’ Information

Trainees can access assessment for dyslexia, dyspraxia, processing and attentional differences through the Learning Differences team at the PSWS when there is a failed exam or an outcome 2 or 3, when it is felt that some form of neurodiversity may be a factor. In addition, if an Educator believes that one of these elements is impacting the trainee’s progress, they can refer and request further exploration of this, even when there is not a failed exam or developmental outcome, as along as there is a sense that it is impacting on progress.  

PSWS can occasionally offer to fund clinical assessment of neurodiverse issues that cannot be diagnosed within our team. However, this is only for those situations where a trainee is at imminent risk of an outcome 4 (i.e., at the next ARCP panel) and there is a possibility that a neurodiversity factor has been impacting on the trainee’s progress. Where this is the case, PSWS can request funding be released to ensure that the trainee receives an assessment in a timely manner.

If an Educator suspects that it may be worth exploring a clinical diagnosis of neurodiversity, this must first be discussed with the trainee. During this discussion, the trainee should be clear about the reasons that this is being suggested and understand that they are not required to undertake an assessment. The trainee must be involved in the process and cannot be mandated to undertake a clinical assessment potentially resulting in diagnosis. Neurodiversity is still sometimes a difficult topic and can be subject to stigmatisation and differing cultural health beliefs and, as such, should be approached with sensitivity. PSWS will check separately with the trainee that they consent for the referral for assessment be made before moving forwards.