Dyslexia and Problem-Orientation

The three main areas of Problem-Orientation in Executive Functioning are:

▶️ Representing Problems
▶️ Error Detection and Correction
▶️ Handing Complexity

Going through these areas one-by-one, we can say:

▶️ Representing Problems
This is the ability to understand, represent, and articulate challenges to oneself and others. Often this ability is hindered by an eccentricity in sequencing skills (including ordering, directionality, and prioritising). It is also affected by poor working memory, which means that the elements of a problem may be “cognitively misplaced” when not written down or recorded in some other way.

▶️ Error Detection and Correction
This is the ability to identify the source, location, and form of a conceptual error. This involves being able to recognise, conceptually categorise, and understand, errors in a system or process; monitor these errors; and then to formulate and carry out strategies to remedy those errors. These strategies may include the determination of a sequence or sequences of actions that are purposively designed to achieve a particular and relevant objective; and then the formulation of a workable plan that will facilitate these actions.

▶️ Handing Complexity
As with representing problems, the ability or inability to handle complexity can partially be attributed to sequencing eccentricities – the differences in how people with dyslexia deal with sequences and how those without dyslexia deal with sequences. Handling complexity can involve the prediction and retention within the working memory of complex and splintering / divergent steps in a previously-unseen process, understanding the several layers of actions needed to undertake those steps, and the simultaneous visualisation of problems that may arise; while it can also involve the ability to function appropriately in situations which involve diverse and detailed differences, and which require sophisticated and knowledgeable responses and actions.

In order to mitigate against potential problems that may come with Problem-Orientation, the following simple strategies may be implemented:

✔️ Mind-mapping a problem
✔️ Visually representing a problem using charts, graphs, etc
✔️ Recording the steps and stages of a problem simply, in a logical fashion
✔️ Discussing a problem that needs to be solved at every stage of the solution
✔️ Understanding the whys, not only the whats, of a problem
✔️ Constantly and consistently referring back to the system that the problem is a part of
✔️ Breaking down the problem into small, easily-manageable chunks
✔️ Mapping / mind-mapping potential solutions
✔️ Visually mapping steps to those solutions
✔️ Consciously linking the steps of the solutions with the problem to be solved
✔️ Repeating and reviewing instructions
✔️ Reflecting and simple evaluation at every step
✔️ Reducing the amount of complexity in the processes of solving the problem
✔️ Celebrating each and every success
✔️ Creating simple “to-do” lists
✔️ Reducing distractions
✔️ KISS – Keep It Short and Simple!