Autism Toolbox a resource for Scottish Schools

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SIGN (Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network) 


ICD 10

All about Diagnosis - The National Autistic Society

Information on Autism Diagnosis - NHS

Diagnosis - Autism Network Scotland

Gender and Autism NAS




Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)

ADHD is one of the most commonly diagnosed neurodevelopmental disorders in children and young people. The core features are persistent (at least 6 months’ duration) and developmentally inappropriate levels of inattention and hyperactivity, often with impulsive behaviour, with onset before the age of 6 years. These symptoms can present either individually, or in combination.

Children with ADHD are at increased risk of low self-esteem, academic underachievement, poor peer relationships, disrupted family relationships, accidents and anti-social behaviour. They may also be at increased risk of later substance misuse. ADHD is associated with an increased risk of other disorders including depression and anxiety. Sleep problems are also common.

ADHD is a long term condition and early diagnosis and appropriate intervention, with the development and implementation of a long term management plan, is crucial.

Taken from: 

More information about ADHD and autism can be found on NAS website



Dyslexia can be described as a continuum of difficulties in learning to read, write and/or spell, which persist despite the provision of appropriate learning opportunities. These difficulties often do not reflect an individual's cognitive abilities and may not be typical of performance in other areas.

The impact of dyslexia as a barrier to learning varies in degree according to the learning and teaching environment, as there are often associated difficulties such as:

· auditory and /or visual processing of language-based information

· phonological awareness

· oral language skills and reading fluency

· short-term and working memory

· sequencing and directionality

· number skills

· organisational ability

Learners with dyslexia will benefit from early identification, appropriate intervention and targeted effective teaching, enabling them to become successful learners, confident individuals, effective contributors and responsible citizens. (Cross Party Group on Dyslexia, 2009)

Taken from

Resources for Teachers -


Developmental dyspraxia

Developmental dyspraxiais an impairment or immaturity of the organisation of movement. It is an immaturity in the way that the brain processes information, which results in messages not being properly or fully transmitted. The term dyspraxia comes from the word praxis, which means 'doing, acting'. Dyspraxia affects the planning of what to do and how to do it. It is associated with problems of perception, language and thought.

Dyspraxia is thought to affect up to ten per cent of the population and up to two per cent severely. Males are four times more likely to be affected than females. Dyspraxia sometimes runs in families. There may be an overlap with related conditions.

Other names for dyspraxia include Developmental Co-ordination Disorder (DCD), Perceptuo-Motor Dysfunction, and Motor Learning Difficulties. It used to be known as Minimal Brain Damage and Clumsy Child Syndrome.

Statistically, it is likely that there is one child in every class of 30 children.

Taken from.Dyspraxia Foundation 



Epilepsy is defined as repeated seizures (not just one) that start in the brain. A brief disturbance in the brain's normal electrical activity causes the nerve cells to fire off random signals. The result is like an electrical storm that causes a temporary overload in the brain.

There are many different kinds of seizure. Some end in seconds while others may last several minutes. People might lose their awareness of what is happening or where they are during a seizure. They may lose consciousness altogether.

Each person's experience of epilepsy is unique. Epilepsy is the most common, serious neurological disorder in the world. In Scotland, 1 in 97 people have the condition. It is not contagious, nor is it a disease. Between seizures the brain works normally.

Public ignorance and misconceptions about epilepsy in the past have led to fear and prejudice. Today, epilepsy is better understood. Being informed about the condition, knowing the medical terms and how to handle any problems helps reduce the impact epilepsy has on a person's life.

Please remember - only seizures are epileptic, not people.

There are many different types of seizure which are divided into two main groups: generalised and partial.

Taken from:


Pathological Demand Avoidence Syndrome (PDA)

In recent years PDA has been increasingly recognised as part of the autism spectrum. 

Further information about PDA can be found from PDA Society where there is a Teacher's guide as well as support materials  

National Autistic Society_NAS WEBINAR: Educational provision and teaching approaches for children with PDA

FURTHER INFORMATION about other associated conditions

 National Autistic Society 



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