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How to become a dyslexia assessor

Associate Membership of the British Dyslexia Association (AMBDA)

What is AMBDA?

Associate Membership of the British Dyslexia Association (AMBDA) indicates a high standard of professional competence in both diagnostic assessment and teaching. AMBDA is now the professional membership required for all those applying for and holding an Assessment Practising Certificate (APC) issued by the BDA. The Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) approves holders of AMBDA to formally assess and make recommendations for exam access arrangements.

The Department of Education (DfE) has announced that a Diagnostic Assessment conducted at any age, which results in a diagnosis of dyslexia, will now be accepted as part of an application for Disabled Students’ Allowances (DSA). It is no longer necessary that a report is carried out post-16. A report will be accepted only if conducted and written by an assessor holding a valid Assessment Practising Certificate (APC), or by an HCPC-registered psychologist, at the time of the assessment.

As reports conducted at any age may be used for DSA purposes, it is recommended that all assessors should now hold an APC, so that no further diagnostic assessment will be required should the dyslexic individual wish to apply for DSA in the future.

You may still assess if you hold AMBDA and you do not hold an APC. However, you have a professional responsibility to alert parents/carers to the fact that your report will not be accepted as part of an application for DSA in the future. By agreeing to adhere to the Code of Ethics, you are acknowledging this responsibility.

Face to Face Assessments

If you are looking to carry out assessments at the current time, we need to refer you to the SASC guidance on their website. Assessors are recommended to send out their own risk assessment and follow all government guidelines in regards to safe practices.

AMBDA holders will receive the following benefits:

  • BDA Dyslexia Contact magazine 3 times a year
  • Discount on BDA conferences
  • Discount on BDA open training courses
  • Professional Indemnity Insurance at members' rate through the Alan Boswell Group
  • Eligible to join the BDA Tutor List
  • Members' rate for the Dyslexia Journal published 4 times a year
  • BDA e-newsletter 3 times a year
  • Invitation to BDA AGM and Members' Day

Who can apply for AMBDA?

Applicants can apply for AMBDA if they have successfully completed a postgraduate (Level 7) AMBDA accredited course or equivalent - see course list on the SpLD Assessment Standards Committee (SASC) website.

To apply for AMBDA

Please contact

AMBDA Courses

* courses marked with an asterisk also offer AMBDA FE/HE (Further and Higher Education) specialism

Gateway Qualifications have applied for BDA accreditation for ATS/APS and AMBDA programmes, confirmation of this accreditation will be published shortly.

Course provider

More information

Miles Dyslexia Centre, Bangor University of Wales

Advanced Certificate of Further Professional Studies in SpLD (Dyslexia) AMBDA *

Bath Spa University

Specific Learning Difficulties/Dyslexia

University of Birmingham (eLearning)

Language, Literacies and Dyslexia Post Graduate Diploma *

British Dyslexia Association (BDA) (blended learning)

Level 7 Diploma in Dyslexia Assessment and Intervention

Canterbury Christ Church University

Specialist Assessment for a Specific Learning Difficulty: Dyslexia *

University of Chester

Dyslexia Research and Practice *

Dyscalculia Research and Practice

St Patrick’s College, Dublin City University

MEd in Specific Learning Difficulties (Dyslexia)

Dyslexia Action (Middlesex University) (blended learning)

Level 7 Professional Diploma in Dyslexia and Literacy *

Level 7 Professional Certificate in Assessment Practice for Dyslexia and Literacy *

Edge Hill University

PG Cert SpLD (Dyslexia) with AMBDA /ATS*

PGDip Education (Dyscalculia)

Helen Arkell Dyslexia CharityLevel 7 Diploma Teaching and Assessing Learners with Dyslexia/Specific Learning Difficulties

Leicester City/Derby University

Teaching and Assessing Learners with Specific Learning Difficulties (Dyslexia); contact for further information

Liverpool Hope UniversityPost Graduate Certificate in Specific Learning Difficulties (Dyslexia)
University College London, Institute of EducationPost Graduate Diploma Specific Learning Difficulties (Dyslexia) with AMBDA
Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU)Post Graduate Diploma Specific Learning Difficulties

University of South Wales

Postgraduate Diploma SEN Specific Learning Difficulties *

Oxford Brookes University

Postgraduate Certificate Education - Working with Children with Literacy Difficulties

Stranmillis University College, Belfast (eLearning)

Master of Education (MEd) Teaching Children with Specific Literacy Difficulties

Postgraduate Diploma in Education: Individual Specialist Assessment, SEN and Access Arrangements

Wrexham Glyndŵr University

MA Education (Additional Learning Needs - Dyslexia)

To renew your AMBDA

AMBDA is now an annual membership and we ask that you submit a CPD Log every three years to evidence your continued commitment to professional excellence. See Continuing Professional Development page.

Visit our Training pages to find out more about the CPD courses we offer.