Researchers from Cambridge University in the United Kingdom recently published analytical research that suggests developmental dyslexia may not be the 'deficit' in education many believe it to be, but instead, an evolutionary form of cognition that plays a crucial role in the ability of humans to adapt.

As more information becomes available with advancing technology allowing us insight into the brain, researchers are learning how educational 'deficits' such as attention deficit or developmental dyslexia may instead enhance behaviors that are necessary for evolutionary adaptation in humans.

With as much as 20% of the world's population having what would fall under the criteria for developmental dyslexia, researchers from England raise the possibility that dyslexia as a deficit doesn't tell the whole story of its role in human brain adaptation.

The research was released in the journal Frontiers of Psychology and suggests that dyslexia could help humans adapt and ensure future evolutionary success due to enhanced brain differences and abilities.

Dr. Helen Taylor is the lead author of the research. In a statement that accompanied the paper, she said,
"The deficit-centered view of dyslexia isn’t telling the whole story. This research proposes a new framework to help us better understand the cognitive strengths of people with dyslexia."
The World Federation of Neurology defines dyslexia as a disorder where one fails to attain language skills of reading, writing and spelling as commensurate with their intelligence, and this is typically noted in conventional classroom failings.

Dr. Taylor's team of researchers believes that developmental dyslexia may actually offer individual strengths for those who have it, as they're good at seeking out new information and new ways to gather it instead of reinterpreting what's already been a 'given'. They believe this ability may play a crucial role in a human's survival.

Clearly, people with developmental dyslexia have challenges, particularly in classrooms, but the benefits could outweigh if our society looked at the cognitive framing of developmental dyslexia differently.

She said, "
We believe that the areas of difficulty experienced by people with dyslexia result from a cognitive trade-off between exploration of new information and exploitation of existing knowledge, with the upside being an explorative bias that could explain enhanced abilities observed in certain realms like discovery, invention and creativity."
Some of the 'tradeoffs' of developmental dyslexia the team found include enhanced explorative search ability (auditory, visually, externally) as well as enhanced memory abilities (procedural, working, episodic). As well, those with developmental dyslexia tend to have strong divergent thinking skills, which could benefit humans as our world is ever-changing.