The image above can resonate with some of us, how filling in forms can infuriate and take a lot of energy out us, leaving us tired and frustrated and sometimes not even wanting to bother. Well that’s how society can exclude many of us with neurological differences. A big sigh when we see them and a bigger sigh when they are complete when it comes to dyslexia and filling in forms.
Whether you are applying for a job, college, university, passport or bank account; we all have to complete forms of one kind or another.
Paper forms are unreliable for various reasons:
- they get lost in the snail mail
- lost by the person filling the form (if you have a working memory difficulty, thats probably something that happens often)
- (the most annoying, especially when it takes you so long to complete with copious amounts of stress) the organisations that sent you the forms that require you to send them, lose the forms you eventually send (Phew!)
Many dyslexic (non dyslexic) people get frustrated due to ongoing problems filling in a form. So we thought we would create a post about it.
Advice with form filling for dyslexics, dyspraxics and ADDers.
1. Before completing the form, contact the organisation and ask if they have a electronic copy of the form
For many PDF and Word document versions of a form are easier to compete. If this is the case for you there is no harm in asking.
2. Read instructions with a highlighter pen and highlight all requirements
This includes highlighting all the documents that have to be sent with the form.
This helps with remembering to include them and acts as a Todo list when completed, you will be able to see at a glance what is required.
3. Always write it all in pencil first
We advise that you should pester a is non-dyslexic/dyspraxic/ADDer friend/partner etc to read the form through.
4. Correct it while still in pencil, including double-checking all numbers, names etc.
Proofreading our own work is a (majority of the time) not a dyslexic, dyspraxic or ADDers strong point especially with their own work.
5. Get a friend to check it before you go over in pen
6. Use a black pen to write over the pencil
This is generally what is required for completing a form any way. Forms are dull and so is the colour black, with that in mind it could help you to remember that.
7. Only rub out the pencil once you are sure that it is correct and it has been completely filled out in pen
If you still make a mistake do not whiteout. Instead just cross out and then initial mistake.
8. Always make a copy the form before sending off
Use a photocopier, scanner or even your smartphone (if you have one). With a smartphone you can email it to yourself or you can upload it to Evernote. This is in case it gets lost or someone wants more info.
9. Go through all the instructions you highlighted before sending off the form
Frequently organisations that request you to complete a form, will also ask for other documents to be sent with the completed form.