Can I be Tested or am I too Old?


Patti White, Disabilities Project Manager Arkansas Adult Learning Resource Center


I am an adult in my 50’s and have trouble reading, finishing what I read and making progress on what I am reading. I reread the same sentence or paragraph repeatedly. It can take me hours to finish a page. I am often distracted and eventually just give up. Can I be tested or am I too old?


Learning disabilities evaluations can be pretty expensive – usually running anywhere from $800 – $1500 for adults. So you might want to consider whether or not you actually need the diagnosis or if you’re just curious. If you need the documentation to request accommodations at work or on a standardized test, then you might want to explore getting a diagnosis. If you have a community mental health center nearby, they sometimes do LD evaluations on a sliding scale, which can cut your cost dramatically. Likewise, some colleges with graduate psychology departments may also do LD evaluations on a sliding scale.

If, however, you’re just curious, and it’s mostly a matter of being frustrated that you can’t read easily, you may want to re-consider having the formal testing done. With all the free & cheap assistive technology available for reading and writing these days, you can provide your own accommodations at home – without any formal evaluation – and sometimes at work, depending on the accommodation needed. Check out the Tools for Life App Finder at for assistive technology ideas that may work for you.

Patti White | Disabilities Project Manager | Arkansas Adult Learning Resource Center

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  1. I’m 41 and have gone back to college to get my bachelor’s degree. I’m struggling very much with my math classes, and have asked for accommodation. They, of course, want something from a Dr. My parents had me tested in elementary school, and pretty much forced my school into creating an IEP (which had never, in the history of that school, ever been done before) and that helped. However, I have no idea when or where the original diagnosis was made; is there a way to find that out, or do I have to get re-tested?

    • LDA of America says

      It is likely to be very difficult to find your original test results unless you or your parents have a copy. Also, your college may want an updated diagnosis anyway. Your college should have a disabilities office. Try contacting them and see if they have recommendations for you unless that is who you already have spoken to about accommodations. Many colleges also offer tutors so you might ask about that. In addition, if your college has a graduate program in psychology, they will often do reduced cost or free testing. If none of this works, you might contact your local vocational rehabilitation office to see if they will do testing to document your disability and your need for accommodations.

  2. Steven Zenthoefer says

    My son is desperately trying to get help as an adult with his reading disability. He needs to know exactly what is wrong and doesnt know where to star . We live in Missouri and need help identifying his problem and dont know where to start. Please reach out to him. Thank you so much.

  3. Shirley DeHart says

    Is it possible to suffer from depression, anxiety, ocd and add all at the same time?

    • Amy L Thomas says


      I’m no expert on this subject, but I can answer that for you because I have been diagnosed with all of those. So yes it is possible.

    • Yes, I have/had all of those. Often one is symptom for the other. OCD is so often a symptom of anxiety as is depression. Then anxiety can stem from depression.

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