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Reading PDFs and Digital Question Papers with Texthelp Read and Write Gold

by Paul Nisbet

on Thu Dec 19, 2013

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Yesterday a teacher called to ask for advice about using Texthelp's Read and Write Gold with the SQA Digital Question Papers. She had two problems and the suggestions I made may be of interest to others who use Read and Write Gold:

  1. The first problem was that the PDF Aloud text-to-speech tool reads out the entire answer typed into a PDF Digital Answer Booklet, which is not good when you usually just want a sentence or paragraph of your text read out.

Unfortunately, this is the way it is with PDF Aloud, and there is no way around it that I know of. However, I suggested two alternatives:

  • Using a Digital Answer Booklet in Microsoft Word format, with the Read and Write Gold Play tool, rather than the PDF Aloud reader. I think the Word DABs are a better option anyway – text flows across from page to page, unlike the PDFs; you can format the text; the word spellchecker is better; R&W Gold works well in Word.)
  • Use the PDF Digital Answer Booklet, but use the Read and Write Gold Play tool instead of PDFaloud. The learner can then select the text and click to have it read out.

Teaching learners to use the Read and Write Play tool may be a better approach anyway, because then they get used to using the same speech tool to read everything – Word files, the internet, emails, and PDFs. I’ve heard some staff say that this is how they use R&W Gold and that they don’t bother with PDFaloud.

You can find out how to use the Play tool on our  Digital Assessment web site and from this downloadable Quick Guide.

The second problem she had was that Read and Write Gold seemed to work on the school's Windows XP computers, but not on the Windows 7 machines. I contacted Texthelp for clarification on what works with what, and they have helpfully provided the table below. 

 

 

Read and Write Gold 8.1

Play

Read and Write Gold 8.1

PDFaloud

Read and Write Gold 9

Play

Read and Write Gold 9 

PDFaloud

Read and Write Gold 10 

Play

Read and Write Gold 10 

PDFaloud

Read and Write Gold 11 

Play

Read and Write Gold 11 

PDFaloud

Windows 7

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Adobe Reader 9

No

RW8.1 is no longer supported

No

Yes / No

(Yes, after serial number 245769, from 22/10/09 onwards)

Yes

(to make it work with the Scottish Voices download this update)

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

Adobe Reader X

No

No

No

No

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Adobe Reader XI

No

No

No

No

Yes

(you need the up to date version, 10.0.6)

Yes

(you need the up to date version, 10.0.6)

Yes

Yes

Windows XP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Adobe Reader 9

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

Adobe Reader X

No

No

No

No

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Adobe Reader XI

No

No

No

No

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

 

Tags: SQA, digital exams

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