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ICT to Support Learners with Dyslexia

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  • Published: 2017
  • Revision: 1.0
  • Format: A3
  • File type: pdf
  • File size: 1Mb

Introduction

An accessible breakdown of this PDF poster is available further down the page.

Technology to support learners with literacy difficulties such as dyslexia can make a big difference. Using free resources provided by CALL Scotland such as WordTalk, the Scottish Voices, Books for All, combined with a range of Windows built-in tools, free downloads and commercial software, support technology should be available to everyone.

This infograph highlights a range of support tools that are compatible with the Windows Operating System (OS) into 5 categories:

  • Text-to-speech
  • Computer Voices
  • Colour Contrast and Highlighting
  • Speech Recognition
  • Word Prediction

Due to layout and space restrictions, some tools have been omitted, although they play an important part in supporting literacy. For example, the Spelling and Grammar checker in Microsoft Word can help learners to identify and amend spelling and grammar mistakes. The keyboard shortcut F7 is a quick way to identify spelling errors.

Also in Microsoft Word AutoText and AutoCorrect can be used to automatically correct common spelling errors such as 'teh' to 'the' or 'acomodation' to 'accommodation'.

Using a Windows computer, whether a desktop or tablet, is a great way of reading accessible books from the Books for All Database, as books in PDF format can be adjusted to suit the needs of different learners, such as background colour, magnification or speech.

For more on reading and writing support visit the CALL Dyslexia section of the website.

And don't forget, ensuring that pupils have access to support technology is a legal requirement, a responsibility we all have. CALL has produced friendly step-by-step guides based on Scottish Government guidance to help: Legal Requirements for Computer Accessibility and Inclusive Learning Resources.

This poster is designed to be printed in A3. The electronic copy (PDF) includes clickable links to resources.

An accessible breakdown of this PDF poster is available further down the page.

Contents of the PDF poster

This is an accessible breakdown of the contents of the PDF poster, designed to be accessible with a screen reader, and also for people who find it hard to see or access the links in the poster.

Technology to support learners with literacy difficulties such as dyslexia can make a big difference. Using resources provided by CALL Scotland combined with a range of Windows built-in tools, free downloads and commercial software, support technology should be available to everyone!

Text-to-speech

Text-to-speech is a computer voice that speaks text from a document or a website i.e. a text reader. Text-to-speech can support reading by helping learners to process and understand information more easily when it is spoken aloud.

Examples include:

Find out more on text-to-speech.

Computer Voices

Text-to-speech requires a realistic computer voice. Free computer voices (Heather, Stuart or Ceitidh) with a Scottish accent designed specifically for Scottish schools, are available from the Scottish Voice website.

Colour Contrast and Highlighting

Changing the colour contrast on a computer screen can help to reduce visual stress, e.g. prevent words from “floating”,“reversing” or both.

Examples include:

  • Colour filters include (free): TBar and ssOverlay (part of MyStudyBar)
  • Changes can also be made to Word: Design (or) Page Layout and choose Page Colour.
  • WordTalk includes synchronised colour highlighting with speech - can aid concentration.
  • Some learners benefit from using a combination of colour contrast, highlighting and speech.

Speech Recognition

With Windows Speech Recognition you can speak to your computer to dictate text and give commands to control it. To start Windows Speech Recognition go to: Start > Control Panel > Ease of Access > Speech Recognition.

  • Other speech recognition programs include:

  • Dragon NaturallySpeaking

  • Word Q + Speak Q

  • Google Voice Typing (Free - in Google Docs)

  • For more on speech recognition visit our speech recognition pages.

Word Prediction

Word prediction software predicts words in context as you write (after the first or second keypress). Word prediction can help spelling and grammar accuracy, and increase typing speed.

Word prediction programs include:

  • Penfriend
  • ClaroRead
  • Clicker (with picture prediction)
  • Co:Writer
  • Texthelp
  • Read&Write