I have been thinking about the question – is using eReaders better or worse for your reading when you are dyslexic? – it’s a personal dilemma for me as I can read much faster and more accurately with the setting on a device set to white text on black but then one of the reasons I read so much is because I have proven the more I read the better I can read!
So it’s a big trade off – the new setting on the devices where you can pick your own font preference, text size and especially the colour make a vast difference to dyslexic readers and I recommend to all my students to play with their settings. You are looking for short lines of text – use two columns, use the black background or the sepia in the sun and a font which is curly rather than square text – oh and don’t be afraid to make it bigger too! All these simple changes will give you so much more confidence reading your books – you read faster and take in more information.
However let’s go back to the other side of the debate – the more you read as a dyslexic the better you can read. People on the dyslexic spectrum or with ADD/ADHD don’t naturally read well. It’s all about practice! So if we make it so much easier as we do with eReaders we lose some of the practice element when we go back to white pages and black text! I wish book publishers would choose their fonts and paper better but until then we have to find ways to cope.
A few months ago I was distressed to realise my reading out – especially of menus was decreasing in ability despite the fact that I read so much (usually up to 7 books at a time so I don’t get bored). But I was reading these all on my Kindle or iPad.
So now I read at least one paperback fiction book and the more hard core work texts I read online with all my fancy settings makes it easier.
This way I’m still reading quickly for work and accurately but I’m still practicing for restaurant menus!
Dr. Naoisé Expression Developist™