connecting dyslexic learners

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Connecting dyslexic learners. Katherine Howey Adult Dyslexia Support Specialist and Tutor Founder, Adult Dyslexia Support Group. Presentation focus. Overview of DyslexicBuddies design process Human/computer interaction considerations Lessons learned Demonstration Way forward. About me. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


  • Connecting dyslexic learners

    Katherine HoweyAdult Dyslexia Support Specialist and TutorFounder, Adult Dyslexia Support Group

  • Presentation focusOverview of DyslexicBuddies design processHuman/computer interaction considerationsLessons learnedDemonstrationWay forward

  • About meAdult dyslexia support specialist and tutorDesigns and teaches foundation courses for dyslexic learners entering FE/HEPreviously consultant in human/computer interaction and disability issues for UK/EU consortia

  • Adult Dyslexia Support Group Formed 2010 Voluntary and community groupSupports adult dyslexic learners throughShort coursesReading group Resource siteSelf-funding

  • About DyslexicBuddiesSpecialist resource site, tightly focused on literacy skills acquisitionBlog allows learners to provide feedbackon the resources and teaching strategies and share experienceWebsite developed by subgroup of ADSG volunteers over 18 month periodOver 500 resource hours to date Project costs covered by funding fromADSHE Liz Ahrends Award 2012

  • User profileFrom pre-literate to HE level Weak literacy skillsspikey profileVarious learning styles, varying in severityauditory, visual, kinesthetic

  • User-Centered DesignEvaluation of products, services and teachingstrategies for dyslexic people rarely asks forthe feedback of dyslexic peopleDyslexicBuddies recognises that dyslexicsare the experts on their own dyslexiaDyslexicBuddies puts dyslexics at the heartof its design process

  • Design evolution Basic blog siteCheap but nasty Hotmail discussion group Not sufficiently transparent, too many clicksWordPress Free Primarily a blogging tool but can supporta website with careful design

  • v Online content managementsystem, easy to use, limited functionalityComes with a branded domain nameeg dyslexicbuddies.wordpress.comWordPress.orgDownloaded software installedlocally, paired with a site hosted elsewhere on the webMore advanced functionalityOffers more options

    Both WordPress services are technically free, but the downloaded software is only usable if you pay for a custom domain name and web hosting

  • Design 1 Basic BlogThis site was difficult to use, unattractive and needed asubscription

  • Design 2 Discussion GroupSet up on HotmailUsers could send e-mails to each other and access a resources pageUsers needed to set up an e-mail account firstMessages were displayed over several pagesIt was easy to get lost on the site High level of user frustration with site design

  • Design 2 Discussion Group

    Dyslexic Friends Discussion Group

    1. Go to

    2. Log in using your Hotmail email and password

    Create a Hotmail account if necessary.

    3. Put mouse over SKY DRIVE

    4. Select Groups

    5. Select Dyslexic Friends

    6. Send an email to

    7. Add a photo or logo for your name.

  • Design 2 Discussion Group Resource Page

  • Design 2 Discussion Group Spelling Resource Template

    Look Say Imagine

    Cover Write Check

    Dys lex i a






    Dyslexia resources: look, say, imagine, write, check. (Colour): Kate Howey:2/11/2008

  • Design 3 WordPress.comUsers were invited to submit ideas for site structure and navigationUsers key usability requirements Simple clean designImage friendly Easy to navigateUncluttered text, clear signposting

  • Design 3 User concept

  • Design 3 - WordPress

  • Design 3 User feedbackDesigned as one long pageToo crowdedDifficult to navigateToo wordy, not enough visual and audio alternatives to the written word

  • Design 4 Current version

  • Design 4 User reactionsMore visually basedEmphasis on multimedia options - audio, video and image resourcesMuch clearerSimpler drop-down menu structure reduces clutter on screen and groups topicsMore elegant design Less to read on screen, straight to the point

  • Website widgets We included a number of plug-ins in thelight of user feedback and continue to monitor take up and relevancePayPal DonateFacebookFor the future? Twitter ScanMe

  • Accessibility Currently provide topic area on visual stress which advises on font size and customising colourConsidering use of assistive technologies, eg, to allow users to view website as spoken text

    Is there a trade off between use of readingsoftware and visual presentation of text for thosewith visual stress?

  • Proposed development pathSubject to fundraising, set up custom domain name and web hostingSeek to incorporate best practice and website accessibility guidelines more fullywithout compromising integrity of the site

  • Contact informationContact us at if you want to add Or view the Website Or through the ADSHE website

  • Thank you



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