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|Title: ||Computer based writing support for dyslexic adults using language constraints|
|Authors: ||Carter, Marina|
|Issue Date: ||2002|
|Publisher: ||© Marina Carter|
|Abstract: ||Computers have been used effectively to provide support for people with a variety of
special needs. One such group is adults with dyslexia. Dyslexia is commonly recognised
as a learning disorder characterised by reading, writing and spelling difficulties. It inhibits
recognition and processing of graphic symbols, particularly those pertaining to language.
Computers are a useful aid for dyslexic adults, especially word processors and their
associated spelling tools. However, there are still areas where improvements are needed.
Creating an environment, which minimises visual discomfort associated with proof
reading and making selections from lists would be of benefit. Furthermore providing the
correct type and level of support for spelling, grammar and sentence construction may
result in higher standards being achieved.
A survey of 250 dyslexic adults established their requirements and enabled the
development of a specialist word processing system and associated spelling support tools.
The hypothesis, that using a language with enforced structure and rigid constraints has a
positive affect for dyslexic adults, was also tested. A support tool, which provided a
controlled environment, to assist with sentence construction for dyslexic adults was
developed from this. Three environments were created using the word processing system:
environment 1 used the basic system with no support, environment 2 provided spelling
support suggested by the survey subjects and environment 3 used the sentence
constructing tool providing support and control. Using these environments in controlled
experiments indicated that although environment 2 achieved high academic standards,
environment 3 produced written work to an even higher standard and at the same time,
the subjects derived greater satisfaction in using it.
This research proves that working in a controlled, rigid environment, where structure is
enforced, substantially benefits dyslexic adults performing computer-based writing tasks.|
|Description: ||Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.|
|Appears in Collections:||PhD Theses (Computer Science)|
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