For Dyslexia Awareness Week we have created a 5 minutes overview of this very common form of cognitive diversity. Thinking differently can be challenging, especially in less flexible environments. However it can also allow people to solve problems and create using their different perspectives and mental approaches. Today is a great day to raise dyslexia awareness. Enjoy #positivedyslexia2017
Dyslexia – a 5 minute guide
What is dyslexia?
Difficulties with language skills, particularly reading
How common is it?
It affects 10% of the population
What causes it?
Some brains process language differently.
It has genetic links.
It is a spectrum
Dyslexia may impact people very differently.
It ranges from mild through to quite severe.
Some people adapt better than others. They find mechanisms that make absorbing and sharing language-based information easier for them.
Top design tips for including people with dyslexia
- Sans-serif fonts tend to be easier.
- Limit italics and underlining.
- Use commonly used words.
- Limit acronyms.
- Adopt readability guidelines.
- Provide clear headers.
- Limit column width to 80 characters per line maximum.
- Use white space consistently.
- Don’t justify text or double space after a full stop.
Video, audio and images
- Video, audio and images can provide alternative options to reading text.
- Limit text on images.
- Offer many paths to content.
- Allow flexible navigation options that allow for very different patterns of thinking / approaches.
- Allow clear paths back one step and back to the start.
- People with dyslexia often prefer softer colours such as pastels.
- Avoid very low colour contrast.
- Allow error recovery.
- Provide auto-complete options.
- Offer your site visitors options to change visual elements: font type, size, colours or spacing.
- Offer simple reading versions or
- text-to-audio tools on the site.
- Test site with Dragon and other AT.
Some facts about dyslexia
- Dyslexia is not a disease.
- It is a difference in absorbing and sharing language information based on different brain patterns.
- Girls and boys are both affected by dyslexia. Boys are more likely to get a formal diagnosis.
- Many people with dyslexia are very successful.
- It has been dubbed a “desirable difficulty” as many people become very creative problem solvers.
- 1/3 of entrepreneurs are dyslexic. Significant numbers of people in arts and engineering are also dyslexic.