Top Dyslexia Tools for Reading

July 2, 2024

Discover the top dyslexia tools for reading - from assistive technology to specialized devices. Enhance your reading experience today!

Top Dyslexia Tools for Reading

When it comes to supporting individuals with dyslexia in their reading journey, a variety of tools and technologies are available. These tools can be categorized into two main types: assistive technology (AT) tools and instructional technology (IT) tools. Both types play a crucial role in maximizing the benefits for students who struggle with reading, spelling, and writing difficulties.

Assistive Technology Tools

Assistive Technology (AT) tools are designed to enable learners to complete tasks they may not be able to do independently. For individuals with dyslexia, AT tools can be invaluable in providing the necessary support. One such tool is text-to-speech (TTS) technology, which translates written text into audio. This allows individuals with dyslexia to listen to the text being read aloud, enhancing their reading comprehension and providing an alternative access to the information they need.

Instructional Technology Tools

Instructional Technology (IT) tools, on the other hand, are designed to reinforce and provide additional practice for skills that have already been taught. These tools cater to learners of all types and can be beneficial for individuals with dyslexia as well. Well-designed IT tools with accurate content, validated by scientific research, can align with the student's reading curriculum and provide additional support for reading skills. These tools often include interactive exercises and activities that help reinforce word identification skills, language comprehension, and other essential areas for proficient reading, spelling, and writing [1].

When it comes to selecting the right tools, a dual approach combining both instructional and assistive technology is critical for students with dyslexia. This approach ensures that students receive direct instruction to develop fluent decoding, spelling, and writing skills, while also providing alternative access to text through technology. By incorporating IT and AT strategies, students can keep up with their peers as they progress through grades and transition to higher education or a career [1].

By utilizing a combination of assistive and instructional technology tools, individuals with dyslexia can receive the necessary support to improve their reading skills, enhance comprehension, and overcome the challenges they face in the learning process. It is important to select tools that align with the specific needs of the learner and provide a fluid and automatic command of the literacy skills required for their unique circumstances.

Reading Enhancement Tools

When it comes to supporting individuals with dyslexia in their reading journey, various tools and technologies can make a significant difference. In this section, we will explore three essential reading enhancement tools: text-to-speech software, dyslexia-friendly fonts, and reading guides and overlays.

Text-to-Speech Software

Text-to-speech software is a powerful tool that converts written text into spoken words, offering individuals with dyslexia an alternative way to access and comprehend written content. By hearing the text read aloud, readers can improve their understanding and reduce reading challenges.

Some examples of effective text-to-speech software include Read&Write, NaturalReader, and Voice Dream Reader, as mentioned by OrCam. These tools provide customizable features such as adjustable reading speed, highlighting of text as it is read, and the ability to save and export audio files.

By utilizing text-to-speech software, individuals with dyslexia can enhance their reading experience, improve comprehension, and even aid in proofreading, as incorrect words or spellings are often more noticeable when heard [2]. This technology has proven to be an essential assistive tool in classrooms, especially for students with dyslexia, as it positively impacts reading comprehension.

Dyslexia-Friendly Fonts

Dyslexia-friendly fonts are specifically designed to alleviate reading challenges for individuals with dyslexia. These fonts feature unique letterforms and spacing that enhance readability and reduce confusion. By using dyslexia-friendly fonts, individuals with dyslexia can experience improved legibility and a smoother reading flow.

Popular dyslexia-friendly fonts include OpenDyslexic, Dyslexie, and Lexie Readable, as suggested by OrCam. These fonts employ various techniques such as heavier bottom portions of letters, increased letter spacing, and unique letterforms that help differentiate similar-looking characters.

Implementing dyslexia-friendly fonts in reading materials, digital content, or learning resources can significantly enhance readability and accessibility for individuals with dyslexia.

Reading Guides and Overlays

Reading guides and overlays provide visual support for individuals with dyslexia, assisting in focusing attention, reducing visual stress, and improving tracking while reading. These tools can be particularly helpful for individuals who experience difficulties with line tracking and visual fatigue.

Different types of reading guides and overlays are available, including tinted overlays, transparent reading rulers, and colored reading strips, as mentioned by OrCam. Tinted overlays are transparent sheets that can be placed over text to reduce visual stress and increase reading fluency. Transparent reading rulers and colored reading strips act as guides, helping individuals maintain focus and track their reading line by line.

By utilizing reading guides and overlays, individuals with dyslexia can experience increased reading comfort and improved concentration, making their reading experience more enjoyable and effective.

These reading enhancement tools - text-to-speech software, dyslexia-friendly fonts, and reading guides and overlays - can play a crucial role in supporting individuals with dyslexia on their reading journey. By implementing these tools, individuals with dyslexia can enhance their reading skills, boost comprehension, and gain more confidence in their ability to access and understand written content.

Digital Learning Platforms

In the digital age, various learning platforms have emerged to provide support and resources specifically designed for individuals with dyslexia. These platforms offer interactive activities, adaptive learning modules, and personalized instruction tailored to the needs of dyslexic students. Let's explore three notable digital learning platforms for dyslexia: Nessy, Learning Ally, and Lexia Core5.


Nessy is a popular digital learning platform that offers a range of dyslexia-specific resources and tools. It provides engaging activities and games that aim to improve reading, spelling, and writing skills. Nessy utilizes a multisensory approach, combining visual, auditory, and kinesthetic elements to enhance learning. The platform offers individualized learning paths, allowing students to progress at their own pace and target their specific areas of difficulty. Additionally, Nessy provides comprehensive reporting features, enabling educators and parents to track a student's progress and identify areas that may require additional support.

Learning Ally

Learning Ally is another digital learning platform that focuses on providing accessible audiobooks to support individuals with dyslexia. The platform offers a vast collection of audio books, including textbooks, literature, and popular reading materials. By providing audio versions of written content, Learning Ally helps dyslexic individuals overcome reading barriers and engage with the material effectively. The platform also includes features such as highlighting and note-taking to enhance comprehension and retention. Learning Ally aims to foster independence and empower dyslexic individuals to become confident readers.

Lexia Core5

Lexia Core5 is a digital learning platform that offers a comprehensive curriculum to develop foundational reading skills. It provides adaptive learning modules that target essential areas for proficient reading, such as phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary, and text fluency. Lexia Core5 utilizes personalized learning paths, which adjust to each student's specific needs and pace of learning. The platform offers real-time progress monitoring, allowing educators to track student performance and provide targeted interventions. With its engaging and interactive activities, Lexia Core5 aims to build strong literacy skills and promote academic success for individuals with dyslexia.

These digital learning platforms provide valuable resources and tools that can support individuals with dyslexia in their reading journey. By leveraging technology and incorporating evidence-based practices, these platforms offer unique opportunities for personalized and engaging learning experiences.

Early Intervention and Screening Tools

When it comes to dyslexia, early intervention and screening tools play a crucial role in identifying reading difficulties and providing timely support to individuals with dyslexia. These tools help in recognizing the signs of dyslexia, allowing for appropriate interventions to help individuals overcome challenges and reach their full potential.

Dyslexia Screening Tools

Dyslexia screening tools are designed to identify potential reading difficulties in individuals. These tools assess various reading-related skills, including phonemic awareness, phonics, word identification, and language comprehension. By evaluating these skills, dyslexia screening tools can provide insights into the presence of dyslexia and the specific areas of difficulty.

Screening tools are typically administered by professionals, such as educators or psychologists, who are trained in recognizing dyslexia symptoms. The results of the screening can guide further assessment and intervention strategies, ensuring that individuals with dyslexia receive the support they need to succeed.

Dyslexia-Specific Resources

In addition to screening tools, dyslexia-specific resources are available to support individuals with dyslexia in their reading journey. These resources include instructional and assistive technology tools that cater to the unique needs of individuals with dyslexia.

Instructional technology (IT) tools focus on providing direct instruction in reading, spelling, and writing. They may incorporate evidence-based practices such as systematic phonics instruction, multisensory learning approaches, and explicit teaching of decoding and encoding skills. These tools aim to enhance foundational literacy skills and promote reading fluency and comprehension.

Assistive technology (AT) tools, on the other hand, assist learners in completing tasks they may struggle with independently. For individuals with dyslexia, text-to-speech (TTS) software can be particularly helpful. TTS technology translates written text into audio, supporting individuals in accessing and comprehending text. This type of assistive technology can be as vital for individuals with dyslexia as a screen reader is for someone who is visually impaired.

By combining dyslexia screening tools with dyslexia-specific resources, educators, parents, and professionals can identify reading difficulties early on and provide effective interventions. These tools and resources align with best practices based on educational research, principles of universal design for learning (UDL), and personalized learning, ensuring that individuals with dyslexia receive the necessary support to thrive in their academic and personal lives [1].

Innovative Reading Aids

For individuals with dyslexia, there are several innovative reading aids available that can greatly assist in improving reading skills and overall comprehension. In this section, we will explore three such aids: Dragon Naturally Speaking, Livescribe Smartpen, and Read & Write Gold.

Dragon Naturally Speaking

Dragon Naturally Speaking is a powerful tool that can be immensely beneficial for individuals with dyslexia. This aid utilizes voice recognition technology, allowing users to dictate their thoughts and ideas instead of relying on traditional typing or handwriting methods. By using their voice, dyslexic individuals can reduce the stress associated with note-taking and written assignments.

The software accurately transcribes spoken words into written text, making it an invaluable tool for creating documents, emails, and other written materials. Dragon Naturally Speaking also offers features like voice commands, which allow users to control their computer hands-free. This can be particularly helpful for individuals with dyslexia who may struggle with traditional keyboard input methods.

Livescribe Smartpen

The Livescribe Smartpen is another innovative reading aid that can significantly benefit individuals with dyslexia, especially in note-taking and learning processes. This pen captures both writing and audio simultaneously, allowing users to revisit their notes and listen to the corresponding audio recordings.

By simply tapping on their written notes, dyslexic individuals can access the exact moment in the audio recording when that particular note was taken. This feature is particularly advantageous for reviewing lectures, ensuring accurate note-taking, and reinforcing comprehension. The Livescribe Smartpen bridges the gap between written words and auditory information, providing a comprehensive learning experience.

Read & Write Gold

Read & Write Gold is a computer program designed specifically to assist students with dyslexia in their reading and writing tasks. This aid incorporates various features, such as text-to-speech capabilities, predictive spelling, word choice suggestions, and access to a dictionary and thesaurus. By providing multiple tools within a single program, Read & Write Gold enables dyslexic individuals to overcome reading and writing challenges.

The text-to-speech function reads electronic text aloud, helping users with dyslexia to better comprehend written materials. The predictive spelling and word choice features assist in reducing spelling errors and selecting appropriate words. The dictionary and thesaurus options provide quick access to definitions and synonyms, aiding in vocabulary development and enhancing written expression.

These innovative reading aids, including Dragon Naturally Speaking, Livescribe Smartpen, and Read & Write Gold, offer valuable support to individuals with dyslexia. By utilizing technology and incorporating features specifically designed for dyslexic needs, these aids empower individuals to improve their reading skills, enhance note-taking abilities, and boost overall academic performance.

Specialized Reading Devices

For individuals with dyslexia, specialized reading devices can be valuable tools to enhance their reading experience and improve comprehension. In this section, we will explore three notable specialized reading devices: the C-Pen Reader, the KNFB Reader, and WhisperSync.

C-Pen Reader

The C-Pen Reader is a unique reading device designed to support children and adults with dyslexia and other reading difficulties. Shaped like a pen, this portable scanner simplifies the process of accessing text features by allowing users to run the pen across printed text. It displays word definitions and reads the text aloud, providing immediate support and assistance.

The C-Pen Reader is particularly beneficial for individuals with dyslexia who struggle with decoding words or comprehending complex passages. By hearing the text read aloud, users can better grasp the meaning and context of the written content, enhancing their overall reading experience.

KNFB Reader

The KNFB Reader is a powerful tool that combines optical character recognition (OCR) technology with text-to-speech capabilities. This device allows users to take a photo of a page, instantly converting the text into speech. It provides high-quality and accurate translation in image-to-speech reading, making it a valuable resource for individuals with dyslexia.

The KNFB Reader offers a convenient and efficient way for individuals with dyslexia to access printed material. By capturing an image of a page, users can have the text read aloud to them, enabling a more accessible reading experience. This tool can be particularly useful for students with dyslexia who may encounter challenges when reading traditional print materials.


WhisperSync is a reading device that seamlessly integrates reading and listening. It allows students to switch between reading a book and listening to it, providing flexibility in how they engage with the content. This feature can be beneficial for individuals with dyslexia, who may find the reading process lengthy and exhausting.

By utilizing WhisperSync, individuals with dyslexia can alternate between reading and listening, accommodating their specific needs and preferences. This tool promotes a more dynamic and enjoyable reading experience, enabling better comprehension and engagement with the text.

These specialized reading devices offer innovative solutions for individuals with dyslexia, providing support and assistance in overcoming reading challenges. Whether through text-to-speech capabilities, instant translation, or integrated reading and listening features, these devices empower individuals with dyslexia to access and comprehend written content more effectively.