An element in many cases of dyslexia is called a visual attention deficit. It is marked by an inability to concentrate on letters within words or words within lines of text.
Another element is known as visual crowding--the failure to recognize letters when they are cluttered within the word.
Lead author Matthew H. Schneps, director of the Laboratory for Visual Learning at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, said that at least a third of those with dyslexia they tested have these issues with visual attention and are helped by reading on the e-reader.
He said that for those who don't have these issues, the study showed that the traditional ways of displaying text are better.
The team tested the reading comprehension and speed of 103 students with dyslexia who attend Landmark High School in Boston.
Reading on paper was compared with reading on small hand-held e-reader devices, configured to lines of text that were two-to-three words long. The use of an e-reader significantly improved speed and comprehension in many of the students.
Those students with a pronounced visual attention deficit benefited most from reading text on a handheld device versus on paper, while the reverse was true for those who did not exhibit these issues.
Their findings have been published in the journal PLOS ONE.
--ANI (Posted on 19-09-2013)