Accessibility

Why KAZ was developed

SEN teachers advised us that 10% of their students, the majority suffering from dyslexia, were experiencing visual disturbances. They asked if we could help. We talked to dyslexia experts, most notably Dr. Sue Fowler and her team at the Dyslexia Research Trust, Reading Clinic and Oxford University.

Over the last fifteen years the Trust have carried out extensive research, trials and visual assessments on over 10,000 children.

Evidence suggested that dyslexia was often associated with mild visual impairments and unstable eye control (wobbly eyes) when reading.

Visual Disturbances

‘Visual Stress’ or ‘Visual Dyslexia' is a neurological problem, specifically related to letters and words. Individuals have a reduced ability to make sense of information taken in through the eyes. White page ‘glare’ and the instability of images of letters and words against a white background can be experienced in several ways. The severity and symptoms can vary from one individual to another.

Unstable Eye Control (Wobbly Eyes)

Unstable eye control is where both eyes do not stare steadily at print, causing letters to blur, dance around the page, double and change their order. This confuses the reader and interferes with the correct identification and order of letters.

Light sensitivity

Headaches from reading

Shimmering colours appearing on the page

Difficulty in tracking across the page

Letters that double, reverse, flip, fade, blur or go out of focus

Print which appears to jump, move, shimmer or shake - sometimes appearing to move off the page altogether

Crowding of letters

Sentences running into each other

Results found that the application of a specific frequency of blue filter to help stabilise letter movement and of yellow, to minimise blurring, were extremely successful in the majority of children suffering with visual disturbances. It had either improved or completely eliminated their problems – resulting in a rapid improvement in reading skills.

The Trust advised us to incorporate these research findings into the KAZ program. They also advised additional specialised features, such as adequate spacing between letters and words, to alleviate the effect of ‘fusing’ and the ‘crowding’ of letters.

So, with further development we produced our specialised SEN/Dyslexia edition. It teaches typing skills, whilst minimising visual disturbances using a unique ‘preference screen. It is suitable for neurodivergent individuals with dyslexia, dyspraxia, dysgraphia, ADHD, ASD and tourettes, amongst others.

Unique ©Preference screen

Preferences include:

  • Choice of coloured background/filter screens for reducing white screen glare, including a ‘customise’ feature, catering for individuals with Meares-Irlen Syndrome
  • Choice of two specific DRT research based background/filter colours - to stabilise letter movement and reduce blurring
  • Choice of dyslexic friendly typefaces (including 2 licensed dyslexic fonts) – for ease of reading
  • Choice of font colour – for contrast from background screen colour
  • Choice of font size – for optimum visibility comfort and to minimise fusing and crowding of letters
  • Choice of Keyboard – for optimum visibility comfort

Once the user has selected their preferences and can read the sample text comfortably, these options are then 'Saved' and applied throughout the course, tailor making it and ensuring the learning experience is comfortable and enjoyable.

Visually impaired users will benefit from KAZ’s audio descriptive version, which includes ‘speaking keys’ and spoken instruction.
Deaf and hearing impaired users will benefit from KAZ’s text only version, with written and visual instruction.

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