Dyslexia is an impairment of reading and comprehension and is the most common learning disability, affecting 17% of American children. Diagnosis commonly occurs in the early years of elementary school as students transition from learning to read to reading for comprehension. There is a need for an engaging, interactive, and inexpensive dyslexia aid to appeal to younger children and facilitate this transition. Our goal is to increase the ease and speed of text comprehension in dyslexic patients by translating any printed text into audio.
Our device uses a camera and image processing software to help students with dyslexia keep up with the pace of the class. The camera captures a picture of the page, which is converted into digital text and displayed on the screen. As the student moves their finger across the words on the screen, the words are highlighted and read out loud using a software that converts digital text into audio. In order to guide the student towards reading independently with ease, the software is designed to gradually stop reading words after the student has read them a certain number of times.
In our prototype, the camera sends a picture to a computer, and the picture is sent through software to convert the text on the picture into digital text and then into audio. Future improvements may include modifying the software to gradually phase out words and include more interactive features, as well as integrating all of the components into one comprehensive device.
(Left to right) Smiti Narayanan, Annett Gawerc, and Angie Varela worked on and demonstrated interactive text-to-audio dyslexia reading tool to rapidly ease dyslexic students into developing independent reading and comprehension skills.
Click here to see the group's poster.