Dyslexia and Dragon



October 2018 is Dyslexia Awareness Month.

Are you dyslectic?

These are the cliff notes in a larger font:

  1. With Dragon you can dictate your texts to the computer. Hardly any typing necessary.

  2. That will allow you to make your emails and documents much faster.

  3. You need to be able to read what Dragon has typed for you, so that you can check your dictation.

  4. You also need to have normal computer use experience.

  5. Interested? Scroll to the bottom of the article to the What to do next header.

A hidden problem

Personally, I think that dyslexia is a huge problem that is largely hidden, so in this blogpost I’m going to pay attention to it.

Fortunately, there is much more awareness around dyslexia than there used to be. Children especially are way more likely to be diagnosed and get proper assistance.

There is, however, a huge group of high performing adults who never got diagnosed with dyslexia and never got any assistance through their education and careers.

This article in Medical News Today says. “Most adults with dyslexia can read and have devised strategies to work around their reading difficulties. Adults with dyslexia may also present a range of other characteristics […] People with dyslexia do not, however, have trouble with vocabulary or speaking.”

The impact of dyslexia in adults

The impact of dyslexia in an otherwise developed an intelligent adult can not be underestimated. The above article also mentioned some of the issues that dyslectic people run into in daily life.

“Adults with dyslexia often have a wide range of nonspecific mental health, emotional, and work difficulties.

They may have low self-esteem, experience shame, humiliation, or lack confidence in their ability to perform at work or in education.”

Other symptoms include:

  • Visual problems while reading: Adults with dyslexia may be highly sensitive to glare, or to the color of the paper or words. Changes in a font, color, or other characteristics of the words may make it more difficult for adults with dyslexia to read.
  • Difficulty focusing when reading: Adults with dyslexia may frequently lose their place, feel like the words are moving or jumbled, or find reading very stressful.
  • Rarely or never reading for pleasure: Dyslexia makes reading challenging, so many dyslexic adults who love learning may avoid reading, preferring other modes of learning instead
  • Difficulties with written communication or tests: For example, an adult with dyslexia might be highly competent at their job but is reluctant to take a written test to advance to the next level. They may find that co-workers or managers complain about their reports or other written communications.
  • Confusing very similar words or letters when writing or reading.
  • Difficulty writing down messages or reports: Adults with dyslexia may forget what they were writing, struggle to follow a train of thought, or incorrectly transcribe a message.

If you read the above, you can imagine that life in general can be quite a challenge for an adult with dyslexia.

If tasks that are simple for non-dyslexic people take so much energy for someone with dyslexia, burnout is just around the corner.

Not to mention the potential loss of income, due to not being able to perform at once real level. If you cannot formulate well in writing, many positions are not available to you.

Can Dragon be a solution for dyslexia?

Actually, it can  🙂  But I need to smash down any unrealistic expectations: severely dyslectic persons may need quite a bit of in-person guidance from an expert to really profit from Dragon.

For people who can read (even if somewhat slowly) and who are otherwise good with a PC and capable of learning new skills… Dragon can be incredibly helpful.

In my training practice, I often encounter clients who discovered Dragon speech recognition software because of other problems than dyslexia. Usually it turns out they have developed some physical issues like a frozen shoulder, RSI or arthritis; it’s coincidence, it has nothing to do with their dyslexia.

Once they hear about speech recognition software, they get all excited. Perhaps it can also help them with their slow typing due to dyslexia!? Most often it turns out that, indeed, it can! And when I teach them to use Dragon, they say that they’d wish they’d learned about Dragon sooner. It would have saved them so much trouble!

Benefits of Dragon

  • Dragon will allow you to make your emails and documents much faster. At least, if you are a slow typist and you have no problems expressing yourself through speaking.
  • You will experience less stress about all the typing.
  • It will be easier to stay on top of your emails and reply to your clolleagues and clients in time. Your job performance will improve then.
  • If you’re proficient in using Dragon and the typing is no linger such a challenge, maybe you can apply for a higher level job.
  • As a student you’ll be able to do your homework faster and make less mistakes in your papers. You can easily create your own summaries for review. You can even have Dragon read them out loud (note: not all versions support that).

How can you learn to use Dragon?

The LearnSpeechRecognition Academy membership offers all essential skills in organised lessons with video tutorials. You must be able to read, though. After all, Dragon exists to help you produce written text. If you can’t check what Dragon has written down for you, you’ll need more help than an online platform can offer.

But if you have relatively mild dyslectia, you may just have stumbled upon the best way to greatly improve your perfomance at work or education!

What to do next?

Very simple: Click here to talk to me about Dragon and find out if it is for you!

Janneke den Draak

Janneke den Draak

Hi, I'm Janneke and I'm your go-to person for Dragon and Apple speech recognition software help.

When I got severe repetitive strain injury issues over 20 years ago, I didn't want to give up using the computer. So I learned all about controlling the PC with speech recognition and dictating my documents and emails.

I've now been a speech recognition software trainer and consultant for almost two decades, teaching over 2000 people handsfree productivity!

My online courses for Apple Voice Control and Dragon offer self-paced learning and I also love running my membership for Dragon users. For those in need of an intensive training or custom speech command creation, I am available for one-on-one calls.

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