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Assistive Technology

Reading long blocks of text can be difficult for people with Convergence Insufficiency, but there are many innovative technologies that can help by converting text to speech and others that make aspects of life with CI simpler.


  • NaturalReader is a free program you can download or use online. NaturalReader will read text to you from webpages, pictures, pdfs, word documents, or you can copy and paste text into it.


  • Beeline reader applies a color gradient to webpages, gently guiding your eyes from one line to the next. This is great for people with CI, who often accidentally jump around or lose track of the line while reading or scanning. It is free for two weeks, and then $2 a month after that.


  • Learning Ally provides human-read audiobooks and textbooks to students with learning disables. To have an account, you must provide proof of disability in the form of an IEP/504 plan or a diagnosis from a doctor. It does cost $135 to become a member, but there is a fee waiver available for those who can't afford it. Their website also provides valuable information resources for parents of students with learning disabilities.


  • Bookshare provides free access to audiobooks and textbooks for U.S. students with print disabilities; international students with disabilities may qualify but must pay a fee $50 for their membership. Bookshare's books are read by computer voices, but they have a larger collection of textbooks than Learning Ally. Bookshare is supported by the U.S. Department of Education and you must provide proof of disability to register.


  • Smart Phones and Computer Screens:


  • The night-mode settings on smartphones and computers is also useful. For me, at least, blue light is hard on my eyes and because screens emit blue light, the orangey tinge of the night-mode settings helps negate its effects.

  • Magnifying Glass: Another useful feature of many smartphones is to turn the camera into a magnifying glass. There is probably a way to do it with android phones, but I am only familiar with the iPhone. With the most recent IOS update, there is a feature you can add under the “control panel” section in settings and add the magnifying glass to the pull-up menu from the bottom of the screen.


  • Microsoft Word has a function where you can have the computer read what you what you have written or what you have copied and pasted in. Go to the Review Tab then select "Read Aloud."

  • Larger print sizes are better for people with CI, so changing the text size on documents, pdfs, webpages, and smart phones can help your eyes not tire out as quickly. Text size settings can usually be found under display settings.

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