More on Deborah Chinn's presentation at ASID 2021. Read the previous blog for more information.
Deborah referred to some agreed ideas such as
- use of images
- positioning images to the left
- using easier language.
Deborah's research from the UK pointed out the texts varied significantly and the target audience also varied. See our blog on Deborah's paper Developers perspectives. In the UK, Easy Read is developed and presented as content for people with intellectual disability only.
Note:Scandinavian countries focus more on the literacy needs of people who are not native speakers of the language. Many European countries also focus their Easy Read as being for people with intellectual disabilities.
In contrast Easy English is targeted at anyone who needs content written in a simple and clear manner. We choose language and images based on the target audience of each document.
Deborah advocated there is a need for more for research into the value of Easy Read for the target audiences.
This is an important point. There are many examples of Easy Read in Australia and they also vary widely in their design and readability, which is the same issue in the UK. This makes it hard for the reader to know what to expect of a document labelled Easy Read. These are some Australian Easy Read examples. Mental Health and 3rd interim report on the Disability Royal Commission
We know Easy Read is not as accessible as Easy English for more people with low literacy. We have consumer reviews of our documents and positive feedback from users of Easy English. However research of outcomes for consumers is welcome. These are some Easy English examples which have been consumer reviewed. NSW Ombudsman How to make a complaint and the Women with Disabilities Australia Our report to the Disability Royal Commission. About group homes part 1 (scroll to the Safety from Violence section)
It would be great to see some specific research that compares Easy Read and Easy English from the consumer perspective. It will important to measure not only the readability of documents but the outcomes for readers. This may provide clearer evidence and guidance for developing standards to produce simplified documents. It will be important to research this with different audiences – non English speakers, people with cognitive disabilities and those whose literacy skill do not allow them to access the information they want or need.
It also needs to be with naive readers of both Easy English and Easy Read.
Access Easy English
Telephone: 0466 579 855
LinkedIn Cathy Basterfield