Understanding Dyslexia

What It Is
Dyslexia: reading difficulty caused by inefficient language processes in the brain.
Because inefficient processes may occur in any part of the linguistic system, some people with difficulty reading also have difficulty with other language functions such as listening comprehension and writing.
AI technology can locate these inefficient processes through a game interface and correct them.

What It Is Not
The innateness concept borrowed from Linguistics may have contributed to the myth that dyslexia is lifelong and cannot be corrected. Innateness in Linguistics, the scientific study of language, is a complex issue involving primarily the syntactic component (sentence formation).

But dyslexia often affects the phonological component (sounds and sound patterns). Phonological structures in the brain develop upon exposure to the first language. A child growing up in Tokyo will develop the phonological structures for Japanese.

Brain scans do show differences between the brain activities of those with and without dyslexia. But this does not mean that inefficient language processes cannot be corrected—so long as they can be identified and improved to 90-100% efficiency.

Who Owns This Problem
Physicians took on this problem because dyslexia was initially mistaken to be an eye issue. Now it is known to be a language issue, but the medical field still owns this problem due to this historical accident. Physicians and psychologists now diagnose dyslexia. But its intervention is left to teachers. This disconnect—that the professionals who diagnose dyslexia cannot treat it—has contributed to the reading crisis we face today.

Who Treats This Problem
Dyslexia/reading specialists use methods aligned with “structured literacy” and the science of reading. These are appropriate for typically developing children. But the science of reading provides little guidance for struggling readers in middle school. Research shows no significant effect of treatment on the broad reading achievement of post-grade 3 students with dyslexia in rigorously designed studies.

Who Should Treat This Problem
Dyslexia is a language processing disorder. Human specialists cannot overcome these obstacles: the complexity and speed of language processing, and the huge computing capacity needed to treat the diversity of individual differences effectively. Only AI technology can.

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