Title: DysWebxia: A Text Accessibility Model for People with Dyslexia
Author: Luz Rello
Advisors: Ricardo Baeza-Yates and Horacio Saggion
Abstract: Worldwide, 10% of the population has dyslexia, a cognitive disability that reduces readability and comprehension of written information. The goal of this thesis is to make text more accessible for people with dyslexia by combining human computer interaction validation methods and natural language processing techniques. In the initial phase of this study we examined how people with dyslexia identify errors in written text. Their written errors were analyzed and used to estimate the presence of text written by individuals with dyslexia in the Web. After concluding that dyslexic errors relate to presentation and content features of text, we carried out a set of experiments using eye tracking to determine the conditions that led to improved readability and comprehension. After finding the relevant parameters for text presentation and content modification, we implemented a lexical simplification system. Finally, the results of the investigation and the resources created, lead to a model, DysWebxia, that proposes a set of recommendations that have been successfully integrated in four applications.