Easy Read: Helping Make Information Accessible

 

 

 

 

 

 

                         

                                       Using the principles of easy read makes information much more accessible

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Learn How To Prepare Easy Read!

 

1. Setting up the page

                                                                

                                                    Note the image to the left and the extra line spacing

  • Use wide margins                                                                                                                                                                          Using wide margins is important, because for easy read information there must be enough room on the left hand side for comprehension aiding visuals to accompany the next. Leave at least 8 cm for your visuals.

  • Place images on the left

       People generally find it easier to follow when images are to the left of the text, and this prevents confusion about             which images match which text. 

  • Use a large, clear font

       Using a large font of 14pt at minimum, or preferably 16pt or larger, helps with comprehension. Use fonts that are             clear and plain, such as Verdana, Arial, Tahoma, Calibri, Helvetica, or Myriad. Avoid fonts that resemble handwriting.

  • Keep text short

      Keeping lines of text on the shorter side makes reading less intimidating and information easier to remember. Try            not to write much more than 20 words in each line.

  • Number your pages at the bottom

      This makes it easier for someone to keep track of what they have read. The bottom right or bottom in the centre              works the best.

  • Add extra space between lines of text 

       Using 1.5cm line spacing instead of Word's default 1 centimeter makes your text easier to read.

2. Writing 

              

                                                           Show                                    Illustrate

                                                       After                                    Thereafter

                                                        19                                        Nineteen

                                                      And                                            &

                                                    Percent                                        %

                                        National Hockey League                     NHL

                                                     Do not                                     Don't

                                                                  

                                     Language should be plain, acronyms explained, and symbols avoided

  • Write in short, clear sentences using basic language

       Using easy words and steering clear of jargon aids comprehension. For a list of basic alternatives to 

       difficult words and phrases, click here.

  • Give only one piece of info per sentence

      For easy read audiences, include only one piece of info per sentence. For example 'The store is         

      open. The store sells Books.' instead of 'The store is open and it sells books'.

  • Spell out acronyms 

       Spell out acronyms and explain their meaning. For example, 'NBA means National Basketball                                               Association. It is a professional basketball league.'

  • Avoid contractions 

       Some easy read audiences rely on, for example, the 'not' in 'do not' to understand what is meant. Using                             contractions can therefore make comprehension more difficult.

  • Use digits, not letters

       For example, write 9 instead of nine. It is easier to understand.

  • Avoid symbols

       Many  symbols are unfamiliar to people. Try to use words instead of symbols like &, #, %, $, and £.

 

3. Illustrating 

 

 

 

               Images should be large and unambiguous. The image on the left is a much better choice for 'female'. 

  • You can find images free and quickly

       You can find pictures on the Clipart function of Word. Simply select 'Insert', then 'Online Pictures', then search away         for what you want!

  • Be weary of using symbols or abstract photos

       Symbols and abstract concepts can be difficult to understand and their meanings often must be  learned. Ensure             that your photos can be understood by your reader.

  • Use large images

       Images should be large and easy to make out.

Final Considerations

If you are working with a designer or editor who is not familiar with easy read, you may find them changing the document to make it look more appealing. It is important that you review their work, and are clear that changes should not be made to aspects such as the format, font size, or images if they take the document out of easy read principles.

If you are helping provide easy read translation for someone else, you should check with them to ensure that you have correctly interpreted the information and that their message is still clear in the easy read version.

Easy Read Checklist 

Click Here

What Is

Easy Read?

Easy read is one of the most effective ways of making information accessible. Easy read is:

  • Written information, supported by pictures

  • Writing that is clear and easy to read and understand

  • Developed to support people with intellectual disability better understand written information

Who is it for? 

Easy read information is for people who have difficulty reading and understanding written information. Easy Read information is for some people who:

 

  • Have a learning disability 

  • Have low literacy levels 

  • Use English as a second language  

  • Are elderly 

  • Are deaf

Examples of

Easy Read

Before going further, quickly take a look at any of these examples of easy read material. Once you've done that, you'll be more prepared to write accessible content of your own. 

Example 1: BBC Young Dance 2019 Application

Example 2: Passenger Transportation Questionnaire

Example 3: Smoke Free Advisory

  An example of easy read from a smoke-free advisory