Read&Write in the Workplace: With the right supports, anything is possible.
Based in Baltimore, Maryland, Jonathan works as a genomics account manager at life sciences company Agilent Technologies. In parallel with this, he’s currently studying for his MBA at Johns Hopkins Carey Business School, after gaining his PhD at the University of Maryland in 2014.
“My life is pretty full-on as an employee, a student and a Dad too” notes the busy scientist. And as if that wasn’t enough to deal with, Jonathan’s work and studies are made even more challenging by his lifelong dyslexia.
“As a dyslexic you basically have to work twice as hard”, he explains. “As an individual you don’t fit into most ‘normal’ teaching models – and you really depend on the right support and resources to get you through, which I’ve been lucky to have. I’ve had teachers reading aloud to me, and I’ve also used lots of different software readers over the years.”
Today, Jonathan relies on Read&Write that’s installed on his PC and Macintosh computers at home and in the office.
“If you’re dyslexic like me, you really need Read&Write to help you read academic textbooks and research papers – and I also use it all the time to proof-read my own work. And while it’s an integral part of my studies, it’s equally vital for my job that’s heavily email driven. When I compose an email to a colleague or a customer it can look clumsy or disjointed: Read&Write ensures that all my communications have that professional polish.”
Jonathan particularly welcomes the software’s read-aloud feature that he finds natural and easy to understand: “Other screen readers often sound stilted and artificial. It’s the intonation of a voice that gives words meaning. Read&Write does this really well – and I always pick a female voice with a British accent!” He also praises the software’s ability to navigate smoothly through PDF documents that contain embedded images – something other screen readers often struggle with.
“I want to stress how fantastic Read&Write is” he confirms. “This software is just great: it’s superior to everything else I’ve used. It can do everything that the others can do. It’s by far the most robust of all the dyslexia products out there that I’ve tried. If I could only use one literacy app, this is definitely the one I’d always choose.
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