The role of visual attention in reading development and dyslexia

The basic cause of specific reading disability, commonly known as dyslexia, has been a matter of intense debate for decades.

Reading is a relatively recent activity for which dedicated brain areas have likely not yet evolved, and so our Department has been working on the idea that the visual attention network usually used in visual search (such as finding a face in a crowd) and in focusing attention at a particular location to assist in object identification is "recycled" to make reading possible. Methods used to assess these theories include behavioural vision testing and functional brain imaging, in both to normal readers those with dyslexia.

Research groups working within this theme include: