This project is developed under the fourth sustainable development goal of the United Nation, Quality Education, which is to make sure everyone can access inclusive and equitable education and lifelong learning opportunities. In this project, the students tried to understand the difficulties and injustices that people with dyslexia face in the education process and use design skills to create a non-violent and inclusive learning environment for them by developing an interactive installation that can increase people’s understanding of dyslexia and show dyslexic’s hidden advantages to change the prejudice.
The students used research methods like observation, in-depth interviews with stakeholders, co-design to scope their research question, and collated Collected Data through a Code Definition List to identify Themes. The next step was to produce a concept through the affinity map, persona, user journey map, insight map, create a prototype, and conduct two rounds of user testing.
To gain a deeper understanding of the dyslexic experience, they conducted in-depth interviews with three dyslexic participants. A substantial amount of information was gathered from the interviews, which put the students in a difficult position in defining the issue they wanted to solve. They decided to use affinity diagramming to sort all the information first. Affinity diagramming helps organize a large amount of information in ideation by writing all the facts on sticky notes and then sorting them into categories.
A user journey map was made based on the affinity map and the experience of people with Dyslexia from Primary School, Middle School, High School and University. This led to the discovery of the pain points dyslexics have was not only limited to the learning difficulty of reading and writing but also related to the environment around them, which includes the misunderstanding and prejudice from families, teachers and other non-dyslexic people around them. Then, the students focused on two key research directions:
1. How to help Dyslexic writing sequences become more Logical?
2. How to make people recognise and understand Dyslexia better?
Through case studies, the students found that not only the professional training methods and visual assistance tools have been specially designed for dyslexia based on long-term research and experiment, but various online writing assisting tools and academic writing support from school are also easy to access for dyslexic students. However, the existing dyslexia awareness and empathy projects the students found online were limited to visual materials like posters or videos to show dyslexics’ reading experience. Few of them showed the advantages of people with dyslexia. Hence, the second direction became the students’ focus area.
Dyslexia Mind box is designed for Non-Dyslexic people to simulate the reading of dyslexic people to give them an insight into the Dyslexic reading experience and to discover the advantages of their three-dimensional thinking, lateral thinking and imagination. The interactive installation is divided into two parts, an interactive game and the paper lamp.
The interactive game includes a simple picture. The participants can press elements on the image, and the word corresponding to the button will appear on an LCD screen. If the user randomly tap on the image elements, the user will ﬁnd that the sentence does not make sense to them, as shown on the LCD screen "Was thinking read he hagrid”, which simulates the reading experience of the person with dyslexia.
The students conducted the co-design online via Miro and asked participants to make creative collages based on provided theme sentence, which was quicker and clearer than hand-drawing and had no drawing ability constraints. The collages would be used as the pattern layer inside the lamp to show the creativity and lateral thinking of the dyslexic students.
The paper lamp is illuminated by pressing a button next to the LCD screen. It shows the image that appears in Dyslexic's mind when they read the words "Harry sat and thought about this while Hagrid read his newspaper. You can see that castles, candles, teacups, and other elements in the lamp are not in the text, reﬂecting Dyslexic's imagination and creativity and strength in lateral thinking as they read.
The students hope that in the future, their installation can be a part of the exhibition for people with Dyslexia. If it is exhibited in schools, children may learn and understand more about Dyslexia early as a different thinking way with hidden advantages. Then, children may accept that they are Dyslexic or be more understanding and patient towards those live with Dyslexia. It can also beneﬁt the future generation on early detection and training for the dyslexic and inclusive education environment when children grow up and become parents or teachers in the future.