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Sight-Reader Looking for Resources

LD and ADD/ADHD Expert Advice from Eileen S. Marzola, Ed.D.

Q: I'm 27 years old and I'm diagnosed as being a sight-reader. I'm looking for information and resources because I'm studying to become a physical education teacher. I still have a hard time with reading, writing, and reading comprehension.

A: When you say that you have been "diagnosed as being a sight reader" do you mean that you have gone through a full psychoeducational evaluation to determine your needs? If you haven't, that should be your first step. If you are working, you may be able to get one through your health plan or the college where you are studying to be a physical education teacher may offer evaluations. You can also contact the Coordinated Campaign for Learning Disabilities at 1-888-GR8-MIND or for a referral in your area.

When someone is labeled as a "sight-reader," that usually means that he has not learned how to decode or "sound out" words, but instead learns them by memorizing them as whole units. As a result, it becomes very difficult to read challenging text or to unlock the reading of words you have never seen before. Spelling is also affected. This is a learning disability that can be identified through a comprehensive evaluation and can be treated successfully.

There are several excellent programs that can help adults with this reading disability to become good readers. My favorite is the Wilson Reading System. You can find out more about it by going to the Wilson website at In the meantime, you may be eligible for getting textbooks and other books on tape. Go to for more information.

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For more than 20 years, Eileen Marzola has worked with children and adults with learning disabilities and attention deficit disorders, and with their parents and teachers. She has been a regular education classroom teacher, a consultant teacher/resource teacher, an educational evaluator/diagnostician, and has also taught graduate students at the university level. Marzola is an adjunct assistant professor of education at Teachers College, Columbia University, and Hunter College of the City University of New York. She also maintains a private practice in the evaluation and teaching of children with learning disabilities and attention deficit disorders.

Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.


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