Easy Read and other formats

Some audiences may have difficulty reading and understanding written information. This may be because they:

  • have a learning disability
  • have low literacy levels
  • use English as a second language.

For these audiences, you may want to present information in a different format to aid understanding. You have several options.

This section covers:


Easy Read

An ‘easy read’ version of information uses pictures to support text, which should be written very simply using everyday words without jargon or acronyms. The design should also aim to support understanding, with large fonts, lots of white space and consistent layout.

Guidelines on how to produce Easy Read information have been developed by the New Zealand Office for Disability Issues and Inclusion Europe.

When developing Easy Read content, take care to rewrite text completely, and find or develop pictures that complement the text. Do not be tempted to use sentences from existing content just separated by white space, or to use available icons or clipart that do not aid understanding.

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Many audiences who struggle with written information can much more easily understand spoken information. Having your information read aloud or discussed between 2 presenters in a video can be a simple way to provide an easy-to-understand format.

Video content should be rewritten as needed. It does not need to be extensively simplified, but should suit a less formal, spoken format.

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Infographics and cartoons

Translating text into an engaging visual story can suit some messages and audiences. The visual story can be presented statically (eg in a poster or brochure) or dynamically (eg in an animated video). (See Showing for more information on presenting visual information.)

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