Date Approved


Embargo Period


Document Type


Degree Name

M.A. in Special Education


Interdisciplinary and Inclusive Education


College of Education


Kuder, S. Jay


Graduate students; Perceptual disorders; Reading disability; Reading--Physiological aspects


Special Education and Teaching


The purpose of this study is to establish the prevalence of SS/Irlen Syndrome in adult graduate students. SS/Irlen Syndrome is a perceptual dysfunction that causes 14 to 16 percent of the general population physical discomfort such as headache, eye strain and blurry vision and academic difficulties such as poor background accommodations and print resolution resulting in inefficient reading (Irlen, 1997).

The 16 subjects were adult graduate students in a university program. Data collection was achieved through the utilization of questionnaires. The first questionnaire, the Irlen Observation Form, surveyed the subjects for characteristics of SS/Irlen Syndrome. The second questionnaire, Parts A and B of the Reading Strategies Questionnaire, rated the severity of the subjects' symptoms. The Compensatory Strategies section surveyed the use of strategies by the subjects. The final section, the Participants' Characteristics, provided information on education, vision, and academic difficulties.

The results of this study indicate that 10 of the 16 adult graduate students were identified as having SS/Irlen Syndrome. Three of these students admitted having academic problems. Nine students acknowledged that they used specific compensatory strategies. Seven students acknowledged they had difficulty in judging distance while driving and nine students admitted to driving fatigue. Five students experienced sports performance difficulties.