Literacy 4-6

Systems Change
Literacy 4-6 > Strategies > Text-to-speech Software

Text-to-speech Software


Providing tools so learners can choose to listen to a text supports individual strengths and needs. Listening activates different parts of the brain to support learning. Text-to-speech software can also support Foundational Writing Skills as learners can benefit from hearing their written texts read aloud.

Use It in the Classroom

Watch how text-to-speech software helps students who struggle with reading. By using their Auditory Processing skills, these students are able to show that they comprehend complex reading material.


  • For learners with strong Auditory Processing skills, listening to, rather than reading, text allows them to draw on their strengths. Text-to-speech also supports Orthographic Processing by using Visual Processing skills to map visual stimuli to speech sounds.
  • Design It into Your Product

    Videos are chosen as examples of strategies in action. These choices are not endorsements of the products or evidence of use of research to develop the feature.

    Learn how developers of Read&Write for Google used text-to-speech software in combination with other features to provide multisensory support for reading and understanding a text. Providing the ability to highlight words for an audio pronunciation with an accompanying visual activates verbal and visual Working Memory. Highlighting the spoken word in a different color from the yellow highlighted sentence strengthens Visual Processing skills through tracking.

  • Developers can easily provide text-to-speech as an option for all students. This audio support can help with comprehension and focus, even for students who do not struggle with Decoding. A teacher or developer can then provide visuals that further support comprehension of the text to bring visual Working Memory into action too.
  • Factors Supported by this Strategy