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Research Supporting the Davis Methods

Brain Scans Show Dyslexics Read Better with Alternative Strategies

Scientists studying the brain have found that dyslexic adults who become capable readers use different neural pathways than non-dyslexics. This research shows that there are two independent systems for reading: one that is typical for the majority of readers, and another that is more effective for the dyslexic thinker.

Read the full article here

Marshall, A. (2003). Brain Scans Show Dyslexics Read Better with Alternative Strategies. Retrieved June 14, 2012 from Dyslexia, the Gift. URL:

South African Researchers Report Reading Success with Davis Methods

Researchers at University of the Free State in Bloemfontein, South Africa, compared the progress of 18 dyslexic students who were given instruction using Davis Dyslexia Correction techniques with a control group of students from the same school. They reported that over a period of nine months, the Davis students performed significantly better on tests of word recognition skills and spelling than a control group of students taught with phonological strategies.

Read the full article here

Marshall, A.(2010). South African Researchers Report Reading Success with Davis Methods. Retrieved June 14, 2012 from Dyslexia, the Gift. URL:

The effect of the Ron Davis programme on the reading ability and psychological functioning of children

South African educator René Engelbrecht worked with a group of 20 Afrikaans-speaking pupils in grades five to seven from a school for learners with special needs. These children had all previously been diagnosed with a reading disorder and had an average to above-average intelligence quotient. These children were randomly assigned to a control group (10) and an experimental group (10).

This study shows that over a short term the Davis techniques had a positive effect on the reading and spelling ability of participants and on their psychological functioning. The effect was furthermore sustained after the intervention.

Read the full article here

Decoding Dyslexia - preview

Jennifer Poole, Ph.D. conducted a comprehensive study of 14 different methods for dyslexia, including Davis methods, and published her results in the book, "Decoding Dyslexia" (Matador, 2008; ISBN 978-1906510510).

She concluded that the key element for a successful approach to dyslexia was to resolve disorientation. She noted that the Davis method was the only approach that used the "orientation" terminology and was expressly based on recognizing and addressing disorientation.

Read the preview here

Whole Word vs. Phonics

Research shows us that there is no one best way to build literacy skills. A balanced approach to teaching reading follows three developmental stages:

  1. Phonemic awareness
  2. Whole word recognition
  3. Comprehension

Read the full article and how the Davis® Program addresses these literacy skills here

Case studies conducted in the UK

There are several case studies about Davis methods, conducted under the auspices of the UK Department of Education and Skills, along with a descriptive overview.

Read the case study here

Case Study conducted at the Universiti Sains Malaysia

Annie is a 9-year-old child diagnosed with dyslexia with major problems in the area of visual perceptual skills, which manifest academically in the area of reading and writing. The Davis strategies were used to help correct her dyslexia symptoms. The results suggest that the Davis Orientation Counseling® method has helped to correct her visual perceptual problems, which in turn improves her reading and writing skills.

Read the case study here

How Research Supports the Davis Reading Method

Spell-Reading and Sweep-Sweep-Spell are important because they build a vital center for reading in the brain. Beginning readers often rely exclusively on phonetic decoding strategies for all words, a process usually centered in the mid-temporal lobe of the left hemisphere, where letter sounds are connected to words. This is a workable means of decoding words, but it is slow – and it is particularly difficult for most dyslexics.

Read the full PDF article here

© 2005 Abigail Marshall and Davis Dyslexia Association International. All rights reserved. Used with permission.

Brain Science and Dyslexia: How the Newest Studies Show why Dyslexics Must Use Unique Strategies for Reading, and How Davis Methods Build those Strategies

Brain scan research shows that dyslexic adults who have overcome early reading problems and acquired strong literacy skills use different neural pathways than non-dyslexics.

Read the full article here

[reprinted with permission by Abigail Marshall – July 2003]

Research which supports dyslexics have special talents in the area of visualization

Read the full article here

This page is adapted from Rocky Point Academy Research page - used with permission.

Davis Dyslexia International has 6 published studies and 3 Master- or Doctoral-level thesis works that support and test the results of the Program.

Research on the Davis Program

Research Articles Citing Davis

See a listing of articles published in research journals, books, or through universities or public agencies which include reference to Davis' books or the Davis approach to dyslexia.

If you would like more information, call or email:

Sandra McPhall
New Chapter Learning
616-534-1385 (ph)

Professional services described as Davis®, Davis Dyslexia Correction®, Davis Symbol Mastery®, Davis Orientation Counseling®, and Davis Math Mastery® may only be provided by persons who are employed by a licensed Davis Specialist, or who are trained and licensed as Davis Facilitators by Davis Dyslexia Association International.

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