Better Reading, Better Learning, Better Outcomes



Help get our Better Reading panel to SXSW EDU 2023!

Our experts from Adobe, CAST, the University of Central Florida, and Readability Matters will share the latest research and implementation plans for using personalized text formats to improve educational outcomes. The panel will also discuss why readability is important for Universal Design for Learning (UDL) to address the variability of all learners.

Vote for this important discussion on creating more equitable learning environments.

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Better Reading, Better Learning, Better Outcomes

Description: What if reading with a different text format your comprehension improved? That is exactly what readability researchers have proven. Small typographical changes to text format can maximize an individual’s ability to read quickly and accurately, and comprehend more. The next step is to implement it for students everywhere, improving educational, career, and life opportunities. Insights from this emerging cross-disciplinary body of work can inform the design of better learning applications.

Learning Objectives: 

  • Understand the impact of personalized text formats in improving the student’s ability to read quickly and accurately, and comprehend more.
  • Learn why adding personalized reading formats to your edTech product is a must-have to improve student learning outcomes.
  • Gain a high-level view of new Readability research insights for all students: K-12, College/University, and Adult Literacy Learners.


Meet The Panel

Rick Treitman. Rick started his professional career as a High School English and media teacher and published the first-ever computer-typeset student newspaper in 1975. Today, at Adobe, Rick is Entrepreneur-in-Residence for Document Cloud – specializing in Education that involves the early-stage development of tools and solutions for Adobe’s customers. Current projects include readability controls in Acrobat, establishing the Virtual Readability Lab at the UCF, and co-founding The Readability Consortium. Previously, Rick was a founder of Virtual Ubiquity (acquired by Adobe in 2007), one of the first cloud-based word processors. Earlier, Rick owned Softpro Books – a Boston area technical bookstore chain catering to high-tech professionals – and was an early employee of Lotus Development.

Steve Nordmark. Steve Nordmark is Director of Business Development for CAST, building partnerships throughout the education field to advance the adoption and implementation of the Universal Design for Learning. Steve also serves as Director of the multi-year, multi-phase, field change initiative-UDL Credentialing and Certification Initiative–using the Learning Designed online platform. As an education technology leader, Steve’s goal is to create dialog, collaboration, and ideas around innovative uses of technology for next-generation learning solutions. Previous positions include COO of the UDL-IRN, Chief Academic Officer at Knovation, VP for Solutions Management & Development at netTrekker, VP of Research & Development at Failure Free Reading, and Consulting Manager at Andersen Consulting (“Accenture”).

Dr. Stephanie Day. Stephanie is a research scientist in the Virtual Readability Lab at the University of Central Florida. She received her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology at Florida State University. Her research centers on examining links between children’s learning difficulties, individual differences, the classroom environment, and achievement. Stephanie has over 16 years of experience managing large-scale research studies focused on building technology to improve literacy outcomes for students in elementary school and is leading the TRC readability education research in K-12 populations.

Marjorie Jordan. Marjorie is a global high-tech industry leader with a track record of developing multi-disciplinary teams to deliver on high-impact strategic priorities. Her interest in the intersection of technology and reading led her to found Readability Matters, a tech-for-good non-profit engaging cross-sector organizations to deliver personalized reading environments, empowering everyone everywhere to achieve more. After graduate school, Marjorie worked as an economic consultant and taught Computer Information Systems classes at Colorado State University. She spent most of her career at Hewlett Packard Company, leading the IT function supporting mergers and acquisitions.


SXSW EDU 2023About SXSW EDU: SXSW EDU (pronounced South by Southwest E-D-U) is most well known for the SXSW EDU Conference & Festival, an annual event that fosters innovation and learning within the education industry.

We believe that education has the power to inspire, elevate, and change the future. We bring together the learner, the practitioner, the entrepreneur, and the visionary to share their groundbreaking stories, tackle complex issues, and build reimagined paths forward. It is this unfettered, inspired and passionate community that will collectively create a new tomorrow for learners everywhere and drive impact.

The SXSW EDU Conference & Festival takes place each March in Austin, TX as a four-day event offering compelling sessions, in-depth workshops, engaging learning experiences, mentorship, film screenings, future-focused competitions, an expo, networking opportunities, and so much more.

SXSW EDU is a component of the South by Southwest® (SXSW®) family of conferences and festivals. Internationally recognized as the convergence gathering for creative professionals, SXSW EDU extends SXSW’s support for the art of engagement to include society’s true rock stars: educators!