The university of Manchester conducted a study in 2013, to attempt to determine the best fonts for dyslexic readers.
“Around 10% of the people have dyslexia, a neurological disability that impairs a person’s ability to read and write. There is evidence that the presentation of the text has a significant effect on a text’s accessibility for people with dyslexia. However, to the best of our knowledge, there are no experiments that objectively measure the impact of the font type on reading performance. In this paper, we present the first experiment that uses eye-tracking to measure the effect of font type on reading speed. Using a within-subject design, 48 subjects with dyslexia read 12 texts with 12 different fonts. Sans serif, monospaced and roman font styles significantly improved the reading performance over serif, proportional and italic fonts. On the basis of our results, we present a set of more accessible fonts for people with dyslexia.” [Rello & Baeza-Yates. 2013:01]
Using a comparison of different fonts, a mixture of test subjects, and examining various aspects. Such as speed of reading, engagement, user preference, and fixation rates. The study came to the conclusion that Helvetica, Courier, Arial, Verdana and CMU are the best for dyslexic readers, adding that italic fonts decreased reading performance.
“The main conclusion is that font types have an impact on readability of people with dyslexia. Good fonts for people with dyslexia are Helvetica, Courier, Arial, Verdana and CMU, taking into consideration both, reading performance and subjective preferences. Also, sans serif, monospaced, and roman font types increased significantly the reading performance, while italic fonts decreased reading performance. In particular, Arial It. should be avoided since it significantly decreases readability” [Rello & Baeza-Yates .2013:07]
Rello, L. & Baeza-Yates, R. (2013) Good fonts for dyslexia. In Proceedings of the 15th International ACM SIGACCESS Conference on Computers and Accessibility (p. 14). October. Available from: http://dyslexiahelp.umich.edu/sites/default/files/good_fonts_for_dyslexia_study.pdf [Last Accessed: 15/07/2017]