Difficulty with reading is common in many types of aphasia. This is known as acquired dyslexia, or alexia. Multiple Oral Reading (MOR) is a therapy technique designed to improve reading abilities. It is sometimes called Multiple Oral Re-reading. Its goal is to help people read faster and more accurately. This is beneficial for many people with aphasia who are able to read but notice that they read very slowly and tend to make errors.
To use MOR, the person with aphasia and speech-language pathologist (SLP) pick out a passage of written text. The person with aphasia will read the text out loud while the SLP times them and sees how many errors are made. This is called the baseline level. Then, the person with aphasia continues to read the text aloud multiple times. The SLP can help as much as is needed – they can read the text together, or the SLP can help read words that the person with aphasia struggles with.
In order to be most effective, the person with aphasia will also practice reading the same text every day. This means they might need to read it at home between speech therapy sessions. This continues until the person is able to read the text at a certain rate that the SLP has set. Some SLPs might instead set a certain number of times that each passage should be read. They can then start over with a new passage.
One benefit of MOR is that it can be done with any text. The person with aphasia is encouraged to pick an article or story that is interesting to them. The text can also be simple or complex depending on the person’s reading abilities. The SLP can help to select something that is at an appropriate level.
MOR requires that the person have some basic reading skills. For instance, the person should be able to read many single words and have the ability to “sound out” words. The goal of the program is for the person with aphasia to improve their “whole word” reading abilities, by reading the text multiple times. This means the ability to read a word by sight, or not have to sound it out. For instance, when most people see the word “dog,” they do not sound out each letter in the word to read it. They are able to recognize the word as a whole.
By using MOR, people with aphasia can increase the number of whole words that they recognize. This improves their reading speed and accuracy. The improvements are mostly seen in the words included in the practiced text. It may also improve speed and accuracy for common words that exist in other text the person is reading.