Information communication technologies as a support strategy for learners experiencing reading difficulties

  • Ramashego Shila Mphahlele University of South Africa
  • Norma Nel University of South Africa
Keywords: reading difficulties, information communication technologies, learning support educators, school-based support team, support strategy


One of the most significant current discussions in education departments around the world is reading difficulties. This article explores the use of information communication technologies (ICTs) to support learners experiencing reading difficulties in two public primary schools. For data collection purposes, a total of 18 school-based support team members and two learning support educators participated in this research through focus group interviews and observation. From the data collected, the teachers’ perceptions, attitudes, understanding, knowledge, values, feelings and experiences were analysed. The study was influenced by Vygotsky’s theory of cognitive development. From the findings, three themes were identified, namely, factors that contribute towards reading difficulties, the effects of reading difficulties and the effectiveness of ICTs in supporting learners experiencing reading difficulties. The most interesting finding was that ICTs as a support strategy proved to be vital in supporting learners experiencing reading difficulties.

Author Biographies

Ramashego Shila Mphahlele, University of South Africa
Shila Mphahlele is a Lecturer at the University of South Africa (Unisa).  She supervises Masters students and is currently editing a research book titled: Empowering students and ensuring inclusiveness and equality through ICT.
Norma Nel, University of South Africa
Norma Nel is a Professor Emeritus, Research Fellow and NRF grant holder at Unisa. She supervises Masters and Doctoral students. She is currently involved in international collaborative  research on ESL/EFL in Chinese contexts.