Visual-syntactic text formatting: A new method to enhance online reading

Stan Walker, Phil Schloss, Charles R. Fletcher, Charles A. Vogel, Randall C. Walker

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations


A new process, visual-syntactic text formatting (VSTF), transforms block-shaped text into cascading patterns that help readers identify grammatical structure. The new method integrates converging evidence from educational, visual, and cognitive research, and is made feasible through computer-executed algorithms and electronic displays. Among college readers, the VSTF method instantly increased reading comprehension and efficiency of reading online text, while reducing eyestrain. Among high school students, who read with the format over an entire academic year, the VSTF method increased both academic achievement and long-term reading proficiency by more than a full standard deviation over randomized controls.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalReading Online
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2005


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