Founder Helen Irlen
Helen L. Irlen, MA, LMFT
Founder & Executive Director: Irlen Institute International Headquarters
Helen L. Irlen is an internationally recognized educator, researcher, therapist, scholar, and expert in the area of visual-perceptual problems. She is a graduate of Cornell University. Ms. Irlen has been in the field of education for the past 40 years. Her background includes 15 years as a School Psychologist, 30 years as a Child and Family Therapist, Educational Therapist, founder and Director of the Adult Learning Disabilities Program and Assistant Professor of Adult Learning Disabilities at California State University/Long Beach, instructor in psychology at Cornell University, and research assistant at Cornell. She has been recognized for her dedication to working with children and adults and is listed in Who’s Who in California, Who’s Who in Asia and the Pacific Nations, International Woman of the Year (1999-2000), International Who’s Who of Professionals, Kingston’s National Registry of Who’s Who, and the Dictionary of International Biography.
Over 20 years ago, research directed by Helen Irlen under a federal research grant studied methods of helping children and adults with reading and learning disabilities. One important discovery was that a subgroup of individuals showed a marked improvement in their reading ability when reading material was covered by colored acetate sheets. For the next five years, Ms. Irlen worked on refining her discovery, developing diagnostic testing instruments, and patenting a set of colored filters.
Because of this breakthrough, the Irlen Method has been the subject of two segments of 60 Minutes, Good Morning America, The Home Show, 60 Minutes Australia, a BBC Special, ABC Worldwide News with Peter Jennings, NBC News, and numerous TV shows around the world. She is the author of Reading By The Colors. Her work has been reported in textbooks on learning disabilities in Australia and England, and the Irlen Method has received international exposure through National Geographic, newspaper articles, magazine articles, and television documentaries.
There are over 170 affiliated Irlen Clinics worldwide and over 10,000 educators have been trained in the Irlen Method. Many school districts have included screening as part of the regular test battery administered.