Skip to main content

Managing Screen Fatigue

young man, sitting in front of computer, rubbing tired eyes

Reading Tools

  • Learn about tools that may help with online reading fatigue, including TextHelp’s ReadWrite and BeeLine Reader
  • Consider listening to websites, content and readings
    • Devices: Most devices have read-aloud tools built into them. Sometimes they are hidden and need to be activated. Most of the time they can be found in settings under Accessibility. 
    • Websites: Browser reading tools are free and built right into the browsers like Safari and Firefox.
    • PDFs: 
      • ReadWrite can scan PDF files and export them as audio files. 
      • Adobe Acrobat can also read aloud using View > Read Aloud.
      • PDF files need to be of decent quality for reading tools to work well. If this is not the case, talk with your professors and see if they can provide a better copy. 
      • If you are creating documents, you can take steps to improve the accessibility of the documents for all readers - including disabled readers who utilize text-to-speech technology. University of Washington has very good advice on creating high quality scans and creating accessible documents.

Additional ideas 

  • Try using yellow tinted glasses
  • Take breaks:
    • When on a Zoom call or watching a video recording, try closing your eyes and just listening
    • Look out to a distance for a few seconds every 10 minutes
    • Take screen breaks throughout each day
    • If you are scheduling or leading Zoom sessions, try to build in and normalize breaks
  • More ideas can be found in the ITS blog article “Tips for Reducing Eye Strain

For students