About TTRS

A typing course that teaches keyboarding, develops reading and spelling skills, builds confidence and motivates learners to succeed

For over 25 years, TTRS has offered a comprehensive touch-typing course based on a structured program of phonics. The program aims to build literacy skills and increase confidence and self-esteem in users as they master the art of keyboarding. Because it takes a multi-sensory approach to tuition, TTRS is also suitable for users who struggle with physical impairments and specific learning difficulties, like dyslexia.

TTRS Overview

  • Designed to encourage success from the start
  • Highly structured yet flexible approach
  • 24 course levels, each of 31 modules - 4,000 words in all

Reading - Writing - Spelling

  • Phonics program supports decoding skills in reading
  • Repetition and dictation exercises develop writing fluency
  • Muscle-memory in the fingers used as a spelling aid

Self-Esteem, Motivation and Confidence

  • Can enhance self-esteem for individuals with a history of educational failure
  • TTRS is appropriate as a typing course for children (6-7+) and adults who wish to learn the skill of keyboarding. It is part of the National Curriculum for Schools and Colleges.

Computer Keyboard Skills

  • Keys introduced sequentially following a phonics program
  • Small, incremental steps delivered at the pace of the learner
  • Multi-sensory learning - students see, hear and type each word

Dyslexia-Friendly Learning

  • Structured wordlists based on the book 'Alpha to Omega'
  • Multi-sensory Orton and Gillingham approach to reading and spelling
  • Sight words, Capital letters, full stops and whole sentences

TTRS is designed to benefit:

  • Students who experience spelling, reading or writing difficulties
  • Adults requiring help with their literacy skills
  • Students learning English as a second language (ESL)

How does Touch-type Read and Spell work?

TTRS is modular in design and contains 24 levels with 31 modules in each level. A module typically takes a few minutes to complete. Student success is encouraged by immediate feedback and positive reinforcement. This feedback includes a score that appears at the end of each module.

The course starts with students learning to touch-type, read and spell the vowels - " a , e , i , o , u ". The audio track accompanies the letters as they appear on screen, reinforcing sound-letter correspondence, which is a crucial skill for sounding out words in reading. The student then receives their first score - and success!

In the second module, the student is introduced to words through "onset and rime". For example - fed, wed, led. This teaches phonics in context and at the same time the student is learning how to touch-type. With repetition, these words move from short-term to long-term memory.

Every 5th module is a dictation module that removes the visual element encouraging the student to listen to the words and then type out what they hear. This reinforces the words introduced in the previous 4 modules. It also develops spelling by testing sound-letter mapping skills.

Some students with dyslexia have problems with their short-term memory. Repetition is a way of “over-learning” which can help with these problems. TTRS uses a multi-sensory approach to repetition learning.

Through the multi-sensory approach, students hear the words using headphones, see the words printed on the screen, and are prompted as to which fingers to press via the on-screen keyboard.

Finally, through the sense of touch, they type out the words and learn to “spell with their fingers”.

It's like talking with my fingers. When I want to spell a word, I just think where my fingers would go.


For schools, colleges, and organisations as part of the curriculum. Learn more

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Delivery of the TTRS Home course on a PC or Mac via an internet connection. Learn more

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After school and holiday courses delivered by tutors privately.
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Touch-Type Read and Spell (TTRS) is based on exercises taken from the classic book 'Alpha to Omega' by Beve Hornsby, Frula Shear and Julie Pool, with acknowledgments to the pioneering work of Anne Gillingham, Bessie Stillman and Samuel Orton in the US, and its UK implementation by Sally Childs.
TTRS, established over 25 years ago, is used by thousands of students in primary and secondary schools worldwide in the State and Private Sector, Colleges, Homes, Prisons, Community and Literacy Programs.

TTRS was established in 1992 with the kind help and assistance of: the Rev. Dr. Jessica Aidley; Jean Hutchins of the British Dyslexia Association Computer Committee; Marjorie Lishman of the London Borough of Bexley Advisory Service; Brother Matthew Sasse; Irene Heskett; Pam Morley and The North Kent Dyslexia Association; Dr. Beve Hornsby of the Hornsby International Dyslexia Centre.