Scientology: How We Help—Study Technology Changes Life of a New Jersey Man

A new brochure released in March 2013 spotlights Applied Scholastics. Lars Risdal is an example of why the Church of Scientology supports the program.

Lars Risdal, director of Applied Scholastics Bergen County, New Jersey, says he is proud that with L. Ron Hubbard’s Study Technology, he can teach anyone of any age how to read and write.

Lars Risdal, 28, is a confident, extroverted redhead—in a wheelchair.

“I was born like that,” he says. “People ask me about my wheelchair or my disability. To me, it’s not really a big deal.”

His philosophy: No matter the disability or barrier, there is really no excuse not to succeed—you have to do whatever it takes to get yourself through life. And life has been the proving ground for him.

As a child, Risdal struggled in school. “I was even assigned to ‘Special Ed.’ It seemed to be assumed that if I had a physical condition then I must certainly have a learning disability,” he says. Fortunately, he learned the cause of his study difficulties when he took a course in Study Technology.

American author and humanitarian L. Ron Hubbard isolated the precise causes for the success or failure of any activity or study and developed an actual technology of learning with which to master any subject. These educational breakthroughs are collectively known as Study Technology.

“There is a simple textbook of Study Technology called The Basic Study Manual,” says Risdal. “Studying and using the information in that book proved to me utterly and conclusively that I am not in any way learning disabled and I never was.”

Risdal enrolled for training as a tutor at the Applied Scholastics campus at Spanish Lake, Missouri, an organization that trains teachers, tutors and mentors in Study Technology and makes this technology available to governments and schools around the world.

He returned to New Jersey equipped with a new profession—he is now the director of Applied Scholastics Hudson County.

“It’s a symptom of the trouble in our society that many people graduate from high school with no education, and very few know how to learn or use what they study,” he says. “I tutor children and adults of all ages in New York and New Jersey. They really can learn anything, no matter how hard it may have seemed before. Recently I started helping one boy who had a 2nd grade reading level and was failing most subjects. We soon had him up to 4th grade reading level and doing quite well in school. I find it ironic that my teachers used to tell my mom that I was ‘phonetically challenged,’ but now I can teach anyone of any age how to read and write.”

The Applied Scholastics network, now comprising well over a thousand groups spanning 70 countries, has trained nearly 140,000 educators and has helped over 39 million with Study Technology.

The brochure Scientology, How We Help: Applied Scholastics, Achieving Literacy and Education is one of a series of publications presented by the Church of Scientology International to meet requests for more information about the Scientology religion and its support of global humanitarian initiatives and social betterment programs. For more information, visit the Scientology website at

Applied Scholastics International is a secular nonprofit public benefit corporation that addresses head-on the problem of illiteracy by making broadly available L. Ron Hubbard’s discoveries in the field of education and literacy.

Press Contact: Karin Pouw
Phone: (323) 960-3500

Church of Scientology International
6331 Hollywood Blvd., Suite 1200
Los Angeles, CA 90028
Phone: 1-323-960-3500


About Us

Developed by L. Ron Hubbard, Scientology is a religion that offers a precise path leading to a complete and certain understanding of one’s true spiritual nature and one’s relationship to self, family, groups, Mankind, all life forms, the material universe, the spiritual universe and the Supreme Being. Scientology addresses the spirit—not the body or mind—and believes that Man is far more than a product of his environment, or his genes.