assistive technology presentation

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Presentation put together for Urbana University Class EDU 309: Technology in the Classroom.


  • 1.ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY Heather Day EDU 309 February 21, 2014

2. Assistive technology (AT) is any tool that helps students with disabilities do things more quickly, easily or independently. It can be elaborate and expensive or simple and low-cost. Assistive technology services are supports for using assistive technology devices, such as assistive technology evaluations, equipment maintenance, technical assistance, demonstration or training (Jendron 2012). This quote, taken from the South Carolina Department of Educations explanation does an excellent job describing the importance of AT as well as informing the reader what it really is. In the following slides I will introduce to you three apps, a group of gadgets to aide in accessibility, and a new way to explore books and other written works. 3. FLASHCARDS DELUXE APP BY: ORANGEORAPPLE.COMPhoto Source: Ernest Thomason iTunes App Store 4. FLASHCARDS DELUXE These arent your ordinary flashcards! In this app, flash cards can have between one and five sides. For example: one side pronounces a word; another provides a visual cue; another spells it with a visual; etc. They are also able to be customized! Students and educators are able to choose colors and themes that will help the students focus on their notes and get the most out of them. This App Features: Two smart study modes that automatically focus more on the cards you miss Browse and download any of the 4 million+ flashcard sets on and Text to speech (TTS) audio in 18 languages Multiple choice option Organize decks in folders and combine decks for studying, Divide cards into categories Several flashcard color themes to choose from, Custom text/background colors Ability to include pictures and sounds. Zoom into pictures. Auto repeat sounds. 3 response levels: Wrong, I kind of know, I know really well Automatically turn cards off after getting them correct a certain number/percentage of reviews Supports Dropbox, Google Docs and USB transfers 5. POPPLET APP BY: NOTIONPhoto Source: Notion iTunes App Store 6. POPPLETPopplet allows users to keep all of their new ideas in one place. The creators of Popplet explain that its great for both work and school. Popplet is incredibly user friendly and allows you to move as fast as you can think, allowing you to capture your ideas, sort them visually, and collaborate with others in a quick and easy manner. The most common uses for Popplet include: Exploring ideas and brainstorming, Plan projects, Using Diagrams, or Process Charts, Recording thoughts, notes, and lists in a journal, Create photo albums, Maintain portfolios, and Studying class notes. 7. IANNOTATE PDF BY: BRANCHFIRE, INCPhoto Source: Branchfire, Inc iTunes App Store 8. IANNOTATE PDFThis app was the 2012 Tabby Award Winner for Best Productivity App and Best Collaboration App. It was the Moxie Award winner for Mobile App of the Year as well. iAnnotate offers several customizable features such as highlight colors and personalized stamps. Students can use iAnnotate to read, mark up, and share PDF, DOC, PPT and image files! This app is also perfect for taking notes on lecture slides, annotating important business documents, revising screenplays, grading papers, and much more. The app also allows the user to forward text summaries of a document's annotations via email. Summaries include the type of each annotation, and relevant page numbers, as well as marked-up text. 9. ALTERNATIVE INPUT DEVICESPhoto Sources: BBC Toms Hardware Guide 10. ALTERNATIVE INPUT DEVICES Alternative Input (AI) devices allow individuals to control their computers using a multitude of other controls rather than a standard keyboard or pointing device. Examples of AI devices include, but arent limited to: Alternative keyboards These devices consist of keys that larger (or smaller) than standard keyboards. They also include alternative key configurations, as well as keyboards for one-handed use.Electronic pointing devices These devices are used to control the cursor on the screen without the use of hands. This is achieved by utilizing infrared beams, eye movements, nerve signals, or brain waves as signals. Wands and sticks This device is worn on the head, held in the mouth or strapped to the chin and used to press keys on the keyboard.Joysticks These are able to be manipulated by hands, feet, chins, etc. and are used to control the cursor on screen.Trackballs These devices are movable balls on top of a base (similar to those found on old Blackberry phones) that can be used to move the cursor on screen.Touch screens Utilizing touch screens allow direct selection by touching the screen. This makes it easier for students to select an option by touching their finger on it, rather than using a mouse or keyboard. 11. AUDIO AND DIGITAL BOOKSPhoto Sources: Library of Classics Apple Insider 12. AUDIO AND DIGITAL BOOKSChildren with learning disabilities often have trouble understanding the words they read. The reasons and causes are commonly unclear, and these disabilities are often life-long conditions. However, access to digital or audio books and other learning materials have been proven to help improve learning outcomes and comprehension. Recent research has concluded that when children with a learning disability are given textbooks, novels, and other learning materials, that are delivered in audio and digital formats, they are more likely to achieve at a higher level, as well as enjoy reading. This is because reading while incorporating digital and audio books bridges the gap between the reader and the content in multisensory ways such as reading and listening at the same time or reading along while the e-book highlights each word. 13. CONCLUSIONThere are many, many, MANY different types of Assistive Technology at the fingertips of educators and parents today. Some of these could be apps, accessories, or programs for the products that we already use on a daily basis. In addition, they could also be completely different gadgets that we didnt know existed. It is such a wonder to research the variety of free or affordable apps available for parents to buy on iTunes and download to their iPhones, iPods, and iPads for their children or spouse to use; or educators to add to class iPads, should they be so lucky. However, it is not only Mac products that can be adapted. There are many items that help students out in the regular classroom as well without using a computer. Audio books, or books on tape are a great resource for classroom teachers. This helps the students with visual impairments or other disabilities focus on the words by hearing them and creating their own visual. Students can follow along with the text as well in order to form connections between the written form of words along with the sounds that they make. 14. REFERENCESFlashcards Deluxe. (2014). Ernest Thomason (Version 3.6.3) [Mobile application software]. Retrieved from Hatton, D., & Hatton, K. (n.d.). Apps for students with LD: Organization and study. Retrieved from iAnnotate. (2014). Branchfire, Inc. (Version 3.0.3) [Mobile application software]. Retrieved from Jendron, J. (2012, October 9). SC curriculum access through AT. Retrieved from National Center for Learning Disabilities. 13 free assistive technology resources. Retrieved from Popplett. (2012). Notion, Inc. (Version 1.9.2) [Mobile application software]. Retrieved from


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