Considering Assistive Technology

What is Assistive Technology?

"The term assistive technology device means any item, piece of equipment, or product system, whether acquired commercially off the shelf, modified, or customized, that is used to increase, maintain or improve functional capabilities of children with disabilities." (20 U.S.C. §1401(a)(25)).

Though federal laws are written to address the needs of students that may require the use of assistive technology, AT is not just for children. As we age, assistive technology makes everyday functioning a bit easier, as well as providing a degree of independence that might otherwise be hampered. Watch this video for an overview of the role of assistive technology for an improved quality of life for people of all ages.

Assistive Technology for all learners

Student uses of computer assisted learning.

How do you begin considering Assistive Technology?
All IEP teams must consider whether a student with a disability requires assistive technology devices and services (34 CFR§ 300.324(a)(2)(v) and Rule 6A 6.03028(3)(g)10., F.A.C.). Questions that will assist the IEP team in addressing the requirement of consideration for assistive technology include:
•What is it we want the student to be able to do within the student’s education program (writing, reading, communicating, seeing, hearing) that the student is not able to do because of the disability?
•Is the student currently able to complete tasks with special strategies or accommodations?
•Is there assistive technology (e.g. devices, tools, hardware or software) currently being used to address this task?
•Would assistive technology help the student perform this skill more easily or efficiently, perform it in the least restrictive environment or perform it successfully with less personal assistance

Resources to assist in considering Assistive Technology:

Screen_shot_2011-11-18_at_10.22.32_AM.pngThe TECH Matrix is an online tool to assist in considering assistive technology resources.

Log on to access an interactive matrix:

SETT Framework

Developed by Dr. Joy Zabala
The SETT Framework is a tool used to assist school-based teams in the gathering and organization of information that can be used to guide collaborative decisions about services that foster the educational success of students with disabilities.

Assistive Technology Resource Guide
The Assistive Technology Resource Guide is provided to assist educational teams in considering assistive technology in the development, review, and/or revision of a student’s Individual Educational Plan. This document provides a framework for identifying relevant tasks within instructional areas as well as appropriate accommodations, modifications, and technology solutions.

Understanding Assistive Technology - Simply Said

Assistive Technology Loan Libraries

AT and UDL Loan Library - Florida's AT Loan Library
Assistive Technology & Universal Design for Learning Loan Library. Funding is provided by the Bureau of Exceptional Education & Student Services.

Using Assistive Technology in math and science.

AT through Co-Writer and the Smartpen

Notetalker - record notes with your phone (free - 5 minute recording time - paid app - unlimited)

My Echo Dictation - dictation for iOS to Windows - download the app to both your iPhone and Windows computer then pair. Use the iOS microphone on the keyboard for dictation. $1.99

Assistive Technology Resource Powerpoint (Pasco County)

Assessing Students' Needs for Assistive Technology
Free material funded by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, this large pdf document is a resource to guide IEP teams in considering Assistive Technology that supports a free appropriate public education for all students. WATI

AbleData provides objective information about assistive technology products and rehabilitation equipment.
AbleData does not sell products, but can help locate companies that do through both domestic and international sources. AbleData

The Florida Alliance for Assistive Services and Technology, Inc. serves Floridians with disabilities by providing free access to information, referral services, educational programs, and publications in accessible formats on topics such as disability rights, laws, and policies. We also provide assistive technology (AT) device loans as well as funding opportunities for AT.

AbleNet (Assistive Technology Products)
AbleNet is an international company and industry leader in providing educational and technical solutions to help children and adults with disabilities lead productive and fulfilled lives.
Free webinars from AbleNet on a variety of topics related to AT

Karen's Resource Directory
A resource directory of Assistive Technology resources.

Tactile screen application for the iPad.

Learning Ally
A national non-profit dedicated to helping blind, visually impaired and dyslexic students succeed in education, offering the world’s largest collection of human-narrated audio textbooks and literature as well as solutions, support and community for parents, teachers and students.

Point2View by IPEVO
An inexpensive document camera to use as an AT device, as demonstrated by Sharon Bittle from FDLRS Action

Assistive Technology Resources from UNDERSTOOD, provided through their parent company, NCLD
A collection of resources to support the SLD student through assistive technology

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