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H810 – Assistive technology knowledge audit

October 24, 2010

In this activity we were asked to make a list of the technologies in the JISC table that we haven’t heard before, as well a list of technologies that we have direct knowledge of and we should include the impairments that we have used the technology to address. Finally we should add any assistive technology that we know about that has been developed since this table was compiled.

Well, that will be a long list of assistive technologies (AT) that I haven’t heard before and a pretty short list of technologies that I know, including the impairments. This is mainly based on my professional context. Like reported before I currently do not work with any disabled students. I worked with students with learning disabilities, but that is already more than 20 years ago and at this time I worked as home economist and trainer in a boarding school, thus my knowledge about AT is more than limited, just what I learned here in H810 so far.

Here my list of technologies that I am not familiar with, I had to do a lot of research to find out what e.g. a Chording keyboard is, or sticky keys are – no we are not talking about my keyboard which is sticky, too 😉 because I take my meals already on the computer or eat sweats – or toogle keys. I am really a novice when it comes to assistive technology. So finally here is the list:

  • Technology – chording keyboard, keyguard, switches, video magnifier
  • Software – (in-built) – magnifier, sticky keys, mouse keys, on screen keyboard, filter keys, pointer options, toogle keys, display properties
  • Software -(third-party) – magnifier, Word prediction, Icon/toolbar design
  • Non-ILT – Wrist and foot rest, arm support, monitor arm

I heard about rollerball, joystick, graphics tablet, wheel mouse, touch screen, OCR pen but not in the context of disability and accessibility.

I use or used cassette/minidisc/digital recorder, USB memory stick, PDA, digital camera, camcorder and I love mindmapping and make great use of it and I know and use document holders for typewriting and I make also great use of laptrays, just sitting with one. But here again I used the technology myself as non-disabled person, thus I can just imagine how this technologies, software or low-tech solutions can be used to address different kinds of impairments. One of my fellow students in my tutor group created a great wiki describing how the technology/software/Non-ILT can be used to help people with particular impairments. She did a great job, thanks for providing such a great resource.

With my limited knowledge I cannot add any new assistive technology to the list 😦 , but find it really interesting to explore how much is available which is great and I read with great interest what my more experienced peers have to report, because I really think this is important to know more and to be more aware about this subject, and probably one day my vocational school we be more accessible for disabled students.

From → H810

One Comment
  1. Harry permalink

    I was looking for a free document scanning software on the Internet. I had used Textbridge for the past 8 years with many versions of Windows OS and I was not willing to buy another expensive scanning software any more. Then I found some interesting ones online, like Free OCR, etc. Though not as good as commercial OCR softwares, they did produce promising results to me.

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