Assistive technology in the classroom is vital in ensuring equity in the education sector. Education is a right for everyone, and disabilities shouldn’t alienate anyone from accessing it. Assistive technologies refer to the tools and software that innovatively help learners with disability to participate in classroom activities.
Embracing assistive technology in the classroom helps remove barriers that could hinder students living with disability to achieve their academic goals. Therefore, when adopting any tools, assistive technology devices, or software, instructors must ascertain how well they improve learning experiences and address hurdles that could limit learners from attaining their objectives.
Considerations when choosing the right assistive technology in the classroom
Before settling on assistive technologies to ingrain in the teaching process, instructors should make several key considerations to reap the optimal benefits of assistive technology in the classroom. Here are a few.
The Unique Needs of Learners
One major consideration is the individual needs of each learner. Instructors should assess their students to ascertain high-tech solutions to address their needs. It would be advisable to embrace technologies that can easily be customized to fit the needs of every learner.
For instance, if a class has hearing-impaired students, the assistive technology you use as an instructor should meet their unique needs as it does to the deaf and so on.
Reading Suggestion: 20 Bathroom Rug Ideas to Make You Rethink Your Space
Level of Integration with Existing Technology
When embracing assistive technology, it is crucial to ascertain how suitable and compatible it is with the existing technology. For instance, if you intend to acquire a more sophisticated hearing assistive technology in the classroom, you should be sure that it will integrate easily with the technology already in existence, such as computers, tablets, and so on
Another important consideration you should make is how easy it is to use the tools. Remember, the main reason for embracing the tool is to help students with disabilities overcome barriers that could hinder their academic success.
Therefore, the technology you adopt to serve the purpose should be easy to use to enhance user experience. Note, however, that the ease of use doesn’t mean low tech. It means that the tools or software are easy to use not only for learners but also for trainers.
Look for assistive technologies that can adapt to different learning environments. For instance, the curriculum may dictate different learning settings to allow students to get a better understanding of the course. As pro essay writers from CustomWritings paper writing service emphasize, technology in education should be multi-functional to allow addressing a wide range of student needs.
As you peruse through the numerous examples of assistive technology in the classroom, choose the ones that can serve different functions to address a wide range of student needs.
12 Assistive Technology Examples in the Classroom
Top on my list of assistive technology in the classroom examples is this powerful tool that helps learners translate text into audio. It is extremely appropriate for learners with ADHD and dyslexia.
2. Kurzweil 3000
It is another powerful speech-to-text software suitable for any educational setting. The software works in 18 languages and is excellent for learners with ADHD and vision impairment.
3. Google Classroom
It has become extremely popular, especially with the increased demand for online learning. The tool has numerous features as well, and it is compatible with many assistive technology software.
4. Audio Players and Recorders
This includes low-tech assistive technology that supports students struggling to take notes. They can record what instructors are teaching in class.
Times are other important assistive technologies that could be adopted in the classroom. They aim to help students who struggle to move from one task to the next. The timers will help them be mentally prepared to switch from one activity to the next.
6. Reading Guides
Reading guides are vital for students who struggle with remaining focused while reading. Using reading guides helps improve their focus by blocking any words surrounding what they are reading.
7. Amazon Echo with Voice Control
This is one of the adaptive assistive technologies that could be used for learners to control their environment. For instance, learners with physical disabilities will easily control temperature, lighting, and other factors that affect their learning.
It is another innovative assistive technology used in the education sector to help learners with hearing impairment with captions in video production to understand the videos. The assistive technology tool is vital, especially when instructors are using videos as training materials.
It is one of the popular reading pens that could positively impact a student’s performance. It helps learners to understand scanned or printed texts by reading them aloud. It is appropriate for students with visual impairment.
It is an important technology that helps students with math challenges by providing audio support. The tool is exceptional since it provides learners with interactive math assistance. Whether a learner has autism or any other challenge, the assistive technology will enhance their performance.
11. Adaptive Computer Components
Adaptive computer components such as keyboards and mice are vital for students with disabilities as they can be customized based on motor skills needs. Such tech will ensure learners participate in academic writing. They will write essays and other educational papers with ease, allowing instructors to evaluate them.
This is an important assistive technology that could be categorized as a graphic organizer, which is essential in helping learners with attention disorder to organize their thoughts. Using assistive technology will help students with attention problems or other learning disabilities learn how to organize their minds to complete specific tasks.
These tools play an integral role in supporting learners with disabilities. Instructors should ensure they guide learners on how to use them for optimal positive outcomes. While the list isn’t exhaustive, it provides instructors and other stakeholders with an understanding of some of the main assistive technologies that should be used in the classroom.
As an instructor, you may decide to choose alternative assistive technologies to serve the same purpose.
Important points to note
Education is a basic right that should be provided unconditionally to learners. Assistive technologies bridge the gap in helping learners with different forms of disability to address the problems that would hinder them from achieving their academic goals. Trainers should understand student needs and the main approaches to the right technology to adopt in class to help them succeed. It will be particularly important to ascertain the suitability of the technology in the classroom. Remember, the goal is to enhance the learning experience and get rid of the barriers, not to make students’ lives harder.