Assistive Technology Tools for Learning Differences and Executive Function Challenges

My Assistive Technology Toolbox

I use a wide variety of technologies in my practice -- both high-tech and low-tech -- too numerous to mention here. But I'd like to list the most significant ones that I rely on, and that I include in my trainings.

Because so many software tools perform multiple functions, it's difficult to list technologies by category such as "Technologies for Reading" and "Technologies for Writing" -- certain tools would show up in several places -- so I've chosen to list them in a more eclectic manner that's still somewhat logical.

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Listening to Recorded Audiobooks

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Simple text-to-speech, text-to-MP3 applications

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Reading, Writing, & Learning Software Suites

Software that bundles multiple supports for reading, writing, and studying.

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Resources for Alternatives to Printed Text - Electronic Text (E-text) and Narrated Audiobooks

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Graphic Organizer and Mind Map Software

Outlining and mapping software to help organize writing, notes, instructions, checklists, concepts -- any information that benefits from a structure.

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Portable Word Processors

Laptop alternatives for classroom use.

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Speech recognition (speech-to-text)

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PDF Annotation

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Taking Notes & Organizing Notes

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Math Notation, Graphing & Drawing

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Math Concepts

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Assorted Reading & Writing Aids

  • Dyslexie and OpenDyslexic - fonts designed to ease visual aspects of reading for those with dyslexia
  • Visual Thesaurus - visual word map (online, Mac & PC)
  • Ginger - contextual spellchecker (online, PC)
  • Ghotit - contextual spelling/grammar checker with word prediction, other supports (Mac & PC)
  • Grammarian Pro2X - grammar and spelling checker (Mac)
  • WordQ - word prediction, word lists, abbreviation/expansion (Mac & PC)
  • SpeakQ - WordQ plus speech recognition (PC)
  • Clicker 6 - custom onscreen keyboards, talking word processor, word prediction (Mac & PC)
  • WriteOnline - word banks, talking word processor, word prediction, mind mapping (online, Mac & PC)
  • BeeLine Reader - text color gradients aid visual tracking, improve reading speed, reduce effort
  • Readability - reduces webpage visual clutter for distraction-free reading (online)
  • Rewordify - automatically defines, or substitutes simpler words in place on webpages
  • Snap&Read Universal - text-to-speech, convert image to text, and text leveling (simplify difficult words) for Web reading

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Assorted Aids for Attention and Executive Functioning

  • Isolator - dims, blurs, or hides all but frontmost window to reduce visual distractions (Mac)
  • Ghoster - dims, blurs, or hides all but frontmost window to reduce visual distractions (PC)
  • SelfControl - restricts access to selected websites for preset times (Mac)
  • Cold Turkey - restricts access to selected apps, websites for preset times (PC; Mac version coming soon)
  • RescueTime - tracks time on apps, websites (Mac, PC)
  • VibraLite - watches with multiple customizable vibration alerts
  • WatchMinder - watch with multiple customizable vibration alerts, messages
  • Wunderlist - task manager app (online, Mac, PC, iOS, Android)
  • DropTask - visual task manager app (online, Mac, PC, iOS, Android)
  • Assignment Calculator - break down large projects into manageable chunks (online)
  • Research Project Calculator - break down large projects into manageable chunks (online)

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Mobile Computing


Other Noteworthy Tools I Use

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Interactive Electronic Whiteboards and Whiteboard Capture

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Alternative Access for Computer & iPad

  • Keystrokes - customizable onscreen keyboard (Mac)
  • SwitchXS - customizable switch access of computer (Mac)
  • LayoutKitchen - programs Keystrokes and SwitchXS (Mac)
  • Tecla Shield - wireless switch access of computer (Mac, PC) or tablet (iOS, Android)

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Virtualization software (allows Windows to run on Macs)

  • Boot Camp - allows Mac computer to boot up with either Mac OS or Windows OS
  • VMware Fusion - allows simultaneous use of Mac OS and Windows OS on Mac computer
  • Parallels Desktop for Mac - allows simultaneous use of Mac OS and Windows OS on Mac computer

Less struggle.

More learning.

 

Copyright © 2008-2015 Rachael M. Haven

 

Greater success.