Module 7

part one

Experience with AT in the Classroom!

1. When I was student teaching, I had a foreign exchange student from China who was not very fluent in English. When I would lecture or discuss topics if front of the classroom she would easily get lost or have no clue what i was saying. However, she had an Ipad with a translator app that allowed her to type in words or take pictures of words and it would translate them to her. So I would type up what I was prepared to say ahead of time and give her a copy to help her follow along. without the AT she had it would have been almost completely worthless for her to come to class!


2. As a student and teacher I have known some students who greatly benefited from the use of a powered wheel chair to go from class to class and to be able to stay interactive and involved in class projects and things!


3. The two pieces of AT that I researched are alternative keyboards and mouses (Eyegaze Edge), and speech recognition software (specifically Dragon speech software). the alternative keyboards and mouses fall under the communication AT, and under the Environmental Interaction AT. The Speech Recognition Software is definitely a Communication AT, and somewhat of an Environmental Interaction AT.

Findings on two AT pieces!

1. The first piece was Eyegaze Edge which is an eye-operated communication and control system that empowers people with disabilities to communicate and interact with the world. By looking at control keys or cells displayed on a screen, a user can generate speech either by typing a message or selecting pre-programmed phrases. Eyegaze Edge Systems are being used to write books, attend school and enhance the quality of life of people with disabilities all over the world. (http://www.eyegaze.com/eye-tracking-assistive-technology-device/)


You do not need attachments to use this AT, there is a camera hooked up to a main keyboard that locks onto the users eyes so wherever the user looks that is where the cursor goes (no hand, feet, or body movement needed), instead of clicking or touching like a normal mouse the user just has to stare at whatever icon is to be used for a certain period of time (normally like 1/2 a second).


This AT is very versatile and can be used by students with varying disabilities including, ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease), Brain injury, Cerebral palsy, Locked-in Syndrome (brainstem stroke), Multiple Sclerosis, Muscular Dystrophy, SMA (Spinal muscular atrophy, Werdnig-Hoffman syndrome), Spinal cord injury, and Stroke.


The Eyegaze Edge system can be of great benefit to students. It will make doing homework and in class work much easier to do without worrying about mobility or functionality of the student. the program comes with a word processor to help comprehend and produce written work.


Information used was from Eyegaze.com, visit the website to learn more!


2. The second piece of AT was Dragon Speech Recognition Software. "Dragon speech recognition software is helping to enhance the educational process for students and teachers alike. It has been shown to improve core reading and writing skills for students of all abilities, including those with physical or language-based learning disabilities, as well as English Language Learners. Dragon lets students dictate papers and assignments three times faster than typing — with up to 99% accuracy. Dragon has been shown to improve reading and writing skills for students of all abilities" (http://www.nuance.com/for-business/by-industry/education/dragon-education-solutions/index.htm).


For Physically Challenged Students - Students with physical disabilities, especially those who do not have use of their hands for keyboarding, use Dragon for accessibility purposes. It provides greater independence, eliminates the need for a dictation buddy, and helps these students keep pace with their non-disabled peers. Dragon’s also a great solution for students suffering from repetitive stress injuries, like carpel tunnel syndrome, that make keyboarding painful, if not impossible. It can also help prevent RSIs in the first place.

For Students with Learning Disabilities - Students with certain learning disabilities, especially those with language-based learning disabilities like dyslexia and working memory issues, use Dragon to help them with writing by taking the focus off the mechanics of composition—spelling, sentence structure, etc.—so it’s easier to transfer ideas into written words.


Dragon can make integration of students of all abilities a lot easier and more efficient because of it's versatility.


All information used was taken from www.nuance.com and you can learn more by visiting their site!