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Every day, there are changes in the world of technology. The advances are faster than anyone can follow as cell phones, video game products, smart phones and computers march on with the new and exciting features. Assistive technology is no less complicated and changing. Catalogs and Web sites show the latest and greatest in software and hardware products. Wheelchairs, computer software, and environmental controls are a few of the technologies evolving on a daily basis. One technology of particular interest to many computer users, whether disabled or not, is voice recognition, which is the art of speaking to a computer …

Scanning and switch software is a vast and complicated category of assistive technology for many professionals and users alike. It does not need to be with a little understanding and exploration into the possible solutions on the market today. Scanning and switch software encompasses everything from simple cause and effect to complex multilayered matrices used for computer access. This article will focus on software applications used with a single or multiple switches, but not the selection of an appropriate switch. What you need Before starting, the user will need an interface box. This allows the user to connect the switch …

Ten percent of the population is diagnosed with a learning disability according to the Learning Disability of America Association. This is a significant number of individuals in our society who could benefit from a variety of assistive technology devices and software. Voice recognition, scanning software, reading pens, and voice output are a few examples of beneficial tools on the market today. One technology that needs to be better understood is voice output. It changes written word or text into auditory reinforcement for the learner. Students with low reading scores have jumped several grades in comprehension when voice output is applied. …

Assistive technology comes in many different sizes, shapes and forms. Sometimes, the accommodation is not high tech, but rather a similar product with basic features that alter a standard model. Keyboards and mice are two input devices that sometimes require accommodations. The standard keyboard and mouse may not work for many students with a disability, but there are other options on the market today that are alternatives to standard models. It is important to remember all types of technology when starting to implement technology for a student. Many practitioners have a tendency to find complex and difficult-to-use solutions for academic, …

Sue Redepenning Sue is a licensed occupational therapist with over 20 years of experience working with all age groups, settings and a variety of disabilities. She is currently working at Courage Center in Minneapolis and is the Supervisor of Assistive Technology. Sue is also a licensed driving instructor working to assist in the Driver’s Rehabilitation Program at Courage Center. Jennifer Mundl has over 20 years of experience working within the disability community with all kinds limitations. She began the Assistive Technology Program at Courage Center in Minnesota. By background, she holds a Masters in special education and an undergraduate in …

Sue Redepenning (left)Sue is a licensed occupational therapist with over 20 years of experience working with all age groups, settings and a variety of disabilities. She is currently working at Courage Center in Minneapolis and is the Supervisor of Assistive Technology. Sue is also a licensed driving instructor working to assist in the Driver’s Rehabilitation Program at Courage Center. JENNIFER MUNDL (right) has over 20 years of experience working within the disability community with all kinds limitations. She began the Assistive Technology Program at Courage Center in Minnesota. By background, she holds a Masters in special education and an undergraduate …

The United States has lost its edge in mathematics and science. Experts say that technological innovation accounted for almost half of U.S. economic growth over the past 50 years; almost all of the 30 fastest-growing occupations in the next decade will require at least some background in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). The bad news: recent studies show that American children do not have the same skills as other children throughout the world in these basic skills. The good news: STEM is now a mandate within the U.S. educational system. The Facts In an international exam given to 15-year-olds …

Jen Mundl and Ashley Bailey Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute.Assistive technology is not always expensive or come from a manufacturer, but can be created on your own. There are creative ways you can use common items found at a hardware store, fabric store, hobby store, or even Target to create you ingenious and useful products for various related disability needs. It is only limited by imagination. Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute and the Assistive Technology Program have been creating an assortment of assistive technology devices for over 25 years. In the past eight years, the organization has used engineers from a local …