We are surrounded by technology. Wherever we go or whatever we do, there is technology available for almost every challenge, related to our daily lives. But technology always gets evolved in the form of tech tools, for those who can think out of the box and have zeal to learn something different. Such tools are known as AT- Assistive Technology, which is easy to use and most of the time it is inexpensive or sometimes free to use.
AT is assistive, adaptive, and rehabilitative devices, software, or equipment that assists people with different abilities, or elderly population. Now the question arises, what is Assistive Technology, and how people of different age groups can use it for their day-to-day challenges? What are the basics to learn to use assistive technology? So, the answer is very simple and that is – Assistive Technology implies any device, tool, software program, accessory, or product system, used to manage, increase, or improve the functional skills and communications, of differently- abled persons. AT is important for those kids who are struggling with learning- including reading, writing, or any specific subject like math. AT builds confidence and independence in kids, i.e., audio-books.
Not all the AT is high-tech, many of them are simple adaptive
tools like organizers and low-tech AT tool is a Pencil grip.
Some of the AT tools are very high-tech, i.e., text-to-speech (TTS), speech-to-text (Dictation), and Word Prediction (Auto-Correct).
Platforms in which Assistive Technology is used
-Desktop and Laptop computers
-Mobile devices (i.e., Smartphones, and Tablets)
-Chrome books (and Chrome browser used in any device)
There is Assistive Technology available for reading, writing, math, and listening comprehension.
Some of the examples of AT are- Mobility aids, such as wheelchairs, scooters, walkers, canes, prosthetic devices, and orthotic devices, hearing aids, etc.
We can add AT tools with mobile/tablet devices by using some apps like-
- Apps that help kids in reading
- Apps that help youngsters in organizations
- Apps for the back-to-school challenge
- Meditation apps for kids and elders
- Different apps for teenagers and kids to build self-control
If you don’t know where and how to start using Assistive Technology in various platforms, then try using text-to-speech at your device first. Text-to-speech converts electronic text to spoken words so that listen to it.