Having a learning disability does not mean that a person is not smart enough to do the work of an average person. It is simply due to processing of information differently than others who don’t struggle with learning. While there are many areas where people tend to have challenges, the most common are in reading, writing, math, and speaking.
People with learning disabilities benefit from being taught in unique ways that differ from people who do not have trouble with learning. Today, computer software programs tailor to people with learning disabilities that can help to achieve goals and succeed in any area of challenge they may have.
Assistive technology greatly impacts a person with learning disabilities, however, assistive technology is mapped out according to each individual, therefore the instructor must make a plan on which sections the individual needs help in. Assistive technology devices can range anywhere from low tech where a person needs help in writing, to technology such as voice recognition devices for people who struggle with speech. This type of technology can help an individual to sort things out at a pace that is more comfortable for their needs.
How Software Helps with Learning Disabilities
Many times a person with a disability is overwhelmed by trying to learn. Software for learning disabilities allows individuals to engage in the program keeping their interest levels up, providing easy to understand solutions to problems, addressing incorrect answers with explanations on how to solve and allows the individual to be monitored in areas that they struggle with, and this helps the individual to stay on track and have the motivation to keep learning.
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If sorting things out and putting thoughts together is the person’s disability, word processors are a great tool! Word processors add color coded text options and provides visual formats. Spelling errors can also be limited with the use of spell check built in to the word processor, cutting down on proofreading time to find misspelled words, and the processor also aids in handwriting.
Reading systems can be added for the individual who has a better ability of listening than reading. This feature reads aloud through a soundcard and can read words back using a speech synthesizer, helping the individual to sound things out more clearly.
Contrasting colors in reading systems will allow the reader to see only one word at a time, highlighting words and increasing text size. This tool is useful for those who are overwhelmed by multiple words together.
A person that has dyslexia may benefit from an app called word predictor. This will allow the person to choose from a list of words while typing to avoid having to stop and look up correct spellings.
Assistive technology communication devices such as a talking calculator is helpful for an individual with math disabilities. This app will repeat back the error in the calculation, or voice out the incorrect line up of numbers that were computed.
While there are many a useful software applications in the world from file sharing by RLink to anit-maleware, most are not life-changing. Those with learning disabilities should no longer feel discouraged. With the technology today, they can excel at anything they once thought was impossible!
C. Johnson enjoys a full time career in Missouri’s medical field, while still devoting significant time to writing. Regardless if she is writing about a terminal emulator for windows 7 or ice ball makers, she gives it 100% and has a lot of fun.
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