Current Trends in Assistive Technology for K

Current Trends in Assistive Technology &
Electronic resources can be found at
Kirk Behnke, M.Ed., ATP
Assistive Technology Specialist
• Past developments for Assistive
Technology (AT) in Education
• 1975 – 2004 Legal Evolution of AT
• 2009 NCTI brief : “5 Key Issues in
Assistive Technology ”
• 2010 National Education
Technology plan
• 2014 Current Issues
• 10 Top Tech Trends In Education
Survey (Project Tomorrow, Feb 2014)
• Current Issues & Trends:
Student Assessment
Digital Instructional Materials
Built-in Tools and Scaffolds
Use of Mobile Technologies
BYOD and flipped instruction
Common Core Curriculum
Authentic Gaming and Social
Past Developments
• Shift from a medical to
social model
• Shift from professional
driven to consumer driven
• Universal Design
• Professional development
& qualifications for AT
• Continuing technological
The Legal Evolution of Access
• EHA 1975 Access to schools
• IDEA 1990 Access to classrooms
• IDEA 1997 Access to general education
• IDEA 2004 Access to instructional materials
Congressional Intent of IDEA 2004
Improved student performance
Increased accountability
Strong parental participation
High expectations for student
• Linked to the general education
• Accessible instructional materials
Congressional Intent of IDEA 2004
IDEA 2004 affirms emphasis on
Assistive Technology as a means to
support educational achievement
• Requires consideration of AT in the IEP process
• Places responsibility for decision-making with IEP
• Requires accessible instructional materials
5 Key Issues in Assistive
Technology (2009)
1. Convergence
2. Customizability and Universal Design for Learning
3. Research- or Evidence-based Design
4. Portability
5. Interoperability
Reference: National Center for Technology Innovation (NCTI) conference
November, 2009
Article by Meris Stansbury, eSchool News 12/2009
1. Convergence
• Single tech platform to perform multiple tasks
• Run multiple applications
– Application for access &
– Application for productivity
• Accessible e-book reading devices
• Online sites for digital libraries/repositories
2. Customizability and
Universal Design for Learning
• Customizable assistive technology
• Flexibility in software and applications to meet
the needs of diverse learners
• UDL strategies to offer
variations for challenges
and additional supports
2. Customizability and
Universal Design for Learning (cont.)
• Accessible gaming and
• Some UDL features and access
for gaming should include:
– captioning of dialog
– text-to-speech capabilities
– ability to magnify areas of
the screen
– ability to use an adapted
– customizable colors for color-blindness.
PlayStation Network
3. Research or
Evidence-based Design
• Assistive Technology effectiveness should focus on
features, usage, and the user population, rather than
individual products
• Inherent accessibility on everyday electronics
• Research needs to provide user
information of technology re:
– Features
– Conditions
– Tasks
4. Portability
• To help promote independence,
portability is critical
– Least restrictive environment
– portable technologies are helping
to redefine “least restrictive
environment” and are boosting
• “netbooks” – portable
• Open-source AT
– Carry AT software on their
jump drive and use it whenever
5. Interoperability
Between operating systems
Exchanging information
Professional development on AT
Integration of “adaptive” software on a main
drive for access throughout the campus
• Cloud computing (sharing software
National Education Technology Plan (2010-12)
1. Learning: Engage and Empower
2. Assessment: Measure What
3. Teaching: Prepare and Connect
4. Infrastructure: Access and
5. Productivity: Redesign and
Identified Current Trends
in Assistive Technology
and Education
Moment for reflection…
Student educational needs come first –
technology tools are last
The SETT Framework
S = Student/Skills
E = Environment
T = Tasks
T = Tools
Adapted from Joy Zabala
• Academic standards
• Accountability of schools
and teachers
• Doing away with
alternative assessments
aligned to modified
achievement standards
• Public feedback
• In Texas, “Life without a
Stimulus Funds
– Aftermath of stimulus funds and the
“big spend down”
• “…to consider investing in ‘state-of-the-art
assistive technology and training’ affords the
field a rare opportunity to define and shape
• Note: NCTI brief also underscores the importance
of state-of-the-art AT training for educators, and it
lists possible uses for IDEA-based stimulus funding
for schools.
Digital Instructional Materials
• Provision of accessible instructional
– Students with Print disabilities
who qualify
– Students who don’t qualify as
having a “Print Disability”
• Publishers who offer online materials
• Schools and Universities who
offer online learning
• Online repositories of instructional
Built-in Tools and Scaffolds
• Co-digital natives using and having
built-in technologies readily available
• Some schools and districts do not
have the “just-in-time” supports that
digital natives are used to at home
• Website accessibility requirements – per section 508
and ADA requirements for receiving federal funds
• School campus and district internet access
• “Cloud” access and building capacity and infrastructure
Use of Mobile Technologies
• School or District
• Platform specific or
• Management of
• Teacher training
iPad introduced April 3, 2010
Bring Your Own Device
• Bring Your Own Device
– Policies
– Practices
– Insurance/liability
5 Trends in Education for 2013
January 8, 2013 by Scott Sterling
1. Marriage of BYOD and
flipped instruction
• BYOD will lend itself to a flipped
instructional classroom
• Flipped instruction demands access to
technology outside of school
2. Where are the apps?
• Tablet devices acquired, check
• Apps to run them, not checked (??)
• Everyone has their favorite apps
• Go back to SETT framework
• Use the right app at the right
time, for the right reason
keeping in mind the
educational goal of the
3. Educational Companies and the
Common Core
Standards have been identified
Knowledge and skills based
K-12 and College and career readiness
Recognize that implementation requires
providing students with disabilities with a
range of needed supports
• Companies need to provide
technology options
and flexibility
4. MOOCs and secondary education
• MOOC – Massively Open Online Course
• Higher Ed efficacy of online learning vs.
traditional face-to-face instruction
• K-12 needs to prepare students going into
higher ed on technologies,
LMS and other
5. Authentic gamification
and socialization
• Building in a “game” atmosphere for learning
• Building social networking platforms for
education (e.g. edmodo)
• Making learning more authentic and
• Use of social media for
your own professional
(Twitter, just sayin’)
10 Tech Trends Students Say Are Changing
Their Education, Feb 5, 2014
• 2013 Speak Up Survey from Project Tomorrow,
which CEO Julie Evans – preliminary survey results
The 2013 results :
• 400,000 surveys from 9,000 schools and 2,700
districts across the country
Respondents included:
• 325,279 students
• 32,151 teachers and librarians
• 39,986 parents
• 4,530 district administrators
# 10 What Devices Belong in the
"Ultimate School"
• Ranking of the relative importance of devices
in their classroom experience:
– Laptops (56%)
– Digital readers (51%)
– Tablets (48%)
# 9 Social Media in Schools
• Student use of twitter,
Facebook, Instagram,
and other social media
Teachers and Parents.
• Students are looking at
social media as a
pervasive part of the
way they are living
#8 Gaming is growing;
and the Gender Gap is Closed
#7 An Increased Interest in
Online Learning
• Students desire to have more control over
their own individual learning
#6 Paying Attention to the
Digital Footprint
• 64% of HS students admitted to being
careful about the things they post online
• 39% said they advise friends about the
content they post -- 32% saying they stopped
interacting with friends who post
inappropriate content
• 44% of high school students said they believe
a positive digital profile is an important part of
their future
#5 Using Different Tools for
Different Tasks
“They like the devices, but they are more
focused on using the right tool for the task at
hand,” and many times tablets don’t seem
to fit.
#4 Mobile Devices for Schoolwork
• Use mobile devices for day-to-day tasks and
leverage their learning process
• 12% of respondents said they used
their mobile device to text their
teacher during class
#3 Use of Video for Classroom
and Homework
• 46% of teachers are
using videos in the
• 33% are using video to
supplement their own
learning – “Kahn
Academy effect”
• 23% of students are
accessing video created
by their teacher
#2 Internet Connectivity
• 64% using a 3G or 4G enabled device to
connect to the internet at home
• and 23% additionally through internet
enabled TV or Wii console
#1 Personal Access to
Mobile Devices
– 62% wanted to bring their own devices
to the classroom
Discussion: The future of AT is…
• to improve student performance on a variety of
technology and non-technology tools
• a tool to lift student educational and life
• built-in features access for
everyday technologies
• to prepare our students to
advocate for their own accommodations
in a digital world
• addressing student needs which are foundations
for good AT implementation
Kirk Behnke, M.Ed., ATP
Senior Education Specialist,
Special Education,
Region 4 ESC
[email protected]
Private consulting contact
[email protected]
Twitter @kbehnke
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