Learning Disability Solutions

Use this page to note useful software to aid people with a learning disability

Assistive Resources

  • Writing with Symbols and Symwriter from Widgit Software : Writing with Symbols, is a symbol and speech supported word processor, the latest version is now called Symwriter. Other Widgit Sofwtare includes Communicate in Print, a program for producing symbol based information such as timetables and instructions. There is also Webwide, a symbol and speech supported web browser.

  • Open source Symbol sets Straight-Street provides computer programs to aid communication for those people who have little or no speech of their own. This can occur with medical conditions such as a stroke, brain injury, Cerebral Palsy, plus many other illnesses.We believe it is vitally important that everyone has an equal opportunity to communicate with the world around them, and that technology can help.
Finding the right communication system can be a difficult and costly task. All our products are free of cost, allowing access to even the most disadvantaged, while at the same time allowing professionals and carers the opportunity to trial many systems without being limited by costs.

  • ICanEmail from RJ Cooper. A simple, but powerful, full-screen, talking email program. Designed for those with cognitive challenges, visual challenges, as well as physical challenges. For the user, it operates in a sequential manner, where it asks one question at a time, such as "Who would you like to send this to?" or "If you'd like to speak your message, you can do that here." No reading is necessary because it talks, talks, talks :)

    The email 'partner' (the recipient or sender) sends and receives mail without any special software at all! To him/her it is just like emailing with anyone else. ICanEmail can also let the user send/receive mail from other users on their system, without even using the Internet at all, even to themselves for practice. AND YOU CAN EVEN ACCESS AOL, HOTMAIL, ETC., through a third party program, IzyMail! Works with keyboard (IntelliKeys, BigKeys), or pointing device (Magic Touchscreen, SAM-Joystick, SAM-Trackball), or CrossScanner for single switch. There is even an option to operate ICanEmail by voice, *any* voice, even the voice of an Augmentative Communication device!

  • Word Prediction: These allow the user to select a desired word from an on-screen list located in the prediction window. This list, generated by the computer, predicts words from the first one or two letters typed by the user. The word can then be selected from the list and inserted into the text by typing a number, clicking the mouse or scanning with a switch. These programs help users increase written productivity and accuracy, and increase vocabulary skills through word prompting.

  • Reading comprehension programs: These programs focus on establishing or improving reading skills through ready-made activities, stories, exercises, or games.

  • Reading Tools and Learning Disability Programs: Include software designed to make text-based materials more accessible for people who struggle with reading. Options can include scanning, reformatting, navigating, or speaking text out loud. These programs help people who have difficulty seeing or manipulating conventional print materials; people who are developing new literacy skills or who are learning English as a foreign language; and people who comprehend better when they hear and see text highlighted simultaneously.

  • Speech Output: Software tools that allow information going to the screen “speak” the text out loud. Individuals who have lost the ability to communicate orally can use a speech synthesizer to communicate by typing information and letting the speech synthesizer speak it out loud.

  • Voice Recognition: Also called voice recognition programs, allow people to give commands and enter data using their voices rather than a mouse or keyboard.

  • Irlen Filters: Couloured overlays that can improve the readibility of text on screen or in books

  • Mindmapping: Giving a visual representation of thought processes and ideas

Other Resources

  • Spubble-a Iphone app for people who have language issues.

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