Assistive Technology

The Office of Disability Services offers a variety of Assistive Technology which allows for independence and accessibility. Upon meeting with a DS staff member, a student’s need for assistive technology related to disability needs is explored. While previous training for many of the following technologies is not needed, there are some that require past experience and knowledge. Assistive technology for personal use is the student’s responsibility.

The following Assistive Technology is available through Disability Services and its use will be dependent upon the specific needs of students:

  • Phoenix: A Braille embosser that uses Duxbury and Firebird software to translate text and graphics, respectively, into tactile format. Materials must be in a Word document in order for them to be Braille embossed.
  • JAWS: The most popular screen reader worldwide, JAWS® for Windows® works with PCs to provide access to software applications and the Internet.
  • ZoomText*: ZoomText is a screen magnification system equipped with “reader” capability.
  • CCTV: Closed-circuit television (CCTV) system using a stand-mounted or hand-held video camera to project a magnified image onto a video monitor or a television (TV) screen.
  • Onyx Deskset 17”: A portable CCTV for both distance and close-up viewing with an attached 17” flat panel monitor and convenient rolling case.
  • SenseView Portable Magnifier: The Portable SenseView CCTV is the world’s smallest portable CCTV, and is packed with features.
  • PC MATE: A camera for both distance and close-up viewing with USB interface makes the Clarity PCMate the ultimate portable video magnifier for use with laptops or desktops in the classroom.
  • Braille N’ Speak: Braille ‘n Speak combines speech with a standard Perkins-style keyboard.
  • Talking Calculators: Basic and Scientific versions.
  • Mini Digital Recorders: These “tape-free” small recorders allow students to record lectures. Recorders are available for loan to eligible students. These can be checked out on a semester basis.
  • High-Speed Scanners: These assist in the text conversion process. Scanners make it possible for books to be scanned and to be prepared for electronic conversion for students with various disabilities.
  • Smart Classroom FM Systems: All “smart” classrooms are equipped with FM systems. If approved, the Office of Disability Services will issue the eligible student a receiver.
  • Pocket Talker: A small microphone picks up speech, which is amplified and sent to a hearing aid-compatible earphone. It amplifies sounds and voices in your immediate environment.
  • Phonic Ear Personal FM system: The Easy Listener personal FM system consists of a simple body-worn transmitter and receiver.
  • Track Ball mouse: A Trackball mouse has a roller ball mounted on a larger computer mouse base, suitable for use by people who cannot use a mouse but have enough dexterity to manipulate a small ball.
  • Head Pointer: The adjustable head pointer is a pointer that fastens on the head with a plastic headband, and projects out over the user’s forehead. The headband and the length and angle of the pointer rod are all adjustable. Head pointers allow hands-free use of a computer.
  • Large Keyboard: These are standard size computer keyboards with very large keys. The keys are 1-inch squares, 4 times bigger than the keys on standard computer keyboards.
  • Ergonomic Keyboard: The ergonomic design allows hands and wrists to be held in more comfortable position
  • Read&Write: Is powerful software that highlights and reads the screen. Read&Write can read text on image and has powerful features that help with reading and writing. Read&Write works with LockDown Browser in Windows only.**

* Note that ZoomText is not compatible with All-in-One (AIO) computers. AIO computers are one unit with no computer case. When launching ZoomText on an AIO computer the screen goes dark, and what appears is only the mouse arrow. IT Services and the vendor of ZoomText are aware of the issue and working on a resolution. Let us know if you encounter any issues.

** Read&Write is not compatible with LockDown Browser on Apple computers. Students will need to use VoiceOver if tests are performed using Apple LockDown Browser. We highly recommend completing the VoiceOver Training before the exam so students get familiar with how to use VoiceOver on LockDown Browser.