Assistive technology is used by individuals with disabilities in order to perform functions that might otherwise be difficult or impossible. Assistive technology can include tools to help an individual with communication, vision needs, hearing impairments, and/or to access the academic curriculum.
Tools can include augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) and tools to support the access to reading, writing, and math because traditional methods have not been successful. The multidisciplinary team will work together to determine if assistive technology is appropriate for every student who has an IEP or 504 plans.
When traditional academic methods have not been effective for a student, assistive technology tools might be an option. An assistive technology consultation request can be put in for any student who needs the next level of support in reading, writing, and/or math.
AAC is used by people who, some or all of the time, cannot rely on their speech. AAC incorporates the individual's full communication abilities and may include any existing speech or vocalizations, gestures, manual signs, and aided communication. AAC is truly multimodal, permitting individuals to use every mode possible to communicate. Over time, the use of AAC may change, although sometimes very slowly, and the AAC systems chosen today may not be the best systems tomorrow - American Speech-Language Hearing Associates (ASHA).
Developing cause and effect is important as a child learns that his/her behavior and actions result in a response. This helps the child to develop early communication and cognition skills, which are necessary to understand the cause and effect relationship.
Assistive Technology and the Law: