ABLEnow, the Virginia-sponsored ABLE savings program, opened for nationwide enrollment in late 2016. Virginia is among the first states in the country to open an ABLE program for eligible individuals living with disabilities.

 
On November 1, the State of Michigan launched its “MiABLE” program. MiABLE is a part of a national program each state is supposed to launch, offering enrollment to qualified individuals with disabilities both in Michigan and throughout the country. MiABLE allows qualified individuals with disabilities to save up to $14,000 a year in an ABLE account without jeopardizing their eligibility for Read the remainder of this entry »

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Gift Giving Guide for Kids with Special Needs

Posted November 28, 2016 By Lee Learson
By Glenda Hampton Anderson, Education/Assistive Technology Consultant.

As stated by Cari Jean, “It’s no secret that kids love toys. They see a new one on a television advertisement and tell their parents, “I want that!” If kids had their way, they would have every toy imaginable. Toys can be a great way for kids to use motor skills, to learn to play by themselves and to learn to share with others. But what happens when children do not have the required skills to play with their toys? Kids with special needs may not be able to play with many of the mainstream toys available. That’s why there is a market for adaptive toys for special needs children.” Read the remainder of this entry »

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By Aviva Rutkin

No braille? No problem. A new device lets blind people read by popping a miniature camera on their fingertip.

To read printed material, many visually impaired people rely on mobile apps like KNFB Reader that translate text to speech. Snap a picture and the app reads the page aloud. But users sometimes find it difficult to ensure that their photo captures all of the text, and these apps can have trouble parsing a complex layout, such as a newspaper or restaurant menu.

figure1b“We want to empower end users to accomplish these activities of daily living through technology,” says Jon Froehlichat the University of Maryland.

Froehlich and his colleagues have developed a device, nicknamed HandSight,  that uses a tiny camera originally developed for endoscopies. Measuring just one millimetre across, the camera sits on the tip of the finger while the rest of the device clasps onto the finger and wrist. As the user follows a line of text with their finger, a nearby computer reads it out. Audio cues or haptic buzzes help the user make their way through the text, for example changing pitch or gently vibrating to help nudge their finger into the correct position. Read the remainder of this entry »

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NASA Internships for Students with Disabilities

Posted November 7, 2016 By Lee Learson

NASA is looking to increase the number of students with disabilities pursuing science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) careers through their regular internship programs. This is not a program for students with disabilities.  NASE is trying to recruit more students with disabilities into their regular internship programs. Disability means both physical and mental disabilities. Internships are a good way to get real-world experience. However, this is not an employment program. NASA jobs can be found at <http://www.usajobs.gov>. Students can apply for Summer 2017 internships now! The deadline for submitting applications will be Wednesday, March 1, 2017. NASA will begin extending offers to students in mid-to-late January and will continue until all positions are filled. If you would like to subscribe to an announcement-only list about NASA internships for persons with disabilities, please send an E-mail to nasainterns-request@freelists.org with ‘subscribe’ in the Subject field, OR by visiting the list page at http://www.freelists.org/list/nasainterns. Read the remainder of this entry »

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Mathematica Builds Resources for Educators! With teachers and students back in school, finding educational interventions that help students succeed just got easier with the redesigned What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) website. Mathematica developed key features of the new site, a trusted source of evidence for educators, including a tool that lets users Find What Works. Find What Works helps identify programs, products, practices, and policies, and with the strongest evidence of effectiveness positively affecting student outcomes—an increasingly important goal in the era of evidence-based decision making. The powerful search function allows users to sort and filter their searches by gender, race and ethnicity, school setting, and grade level, and to compare interventions to find the right fit for their students. Read the remainder of this entry »

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More and more government services are going online, but if the website isn’t accessible to people with disabilities, then millions of Americans are being excluded from vital civic services.

by Kevin Rydberg; GT (Government Technology) www.govtech.com 

Unplug your mouse. Now, try to log into your website and use your keyboard to navigate — try to fill in a form or download a document. How did that go? If you were on one of thousands of state, county or city government websites that are not accessible, it was probably quite a challenge. For reasons of practicality and efficiency, more and more government services are going online. But if the website is not accessible to people with disabilities — the country’s largest minority population — then millions of Americans are being excluded from vital civic services. Why Web Accessibility Matters… Read the remainder of this entry »

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A Comprehensive Guide to AT Services by CAST

Posted September 27, 2016 By Lee Learson

CAST has announced it’s new publication of “Quality Indicators for Assistive Technology: A Comprehensive Guide to AT Services” by CAST Professional Publishing. The book contains much of the information provided on the QIAT website in a comprehensive, concise format with everything in one place.  Other benefits are the inclusion of a research base for the Read the remainder of this entry »

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ShortcutWorld.com is an open, wiki-style Reference Database for Keyboard Shortcuts. Using Keyboard Shortcuts on a daily basis is the mother of all productivity techniques. With this project, ShortcutWorld.com is building an open Hotkey Reference Database with the goal to cover as many Applications on as many Platforms and in as many Languages as possible.

Their goal is to get millions of users out there to be more productive. Please read the Frequently Asked Questions to learn more how the site works and how you can contribute.

Here’s an example of what’s available on the site… Read the remainder of this entry »

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ATIA 2017: Network, Learn, Volunteer!

Posted September 12, 2016 By Lee Learson

ATIA 2017 will be here sooner than you think and now you can start planning your conference experience. The ATIA 2017 online session directory is live! Browse the education sessions you can attend and register by September 30 to take advantage of the Early Bird Discount and the early risk-free cancellation policy.

NETWORK Read the remainder of this entry »

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App Ed Review was born when Dr. Todd Cherner was teaching a graduate-level literacy class at Coastal Carolina University. As part of that class, Todd set aside time for “app-etizers” that were mini-lessons about apps. Because the school district where the majority of his students worked provided each of them an iPad to use in their classroom, Todd’s students were very interested in these mini-lessons. Then, during one of these app-etizers, a student asked him, “What makes an app good to use in the classroom?” Read the remainder of this entry »

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