FSU Launches New Graduate Certificate in Assistive Technology

The advent of mobile applications and other technologies have created thousands of new opportunities to assist people with disabilities. This fall, Framingham State is launching the state’s first graduate certificate that aims to make people more proficient in using all these new tools to help others.

The Graduate Certificate in Assistive Technology begins with an Introduction to Assistive Technology course, which is also part of FSU’s master’s degree programs in Educational Technology and Special Education.

“The program will teach people not only about the great commercial solutions that are out there, but also ways to think creatively to come up with custom solutions to meet an individual’s needs,” says Dr. Katherine Hibbard, a member of the Education Department and coordinator of the new certificate program.

Dr. Hibbard says assistive technology ranges from low-tech solutions, such as pencil grips or playing cards with brail, to high-tech solutions available on iPads, laptops and other devices. The University has provided more than $30,000 in grants to purchase assistive technology to demonstrate in the classroom. There will also be an opportunity to visit one of the state’s Assistive Technology Demonstration Centers.

“Students will learn about a wide range of assistive technology tools and devices and how to use them effectively,” says Dr. Hibbard. “They will also learn how to work with a team to asses an individual’s needs and determine which products, or group of products, might be best for them.”

The target audience for the certificate is working professionals in the K-12 or higher education setting, as well as people working in a disability services or a veteran’s services office. Students must complete four courses to earn the certificate. They also have the option of taking an Advanced Internship Course.

Click here to learn more about Framingham State’s Graduate Certificate in Assistive Technology. You may also e-mail Dr. Katherine Hibbard at khibbard@framingham.edu with any questions.

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