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Technology can help struggling students leverage their learning strengths and bypass weaknesses to improve performance, independence, and self-confidence. In this online course aimed at teachers, learning specialists, educational therapists, and parents, you will learn about a wide range of tools to support students with learning disabilities, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), executive functioning deficits, and issues with processing information and memory. Through readings, lectures, video demonstrations, and hands-on activities, you will learn:
- How various tools address specific learning needs.
- How to match students with appropriate tools.
- Practical methods and strategies to implement technology solutions and integrate with curricula.
- How technology can facilitate Universal Design for Learning (UDL) practices in the classroom.
Learning OutcomesAt the conclusion of the course, you should be able to
- Provide a working definition of assistive technology (AT) devices and services in the context of accommodations for learning.
- Explain the principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL), and provide examples of how technology can facilitate practicing UDL in the classroom and why accessible education materials (AEM) are important to students using AT.
- Demonstrate understanding of how specific technology features address the functional limitations that students with learning differences encounter with a wide range of essential academic tasks.
- Apply a process for analyzing an individual's AT needs and creating a plan to implement selected tools and strategies.
- Name and differentiate between the main laws that govern AT in education and describe their implications for students with learning differences.
- Components of an effective AT solution
- Basics of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and Accessible Educational Materials (AEM)
- Tools and associated strategies for various academic tasks
- Applying a process for tool selection, implementation, and evaluating effectiveness
- To be successful in this class all students should have working knowledge of Google Workspace or Microsoft Office, proper email etiquette, and an essential understanding of Canvas.
- Students should have a basic understanding of the academic challenges faced by individuals who have learning disabilities, ADHD, and executive function issues. This can be satisfied in various ways, including (but not limited to):
- Professional experience addressing the needs of students with learning differences.
- Completion of "Understanding Learning Differences" (EDTH.x309) or equivalent coursework.
- Prior review of material on learning differences (provided by the instructor).
- Other requisites may be approved in advance by the instructor.
We recommend students understand the basics of using the Google Chrome browser (e.g., installing Chrome extensions) and Google Core Apps such as Docs, Sheets, and Drive.
Additional InformationPlease review section notes to view the full schedule.
Instruction is primarily online and asynchronous (self-paced) and includes comprehensive reading material with diagrams, videos, photos, tables, and links to additional web-based resources, plus self-guided activities. Live weekly Zoom sessions supplement the online instruction with class discussion and technology assistance.
Exploration of certain technologies is an essential part of this course. For these activities, students will need access to certain minimum tools, as listed below:
- A computer: A PC with Windows 10 or above, a Mac with macOS 10.14 (Mohave) or above, or a Chromebook with the latest Chrome OS.
- The Google Chrome browser or Microsoft Edge browser.
- A personal Google account. (recommended: new Google account specifically created for use with this course).
- Need the ability (permissions) to download and install free and trial software onto their device, especially Chrome extensions. Specific titles to be provided in class.
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Accessibility and Accommodation
For accessibility questions or to request an accommodation, please visit Access for Students with Disabilities or email the Extension registrar.
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This course is related to the following programs:
Estimated Cost: TBD
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