The iPad as a mobile assistive technology device

Linda Chmiliar, Carrie Anton

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Articlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to present the viewpoint of the authors on the use of the iPad as an assistive technology tool for post-secondary students with disabilities. Design/methodology/approach – Although this paper is not classified as a research article, the viewpoints discussed by the authors are related to a pilot study and continuing case study research they are conducting. Findings – The authors indicate that they have been surprised at the positive results they have observed in the iPad implementation, particularly with students moving to the iPad to continue their studies at the completion of the research. Practical implications – This paper discusses the opportunities and limitations afforded by the use of the iPad with post-secondary students as well as suggestions for implementation. Social implications – After decades of experience in the field of assistive technology, the authors are becoming convinced that the iPad offers significant opportunities for learning for students with disabilities. One of the exciting parts of being involved in these iPad studies has been to observe: the transformation of student study skills, the increased student self-discovery around how they learn, and the increase in student confidence in technology use. Perhaps rather than labeling the iPad as a mobile device or an assistive technology tool, the authors need to look at different terminology to define it. The ownership of this device by post-secondary students is growing every year, and it is a device that does not set students with disabilities apart from their peers. It is a device that can effectively support student learning through built in accessibility features and the use of commonly available and used apps. Perhaps using the term “equalizing technology” to describe the iPad might be more appropriate. Originality/value – This paper discusses the opportunities and limitations afforded by the use of the iPad with post-secondary students as well as suggestions for implementation. This is a rapidly developing area in universities and colleges around the world.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)127-135
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Assistive Technologies
Volume9
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 21 Sep. 2015

Keywords

  • Apps
  • Assistive technology
  • Learning
  • Post-secondary students
  • iPad
  • m-Learning

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