Assistive Technology

Assistive Technology (AT) is any item, equipment, software program, or product that is used to help increase or improve accessibility for individuals with disabilities. The Center for Learning, Access, and Student Success also provides a variety of assistive technology to help meet learners’ needs.

  • Optimizing Personal Technology

    Making a few changes in your Desktop and Laptop settings can help you improve accessibility

    Mac accessibility

    PC accessibility: MS Word and Adobe PDF provide built in accessibility (text-to-speech) features.

    Microsoft Edge

    iPhone and iPad Accessibility

    Android Accessibility

    Amazon Kindle Books: Often have text-to-speech features. Can be used on mobile devices and Kindle readers.

  • Speech-to-Text, Text Transcription, and Note-Taking Resources

    Smart Pen: Available to loan through the CLASS office by semester. Allows you to audiorecord information that is occurring while you take notes and to play back what is being recorded at any point. Particularly useful if you are slow at writing notes. Can upload notes to computer as well as audio.

    iPad applications (similar to a Livescribe pen): Audionote, SoundNote, and Notability. All available through itunes.

    Microsoft Transcript: record and transcribe audio

    Read & Write for Google Chrome: A powerful  extension on Chrome browser.

    Voice Note: Free speech-to-text dictation extension for Chrome browser.

    Voice Typing in Google docs: Type and edit documents in Google docs using just your voice.

    Dragon Naturally Speaking: Premier voice recognition software.

    Otter: Includes text transcription and other resources

    Co:Writer: Uses a grammar smart word prediction formula to suggest words as you type on different IOS platforms.

    Focus on Listening: Record classes, and then share or edit notes.

    See “help with note-taking and writing” under “Other Helpful Apps and Resources” for additional note-taking resources.

  • Text-to-Speech, Screen Readers, and Other Alternative Text Resources

    Learning Ally: Organization focused on creating audiobooks on over 80,000 titles with focus on both  visual impairment and dyslexia/reading disorder. Contains resources specifically designed for a college/adult learner. Limited to individuals with a diagnosed print-based learning disability such as Reading DIsorder (dyslexia) or Visual Impairment.

    Bookshare: Created for individuals with print disabilities (visual impairment, physical disability or  learning disability.)Text to speech with highlighted words on the screen. Availability of braille. *Free of charge for qualified US students of any age*

    Voice Dream:  text-to-speech app is compatible with Android and iOS, costs $9.99 and allows students to both sync their Bookshare accounts and upload any personal files to be read aloud.

    NVDA: free downloadable screen reader

    Natural Reader: Text-to-speech program for Windows or Mac. Converts text from multiple formats (word, pdf, webpage, etc) to audio files. Service is no longer part of the free version

    Read & Write for Google Chrome: A powerful  extension on Chrome browser.

    Speechify: Desktop and mobile application.

    Snap & Read: Text-to-speech software working across platforms online for digital text.

  • Other Helpful Apps and Resources


    Audio Note: record notes with integrated notepad

    Evernote: take notes, capture photos, create to-do lists, record voice reminders, and is searchable.

    PDF Notes

    Note Everything: A note (notepad) application where you can create text, voice, and paint-notes for Android.

    Noteability – Handwriting, note taking, audio recording, annotate PDFs, cloud sync your notes to Dropbox.

    PaperDesk – While playing audio, tap a word and PaperDesk will take you to the point in the recording when you typed that word!

    Brevity: Text editor and word prediction app

    D2u Dictation and Transcription: lets you dictate/transcribe notes.

    iTalk: A high quality recording app-good for recording lectures.

    Quick Voice: Most popular iPhone/iPad recorder.

    Speak It!: Text to speech for emails and other documents.

    Speechify – text to voice software that will read pictures of books, PDFs, or various types of documents

    Fast Finga: Converts hand written notes into text.


    Wunderlist: lets you create and manage a to do list, and share with others to coordinate planning.

    Instapaper: lets you save anything you are reading and sync across devices

    Tile: helps you find things you tend to misplace

    Secretary:  allows you to record voice memos/reminders to play back in certain locations

    Inbox: email management system in google chrome will sort emails into categories

    Google Keep: Create and organize lists

    Google Calendar: offers a variety of ways to manage time. The Alerts feature on Iphone and Alarm feature can be used to remind of either one time or recurring tasks.

    myHomework: Keep track of homework and projects.

    Microsoft To Do: “List-making will be your easiest to-do item on this free, streamlined app that synchronizes through the cloud across your devices.” “This freemiuim app adds some nifty power features. Chief among them: it integrates with your phone’s calendar to create a single interface showing both appointments and to do items.”

    Trello: “Track multiphase projects—for yourself or a small team.”


    Focal Filter: can block distractions when working like email, social networking, online videos

    Self-Control: for macs only

    Leech Block

    StayFocused: can limit the time you spend on distracting websites during the day

    Interval Minder: won’t help you block out distractions but will have a tone at random intervals to cue you to find out if you are focused on the task you are trying to complete.

    RescueTime: helps manage time and block distraction. Lets you track time spent on different websites/distractions as well as monitor time spent working at tasks

    Forest: a fun and creative way to limit and manage digital distractions.


    Hours: Helps you create virtual study groups and accountability strategies.

    Formulas HD for Calculus: A simple, easy to use, easy to navigate collection of the most important formulas and topics for college students.                       

    SpellChecker – Multilingual Spellcheck as you type with Grammar errors highlighted.

    Talking FlashCards – Use while driving, running, walking to capitalize on “down time”. 

    TextGrabber – ABBYY’s Mobile OCR! Just take a picture of the text, and you can immediately edit it or translate

    Typ-o HD – Powerful word prediction engine for dyslexia and/or trouble with spelling.

    Inspiration: Graphic organization to help with studying/reading. Templates for writing process and  ways to organize thoughts before starting to write. Web license version offered.

    Write Well: App features writing templates, tips, and outlines to help you get started and stay organized.


    Goal Streaks: is a program for your apple device that lets you track daily progress towards a set goal

    StickK: lets you publicly commit to a goal and enlist support to get there.

    Balanced: lets you keep track of goals related to wellness such as mindfulness and exercise

    The Habit Factor: lets you keep track of goals and helps track progress towards goals

    Pomodoro: is a time management technique that breaks work into 25 minutes of work time with five minute breaks, and a longer break after four time segments.

    HomeRoutines: app lets you create routine checklists for daily/weekly chores

    ATracker Pro: lets you create daily task to do lists and track how long tasks take

    Productive: “This app for Apple devices is a to-do list for the good things in life. It helps you get started with preconfigured to-do items such as “Eat fruits and veggies,” “Write in my journal,” and the elusive “Inbox zero.” You can configure any other good habits you like and set timeframes for each of them: daily, weekly, monthly, etc.”

    Rescue Time: “Use Rescue Time, and you’ll get a good overview of how well you’re managing your waking hours. The free app tracks both the programs you use and the sites you visit on your computer or smartphone.”

Contact the CLASS office ( or 336-758-5929) with any additional questions.