Let Assistive Technology assist you
Assistive Technology

Let Assistive Technology assist you

Wait, what… you’re telling me that there’s technology that can convert text into speech… and that means you could actually be listening to what I am writing right now!

How smart is that?!...and just think how much help this could be for students across the college! Apparently, they can also show me how to turn my speech into text too! So the next blog I write I might just be talking into a mic and watching the words appear on screen, rather than banging away on the keyboard.

And this is just some of the technology that Forth Valley Colleges’ Equalities, Inclusion and Learning Services Department can provide for students and staff, who are looking to save time, make learning easier, improve organisation and at the very least boost their confidence.

Microsoft 365 'Learning Tools', Google Suite AT tools, Inspiration or MindGenius (mind-mapping software), and – coming soon – an upgrade to Read & Write, are all available on all the college PCs to support learning needs and make academic life easier for all of us.

All the above are able to help with:

  • Study Skills
  • Organising
  • Referencing
  • Researching
  • And even writing an essay… yes, you read (or heard) right - writing an essay!

As Laura Hutton, Forth Valley Colleges’ Assistive Technology Co-ordinator, says, “We are responding to the needs of students and staff. Assistive Technology, in general, is designed to level the playing field, by allowing users to work in ways better suited to their personal learning style.”

Laura makes a very good analogy here: doctors dictate their letters, not because they don’t know how to write a letter but because it saves them valuable time. It’s simply not the case that using assistive technology suggests a lack of ability.

Assistive Technology is there to ‘assist’ the user to be quicker and more productive – not only is it a great resource for people with conditions like dyslexia – it’s a fantastic tool to enable anyone to become more efficient too.

Referrals come from all across the college to use this technology and all students and staff are welcome to contact the Equalities, Inclusion and Learning Services Department to find out what tech would enhance their studies or reduce their workload.

In fact, the Learning Resource Centres at all three Campuses will soon be running sessions on Study Skills, using Read & Write and other workshops, so look out for more information on the FVC communication platforms soon.

Laura added, “Assistive Technology can be transformative for those who have a specific learning difficulty and simply a massive time saver for those who don’t.”

It really is a no-brainer!

Contact 01324 403120 or email learningsupport@forthvalley.ac.uk for more information.

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