• Benefits of Assistive Technology within the Inclusive Classroom for Students with Disabilities

      Bruzee, Natalie Erin; The College at Brockport (2004-05-15)
      As the number of students with disabilities in our classrooms grow, it is important to make sure we as educators do as much as possible.to ??commodate our students with disabilities. The 1997 reauthorization of Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) extends this mandate by requiring Individualized Education Plan (IEP) teams to consider assistive technology. Do students with disabilities in inclusive classrooms benefit from using assistive technology at appropriate times in the classroom? In order to answer this question, I reviewed articles and distributed an anonymous questionnaire to inclusive education teachers in a suburban school district. All questions had to do with the use of assistive technology within the classroom and teacher's experiences with assistive technology and their students. By looking at these articles and questionnaires, I was able to gain a better insight into assistive technology and its academic benefits for students with disabilities when used at appropriate times. Results suggest that when students with disabilities used their assistive technology at the appropriate times, students benefited academically. However, more research needs to be conducted on what strategies teachers should implement to ensure students are using their devices at the appropriate time in order to be beneficial. Teachers also need support in the area of training. Educators are expected to know what device is appropriate for a particular disability, yet there is no specific training beyond the basic operating techniques.