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Assistive Technology

Assistive Technology Device. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEA) Section 300.5 states, “Assistive technology device means any item, piece of equipment, or product system, whether acquired commercially off the shelf, modified, or customized, that is used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities of a child with a disability. The term does not include a medical device that is surgically implanted, or the replacement of such device.” 

  1. Assistive technology devices can be sorted into three categories. 
    1. Low-tech tools. These are tools that do not require electricity/batteries to operate (e.g., Slant boards, pencil grips, magnifying glass, picture schedules, etc.). 
    2. Mid-tech tools. Included in this category are devices that use batteries or have basic circuitry involved (e.g., lights, vibrating switches, GoTalks, BigMack switches, etc.). 
    3. High-tech tools. These tools may use batteries but also include advanced circuitry. (e.g., dynamic display communication devices, software, etc.). 

Assistive Technology Service. According to IDEA Section 300.6, “Assistive technology service means any service that directly assists a child with a disability in the selection, acquisition, or use of an assistive technology device. The term includes - 

  1. The evaluation of the needs of a child with a disability, including a functional evaluation of the child in the child’s customary environment;
  2. Purchasing, leasing, or otherwise providing for the acquisition of assistive technology devices by children with disabilities; 
  3. Selecting, designing, fitting, customizing, adapting, applying, maintaining, repairing, or replacing assistive technology devices; 
  4. Coordinating and using other therapies, interventions, or services with assistive technology devices, such as those associated with existing education and rehabilitation plans and programs; 
  5. Training or technical assistance for a child with a disability or, if appropriate, that child’s family; and
  6. Training or technical assistance for professionals (including individuals providing education or rehabilitation services), employers, or other individuals who provide services to, employ, or are otherwise substantially involved in the major life functions of that child.” 

For more information about AT, please contact your campus Educational Diagnostician, Speech Language Pathologist, or 

Jordan Swain 

Speech Language Pathologist