How technology can help learning for young people with special educational needs

The use of technology has an impact on many aspects of society, including media and information transfer, and leisure activities, and is widely recognized as an everyday part of education, training, and employment. Technology also determines the economic prosperity of individuals and countries. That technology is a particularly a valuable tool for young people with special educational needs and can improve the academic performance, their quality of life, and increase their participation and social inclusion, is something that is indisputable.

There are several ways in which technology can help people with special education needs. For example, using personalized, video-game based learning can improve the skills of children with learning difficulties and motor impairment. A Hong Kong game developer works with Microsoft Kinect to develop unique educational games designed to help children with a variety of learning difficulties including dyscalculia, dyslexia, ADHD, autism and dyspraxia.

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The video games are designed in conjunction with therapists and educators in order to mimic exercises the children already have to do as part of their therapy or education. The developer’s mission is to make special education engaging by using innovative games whose designs are based on well proven educational practices using the Microsoft Kinect camera. The idea is to integrate them into computer-based gaming activities. The included exercises motivate and please the children during therapy sessions thereby increasing their attention, which in turn speeds up the rate at which they acquire skills. The developers of these games know that every child is unique, each having different sets of skills and academic needs. This is why they design games that can be easily adapted by the parents, teachers, and health care professionals, and are tailored to satisfy the individual needs of each child.

Technology helps in teaching, studying, and in communication.  It also helps in aiding therapy and diagnosis of need. We also have text-to-speech conversion technology which supports text disabled young people both through low tech devices and computer based systems. There are also spell checkers that helps young people with dyslexia and also has inclusive tools to encourage the production of writing. Technology can also be used for training young people with special educational needs on specific skills, both numeracy and literacy. A web based system can also provide opportunities for young people with special education needs an access to multimedia rich resources which can provide a richer learning experience for them.