Technology Advancements aiding Education and Employability of the disabled
How has technology evolved throughout the years? Can technology aid in providing access to better education for the disabled individuals? Has technology lent a helping hand to the disabled individuals at work?
Over time, technology has brought about substantial changes within societies, from an mp3 player to an electric car. Technology has unquestionably proven the importance of the scientific mechanism in the field of medicine, astronomy, education, arts, food and agriculture etc. Innovation has aided in shaping the world we live in today; allowing inclusion to be possible across all industries around the world.
Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the WWW(World Wide Web) quotes:
“The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect.” Hence, the term technology has become universal, and one can gain access to it on a daily basis.
When technology integrates within the diameters of education; a drastic evolution is envisioned. To elaborate, technology has provided assistance in the fields of education and employment for the disabled individuals. Starting from the classical braille methodology to advanced technologies and apps that have created comprehensive tools to aid the disabled individuals to gain access to widespread knowledge in science and technology. Technological advances in education for the disabled individual has allowed ideas to flourish, fostering creativity and unique perspectives. This has allowed people with disabilities to keep up with evolving needs of a competitive world. Historically, a disabled individual has been able to stood out in all the fields since technology has created paths for the access of an easy-learning process and hence that has allowed a great comfort level for the individuals.
In the report” Current Perspectives on Assistive Learning Technologies” 2012 examines the methodological aspects on learning and the removal of any barriers in having access to education.
In this research, a detailed opinion is observed:
“In some instances, the technology may assist, augment, or supplement task performance in a given area of disability, whereas in others it may be used to circumvent or “by-pass” specific deficits entirely. Assistive technology is not intended to “cure”, “fix”, or remediate learning disabilities, nor is it intended to teach or instruct (as is computer-aided instruction, CAI). Furthermore, it strives to accentuate strengths rather than weaknesses, to enable expression of abilities at a level commensurate with intelligence, and, ultimately, to enhance the quality of life of persons with learning disabilities” (Raskind, 1994).
However, the transformation of educational and employment system has permitted the progress of ICT (Information and Communication Techology) for the disabled individuals across the globe. Certainly, the access of affordable technology enhances the representation of the disabled individual as to overcome the given obstacle and acquire success. There are plenty of technologies that have made learning easier for the disabled individuals.
Voice Mate is a built-in application for various LG smartphones. It is an application that is activated by an individual’s voice. It is basically an organizer that provides keeping track of appointments, phonebook, making calls, calculations and an alarm clock. By speaking the name of a person, the voice mate will in return speak the number for you, making it an ideal application for managing a tough schedule.
Audio Note Taker is said to be the best application for the students with disabilities. The software deviates an individual’s laptop or smartphone into an audio recorder, providing full access to audio recordings of the lectures thus creates a sense of independence and the ability to achieve great academic potential. Through this software, variety of audio essays can be created and edited.
Assist-Mi, is a free application simply designed for the disabled individuals to accommodate the services requested. The app allows to improve the lives of an individual with disability by giving full assistance in getting to work, shopping, travelling and engaging the individual with the society and media. The app speaks volume as it quotes:
“This isn’t just an app… This is a revolution”
Smartphones have become a necessity for everyone across the globe, including the disabled. Sesame phone has received a lot of attention for its uniqueness and sensitivity as it is the world’s first touch-free smartphone. This innovation has created a platform for people with disabilities to have access to the society. It works with head movements which is then tracked by the front-camera. The individual can operate any features of the device by controlling the cursor with small head movements.
To conclude, technology has transformed each and every field for the disabled individuals; and with great innovations — there are higher chances of further improvements in the field of science, technology and education. A better educational system can thus allow any individual in obtaining an outstanding lifestyle along with the assistance of an advanced tech world.
As Dean Kamen, an American engineer, inventor and businessman quotes:
“Everybody has to be able to participate in a future that they want to live for. That’s what technology can do.” Thus, we all as a part of the society should contribute in the advancements of technologies and help shape the world in to a more inclusive space.