Join our Discussion on Assistive Technology Tools

Statistics show that just over 10 percent of adults have hearing and vision-related disabilities. These students enroll in our adult education programs and need assistance to be successful. On July 15th at 3 PM EDT, the LINCS Reading and Writing, Integrating Technology, and Disabilities and Equitable Outcomes communities will hold a live event to provide guidance and tools to assist adult education professionals serve their students with hearing and vision-related disabilities. Learn how to use the accessibility features in Actively Learn, CommonLit, and ReadWorks as well as tips on how to make learning materials accessible for everyone.  

Register here to join the discussion on Wednesday, July 15th, at 3PM EST.




Hi Disabilities and Equitable Outcomes Colleagues,

This is a friendly reminder that a live event will be held Thursday, July 15 at 3 PM ET (register HERE) featuring Ashly Winkle of the Integrating Technology group conducting live demonstrations of the accessibility features of three free tools that became favorites during pandemic online teaching:

ReadWorks A levelled text resource that supplies a variety of reading contexts.

CommonLit  A digital reading curriculum that assists students in improving their reading, writing, and thinking skills.

Actively Learn A digital reading platform that allows students to have deeper text engagement.

Your group's fearless leader Mike Cruse will also present about how to make PowerPoint presentations more accessible to leaners with vision and hearing disabilities.

I'm looking forward to seeing you at the event!

Steve Schmidt, Moderator

LINCS Reading and Writing Group 

Today's live discussion on Assistive Tech Tools was information packed!  As promised, I want to follow-up with some resources to help members become more comfortable with the tools in Microsoft PowerPoint (PPT).  We covered eleven elements to consider when building an accessible slide deck.  You can read more about each of these elements - and step-by-step directions on how to use them - here.

The one piece that I highlighted for anyone just jumping into accessibility is the built in Accessibility Checker.  It's a tool that walks you through your PPT and shows you where there are issues, and how to resolve them.  You can find more about it here.  It's the best place to start when you're new to considering all the elements.

The most challenging element is checking the slide reading order.  I found this tutorial, which you can read or watch,  helpful in explaining why it matters, and how to make sure you're doing it right. 

Reach out if you have questions, or lessons, that you want to share with us as you're learning!



Great webinar yesterday, I really enjoyed it. I really like that Wakelet has built in the MS immersive reader tool to help learners access information shared on Wakelet boards. I also have started working with a group of teachers who will be using MS forms and MS Word more in the adult education classroom. MS forms integrates MS immersive reader tool and operates much like Google Forms. Newer versions of MS Word have "dictate" button in the top right corner of a Word document that allows you to to speech to text. I am not sure that it would be very accurate for an ESL learner or someone with speech difficulties, but it might be helpful for people that struggle to type.