Assistive Technology

Assistive technology can open up exciting new opportunities for a child, but it is not magic. There are certain basic requirements for any individual to be successful with technology. It is important to face these requirements squarely. It can be very disappointing and discouraging to purchase expensive equipment for a child, which is beyond his or her capabilities to use. We encourage parents and students to become well informed.

There's an App for That - Understanding Apps!!
Helpful Apps - Other helpful apps for students

Google Chrome / Google Read&Write

Read&Write for Google Chrome is an extension that provides comprehensive reading and writing supports for Google Docs and the web as well as PDFs, ePubs, and KES files stored in Google Drive. Tools like talking and picture dictionaries and a translator to support struggling readers or English Language Learners.

Here is a “How-TO” for Google Chrome and an intro to Google Read&Write.

Premier Literacy Tools Guide

Have you heard of Premier Literacy Tools? Premier Literacy Tools is the world’s only suite of literacy tools that support individuals who find reading and writing a challenge, whether they are “at risk”, have a learning disability, low vision or blind. If you are part of the Rainbow District School Board, you have access to Premier At Home, where you can download and access these tools from your own personal computer. We have developed a Tutorial Guide that gives screenshot step by step guides to the most popular options on Premier. Click on the link below to download your own easy to use guide for Premier Literacy Tools.

Premier Literacy Tools Tutorial Guide  – Click Here!

High Tech Assistive Technology that may be helpful for older students with LD

NOTE:  LDA Sudbury does not endorse any of these products.  This is for your information only.

TextHELP Read and Write

TextHELP is a world-renowned software system for students with learning disabilities. As the name implies, it is designed to help students with their reading and writing skills. Its ability to read text out loud is enhanced with a talking spell checker, thesaurus and word prediction feature. TextHELP can also be used as a screen reader, which a student can use while typing text. For more information visit

Kurzweil 3000

Kurzweil is a program designed to help students with their reading and writing skills. Its ability to scan and read text allows the student to strengthen comprehension. Kurzweil also has an impressive study skills feature which allows the student to highlight and extract the main points of a passage. For more information visit


ReadPlease is a screen reader that can be downloaded free of charge. Created by Thunder Bay’s own Rob McCormack, it can read any web-based or scanned text. ReadPlease is a helpful tool for any student with visual or learning difficulties. For more information

Dragon Naturally Speaking Preferred

Dragon Naturally Speaking is a voice recognition software system. After the recommended training, a student can dictate directly into the computer, eliminating the need to type. Dragon Naturally Speaking works well for students who can verbalize their thoughts but may have difficulties writing. For more information visit

Palm Pilot and other PDA’s

The Palm Pilot is a portable and convenient hand-held device that has several useful features. It allows the user to organize events/assignments and type notes (with a portable keyboard) that can later be downloaded to any PC. For more information visit

Free and Lower Cost Assistive Technology Software

This information is adapted from the brochure and presentation “Assistive Technology: Lower Cost Options”
The full-colour brochure is linked at the bottom of this page in PDF format.

Dragon NaturallySpeaking

  • Turns speech into text
  • Very good accuracy after training
  • Helps those with spelling problems or those who have problems putting ideas onto paper
  • Works with most Windows programs
  • For Windows only

Costs $130-200


  • Mind mapping and graphic organization
  • Helps organize ideas into an outline
  • Can convert to Office format
  • Clip-art and multiple flow charts
  • Create easier to remember study aids
  • For Windows and Mac

Costs about $65


  • Reads any text pasted into it
  • Works with any program that lets you copy and paste
  • Free for everyone
  • Helps with reading difficulties
  • For Windows only


Firefox with CLiCK Speak

  • Firefox is a web browser, like Internet Explorer
  • Add-on CLiCK speak reads web pages aloud
  • Is built into the program so no copy and pasting is needed
  • Can read page, paragraph or sentence
  • Can be put on a USB stick and used on any Windows computer
  • Works with the Mac and Linux Firefox (not on USB)

 to download Firefox for CLiCK Speak Firefox for USB keys

A pre-compiled, ready for USB version is coming very soon to!

Google Calendar

  • Has to-do, events and scheduler
  • Accessible on any online computer
  • Can send an e-mail or text message reminder
  • Free for everyone
  • Helps with organization
  • For all Systems


Google Notebook

  • Put in links to research and other school stuff
  • Have as many subjects as you want
  • Type ideas and thoughts
  • Accessible on any computer with internet
  • Free for everyone
  • Helps with organization
  • For all Systems


  • Has most of the same features as Microsoft Office
  • Opens Office files
  • Has spell checking, dictionary and thesaurus
  • Creates easier to study tables and inserts images to text for better memorization
  • Works with Dragon
  • For Windows, Mac through X11, and Linux

Mac Users should check out for a OS X native app


  • Mind mapping and organization
  • Creates visual webs and flow charts
  • Similar to Inspiration or SMART Ideas
  • For Windows, Mac and Linux



  • Scientific Calculator
  • Shows all your lines of work that can be copied and pasted
  • You can go back and fix errors line-by-line, or copy and paste all the steps to show your work
  • For Windows only



  • Scientific and Graphing Calculator
  • Shows all your lines of work that can be copied and pasted
  • You can go back and fix errors line-by-line, or copy and paste all the steps to show your work
  • For Mac only


About LDAS

The Learning Disabilities Association of Sudbury is a charitable non-profit organization dedicated to supporting all individuals with Learning Disabilities in reaching their potential, within a community that values their unique contributions and abilities.

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