Presentation on theme: "Dr Abi James Product Manager iANSYST Ltd"— Presentation transcript:
1 Dr Abi James Product Manager iANSYST Ltd How Can Technology Be Used To Help Students With Dyscalculia And Dyslexia Overcome Their Difficulties? Dr Abi JamesProduct ManageriANSYST Ltd
2 Introduction Why use technology What is the problem? Reading and writing skills still needed in maths subjectsTechnology is available & widely used in other areasTechnology should save time and remove in-authentic labourWhat is the problem?Current technology solution not developed to cope with scientific notationExisting solutions may need to be adapted or used taking a different approachTechnology should save time and remove inauthentic labourshould in the important thing here. It doesn't always when it comes to science subjects. Therefore using basic tools becomes a problem.
3 Problems experienced by dyslexic students Problems experienced in mathematical subjectsProblems experienced by dyscalculic students
4 Problems experienced by students Using technology to help with reports, assignments & examssubject specific words will not be accepted by spell checkersdifficult to proof read scientific notationspeech recognition and concept mapping can help some studentsStudent's issues- students have to learn to recognise a much wider range of symbols.- sequence is important both in interpreting and correctly writing notation (e.g. putting a - sign in the power component instead in front of the numerator)- at HE students are expecting to pick and use this new language without any help. Newer get a course in the Greek alphabet....
5 Problems experienced by students Note taking during lectures or seminarsDifficulties with accuracy and speedLimited technology to help with taking down scientific notation quickly and accuratelyNon-medical helpers for note taking rarely have a scientific backgroundUnable to use audio recordings to back up notesStudent's issues- students have to learn to recognise a much wider range of symbols.- sequence is important both in interpreting and correctly writing notation (e.g. putting a - sign in the power component instead in front of the numerator)- at HE students are expecting to pick and use this new language without any help. Newer get a course in the Greek alphabet....
6 Technology solutions: Subject specific Spell Checkers Spellex adds subject specific terminology into MS Word’s spell checker (£82 + VAT for a single user).UK versions available for medical, pharmaceutical, legal, biotech, botanical, technical, geographicalVarious medical dictionaries available (e.g. Brody’s) but many are American.
7 Technology solutions: Word Prediction, Banks & Text Expansion Word prediction can quickly learn terminology and phrases to be reproduced when needed.Read & Write and Penfriend alsoinclude text expansion toolsWords banks (Wordbar) can used to quickly enter phrases or keystrokes.
8 Technology solutions: OCR Software OCR software is needed to convert scanned in images to editable text.Packages can not convert equations into editable/readable text – they remain as images.Abbyy FineReader can recognise some programming languages
9 Technology solutions: Text-to-speech Speech engines will attempt to pronounce terminology using phonetic rulesCan not read-back equations represented as images or in PDF filesLimited read back of Equations - MathML & Math Player with Read & WriteEquations need to be read-out non-linearly. So although simple equations and expressions may be read aloud e.g. x+y=z, anything more complicated will have problems.
10 Technology solutions: Talking calculators Read & Write Gold and ClaroRead provide speech-enabled software-based calculatorsHandheld talking calculators are available but expensive : £200+Designed for visually impaired
11 Technology solutions: Speech Recognition MathTalk with Dragon NaturallySpeaking enables scientific notation to be dictated.Good for writing reports but not note takingUser needs to be fluent in terminology and symbolsSuits auditory learners and disadvantages visual learnersMathTalk demos
12 Technology solutions: Concept mapping Used to explain concept and plan reports or projects.Good for overcoming sequencing & organisation difficultiesInspiration includes basic maths symbols but aimed a secondary level.More advanced drawing packages can provide equation builders but more difficult to make maps –SmartDraw; Visio
15 Quicklink Pen Elite & SuperPen Professional Scan a word or line of text and hear it.See the definition of the word.QL EliteTransfer text and images to PCSuperPen Professional:Comes with dictionaries covering medicine, finance, computing, geography, science & a thesaurus.
16 New solutions for note-taking: Digital Pen IO Pen saves an image of pages written in a special notebook to a PC.Can use handwriting recognition but problems with:Spelling errorsTerminology & equationsBut could be used be a note-taker or for saving notes as an image.
17 New solutions for note-taking: Graphics Tablet A graphics tablet can be used to enter diagrams or equations graphically alongside a PC.But requires good co-ordination skills.Still slower than writing by hand
18 New solutions for note-taking: Adapted word banks Project to develop a method of creating equations quickly in Word byDeveloping word banks to control the equation editor or maths word processorProvide shortcut to symbol tools within Word.
19 Question & Answer session What solutions are you using with your students?What works?What do your students need?
20 Dr Abi James Product Manager iANSYST Ltd Fen HouseFen RoadCambridgeCB4 1UN