The following programs can be funded by the Disabled Students Allowance, so it can be useful to have a think about what may be helpful before the needs assessment to make sure everything that you think will be useful is covered. All the programs except Dragon Professional also have demo versions that you can download to try – click on the links to go the program’s website and this will direct you to where the trial versions can be downloaded.
- Sonocent Audio Notetaker (audio recording and organisation)
- ClaroRead / Texthelp Read&Write (text-to-speech)
- Dragon Professional (speech recognition)
- MindView (mind mapping)
- Pro-Study (organisation)
- Global Autocorrect
Sonocent Audio Notetaker – this is a program that you can use to record lectures with. You can use it on a laptop in lectures, record via the app on a smartphone and then transfer it to the software, or record using a digital recorder and create the file afterwards.
ClaroRead / Texthelp Read&Write – these programs both read text out loud so that you could listen to it if struggling with taking in information, having difficulties with concentration, or if too fatigued to read visually. The voice can take a bit of getting used to, but there are quite a few different ones to try. They can also be used to create audio versions of text that can then be listened to away from the computer, and have some additional proofreading and study skills options which can be handy.
Texthelp have also developed a program called Equatio, which is one the first that can provide support with maths-based subjects
Dragon Professional – this lets you talk to your computer to create text, which can be a more efficient way of working or can help student get their ideas down without the process of writing interfering. It takes quite a bit of practice to get used to and really depends on how well you can articulate your thoughts, but can be a useful tool for some.
MindView – this is a mind mapping program which can be a really efficient way of writing essays – you can use it to plan and organise ideas, but also add more information and export it all to MS Word to create an essay draft.
Pro-Study – this is a nice tool for organising research from computer-based reading material, which may help save some time and energy.
Global Autocorrect – this is great if you make typos when typing as it will automatically correct your writing as you type, which can be a big time saver. Useful for students with specific learning difficulties, but also students with fatigue, RSI, visual and hearing impairments.