TECH - NJ 2003

Assistive Technology for People with Disabilities

Volume 14, Number 1

EDITORIAL


The staff of the Adaptive Technology Center for New Jersey Colleges and the faculty in the Department of Special Education at The College of New Jersey are pleased to bring you this 2003 issue of TECH-NJ. Its publication coincides with the launching of our new web site:

http://adaptivetech.tcnj.edu

The site has been re-designed to offer more information in an easy-to-use layout. We encourage you to visit the web site and use the resources we have included under two new buttons:

• Information on Assistive Technology

• Information on Post-secondary Education for People with Disabilities

Under these buttons you will find links to our popular resource packets, which are now in PDF format so that you can easily download, print and disseminate them to your faculty, disability support staff, child study team personnel, transition coordinators, administrators, parents, and students.

We are also very happy to announce three exciting new hires at the College. First of all, we have a new dean of the School of Education — Dr. Terry O’Connor, who comes to us from Indiana State University. And secondly, two assistive technology enthusiasts have joined the faculty of the Department of Special Education: Dr. Jerry Petroff, from the State Department of Education, and Dr. Debbie Newton, who had served as the assistive technology specialist at the Center for Enabling Technology. We are extremely fortunate to have them at the College, and we look forward to their creative contributions to our teacher preparation programs, our assistive technology initiatives, and future issues of TECH-NJ.

This issue of TECH-NJ provides an update on technology tools for struggling readers and writers that was the focus of our previous two issues, and it features the use of technology to enhance communication. Being able to communicate one’s thoughts, feelings, and ideas is absolutely critical to being successful in school and the workplace. Being able to understand other people’s communication attempts is equally essential. For people who cannot speak and for people who cannot hear speech, technology offers an exciting range of solutions. In this issue, a young man explains how computer-based augmentative communication systems have enabled him to work, live independently, and just be himself, despite the fact that he is unable to speak. The issue also features several articles on technology tools to enhance communication for people who are deaf or hard-of-hearing. The user profile highlights a high school student who is successfully included in regular classes through the use of an FM assistive listening system and the use of C-Print™ for note-taking. Once again, TECH-NJ emphasizes the theme of using assistive technology to increase independence and participation for all people.

A.G.D.


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