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Assistive technology

All computers on campus have specialist software to support those with dyslexia or a visual impairment. On all computers on campus you can find:

  • Mind-Mapping Software:  XMind and Inspiration
  • Text to Speech Software:  Read & Write, Zoomtext and JAWS
  • Magnification and Screenreading Software:  Zoomtext and JAWS.

Many of the lecture halls and reception areas have ‘T’ switch hearing loops, where you can hear the voice of the speaker directly through a hearing aid. There are a small number of accessible rooms on campus with facilities such as height adjustable desks, automatic doors, low level drawers, hoists and deaf alerter systems.

Assistive Technology Centre

The Assistive Technology Centre (ATC) provides a quiet working area for disabled students with equipment for you to use. In the ATC, there are networked PCs, printing, photocopying and scanning facilities and private study rooms. The centre also has a wide range of assistive technology for you to use including: 

  • Mind-Mapping software: MindView, Inspiration and XMind
  • Text-to-Speech software: Read & Write, Zoomtext, JAWS, NVDA and Supernova
  • Book scanners: Opticbook 3800 (these scan quickly and effectively into the spine of the book so that the book can be converted to Word or PDF)
  • Scanning to text (OCR) software: Omnipage, Read & Write, Kurzweil 1000 and Kurzweil 3000
  • Spellchecking and proofreading software: Ginger and Read & Write
  • Voice recognition software: Dragon Naturally Speaking
  • Magnification and screen reading software:  JAWS, Zoomtext, Supernova and NVDA
  • Mice: Logitech Marble, Kensington Ball, Air0bic Quill, Evoluent, EasyTrax Joystick
  • Keyboards: Microsoft Ergonomic, Big Keys, Goldtouch, Keyguards
  • CCTV magnifiers: Optelec ClearView (Standalone and attached to PC), Farview Spectrum, SenseView
  • Adjustable tables: Automatic height adjustable tables with electric motor
  • Ergonomic chairs: RH400, Grahl Duo Back, Hoganasmobler 382 & 562 and Aeron ‘B’ Mesh Chair and others.

Loan equipment

The Disability and Dyslexia Service has a range of equipment for disabled students to borrow. This enables you to try equipment before being assessed for Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA); access equipment whilst waiting for DSA funding; or borrow equipment if you are not eligible for DSA.

The equipment available includes:

  • Voice recorders: high quality Olympus recorders which can record lectures even if the speaker is some distance away
  • Portable assistive listening devices: systems for those with a hearing impairment. The lecturer’s voice will be transmitted into a receiver, which can then be listened to on headphones or through a hearing aid
  • Back supports: portable supports to provide extra comfort on chairs for those with back pain
  • Portable CCTVs: these hand held devices magnify text placed underneath them
  • Laptops: a small number of laptops are available for temporary loan with some assistive technology, including voice recognition software.

Training and support

Help and assistance is available if you wish to learn how to get the most out of the mainstream and assistive technology available. This is provided in the following ways:

  • Online resources: a wide range of resources are available online via the Disability and Dyslexia Service Blackboard pages, including software tutorials and details of free assistive software and apps.
  • Drop-in support: students with quick queries can drop-in between 2-3pm every weekday during term time for help with assistive technology. No need to book.
  • One-to-one appointments: for more in depth support, appointments can be booked with the ATC adviser using the contact details below.
  • Assistive technology training: students receiving AT training funded by the DSA can have this training in the ATC.

DisabledGo: Brunel University - Access Guide