How to Use this LD Guide

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How to Use this Guide

How to Use this Guide

Under Case Studies in each of the areas you will find studies presenting descriptive examples of some of the ways in which technology can enable persons with particular learning disabilities to perform tasks, to enhance the quality of their work and life, and to experience success and fulfillment in those aspects of their lives which have frustrated or even defeated them in the past. While these case studies are primarily illustrative of particular difficulties faced by particular individuals, they provide a matrix for moving from identification of a problem to action.

After the narrative describing the setting and the problem, each case presents a crucial step in the progress from thought to action: an analysis of the individual's strengths and weaknesses. Any further action will capitalize on the person's strengths (e.g., strong motivation, good language skills) and accommodate his weaknesses (e.g., poor spelling and writing skills, deficits in nonverbal skills).

The final section presents suggestions for the application of assistive technology to the deficient area or skill drawn from the rapidly expanding array of technological accommodations available to the consumer, his family, and providers.

We provide some suggestions, not the solutions to any given problem. As technology advances in the area of assistive technology as it applies to learning disabilities, the choices will grow and the range of accommodations expand. In any case, these suggestions should not be viewed as a cure all. They are tools of which the usefulness must be evaluated case by case.

The good news is that there are usually other options available if one tool proves ineffective or too expensive or too complicated for the user. (See Chapter IV, Technology and Learning Disabilities, for more information on reading, writing, math, and social skills problems and for strategies to deal with these problems, including descriptions of hardware and software options).