Students With Disabilities Services
STUDENTS » Assistive Technology
What is Assistive Technology?
Assistive technology (AT) is hardware or software designed to provide individuals with disabilities equal access to information and products.
Why is AT Important?
The most important aspect of assistive technology is the independence that it offers students with disabilities. With assistance, a student can maximize independence in reading, writing, and performance. Assistive technology also helps the university meet the letter and spirit of disability law.
Assistive Technology Available for Testing
The Students with Disabilities Services office maintains assistive technologies for testing. The Testing Center is equipped with PC computers using assistive technology software and equipment that features:
Text-to-Speech and Web-to-Speech software
Screen reader software
Screen enlargement software
Microsoft IntelliType Pro keyboard software
Microsoft IntelliPoint Pro mouse software
Optical trackball marble mouse (upon student request)
Headset with built in microphone
The specialized software available includes ZoomText and JAWS, which are designed to assist students who are visually impaired or blind as they enlarge the screen or read aloud anything found on the screen. For those with difficulty with typing using the standard keyboard, Dragon Naturally Speaking allows you to dictate directly to the computer with your words appearing right on the screen. SDS's Test Center computers also have the software most commonly found in labs across campus (Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, etc.).
If you need training in the use of the assistive technology, contact the SDS Assistive Technology Coordinator at 974-4309 for an appointment. Our office is committed to increasing access to AT and is working towards its goal of providing access to AT in every major USF campus computer lab, stay tuned for more information regarding this exciting initiative.
Assistive Technology Goal
The goal for SDS's Assistive Technology is to provide students with disabilities access to an education through the use of assistive technology, while providing enhanced independence for enrolled students with disabilities in accessing learning and an education.
The Assistive Technology Coordinator at SDS serves as a campus resource by:
Providing for training/education for students with disabilities, faculty and staff in the use of specific adaptive technology.
Providing a cost-effective and timely production of print materials into alternative formats.
Enhancing self-reliant student use (for students with disabilities) that will increase technological and learning strategies that will enhance learning as well as employment/career opportunities.
Developing collaborative opportunities with Academic Departments in an ongoing effort that will provide for adaptive technology in computer labs throughout USF's campus.
SDS's Assistive Technology offers:
Student's one-on-one training and consultation.
Faculty, staff, and departments consultation of assistive technology needs and staff introductory training in assistive technology.
FM systems are available for students who are in need of amplification in the classroom. Students with hearing impairments and sometimes Central Auditory Processing Disorder often benefit from the use of FM systems.
To request an FM system:
Contact your SDS coordinator and arrange for a one-on-one office visit.
SDS will fit you with the FM equipment and train you in its use.
You will sign a contract with SDS to check out FM equipment for the semester.
Return equipment at the end of each semester to SDS.