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Assistive Technology Assessment & Implementation. Your Hosts From Parents Helping Parents iTECH Center…. Debbie Drennan– AT Specialist and *Leading Expert in the AT World Janet Nunez – AT Specialist and “’What If?’ Girl” of the AT world (Special Guests: Agnes & Gladys)

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Assistive Technology Assessment & Implementation

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Assistive technology assessment implementation

Assistive TechnologyAssessment& Implementation

Your hosts from parents helping parents itech center

Your HostsFrom Parents Helping ParentsiTECH Center…

  • Debbie Drennan– AT Specialist and *Leading Expert in the AT World

  • Janet Nunez – AT Specialist and “’What If?’ Girl” of the AT world

  • (Special Guests: Agnes & Gladys)

    *Based on peer-review

Objectives of presentation

Objectives of Presentation

Attendee will learn about:

  • The differences between consideration & assessment

  • Best practices regarding AT assessments

  • The elements of a quality AT assessment report

  • Resources available to assist teams with assessment and implementation process

Assistive technology assessment implementation

Agnes & Gladys

Two mature women sit facing each other in a living room. They are wearing head scarves and gaudy jewelry. The woman on the right appears to be talking while the woman on the left holds a funnel to her ear and appears to be listening intently. A large jar of pickles can be seen on a table in the background.

Quick review

Quick Review!

  • IEP consideration process-

    • What does the law say about consideration of AT?

    • Can you name one framework for consideration?

    • Four outcomes of consideration

Assistive technology assessment implementation


  • No Tech:

  • Low Tech:

  • Mid Tech:

  • High Tech:

Consideration steps

Consideration Steps

  • Review present levels.

  • Develop annual goals.

  • Identify tasks necessary to accomplish goals.

  • Determine the difficulty of the student’s tasks or barriers to success.

  • Identify appropriate supports and service, including AT.

Where does the iep team start

Where Does the IEP Team Start?

  • The least complex solution that will remove barriers to achievement should be a first consideration.

  • Focus on the least restrictive solution from which meaningful benefit can be derived.


Assistive technology assessment implementation

Accessible Technology Assessment: Student, Environment, Tasks and Tools (SETT)

IEP Goal area being addressed:

Trial Period recommended? No _________ Yes __________ If yes, complete and attach Trial Period Plan form.

Consideration outcomes

Consideration Outcomes

  • AT is not required

  • AT is required

  • AT is required but trials are needed to determine appropriate AT

  • Team needs more information

Assistive technology assessment implementation

Agnes & Gladys

What is the difference between consideration assessment

What is the Difference between Consideration & Assessment?

  • Consideration

    • Happens during IEP team meeting

  • Assessment

    • May be a result of consideration

    • May be result of parent request

Assistive technology assessment implementation

Why is AT Assessment Important?

  • AT Abandonment: Matching Persons with Technology study 1999

  • Funding source- some require a full AT assessment



Who should conduct at assessment

Who Should Conduct AT Assessment?

  • Depends on goals being addressed

  • Funding source requirements

  • In Education law, no specific requirements noted except that assessor must be “qualified.”


Assessment best practices

Assessment Best Practices

Procedures of assessment clearly defined

Team approach

Student and family involvement

Conducted in the student’s customary environment



Recommendations based on data

Reassessment as needs change

Quality Indicators for AT


Assessment goals

Assessment Goals

Does the type of technology we are trying actually do what we thought it would do for the child?

Which of the technology solutions tried is most effective?

If AT tried includes a wide range in cost, is there data to justify the selection of one of the more expensive options?

Bowser & Reed, 1998 – Education Tech Points


Assistive technology assessment implementation

Accessible Technology Assessment: Student, Environment, Tasks and Tools (SETT)

IEP Goal area being addressed:

Trial Period recommended? No _________ Yes __________ If yes, complete and attach Trial Period Plan form.

Assessment process

Assessment Process

  • Identify and define problem

  • Gather information– (SETT process, student records, interviews, observation)

  • Generate and prioritize AT solutions (no-tech to high-tech)

  • Develop an AT plan

  • Conduct AT trials and collect data

  • Formulate report/recommendations

  • Document in IEP


Acquiring trial equipment

Acquiring Trial Equipment

  • Vendors

  • AT Network: AT Device Lending Library

  • Public Library

  • Check within school districts/SELPA

Data collection

Data Collection

Assessment tools

Assessment Tools

  • WATI-

  • Oregon Technology Access Program

  • UKAT toolkit-

  • Don Johnston Inc.- assess writing issues

  • American Foundation for the Blind

Assistive technology assessment implementation

TAM – Technology & Media Division

AT Fans

Quick Wheel

AT Planner

Stages assessment software www intellitools com

Stages Assessment

  • Assesses learner’s cognitive, access & language abilities

  • Addresses alternate assessment needs

Compass www infogrip com

  • Computer/Device access assessment tool

    • Assess over three input domains

      • Pointing

      • Text entry

      • Switch use

Assistive technology assessment implementation

How Do You Know It?

How Can You Show It?

Created by:

Penny Reed

Gayl Bowser

Jane Korsten

Graph chart

Trial period forms

Trial Period Forms

  • Accessible Technology Trial Period Plan-

  • Choose and Trial Assistive Technology

Four ways to gather info

Four Ways to Gather Info:


Review finished products

Observe student’s performance

Video-tape student

When is comes to data, generally more is better!

Reed, P., Bowser, G., & Korsten, J (2002). Wisconsin Assistive Technology Initiative


How will performance change

How Will Performance Change?

  • Quality

  • Quantity

  • Speed, accuracy, spontaneity, frequency, duration

    Collecting data on the use of any AT without adequate training is NOT useful!

Data answers

Data Answers ..

  • What AT is required

  • Does the tool make a difference?

  • Is the AT necessary for FAPE?

  • Is AT required for equal access under 504?

  • Must the AT be provided outside the school?

Assessment report

Assessment Report

Elements of a quality assessment report

Elements of a Quality Assessment Report

  • Background info

  • Reason for assessment

  • Process/procedure

  • Review of records

  • Interviews & Observations

  • Trials & data-collection

  • Data analysis/summary

  • Recommendations- features of AT tools needed

Outcomes from data

Outcomes From Data

  • AT made a difference

  • AT did not make a difference

  • Not enough data to make a decision – more should be collected

  • Data uncovered unexpected information. Team may need to frame new question.


What do these agencies need to see in a report

What do these agencies need to see in a report?

  • MediCal:

  • CCS:

  • Private Insurance:

  • Regional Centers:

After the assessment

After the Assessment:

Consider data collected from trial period or recommendations from team/formal assessment.

Discuss modifications, strategies, training needs and related services.

Reach consensus.

Record description of AT in IEP.


Assistive technology assessment implementation

Agnes & Gladys



Develop implementation plan

Develop Implementation Plan

Assign responsibilities to team members


Equipment management issues

Assign timelines

Record student performance

Monitor plan for success

Periodic review


Implementation team considerations

ImplementationTeam Considerations

  • Commitment to role & responsibility

  • Training

  • Monitoring Effectiveness

  • Communication between team members




Identify source of equipment and costs

Order equipment

Plan for training as needed

Set up equipment

Establish technical support system


Student considerations

Student Considerations

Which tasks?


How often?

Training needs?

Home use?


Implementation forms

Implementation Forms

  • AT Implementation Form:

  • Assistive Technology Implementation Plan

Periodic review

Periodic Review

Is the AT being used?

Is the AT functioning as expected?

Is a change needed in the current AT plan?


Assistive technology assessment implementation

Yes, these are best practices…how can they become standard?

Systems change

Systems Change

  • Provide staff support and training in using a consistent process to determine AT needs

  • Provide staff training in writing AT into IEP, IFSP, 504 and transition plans

  • Release staff to attend AT trainings and conferences

  • Develop district budgets or locate funding to establish AT library or evaluation center

Were you paying attention

Were You Paying Attention?

Time for a quiz! Raise your hand if you have an answer!




  • Wisconsin AT Initiative

  • : Oregon Technology Access Program

  • : University of Kentucky AT Toolkit

  • Maryland ATN AT Cycle

  • : Quality Indicators in AT

  • : National AT Research Institute

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Parents Helping Parents & iTECH Services

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  • Techsplorations

    • T.I.P program (Early Start ages 0-3)

  • Consultations

  • AAC/Communication expertise

  • Information and referral

  • Toy-switch surgeon

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  • Member, Alliance for Technology Access (855)727-5775 toll free

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