7 Assistive Technology Devices to Help Students with Learning Disabilities

2023-07-20 | By Orcam Staff

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Empower Learning! 7 Assistive Technology Devices for Students with Disabilities

Are you a student struggling with learning disabilities such as ADHD or dyslexia? Assistive technology can be a powerful tool to help those with learning disabilities overcome challenges and succeed. In this blog post, we will explore 10 assistive technology devices specifically designed for students with ADHD and other learning disabilities. From text-to-speech software to mind-mapping tools, these devices can provide personalized support tailored to your needs. Read on to learn more about how assistive technology can help you manage your learning disability and reach your academic goals.

1) Overcoming Barriers to Learning

Overcoming Barriers to Learning

Learning disabilities such as ADHD and dyslexia can be challenging for students in the classroom. However, with the advancements in technology, there are now numerous assistive tools that can aid students in overcoming their barriers to learning. 

One popular tool is the reader pen for dyslexia or reading pens. These devices scan and read out text for students who struggle with reading and comprehension. Students simply hover the pen over the text and the pen reads the text out loud. Some of the popular options include the scanner pen, pen reader for dyslexia, and pen that reads to you. 

Another great tool for students with ADHD are apps specifically designed to help them stay organized and on track. These apps can help with task prioritization, time management, and study planning. Some of the popular apps for students with ADHD include Focus@Will, Stay Focused, and My Study Life. 

In addition to these tools, there are also physical aids such as fidget toys or noise-canceling headphones that can help students with ADHD stay focused and minimize distractions. 

Overall, there are numerous assistive technology devices and tools available to help students with learning disabilities overcome their challenges and succeed in the classroom. Whether it's reader pens for dyslexia, apps for students with ADHD, or physical aids, students can find the support they need to succeed in their academic pursuits.

2) Literacy Tools

For students with learning disabilities such as ADHD and dyslexia, writing is often used as a method for demonstrating learning. However, there are other options available that can help these students to overcome barriers to learning and show their knowledge and creativity.

One alternative to traditional writing is the use of portable tablet technology, such as an iPad or Chromebook. With the right apps and settings, students with dyslexia can use reading pens to highlight and hear words read aloud, while others may benefit from the use of voice-to-text software.

Online tools can also provide valuable literacy support. Storybird, for example, offers a unique approach to storytelling by providing students with access to professional illustrations and encouraging them to create their own stories based on the pictures. Comic strip creation tools like Bitstrips are also great for students on the autism spectrum, as they promote perspective-taking and can help students to better understand social cues.

By providing a variety of literacy tools and resources, we can help students with learning disabilities to build their confidence and showcase their strengths in ways that work for them.

3) Organization and Time Management Aids

For students with learning disabilities, staying organized and managing their time can be a significant challenge. Fortunately, assistive technology has come a long way in recent years, providing many innovative tools to help students overcome these obstacles.

Here are some of the best organization and time management aids for students with learning disabilities:

1. Digital calendars:

Digital calendars such as Google Calendar or Apple Calendar are excellent tools for keeping track of deadlines, appointments, and events. They can also be synced with other devices, ensuring that students always have access to their schedule.

2. Time-tracking apps:

Time-tracking apps like RescueTime or Toggl can help students understand how they're spending their time. They can provide insights into how much time is being spent on specific tasks, helping students prioritize their activities better.

3. Reminders:

Many devices and applications have reminder features that can help students stay on top of their schedule. They can set reminders for specific tasks, appointments, and deadlines, ensuring that they never forget anything important.

4. Task managers:

Task managers like Trello or Asana can help students stay organized by breaking down larger tasks into smaller, more manageable steps. They can also assign deadlines, making it easier to track progress.

5. Note-taking apps:

Note-taking apps like Evernote or OneNote can help students organize their thoughts and keep track of information. They can be used for class notes, research, or personal projects.

By using these organization and time management aids, students with learning disabilities can take control of their schedule and stay on track. With the right tools and support, they can achieve academic success and reach their full potential.

4) Writing Tools

Writing can be a daunting task for students with learning disabilities such as dysgraphia, dyslexia, and ADHD. The use of assistive technology can make a significant difference in the quality and quantity of their written work. Here are some writing tools that can assist students with learning disabilities:

1. Speech-to-text software:

Speech-to-text software such as Dragon NaturallySpeaking allows students to dictate their writing. It is particularly helpful for those who struggle with spelling and typing.

2. Word prediction software:

Word prediction software, such as Co Writer, predicts the word that the student is trying to type. It is useful for those who have difficulty with spelling and vocabulary.

3. Text-to-speech software:

Text-to-speech software, such as Read&Write, reads out the text for the student. It is beneficial for those who have trouble with reading and comprehension.

4. Graphic organizers:

Graphic organizers such as Inspiration and MindMeister help students organize their ideas and thoughts before starting to write. They provide a visual representation of their thoughts and enable students to create an outline for their writing.

5. Spell check software:

Spell check software such as Ginger Software checks spelling and grammar errors. It is useful for those who have difficulty with spelling and grammar.

6. Writing templates:

Writing templates such as WriteWell provide pre-formatted templates for various types of writing, such as essays, reports, and research papers. They help students organize their writing and provide a structure for their work.

7. Smartpens:

Smartpens such as Livescribe enable students to take notes and record audio simultaneously. It is helpful for those who have difficulty with handwriting and organization.

Using these writing tools can significantly improve the quality and quantity of written work for students with learning disabilities. They can assist students in overcoming the challenges they face when it comes to writing, and help them achieve academic success.

5) Foreign Language Aids

Learning a foreign language can be a challenge for anyone, but it can be especially difficult for students with learning disabilities such as ADHD or dyslexia. Luckily, there are assistive technology tools that can make language learning more accessible and less overwhelming. 

One helpful tool is the translation app. These apps allow students to easily translate words and phrases into their native language, which can help them better understand the material and communicate with their peers. Some apps also offer audio pronunciation, which can be beneficial for students with language processing issues.

Another useful tool is the visual dictionary. This tool uses images and illustrations to help students better understand the meaning of words and phrases. This can be especially helpful for students with dyslexia who may struggle with traditional text-based definitions.

Assistive technology for learning disabilities can also include language learning apps that are specifically designed to cater to the needs of students with ADHD or dyslexia. These apps often include features such as audio instructions, visual cues, and interactive activities to help keep students engaged and focused.

In addition, students can benefit from using subtitles and closed captions when watching foreign-language movies or TV shows. This can help students better understand the dialogue and improve their listening comprehension skills.

Overall, assistive technology can play a crucial role in helping students with ADHD or dyslexia succeed in foreign language classes. With the right tools and support, these students can overcome language barriers and thrive in their academic pursuits.

6) Physical Aids

In addition to cognitive and emotional aids, students with learning disabilities may benefit from physical aids as well. These devices are designed to help students who struggle with fine motor skills, vision, and hearing, among other physical challenges. Here are some of the most popular physical aids available through AI technology:

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Reading Pens for Dyslexia:

For students with dyslexia, reading can be a challenging task. One solution to this problem is assistive technology for students with learning disabilities, such as reading pens, which are handheld devices that scan text and read it out loud. These pens can also highlight words or phrases, making it easier for students to keep track of where they are in the text.

Assistive Technology for ADHD:

Students with ADHD often have difficulty focusing on tasks for extended periods. One helpful physical aid is a fidget toy, which allows students to occupy their hands while still paying attention to the lesson. Another option is a standing desk, which allows students to move around and change positions as needed throughout the day.

Assistive Tech & Learning Aids:

There are many other physical aids available to students with learning disabilities. For example, some students may benefit from ergonomic keyboards or computer mice designed for easier use. Others may require larger or more specialized seating to accommodate physical needs. In some cases, simple modifications to the classroom environment can make a big difference in a student's ability to learn.

Overall, physical aids are just one component of a comprehensive approach to assistive technology. By combining cognitive, emotional, and physical aids, educators and parents can provide the support that students need to overcome their unique challenges and achieve their full potential.

7) Emotional Aids

Learning Disabilities

Learning disabilities can often cause emotional distress for students, leading to anxiety, stress, and low self-esteem. It's crucial to address these emotional barriers to help students achieve their full potential. Assistive technology can offer emotional support and alleviate some of the challenges students face. Here are some emotional aids that can help:

1. Meditation Apps:

Calm, Headspace and Insight Timer are meditation apps that can help students with learning disabilities relax and focus on their studies. They offer guided meditations that help reduce anxiety, increase self-awareness, and promote overall well-being.

2. Therapy Apps:

Talkspace and BetterHelp are apps that connect students with licensed therapists who can help them address their emotional needs. Students can communicate with their therapists through text, voice, or video calls, making it easier to get the help they need, even when they're away from home.

3. Emotional Regulation Tools:

Some learning disabilities make it challenging for students to regulate their emotions. Apps like MoodMeter and MyEmotions help students identify and track their emotions, develop coping skills, and improve their overall emotional intelligence.

4. Social Skills Development:

Learning disabilities can make it difficult for students to develop social skills. Apps like SuperBetter and Friendzy help students develop social skills, make friends, and communicate effectively with their peers.

5. Sensory Tools:

Students with learning disabilities may have sensory processing difficulties that can cause emotional distress. Sensory tools such as fidget toys, weighted blankets, and noise-canceling headphones can help students regulate their sensory needs, reduce anxiety, and increase focus.

Assistive technology devices can offer much-needed emotional support for students with learning disabilities. By addressing the emotional barriers to learning, students can achieve their full potential and enjoy the learning process.

Key Takeaways:

  1. Assistive technology devices play a crucial role in helping students with learning disabilities, such as ADHD and dyslexia, overcome challenges and succeed academically.

  2. There are various types of assistive technology devices available to support students with learning disabilities, including reader pens for dyslexia, apps for students with ADHD, literacy tools, organization and time management aids, writing tools, foreign language aids, physical aids, and emotional aids.

  3. Reader pens can help dyslexic students by scanning and reading out text, while apps designed for students with ADHD can aid in task prioritization and time management.

  4. Literacy tools, such as tablet technology and voice-to-text software, offer alternative ways for students to demonstrate their knowledge and creativity.

  5. Organization and time management aids, like digital calendars and task managers, help students with learning disabilities stay organized and on track.

  6. Writing tools, such as speech-to-text software and graphic organizers, assist students with dysgraphia, dyslexia, and ADHD in improving the quality and quantity of their written work.

  7. For foreign language learning, translation apps, visual dictionaries, and language learning apps can be beneficial for students with learning disabilities.

  8. Physical aids, such as reading pens for dyslexia and fidget toys for ADHD, help students with fine motor skills, vision, and hearing challenges.

  9. Emotional aids, including meditation apps, therapy apps, emotional regulation tools, social skills development apps, and sensory tools, provide support for students dealing with emotional distress caused by learning disabilities.


Assistive technology devices offer a wide range of solutions to support students with learning disabilities, helping them overcome barriers and achieve academic success. From reader pens for dyslexia to apps tailored for students with ADHD, and from writing tools to emotional aids, these devices provide personalized support tailored to the needs of individual students. Among the various assistive technology devices mentioned in the article, OrCam Learn stands out as an ideal solution for helping students with learning disabilities. By providing features such as text-to-speech software, reading assistance, and organization tools, OrCam Learn addresses multiple challenges faced by students with learning disabilities. With the right combination of cognitive, emotional, and physical aids, educators and parents can create a comprehensive approach to assistive technology that empowers students to reach their full potential and thrive in their academic pursuits.