We’ve compiled a list featuring seven of the most important things to consider when choosing any piece of Assistive Technology (AT):
1. Focus on the task, not the disability
It’s important to prioritize your focus when dealing with Assistive Technology, as it’s very easy to become overwhelmed by all of the options. Try and make a list of the specific tasks which give you difficulty, and order the tasks from most to least difficult. This will allow you to organize your needs in a cohesive and logical way.
2. Solutions are unique and individualized
What works for one person may not (and probably will not) work for the other. It’s essential that each accommodation be based off the specific needs of the individual. Everybody requires a totally unique approach to accommodation.
3. Focus on strengths
It’s important not to lose sight of your strengths, as they may make up for (or exceed) your deficits. Everybody has shortcomings, but effectively learning to use those strengths to “fill in the gaps” is an important key to success in any facet of life.
4. Keep it simple
The more time consuming and complex a piece of Assistive Technology is, the more difficult it will be to operate. As most pieces of AT are used on a more or less daily basis, it’s important that you do not overburden yourself with extraneous technology.
5. Build on what you have
Take advantage of whatever foundations or technology you already have in place. It’s always best to utilize the technology you are most familiar with, as this will decrease the your initial learning curve, potentially lessen some of the costs associated with buying AT, and allow you to begin focusing on the solution sooner.
6. Before you buy it, try it.
There are usually options to loan or rent AT equipment, so if at all possible, try out the product first, preferably in the environment in which it will be used.
7. Consult the experts
Always consult with an Assistive Technology (AT) specialist for a knowledgeable and valid assessment. AT specialists are always up to date on the latest apps and technology, and are specially trained to assess individuals’ strengths and challenges, and to use that information to recommend specific accommodations, strategies and AT.
For residents of New Brunswick, the AT help desk is always available to answer any questions from 08:00 am – 08:00 pm, Monday to Friday. Call us at 1-855-450-3287, text us at 1-506-450-3287, or email us at email@example.com(new window).