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Iphone Ipod Touch Apps for Communication Education and Access

by Allan Wilson

on Mon Jan 18, 2010

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Were you lucky enough to get an iPhone or an iPod Touch for Christmas? Perhaps your school was able to scrape together funds to buy one?
In addition to all the music and videos that you can download from iTunes, you'll find a bewildering array of apps that you can use, covering everything from tuning a guitar to tantalising your tastebuds with a Jamie Oliver recipe.
There is an increasing number of excellent, low-cost apps available to support children (and adults) with additional support needs or disabilities.

Sally Millar blogged last year on the excellent Proloquo2Go, which provides a full AAC system with over 7,000 symbols and high quality voices. There are now additional apps to support communication, including:

  • iConverse - a simple app combining speech and symbols with a focus on expressing basic everyday needs. It costs £5.99.
  • Look2Learn - AAC, a basic, low cost (£14.99) app that combines the use of photographs with pre-recorded speech to help someone express their wants and needs.
  • MyTalk - Another low-cost (£21.49) communication app combining symbols with speech output. Pages can be created and stored online, using a public image library with over 1,000 symbols.
  • Speak it! - this is a basic text-to-speech app, costing £1.19. It can read out text as it is typed into the device, or can be used to read out existing text, e.g. from a web site
  • Voice4U - this comes with 130 pre-loaded icons and high quality speech output. You can add your own photos and icons to personalise the system. It costs £17.99.

These apps all come from a comprehensive list of 'iPhone and iPod Touch Apps for (Special) Education' by Eric Sailers, an American speech-language pathologist. The list contains over 150 apps categorised under the headings Communication; Organization; Reading; Writing; Math; Music; Songs; Art; Games; Assistive Technology.

One interesting app that Eric missed from his list is iMocon, an App that allows an iPhone/iPod Touch to be used as a remote control for a computer by emulating the mouse. It costs £1.79.

Screenshot of iConverse App Screenshot of Look 2 Learn App Screenshot of MyTalk App Screenshot of Speak It! App Screenshot of Voice 4 U AppScreenshot of iMocon App

Tags: access, communication aid, iPhone / iPod Touch

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