Classroom Technologies

We can develop custom technologies to fit your classroom needs. As an example, we have developed visual support technologies based on proven research, as described below:

Visual supports have been used successfully in classrooms, homes, and private practices to address difficulties with: sequential memory, organization of time, language comprehension, and to lessen anxiety.  However, they are hard to make, maintain, and personalize.   Further, the current tools are also not as interactive and engaging as they could be

To address these challenges, we created VSked, an interactive and collaborative assistive technology for students with autism.  VSked combines visual schedules, choice boards, and a token-based reward system into an integrated classroom system.

The VSked system is more than just a digital version of the paper-based tools in use in the classroom today.  While most paper-based tools tend to use generic, often cartoonish imagery to make repurposing easier, VSked uses both photos and drawings to help reduce student anxiety with unexpected events.  VSked was designed with group classroom activities in mind, reflecting the need not only to augment each individual student’s communication capabilities but also to enable synchronized group interaction and shared experience.

 

overview of vsked large screen

 

In a two year study in an Orange County school

    • Use of VSked reduced the number of prompts given by teachers, paraprofessionals, and aides.
    • Use of VSked improved transition times.  In our quantitative analysis, transition time from one activity to another was reduced by 61%.
    • New community practices emerged that promoted more social awareness.
    • Classroom staff had greater visibility into not only what activities are upcoming but also how the current activities are progressing.

VSked has an extensive record of scientific publications.  Click on the following links for the published findings.

Classroom-Based Assistive Technology: Collective Use of Interactive Visual Schedules by Students with Autism – Presented at CHI 2011, Vancouver, Canada

Interactive Visual Supports for Children with AutismPresented in the Personal and Ubiquitous Computing Journal. April 2010.

VSked: An Interactive Visual Schedule System for use in Classrooms for Children with Autism – Presented at IDC 2010, Barcelona, Spain

VSked: Evaluation of a System to Support Classroom Activities for Children with Autism – Presented at CHI 2010, Atlanta, USA

Interactive and Collaborative Classroom Visual Schedules  Presented at the International Meeting for Autism Research 2009, Chicago USA

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