Assistive Technology Interventions for Adolescents and Adults with Learning Disabilities (earlier poster version)


There are more and more assistive technology (AT) interventions for adolescents and adults with learning disabilities. But are these interventions effective? What is learners' lived experience with these supports? Our study assessed the peer-reviewed literature, with no temporal or geographic restrictions. We included qualitative and survey-based research in addition to group-design and single-subject intervention studies. This let us go beyond the purview of the usual systematic review and comment on the social context of these interventions, and the experience of the people receiving them. We found several AT interventions with at least some effectiveness testing: text-to-speech and speech-to-text systems, interventions based on word processing (e.g., spell and grammar checkers), multimedia and hypertext interventions, smart pen use and other computer-based solutions. We performed a quality assessment of the publications. Where there were sufficient amounts of comparable studies about one intervention, we conducted statistical meta-analyses. Effect sizes (Hedges' g) ranged from negligible to large.

Symposium for Research in Child Language Disorders

A newer version is forthcoming as an article in the journal Computers & Education. That version contains a further round of literature search for late 2016 - early 2017 articles, so please cite that one instead of the poster.

This study was funded by the University of Iowa Presidential Graduate Research Fellowship to BP and NIH grant 5R01DC011742 to KKM.