Home > Uncategorized > Touchscreen revolutionized communications for autistic

Touchscreen revolutionized communications for autistic

Touchscreen could be named as technology which revolutionized communications for children with autism. Mobile apps, iPad apps and other tablet software have become a tool which not only engages the child, but also helps them as as a learning aid, a communication aid doing their day-to-day work and helping them communicate with others in the society.

Sharia, the daughter of Sididiqui family residing in Columbia, condition improved after she interacted with iPad. “What the iPad has done has given her a sense of control that she never had before,” Siddiqui said. “She knows when you touch it, something is supposed to happen. She knows she doesn’t need to cry, she needs to point.” Some tools that helped Sharia – Proloquo2Go, First Words, ABCs and Me, and Puzzle Me.

As per Marlena Odon, mother of an autistic boy, she used to worry about sending her child to school into the hands of others who might not be able to interpret what he was trying to say. But now, as a result of integration of iPad into the  school, he is able to communicate his wants and needs. The apps used in his school are- Proloquo2Go,  Sonoflex.

Internet is full of such stories where you would find that touchscreen technology have immensely helped children with autism.
According to David Niemeijer, founder and CEO of Amsterdam-based AssistiveWare and creator of Proloquo2Go, mentioned that “90% of AAC users use an iPad for communication, and more than 25% use an iPhone or iPod Touch, according to the company’s surveys. About half of them reported improved speech abilities,”.

Let me discuss about few more apps – “Stories About Me”,  an Apple iPad app, allows caregivers and users to create their own social situational stories. It combines graphics, text and voice altogether, reaching early learner’s insights through visual and verbal approach.  This app, allows users to do playback their own-recorded voice and see recognizable images on story pages. Users can choose to have specific details of what they need to build their stories and go exploring their imagination. DropBox integration ensures all users can save and backup their stories in the secure cloud system.

There is also a start-up company which is aiming to help diagnosis of autism in children through a touchscreen app. Autitouch’s app which runs on Microsoft, features a number of games and tests designed to detect signs of autism. This is Autitouch says is a format which is more interactive and able to keep the attention of children with signs of the condition. Diagnosis of autism can be a very labour intensive process and can be prone to error. Applications like a mouse and keyboard doesn’t take into account the limited motor skills of some autistic people.


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