Date of Award

5-13-2006

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)

Department

Education and Human Development

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate if the amount and quality of expressive language in children with disabilities increase or decrease as a result of assistive technology, (focused on hardware and software) that is individualized to the needs of each child. To obtain information about this topic, the researcher reviewed literature and gathered evidence on the language skills of four elementary students with disabilities through pre and post language samples during a play situation. Pre and post language samples were used to assess any increases in the students' expressive language while using the assistive technology software, Picture Sentence Key (version 2.0) during a span of three weeks. Results suggest improvements in expressive language in half of the students who took part in this study. The findings of this study may be helpful to teachers who work on assistive technology programs with their young students with disabilities. There still needs to be more research to investigate how assistive technology can help the expressive language of students with disabilities and further enhance the outcomes of their learning.

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