Technology Tutorials and Manuals

Disability and Access offers several Assistive Technology software applications  and hardware solutions to students who qualify. On this page are tutorials introducing some of this technology. In each tutorial, you will learn about the benefits and features of each technology. Also, please find user manuals for some of our commonly used hardware solutions.

If you would like to learn how you might qualify to use some of these apps or hardware, please contact an Access Specialist!

Read and Write Gold (RWG)

RWG is a text-to-speech program that can display your textbook on your computer, while it reads the text audibly. As it reads, it highlights the sentence to help focus in on the material being spoken. There are also many study features included in RWG. See “Beyond the Basics” below to learn about them.

RWG Basics for Mac OSX

RWG Basics for Windows

RWG Beyond the Basics

Sonocent AudioNotetaker

Sonocent has created a Notetaking solution that transform listening to a lecture into an active process rather than a passive one. Additionally, it frees the student up to make decisions on what is important to come back to, rather than feverishly writing every word that is said. Then, when reviewing after class, the app allows for the valuable task of summarizing the important bits and adding additional relevant information which can lead to building top-notch notes from which to study. Watch this video to see how it works.


Livescribe Smartpen

Livescribe smartpens serve as an audio recorder as well as a pen. As you record lecture and take notes, the pen is keeping track of where on the page you are writing. After class, simply tap on the words you wrote, and the pen will play back the portion of the lecture that was recorded at that time. Never miss another word while you are taking notes!

Dragon Dictate (Mac) and Dragon Naturally Speaking (Win)

The Dragon suite of dictation products is a wonderful tool for many types of people. By recording your voice and transcribing what you say onto screen, it can help people overcome “writer’s block” or a fear of writing. Speaking your thoughts or ideas without even looking at the computer screen for feedback can result in having some key phrases and sentences captured without you typing a thing. Then, you can copy and paste the best bits into a new document. You’ve now achieved a start and have something to work from. Dragon, of course, is also very helpful for people who are unable to type or write, but can also be a great tool for people who work better when they’re standing or moving around, rather than tethered to a keyboard. Dragon can be used to control your computer using your voice, or simply to dictate into email or a word processing app.

Sansa Clip mp3 recorder/player

The Sansa Clip is a favorite for many students who wish to record lecture to supplement their notetaking efforts. Its size and simplicity make it an easy-to-use, easy-to-upload device. It’s less distracting than using your phone to record.