Evidence-Based Strategies for Training Adults to Use Assistive Technology and Adaptations

This research brief summarizes findings from a research synthesis of the effectiveness of different types of practices for promoting practitioner and parent adoption of different kinds of assistive technology and adaptations for young children with disabilities. The research synthesis included 35 studies of 839 adult participants and 1100 child participants. The assistive technology that were the focus of training included speech generative devices (e.g., CheapTalk), computers (e.g., adapted keyboards), and switch activated devices and toys. Six operationally defined adult learning method characteristics and between 2 and 5 practices for each characteristic were used to code and analyze the studies in terms of both adult (practitioner and parent) and child outcomes. Results showed that particular practices for each adult learning method characteristic proved most effect in terms of changes and improvements in both the adult and child outcomes. A key characteristic of the most effective training practices was active learner participation in all aspects of the training. Results also showed that when combinations of the most effective practices were used as part of the training, the more positive were the adult and child outcomes. A checklist based on the research synthesis results is included for developing and evidence-based training implementing methods and procedures.

Source: Tot’s -n- Tech

Available at: http://tnt.asu.edu/files/TotsNTech_ResearchBrief_2011.pdf

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