Using iPods (R) and iPads (R) in teaching programs for individuals with developmental disabilities: A systematic review

Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington, New Zealand.
Research in developmental disabilities (Impact Factor: 4.41). 08/2012; 34(1):147-156. DOI: 10.1016/j.ridd.2012.07.027
Source: PubMed


We conducted a systematic review of studies that involved iPods(®), iPads(®), and related devices (e.g., iPhones(®)) in teaching programs for individuals with developmental disabilities. The search yielded 15 studies covering five domains: (a) academic, (b) communication, (c) employment, (d) leisure, and (e) transitioning across school settings. The 15 studies reported outcomes for 47 participants, who ranged from 4 to 27years of age and had a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and/or intellectual disability. Most studies involved the use of iPods(®) or iPads(®) and aimed to either (a) deliver instructional prompts via the iPod Touch(®) or iPad(®), or (b) teach the person to operate an iPod Touch(®) or iPad(®) to access preferred stimuli. The latter also included operating an iPod Touch(®) or an iPad(®) as a speech-generating device (SGD) to request preferred stimuli. The results of these 15 studies were largely positive, suggesting that iPods(®), iPod Touch(®), iPads(®), and related devices are viable technological aids for individuals with developmental disabilities.

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    • "This is why some researchers invite caution when using mobile technologies (Arthanat, Curtin, & Knotak, 2013; Selwyn, 2015)—they suggest evaluating mobile technologies critically before adopting them, and to avoid using them because they are trendy. Nonetheless , in the context of research with populations living with ID, Kagohara et al. (2013) mention that mobile devices have become socially accepted and they are less stigmatizing than traditional assistive technologies used by people with ID, which constitutes a good argument to exploit them with underserved populations. One possible avenue to avoid the pitfalls related to using mobile technologies is to position the participants in the role of the producers of knowledge, rather than in the role of the consumers of knowledge. "
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    ABSTRACT: This article presents the results of a collaborative action research conducted with people living with intellectual disabilities (ID) who were going through a community integration process. To be successfully integrated into a community, they need to develop basic life skills as much as they need to learn to use mobile technologies for authentic interactions (Davidson, 2012) and to be self-advocates online (Davidson, 2009a). This study used the Capability Approach pioneered by Sen (1992) and Nussbaum (2000), which focusses on what people can do rather than on their deficiencies. I recruited a group of eight people with ID who wished to set goals, engage in developing new capabilities, share their goals and act as models for others with ID who want to learn to live on their own. In this article, I examine the process of developing self-advocacy videos with mobile technologies using the Capability Approach and I analyze the inventory of capabilities collected through this study. I provide recommendations for intervention through mobile technologies with the long term-goal of helping people with ID to become contributing citizens. I discuss the innovative action research methodology I used to help people with ID become self-advocates and take control of the messages they give through producing their own digital resources.
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    • "Finally, and perhaps most importantly, the use of a tablet or multimedia player allows the user greater flexibility and options in terms of the function of the device. That is, although the primary purpose of such a device may be to function as a SGD, the device can be used for secondary purposes including academic and leisure applications (i.e., Kagohara et al. 2013; Lorah and Parnell 2014). "
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    ABSTRACT: Powerful, portable, off-the-shelf handheld devices, such as tablet based computers (i.e., iPad(®); Galaxy(®)) or portable multimedia players (i.e., iPod(®)), can be adapted to function as speech generating devices for individuals with autism spectrum disorders or related developmental disabilities. This paper reviews the research in this new and rapidly growing area and delineates an agenda for future investigations. In general, participants using these devices acquired verbal repertoires quickly. Studies comparing these devices to picture exchange or manual sign language found that acquisition was often quicker when using a tablet computer and that the vast majority of participants preferred using the device to picture exchange or manual sign language. Future research in interface design, user experience, and extended verbal repertoires is recommended.
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    • "Devices such as cassette players, regular computers, and palmtop computers have been used to deliver pictorial, audio, and/or video prompts (Mechling, 2007; Stephenson & Limbrick, 2015; Stromer et al., 2006). With the advent of touch screens and tablet devices such as the iPod Touch, iPads, and other tablets, graphic symbols can be paired with audio prompts or video modeling (Kagohara et al., 2013; Stephenson & Limbrick, 2015; Stromer et al., 2006). The combination of audio prompts delivered simultaneously with graphic or video prompts may be especially helpful for students with ASD (Lequia et al., 2012). "
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    ABSTRACT: The use of a schedule to guide students with special education needs through a series of activities can increase independence and self-management as well as improve on-task behavior. In the study reported here, three young boys with developmental disabilities were taught to use the scheduling app First Then on an iPad. Least to most prompting was the instructional strategy employed. The intervention was carried out by class teachers in special education classrooms as part of their regular daily routine. There was a clear intervention effect for all students and two met the mastery criterion of all steps correct for 3 consecutive days.
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