Assistive Technology Training

Overview

Woman holds a device over a piece of paper and the text appears on the screenAssistive technology can be a real game changer for people with vision loss, increasing access to information and providing tools to minimize obstacles in workplace and educational settings.

At Helen Keller Services for the Blind (HKSB), instructors will help you to identify the technological devices and software that best meet your needs and teach you how to use them. You’ll learn from experts in the field, including trainers who are blind or visually impaired—people who know firsthand the challenges you face.

Training is available at our Assistive Technology Centers (ATCs) in Brooklyn, Hempstead and Ronkonkoma, New York. HKSB also offers follow-up training and support via on-site tech services in workplace and academic settings.

Assistive Technology Centers

Man in sunglasses sitting at computer using a magnification device to read.HKSB’s Brooklyn, Hempstead and Ronkonkoma locations house Assistive Technology Centers. 

Featuring an array of equipment and software, these technology-rich environments are designed for one-on-one and small-group training, providing comfortable settings in which to explore mobile, desktop computing, handheld and wearable technology.

Assessment and Hands-on Training

Through discussions and screening tests, your instructor will assess your current technology skills, including your proficiency with keyboarding and different software packages. This will help determine which technological tools might be useful to you in your career or academic pursuits. Working closely with your instructor, you’ll develop a training plan and an assistive equipment configuration tailored to your unique needs. (If you were referred to our program by the NYS Commission for the Blind (NYSCOB), the actual purchase of the equipment will be determined by your state counselor.)

Everything you learn will have practical, real world applications. Most training is conducted one-on-one to maximize personal attention. In some cases, there may be a combination of individual instruction and small-group sessions.

Equipment may include:

  • Magnification/enlargement software
  • Refreshable braille displays and note takers
  • Optical character recognition software
  • Scanners
  • Text-to-speech screen readers
  • Standard productivity software interface with accessibility programs
  • Smart phone applications
  • Apple- and PC-based adaptations, tablets and wearable devices

Armed with new skills, tools and confidence, you’ll be better prepared to compete in the job market or make your mark in the classroom.

Follow-Up Technology Services

If after completing your training you feel like you need additional support in order to put your new skills to work in a specific job or educational setting, HKSB offers services to help you make a smooth transition from the supportive environment of the Assistive Technology Center to the workplace or classroom.

HKSB’s technology specialists can assess your needs and abilities with regard to a particular position or situation, and can make recommendations or take actions to resolve potential issues, including collaborating with IT staff at your company or school to attempt to interface assistive technology with existing systems.

Follow-up services may include:

  • Device set-up, troubleshooting and warranty establishment
  • On-site equipment installation
  • Refresher training or update training as new versions of products are introduced

Admissions

Documentation of legal blindness and program sponsorship most often through the NYS Commission for the Blind. 

Contact us for more information

Success Story

Man at table reading braille.

Emilio’s Story: New Skills for a New Chapter

Emilio first came to HKSB as a child; now he’s getting the assistive technology training he needs to advance his career.

Go to Emilio's Story Go to All HKSB Success Stories