• List of apps for iOS

    Over 600 iPad/iPhone/iPod touch apps suitable for people with ASD and other special needs. Go to the list

  • List of Android apps

    Over 200 apps for Android devices also suitable for people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other special needs. Go to the list

  • List of books

    Reviews of books on ASD and other special needs, from novels to scientific texts. Go to the list

We are revamping iAutism!

We are revamping iAutism, and it is a longer task than expected. Perhaps you see some strange things. Sorry for the inconvenience!

Conference on Technologies for people with ASD

The second edition of ITASD Conference on Technology and Autism (International Conference on Innovative Technologies for people with Autism Spectrum Disorders, www.itasd.org) will take place in Paris the 3rd and 4th October 2014. This new edition will be organized by Orange Foundation, Adapta Foundation, Autism Speaks and the Pasteur Institute.

As in the first edition, ITASD focuses on digital technologies that help improving the quality of life of people with autism, and aims to bring together in a single forum families, autism professionals, the scientific community and technology professionals (e.g. developers of apps). ITASD wants to be not only the showcase of the latest technology, but also a forum where practical solutions are presented to families and ASD professionals.

Until April 30th, those interested in presenting their work summaries or abstracts can send them through this LINK to participate in the selection process and present the project in the Conference. In October , iAutism team will cover this conference.

-Francesc Sistach

Free or discounted apps – World Autism Awareness Day (2014)

Last April 2nd we celebrated the World Autism Awareness Day. Some app developers offered special discounts and in some cases even their apps for free. And some of them have extended the period for their discounts for some more days or even for the entire month.

This post presents a list of these apps for iPad/iPhone/iPod touch divided by categories. Those categories are only indicative, and some apps could be included in more than one category. There are apps specifically designed for people with autism and other which are aimed to help people with special needs in general, and other that are totally generic.

The list is divided into categories. For each one, there is an app table with the following columns:

  • App logo.  
  • iPad version data: app name, additional editions, and prices in dollars and euros.
  • iPhone / iPod touch version data. In case this app also supports the iPad, this cell and the previous one will be combined. (Keep in mind that iPhone apps can be used in an iPad using the “2x” display mode).
  • Doucle link to the iTunes webpage and to the App Store.
  • List of languages supported by the app.
  • Developer’s website.
  • A link to the review of the application published in iAutism, if it is already written (represented with the “TEST” logo).
  • A short description of the app. This is NOT meant to be a well-thought summary but only an indication of its functionality.

This list is sponsored by


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1. AAC - BUTTONS AND COMMON PHRASES
These apps allow you to create pages with buttons. Each image is a button that plays an audio clip. Some are very focused on Yes/No choices, or on very specific topics (communicating health information) or common phrases.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
AutoVerbal Pro Talking Soundboard
$29.99 / €26.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$19.99 / €17.99 (33% OFF)

No Tie, LLCAAC based on 100's of built-in phrases in over a dozen categories with natural voices and icons, programmable buttons, and computer TTS. Natural voice (male and female) when Internet is available.

2. AAC - SELECTING IMAGES FROM CATEGORIES
These apps allow you to create categories of images, usually with their associated audio clip. The user chooses a category and, within it, a particular image.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
Augie AAC
$159.99 / €139.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$64.99 / €59.99 (60% OFF, entire month)

Intervention Development LLCCombines an AAC based on categories of images with schedules, note pad, and other functions. Home, School and Work vocabulary included.
Communicate Easy - Autism App for iPad for Special Needs Communication
$3.99 / €3.49
2012_SpecialOffer
$1.99 / €1.79 (50% OFF, entire week)

Pluja Apps LimitedAAC based on images and videos stored into folders and subfolders, with audio clip and some states, and some other advanced features. Can be used for AAC, choice making, visual prompts, or grouped together to form a schedules.

4. AAC - CREATING PHRASES WITH IMAGES
Construction of a phrase based on concatenating images selected from categories.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
Expressive
$29.99 / €27.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$14.99 / €13.99 (50% OFF)
Smarty EarsAAC based on creating phrases using images; 600 Smarty Symbols preloaded.
Grace - Picture Exchange for Non-Verbal People
$24.99 / €21.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$9.99 / €8.99 (60% OFF)
Steven Troughton-SmithAAC based on creating phrases using images; no audio.

5. AAC – ADVANCED
These apps include many thousands of images and many categories, but also allow you to build communication boards and/or include natural voices, etc. Its price, consistent with that functionality, easily exceeds $100.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
Able AAC
$24.99 / €22.49
2012_SpecialOffer
$9.99 / €8.99 (60% OFF, entire month)
AbleVoxAAC based on 26 categories of images to generate sentences in text format; 800 images preloaded; 20 languages supported and 83 voice engines (4 English child voices). It also includes scheduling functionality, a video and audio learning system and a points motivational reward system.
Able AAC Free
Free
Avaz for Autism
$119.99 / €107.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$99.99 / €89.99 (20% OFF, entire month)

Invention Labs Engineering ProductsAAC based on creating phrases with picture symbols. 5 Acapela voices (two accents, male, female and child voices), a keyboard to help users transitioning to text. Up to 10,000+ Symbolstix symbols. Designed for people with ASD, with animation for maximizing reinforcement, the ability to remove distracting content from the screen, fine-grained control over the speech output, a high-contrast mode, image size adjustable, ...
Avaz Lite version
Free (subscription)

Avaz Australia
$119.99 / €107.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$99.99 / €89.99 (20% OFF, entire month)

Avaz Dansk
$119.99 / €107.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$99.99 / €89.99 (20% OFF, entire month)

Avaz India
$119.99 / €107.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$99.99 / €89.99 (20% OFF, entire month)

Avaz Italiano
$119.99 / €107.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$99.99 / €89.99 (20% OFF, entire month)
ChatAble
$159.99 / €144.49
2012_SpecialOffer
$79.99 / €74.99 (50% OFF)


Therapy Box LimitedAAC based on symbol and photo grids. Share and back up grids. Send messages by email, twitter or facebook. Switch access, 12,000 Widgit Symbols, 12 high quality Loquendo voices, handwriting and keyboard input option.

9. PICTURE SCHEDULING / SOCIAL STORIES
Apps for showing or constructing sequences of images, typically of actions to perform, to provide a framework known of what to do or what it is going to happen, a schedule of activities to do, etc. Many also allow you to work as AAC, so this category can be considered as a subset of the previous one but consisting on apps with even more features.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
ASD Tools
Free
Chestnut Apps Picture scheduling plus timer, token economy and basic communication functions.
iCommunicate
$49.99 / €44.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$29.99 / €26.99 (40% OFF)
Grembe Apps Inc.Flashcards, storyboards, routines and visual schedules with custom audio and 100 preloaded images

My Video Schedule
$11.99 / €10.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$4.99 / €4.49 (60% OFF, entire month)
Acceptional Possibilities, LLC.Combines video modeling within a structured schedule while providing positive reinforcement
Scan How Intl.
$8.99 / €7.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$2.99 / €2.69 (70% OFF, entire month)
Unges UddannelsescenterCreate and visualize workflows and tasks with images, video, sound and text, even associating them to QR codes.
Social Stories
$3.99 / €3.59
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (75% OFF)
Pufferfish AppsTo create social stories made of pictures and text. based on ABA.
Speech with Milo: Interactive Storybook
$1.99 / €1.79
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (April 14th, 29th)
Doonan Speech TherapyInteractive story book that allows children to record their own story.
Visual Routine
$4.99 / €4.49
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (75% OFF)
Pufferfish AppsVisual schedules based on images plus text.

10. EMOTIONS
Apps for describing emotions or showing typical facial expressions, emotion recognition exercises, etc.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
Emotion Detective
$13.99 / €12.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$4.99 / €4.49 (50% OFF, entire month)

InGenius Labs4 fun games with eye spy screens, interactive animations and exciting sounds mixed with learning activities that aim to teach basic emotions, body language, conversation and perspective taking.

11. SOCIAL BEHAVIOR
Apps that show correct social behaviors or skills, or common community situations. They are typically based on multimedia presentations or video clips (video modeling).

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
iSEQUENCES
$2.99 / €2.69
2012_SpecialOffer
$1.99 / €1.79 (33% OFF)

Fundación Planeta Imaginario100 sequencing exercises of self-help skills, leisure activities, typical situations of everyday life and emotions.
iSEQUENCES Lite
Free

Same app but limited to 10 sequences.
Social Adventures
$19.99 / €17.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$9.99 / €8.99 (50% OFF, entire month)
all4mychildOver 80 activities of interactions, advocating and negotiating, experiencing humor, negotiating personal space, … Includes Kid-friendly and memorable visuals designed to be used for role play or cue cards, social catch phrases, a game and a tutorial and a sample 8-week program to get started.

Social Navigator
$49.99 / €44.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$23.99 / €21.49 (50% OFF)
Seven Minds, LLCTo assist children with social and behavioral challenges in adapting their behavior and developing life-long social skills, addressing social situations at home, at school and in the community. Tracks behaviors and development.
Speech with Milo: Sequencing
$2.99 / €2.69
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (April 7th, 18th, 28th)
Doonan Speech TherapyFlashcards-animations to order sequences of actions
storysmart1: Trudy Goes to the Beach - Social Language Skills
$3.99 / €3.59
2012_SpecialOffer
$1.99 / €1.79 (50% OFF, entire month)

Ruby Cube, Inc.Animated story where the user has to make choices to help a character in a beach trip with her family. Focus is on social language skills. There are hundreds of choices and multiple paths to resolve each social situation. Users can record their voice and play it back.
storysmart2: Casey's Big Day - Social Language Skills
$3.99 / €3.59
2012_SpecialOffer
$1.99 / €1.79 (50% OFF, entire month)

Similar app but based on a boy in his first day at 5th grade.
storysmart3: Ruby Gets in the Game - Social Language Skills
$1.99 / €1.79
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (50% OFF, entire month)

Similar app but based on a soccer team.
Talking Train
$1.99 / €1.79
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (50% OFF, entire month)
all4mychildIt provides support for simple story telling, social stories, sequencing, and question asking by creating sequences of 3 parts where you can include drawings, text, pictures, puffs of smoke for texts and some visual effects.

12. GAMES
Apps that, although can have some educational value, are more focused on gaming and have been specifically designed for people with special needs.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
Bag Game
$1.99 / €1.79
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (50% OFF, entire month)
all4mychildA spin-off of 20 questions with more than 100 images and many levels of difficulty.

13. ORAL AND WRITTEN LANGUAGE
A variety of apps that help to develop oral and/or written language (even to validate sentences). Some apps are simply vocabulary flashcards accompanied by audio clips. Others include vocabulary exercises or even phrase creation practice. Supported languages ​​are critical. The frontier with generic learning applications is diffuse.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
Autism Language Learning
$26.99 / €23.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$19.99 / €17.99 (30% OFF)
TalkTime Pediatric Speech Academy160 videos to help learning 5 modules, arranged in a hierarchy of verb + ing, singular pronouns (he & she) + is + ing, plural pronoun (they) + are + ing, and mixed singular and plural pronouns + is/are + ing.
Autism Language Learning Lite
Free
Autism Language Learning Series II
$16.99 / €14.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$9.99 / €8.99 (40% OFF)
43 short video clips and 13 still pictures to help children learn how to answer yes/no questions.
Autism Language Learning Series II Lite
Free
Language Lab: Adjectives
$2.99 / €2.69
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (April 13th, 25th)
Doonan Speech TherapyApp designed for individuals who are beginning to use adjectives in simple sentences to describe things. Stage four of the Language Development by PRC.
Language Lab: ing Verbs + Prepositions
$2.99 / €2.69
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (April 20th, 27th)
Similar app, but focused on stage three.
Language Lab: Spin & Speak - Social Skills
$4.99 / €4.49
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (April 11th, 24th)

Board game designed to help teach the pragmatics of language. Focused on 7 areas: instrumental (requesting things, asking for help), regulatory (directing others), interactional (exchanging information), personal (maintaining contact, interests), heuristic (discovery, making choices), imaginative (creative imagery) and informative (statements of fact, storytelling). Data tracking and sharing.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
Speech With Milo - Adjectives
$2.99 / €2.69
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (April 17th)
Doonan Speech TherapyFlashcards-animations to learn 55 adjectives
Speech with Milo: Nouns
$2.99 / €2.69
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (April 10th, 23th)
Doonan Speech TherapyTo practice words and at the same time save yourself looking at the iPad, sharing the videos later.
Speech with Milo: Prepositions
$2.99 / €2.69
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (April 16th)
Doonan Speech TherapyFlashcards-animations to learn 100 verbs
(Spanish) Speech with Milo: Prepositions
$2.99 / €2.69
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (April 12th, 26th)
Speech with Milo: Verbs
$2.99 / €2.69
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (April 15th)
Doonan Speech TherapyFlashcards-animations to learn 100 actions
(Spanish) Speech with Milo: Verbs
$2.99 / €2.69
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (April 19th)

14. LANGUAGE THERAPY / ARTICULATION / SLP
These are tools to practice the pronunciation of certain phonemes and spoken language in general, and are usually presented as applications to treat SLP (Speech Language Pathologies). Supported languages are critical.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
Answering TherAppy
$19.99 / €17.99
Tactus Therapy Solutions Ltd.400 questions in 7 levels of Yes/no questions & 9 categories of Wh questions (who, what, where, when, why, etc) with the ability to add your own. Customizable. Data tracking. Verbal & written modes. Optional pictures. High-quality voices.
Asking TherAppy
$19.99 / €17.99
Focused on asking Yes/No and Wh- questions to discover new information, asking for clarification & asking to request information. Over 500 questions, 8 tenses, 5 Wh question words & over 1000 audio clips. User profiles, flexible settings, audio recording, both natural & high-quality synthesized speech, etc.
Question TherAppy
$34.99 / €32.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$29.99 / €27.99 (April 2-16)
Combines Answering TherAppy & Asking TherAppy.
Question TherAppy Lite
Free
Category TherAppy
$14.99 / €13.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$9.99 / €8.99 (April 2-16)
Tactus Therapy Solutions Ltd.To teach categorization skills. 4 activities (find, classify, add one, exclude) and 3 levels (Concrete Categories, Subcategories, & Abstract Categories). Approximately 700 images in 70 categories.
Category TherAppy Lite
Free
Comprehension TherAppy
$24.99 / €22.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$19.99 / €17.99 (April 2-16)
Tactus Therapy Solutions Ltd.Auditory and reading comprehension of single words (700 included).
Conversation TherAppy
$24.99 / €22.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$19.99 / €17.99 (April 2-16)
Tactus Therapy Solutions Ltd.Uses 300 pictures & 10 question types to generate 3000+ questions to target higher-level expressive language, pragmatic, problem-solving, speech & cognitive-communication goals.
Conversation TherAppy Lite
Free
Language TherAppy
$59.99 / €54.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$54.99 / €49.99 (April 2-16)
Tactus Therapy Solutions Ltd.Comprehension, Naming, Writing, & Reading TherAppy apps together.
Language TherAppy Lite
Free
Minimal Pair Pack
$29.99 / €26.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$4.99 / €3.99 (80% OFF)
Therapy Box Limited700 flash cards to work on pair words to improve many speech sounds in the initial position of words. Keeps track of accuracy and includes visual and audio reindorcements.
Naming TherAppy
$24.99 / €22.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$19.99 / €17.99 (April 2-16)
Tactus Therapy Solutions Ltd.Word-finding app to help people with aphasia and children with special needs practice important naming and description skills. Over 700 words included.
Reading TherAppy
$14.99 / €13.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$9.99 / €8.99 (April 2-16)
Tactus Therapy Solutions Ltd.4 reading practice modes with over 450 exercises at phrase -and sentence- level each, for 1,800+ reading comprehension practice items .
Speech FlipBook Standard - Articulation & Apraxia
$9.99 / €8.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$4.99 / €4.49 (April 2-16)
Tactus Therapy Solutions Ltd.You can pick which sounds you want to appear in initial, medial, & final positions; flip between sounds or words; and hear them or record yourself & play it back instantly.Includes over 2,300 recordings of words in natural speech & 125 phonemes & clusters. Includes all vowels & consonants of Standard American English as well as over 250 sets of homophones.
Speech FlipBook - Articulation & Apraxia
Free
Speech with Milo Articulation Board Game
$6.99 / €5.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (80% OFF, April 8th, 21th)

Doonan Speech Therapy/a>Sound cards for more than 500 words to practice initial, medial an final options for each sound. Included sounds are: /F/, /V/, /K/, /G/, /S/, /Z/, /CH/, /SH/. You can purchase more as separate sound packs or buy the PRO version, which includes all of them and 1,400 cards. Data tracking. You can email your data. Up to 20 students. You may purchase additional 3 for $0.99 / €0.89.
Speech with Milo Articulation Board Game PRO
$23.99 / €21.49
2012_SpecialOffer
$18.99 / €17.99 (20% OFF, April 9th, 22th, 30th)

Speech Sounds For Kids - US Edition
$24.99 / €22.99

2012_SpecialOffer
$12.99 / €11.99 (50% OFF, entire month)


Multimedia Speech PathologyTo promote phonemic awareness (22 consonant sounds), auditory discrimination and speech sound production using a multi-sensory approach.
Speech Sounds For Kids Lite - US Edition
Free

Speech Sounds For Kids - Australian Edition
$24.99 / €22.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$12.99 / €11.99 (50% OFF, entire month)

Speech Sounds For Kids Lite - Australian Edition
Free

Speech Sounds on Cue for iPad (US English)
$24.99 / €22.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$12.99 / €11.99 (50% OFF, entire month)


Multimedia Speech PathologySpeech therapy treatment software for articulation difficulty caused by apraxia of speech or other speech difficulties with all audio and video recorded by an American SLP (US version) or Australian speech pathologist (AUS version)
Speech Sounds on Cue for iPad Lite (US English)
Free

Speech Sounds on Cue for iPad (Australian English)
$24.99 / €22.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$12.99 / €11.99 (50% OFF, entire month)

Speech Sounds on Cue for iPad Lite (Australian English)
Free

Speech4Good
$19.99 / €17.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$3.99 / €3.59 (80% OFF)
Balbus Speech, Inc.Set of tools for monitoring, recording and sharing a speech therapy session
Writing TherAppy
$19.99 / €17.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$14.99 / €13.99 (April 2-16)
Tactus Therapy Solutions Ltd.4 modes (Fill-in-the-Blank, Copy, Spell What You See, Spell What You Hear) and 3 levels of difficulty in each to practice writing over 500 words + unlimited custom words.

15. THERAPIES SUPPORT / DTT / ABA
Apps to perform exercises based on DTT (Discrete Trial Teaching) or ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis), as categorizations, generalizations or practicing receptive language. Some let you set the exercises to perform, execute them and record the results.

iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description

Adam's Game - Toddler Voice Flash Cards
$1.99 / €1.79
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (50% OFF, entire month)
Sol Robots, L.L.C.Receptive language practice using three images each time
Barn Door Four: Home Edition
Free ($12.99 IAP)
2012_SpecialOffer
$9.99 / €8.99 (20% OFF, entire month)

Learnitech, LLC29 exercises based on ABA to develop learning, communication, fine motor, visual performance and sequencing skills. You can customize and save lessons. Statistics. Interactive play scenes.
Barn Door Four: School Edition
Free (subscription)

Adds support for multiple students and an online system to save data.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
Odd One Out Pack
$29.99 / €26.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$4.99 / €3.99 (80% OFF)
Therapy Box Limited3 levels x 6 sets of cards for working on semantic reasoning skills with vibrant symbols and clear visual and auditory feedback, and data collection.
PECS Phase III
$9.99 / €8.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$5.99 / €5.49 (40% OFF, entire month)

Pyramid Educational ConsultantsTool to implement the specific discrimination teaching strategy of Phase III of PECS™.
iHear PECS: Animals
$1.99 / €1.79
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (50% OFF, entire month)

For students who are learning to comment in Phase VI of PECS®, by teaching responsive and spontaneous commenting and requesting using 12 familiar animals.
Sort This Out Pack
$29.99 / €27.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$4.99 / €4.49 (80% OFF)

Therapy Box LimitedEducational game for categorization of 264 colorful Widgit symbols from 22 categories plus the option to add your own images and personalize the session
Spaced Retrieval TherAppy
$3.99 / €3.59
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (75% OFF, April 2-16)
Tactus Therapy Solutions Ltd.Recalls an answer over expanding intervals of time (1 minute, 2 minutes, 4 minutes, 8 minutes...) to helps cementing the information in memory,
Visual Attention TherAppy
$9.99 / €8.99
2012_SpecialOffer
$4.99 / €4.49 (April 2-16)

Tactus Therapy Solutions Ltd.To find letters and symbols in a field of adjustable size (for practicing to train the eyes and brain to move correctly).
Visual Attention TherAppy Lite
Free

16. MOTOR SKILLS / EYE CONTACT
Apps to practice motor skills (fine motor skills, oral motor skills, etc.) or just to practice the gestures necessary to use a touch device or even eye contact, smile or dance.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
Slide & Spin
$0.99 / €0.89
2012_free

MyFirstApp.comDevelop fine motor skills using four basic motions: turning, sliding, spinning, and pushing of a button

17. TOKEN REINFORCEMENT / TOKEN ECONOMY
Apps that allow you to define a prize (for example, an image or a text) and a series of actions to perform in order to get it. These are generic applications aimed at all children, but used especially for people with autism.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
Working4
$1.99 / €1.79
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (50% OFF, entire month)
Pyramid Educational ConsultantsToken economy based on defining a goal, the number of tokens (1-5) and the reinforcers (1-6 from the included images or other added).

18. TIMERS / TURN TAKERS
Apps -mostly generic- that allow you to set up a timer or take turns in a particularly graphic way.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
AspecTimer
$3.99 / €3.59
2012_SpecialOffer
$1.99 / €1.79 (50% OFF, until Easter)
KodeTree SoftwareCustomizable alarm, Intervals and timers. Parental lock. 10 familiar themes.
Fun Timer
$1.99 / €1.79
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (50% OFF, entire month)
all4mychildTwo steps timer: first you select and image or write a text (the reward) that appears on the center of the timer. Then, when the kid deserves that reward, the timer starts. Kid-friendly design.
Wait4it
$1.99 / €1.79
2012_SpecialOffer
$0.99 / €0.89 (50% OFF, entire month)
Pyramid Educational Consultants, IncVisual tool to help teach the concept of "wait". Includes timer, sand timer and an image of the reinforcer to be obtained when the timer runs out.

21. GENERIC LEISURE AND LEARNING
As explained in the post titled Leisure and learning apps, there are thousands of apps non-specific to people with special needs but that can be very useful for them. To compile a list of these apps would be endless. In the mentioned post we’ve included links to some long lists of such apps, and here we simply list those we have just found and had time to review in iAutism, so it can be easier to find the respective reviews.

 
iPad
iPhone & iPod touch
App Store
Lang.
Web
Test
Short description
Yellow, Red, Blue and if I get angry Grey
$0.99 / €0.89
2012_free

Ware's me srlA story without words in which children are free to wander in an endless exploration of the primary colors and musical themes that accompany them.
Giallo, Rosso, Blu e se mi arrabbio Grigio
$0.99 / €0.89
2012_free

-Francesc Sistach


BOOKS: “Technology Tools for Students with Autism”

Technology focused on people with ASD has been on the market for a few decades, and has grown rapidly in the last few years with the appearance of smartphones and tablets.   However, the literature on what can be done today with so much technology and how to apply it is scarce.

Co-written by 48 authors, Technology Tools for Students with Autism sheds a bit of light on the subject, showing many examples of technology, criteria for selection, ideas for implementation, references, etc. The book covers topics such as the apps for iOS to virtual reality or the robots, without forgetting classic software for PC or video modeling.

Politics, UDL, inclusion, virtual reality, and robots
The first section deals with the policies —primarily in the U.S.— related to autism and the use of innovative technologies to improve the services for people with ASD. It continues with a chapter devoted to UDL (Universal Design for Learning). UDL defines a group of principles for the creation of a curriculum which provides learning opportunities to all individuals, adjusting them to the possibilities of each one, and it is a framework or focus which is defended in various parts of the book.

The second section then tackles the subject, and starts off by introducing the technology that helps towards the inclusion in ordinary schools, from communication apps (AAC) or graphical word processors to tools as common as Word or PowerPoint and a set of pictograms.  The next two chapters are much more advanced and focus on virtual reality and robots.

For the virtual reality field, the authors state that there has been a lot of noise and if the reader permits me a pun, “little reality”. This chapter lists the most prominent projects and the evidence obtained for a technology that, for persons with ASD, is still basically under research, but proves useful for the teaching of social skills thanks to its ability to simulate real scenes.
Regarding robots, the authors list the main robot projects linked to autism and provide ideas of how they are being applied. Students with autism usually pay a lot of attention to robots—more than to professors, according to a study— and robots have proven to be a good tool for learning social skills, of communication or motor skills. Nevertheless, we are again looking at a technology that isn’t widespread.

Applications section
Focusing now on more usual technologies, the third section is about language and communication. The main types of vocabulary and grammar learning applications are described first, and those for sentence-level semantics and pragmatics after. This section continues presenting apps for receptive language learning, the expressive communication ones —which in general other authors would identify with the acronym AAC— and organizers or visual planners. And it finishes with applications for the improvement of literary abilities, both reading and writing: speech therapy, creation of digital stories, reading comprehension, text-to-speech (TTS), handwriting, etc.

This is a section where there is a proliferation of applications —many for iOS— as well as the selection criteria and desirable characteristics for them. There is also some emphasis placed on using generic apps in creative ways with students with autism.

Emotions and social interaction
For teaching the recognition of emotions, the authors —Simon Baron-Cohen among them— defend in the fourth section the systematic teaching of empathy with LEGO, robots, videos, and software, listing those applications that have scientific evidence. Regarding social interaction, it is commented that various technologies can contribute: video modeling, robots, collaborative virtual environments, communication with computer mediation, and videogames.

This section finishes by talking about how technology can assist in interventions focused on social-emotional intelligence, self-awareness, stress management, personal style, and self-regulation. This “new” approach, centered more on quality of life, is accompanied by a social-emotional curriculum (Science of Me) that the authors have developed themselves. As a curious technology here, wearable devices that allow the measurement of stress levels are discussed.

Collecting data
The fifth section is dedicated to applications for data collection by family members and professionals or by the person with autism themself, such as the aid provided by some of these tools to help overcome certain situations once it has been detected that they are taking place (i.e., stress).

Implementation and training
The last two sections deal with several separate but interesting topics. First, some ideas —very conceptual— on how to implement the technology in the classroom and an entire chapter explaining how it was done in one school. Second, the use of technology for distance learning (online) for parents and professionals. The main programs used today are discussed here. And third, support in the transition from school to work, based on an app for iPad developed by the authors.

Assessment
As often happens in books that combine chapters written by different authors, the style and focus of the book is quite variable. As a whole, this writing, clearly directed at educational professionals and academics, offers a good review of many of the available technologies and provides many ideas to be used, such as the state of the art in areas like virtual reality and robotics.

The reader will get examples of applications and other technologies to work on learning each of the main areas (language, emotions, social interaction, etc.), and many inspirational ideas about education for people with autism in general. But of course with so many subjects and only 360 pages, the most pragmatic part on methods and implementation is limited.

So, it is a good book to know the state of the art, to obtain a global vision, and to draw inspiration. I recommend it to all autism professionals with interest in the technology.

-Francesc Sistach

Technology Tools for Students with Autism
Editors: Katharina I. Boser, Matthew S. Goodwin, Sarah C. Wayland
Publisher: Brookes Publishing
Year: 2013
Pages: 360
Language: Inglés
ISBN: 978-1-59857-262-9
Price: 39,95 $
URL: http://products.brookespublishing.com/Technology-Tools-for-Students-with-Autism-P701.aspx

 


REVIEW: SpeakColors

SpeakColors is much more than an app to learn colors, and provides exercises to learn diverse vocabulary, to work receptive and expressive language, and to practice various basic structures of sentences.

Combine colors

The main menu of SpeakColors allows you to get help and personalize the app. The main button leads you directly to the work screen.

There are various elements in the work screen. In the center and very big, a color square and a photograph of a real object of that color. Touching each of these two elements we can hear an audio clip with the pronunciation of the corresponding word. And in the center, below, we have a button of a microphone which allows us to record, and then play, an audio clip at will.

The idea is simple. The student sees combinations of colors and objects and can practice the receptive and expressive language.  The arrow buttons below allow you to see other objects of the same color, and the color buttons above allow you to change the color. SpeakColors allows working with seven basic colors: white, black, blue, green, red, yellow and orange.

But there’s even more. Sentences are not limited to a combination of color+object. We can choose between 13 phrase templates (19 in the Spanish version in order to effectively cover masculine and feminine names).  If the template has one or two additional words, these appear in boxes and they will in turn have associated audio clips. (Note: the images below belong to the English and the Spanish versions).

This way, the student can practice simple model phrases, such as “I play with a …” or ” In my house, I have a….”.

A few buttons near a corner permit us to move to an object rapidly -by selecting it from the list- or to block some of the sentence, so you cannot change the structure of the sentence, the color and/or the object. From the main menu you can also choose if you want the the text of each color and object to appear below the corresponding images.

Customization

SpeakColors comes preloaded with a basic vocabulary and 200 photographs that allow over 1,000 phrases. But SpeakColors allows you to add new words to the vocabulary (including it’s text, image and audio clip), deciding in which phrase templates they can be used. You can do this in a configuration screen that is very similar to the work screen and easy to use. The same functionality allows you to change the preloaded audio clips and the photographs. When taking photographs, you can scale them -something typical- but also rotate them -less typical but useful also.

Assessment

SpeakColors is a relatively simple app that you can control in a matter of minutes. Thanks to its ability to be customized, it can serve as a basis for working with a very large vocabulary set.

It is assumed that the student already knows at least the color-object associations (though perhaps hasn’t mastered them). SpeakColors lets them start to evolve into more complex phrases with verbs, but always incorporating the variable of color.

 

I would love the opportunity to work with only those colors first and then later without them, or to have a registry, but as always the list of possible extensions is very long. In the Spanish version (SpeakColors Spanish Pro), the audio clips have an American accent.

Anyway, SpeakColors can be a very useful app to practice expressive and receptive language, color associations and structures of simple phrases. And the free Lite version allows you to test it.

-Francesc Sistach


SpeakColors Español Pro 3.2 / SpeakColorsHD
Developer: RWH Technology
Languages: English, Spanish.
Features: To learn color-object associations and simple sentences with colors.
Versions: iPad.
Price: SpeakColorsHD: $3.99 / €3.59; SpeakColors Español Pro: $6.99 / €5.99; ‘Lite’ and free version