EDTH.X310 Assistive Technology for Learning Differences

The following is from the UCSC Extension course description and registration webpage:


Assistive Technology for Learning Differences

Technology can help struggling students leverage their learning strengths and bypass weaknesses to improve performance, independence, and self-confidence. In this online course aimed at teachers, learning specialists, educational therapists, and parents, you will learn about a wide range of tools to support students with learning disabilities, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), executive functioning deficits, and issues with processing information and memory. Through readings, lecture, video demonstrations, and hands-on activities, you will learn:

  • How various tools address specific learning needs.
  • How to match students with appropriate tools.
  • Practical methods and strategies to implement technology solutions and integrate with curricula.
  • How technology can facilitate Universal Design for Learning (UDL) practices in the classroom.
  • Laws that govern assistive technology (AT) in education.
  • Local, national, and online resources for AT information, equipment, training, and services.

Instruction is primarily online and asynchronous (self-paced). Live weekly sessions supplement online instruction with class discussion and technology assistance. 


Students should have a basic understanding of the academic challenges faced by individuals who have learning disabilities, ADHD, and executive function issues. This can be satisfied in various ways, including (but not limited to):

  • Professional experience addressing the needs of students with learning differences.
  • Completion of "Understanding Learning Differences" (EDTH.X309) or equivalent coursework.
  • Prior review of material on learning differences (provided by the instructor).
  • Other requisites may be approved in advance by the instructor.

We recommend students understand the basics of using the Google Chrome browser (e.g., installing Chrome extensions) and Google Core Apps such as Docs, Sheets, and Drive.


Hands-on exploration of certain technologies is an essential part of this course. For these activities, students will need access to the following minimum tools:

  • A computer with: A PC with Windows 10 or above, a Mac with macOS 10.14 Mohave or above, or a Chromebook with latest Chrome OS.
  • The Google Chrome browser or Microsoft Edge browser.
  • A personal Google account (recommended: Google account specifically created for use with this course).
  • The ability to download and install free and trial software, especially Chrome extensions.  Specific titles to be provided in class.