Technology Use for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder

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It is estimated that one in every sixty eight children will be diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (CDC, 2014). In schools around the country these students are struggling in their classroom environment due to deficits in three areas; communication skills, social skills, and repetitive behaviors or interest (Marder & Fraser, 2012). Implementing the use of technology in the classroom like iPad, iPod, android tablets, e-readers, and computers is beneficial to students with autism spectrum disorder. It can increase communication skills, can help make their classroom experience more pleasant, and it gives them the best chance at success.
One important benefit of implementing the use of technology in the classroom for students with autism spectrum disorder is, technology gives the student the opportunity to interact with the world in a way they might not be able to do otherwise. One major characteristic of autism spectrum disorder is speech delays. These delays can be minor delays or severe delays where the child is non-verbal. The use of technology can help a student develop communication skills. Applications that use gestures, pictures, and other symbols give children who have limited verbal skills an alternative means to communicate and interact with their surroundings. For those children who are verbal, the use of technology also shows a significant benefit. In one study, funded by Autism Speaks, it was discovered that using a program to generate speech on an android device or iPad helped children developed more spoken words compared to any other interventions (Brasher, 2013). All children in the study learned new words, and some even learned to speak sentences. Ann Kaiser, a researcher at Vanderbilt Peabody Col...

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