ICTs in Education for People with Disabilities - Review of Innovative Practice

In 2010, the UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education (UNESCO IITE) and the European Agency for Development in Special Needs and Inclusive Education agreed to collaborate on a joint project to develop a Review of Innovative Practice – a report presenting concrete examples of practice of the use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) with people with disabilities in different educational contexts and settings. In particular, the Review was targeted at considering examples of practice that can be considered to be ‘innovative’ within the specific educational setting and wider societal context they were situated within.

The aims of this Practice Review therefore are to use the collected examples in order to:

  • Highlight a range of different purposes for using ICT in education for people with disabilities;
  • Identify possible key messages for policy and practice in this area. 

The examples of practice cover different parameters of ICT application:

  • Countries and geographical regions in order to show that ICT can be applied effectively in very different economic and ICT infrastructure situations;
  • Sectors of education school, vocational, higher and even adult education;
  • Types of ICT equipment and their application in educational settings, from simple multimedia tools (such as CDs or DVDs) to the development of new research based software or applications.

The Practice Review presents a description of the work undertaken followed by a review of information on international policy for ICT and people with disabilities. Each one of the four thematic areas of the Practice Review is discussed in a separate Chapter presenting three detailed Case Studies as well as various Vignettes as further exemplars of key issues emerging within the thematic area. 

(i) Supporting personal access to information and knowledge - Case Studies from Estonia, Finland and Grenada and Vignettes from Belgium, Estonia, Germany, Spain, UK (England) and Uruguay. 

(ii) Supporting learning and teaching situations - Case Studies from Belgium, Portugal and Syria and Vignettes from Belarus, Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Slovenia and Sweden.

(iii) Supporting personal communication and interaction - Case Studies from France, Ireland, UK (England) and Vignettes from: Belarus, Belgium, Finland, Portugal and an international example.

(iv) Supporting access to educational administrative procedures - Case Studies from Belarus, Moldova and an International example, as well as Vignettes from Austria, Belgium, Estonia and Ireland.

In addition to presenting a detailed series of key messages and recommendations, the Practice Review includes a Glossary of key terms and the full contact details of all the contributors of Case Study and Example Vignettes. 

The full Practice Review can be downloaded as an accessible pdf file (in English only). 

A full version with the covers is available here.

An Executive Summary of the main findings from the Review is also available.

The surveys used for collecting the information on Case Study and Vignette examples used in the review are also available to download here.

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Last modified Jan 15, 2014