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Tablet PCs

Tablet PCs are being used in different therapy settings to support people with a disability. You can find out about how tablet PCs are being used to support:

Young children with autism

AEIOU Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation that provides a professional early intervention program for children aged 2½ to 6 who have been diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs).

Becky Mead, a speech pathologist at AEIOU Foundation's Nathan Centre, uses iPads with children with autism who participate in the early intervention program. You can watch Becky doing a communication activity with Byron, a young boy who participates in the program, using a book and Proloquo2GoTM, an app on an iPad.


Video transcript


AEIOU Foundation operates centres throughout Queensland that provide an early intervention program to support young children with autism. Byron, 4, participates in one of the programs. He is using an iPad with Becky Mead, an AEIOU speech pathologist. Byron is spelling out words with assistance from Becky on the iPad. Becky then reads Byron a book, and he provides answers to questions that she asks by clicking on different items—such as colours and animals—on the iPad, as well as providing verbal responses.


Byron using iPad: K... E... K-E-Y-S. Keys. (sound like keys rattling).

Becky: Good spelling. What is it?

Byron: Keys

Byron using IPad: Keys, Keys, Keys

Becky: Do another one... (does sign language for a bird). Bird.

Byron using iPad: D... I... I... B... R...  B-I-R-D. Bird. (makes tweeting noises for a bird)

Becky: You got it!

Byron using iPad: Bird. Bird. Bird. Bird. Bird. Bird. Bird. 

Becky: Can you tell me Byron what is it?

Byron and Becky together: a bird.

Becky: Next.

Byron using iPad: I... S... H... P... S-H-I-P. Ship. (makes sound of a horn honking). Ship. Ship.

Becky: What do you see?

Byron: ship.

Becky: a ship.

Byron using iPad: A...

Becky: This one's a long one.

Byron using iPad: I... N... T... R... T-R-A-I-N. Train. (iPad makes a train sound; Byron uses his arms in a circular motion, and so does Becky.)

Becky: What is it?

Byron using IPad: Train. Train.

Byron: train

(Change of task, with Becky reading Byron a story book. Byron is actively engaged, providing responses to questions that Becky asks as she reads through the book.)

Byron using iPad: Next page.

Becky: Next page. (turns the page) Brown bear, brown bear, what do you see?

Byron using iPad: Bear. Bear.

Becky: What colour? (Becky does a hand gesture).

Byron using IPad: Bear.

Becky: Is it brown or green? (points to colours on iPad).

Byron using IPad: Brown.

Byron: Green!

Becky: It's not green. It's a...

Becky using iPad: Brown bear.

Becky: Tell me?

Byron using IPad: Bear. (Points near brown colour on the iPad). Bear.

Becky: It's a brown bear! Good work.

Becky: Here we go. I see a red... (turns page).

Byron using IPad: Next page. Red. Red.

Becky: Red

Byron using IPad: Red

Becky: A red what?

Byron: You do it...

Becky: (Becky does a hand gesture) Bird.

Byron: Bird. Bird.

Becky: Touch here. All together.

Byron and Becky using iPad together: A red bird.

Becky: A red bird, Ok, red bird, red bird, what do you see? (turns page). I see a?

Byron: Duck!

Becky: It is a duck. What colour?

Byron using iPad: Yellow.

Byron: Yellow duck.

Becky: Yellow what?

Byron using iPad: Duck.

Byron: Duck. Duck.

Becky: Touch up here?

Byron using IPad: Yellow duck.

Becky: a yellow duck. Where is it?

Byron: Duck. (Byron points to the duck on the story page.)

Becky: A yellow duck. Yellow duck, yellow duck, what do you see? (turns page). I see a blue horse looking at me?

Byron using IPad: Blue. Blue. Blue.

Becky: Too many blues. A blue—what?

Byron using iPad: horse.

Byron: horse

Becky: Blue horse. It's a big blue horse.

Byron: Horse.

Becky: That's right. Blue horse, what do you see? I see a?

Byron: horse.

Byron using iPad: next page.

Becky: Next page. I see a?

Byron using iPad: green.

Becky: I see a green what?

Byron using iPad: Green. Green. Green. Green. Green. Green. Green. Green.

Becky: I—I see. What? A?

Byron using iPad: green.

Becky: green

Byron using iPad: frog.

Becky: Let's touch it together!

Byron and Becky using iPad together:  I see green frog.

Becky: I see a green frog!

(New page shown, with the book open in clear view.)

Becky: Goldfish, goldfish what do you see?

Byron using iPad: Next page.

Becky: I see!

Byron: monkey.

Becky: A monkey! Good talking. Looking at me...

Byron using iPad: black, black.

Becky: Good boy. Monkey, monkey what do you see? I see, children... (shows Byron content on the iPad) I-I see...

Byron using iPad: my turn. My turn.

Becky: Your turn. Children. Let's find children. I. I—see. I see...

Byron: children. I...

Byron and Becky using iPad: children.

Becky: Children looking at me. I think it's the last page Byron. Last page. (turns page). We see a?

Byron: Page.

Becky: We did turn the page. We see a?

Byron: Page.

Becky using iPad and talking at the same time: A brown bear. A...

Byron using iPad: Bear. Bear.

Becky: It is a bear. Byron, do you want to choose? What do you see?

Queensland schools

Within the state education system, students requiring additional support can access a range of student services. This can include using assistive technology to support a child with meeting their educational needs.

The Department of Education, Training and Employment (DETE) website provides information about:

• learning and disability support
• the Queensland Government's Smart Classrooms strategy includes information for school leaders, teachers, parents and caregivers and students.
• support services and resources


Here are some resources* that relate to assistive technology, including tablet PCs, and education:

*The Queensland Government does not endorse any of the suggestions included on this list, which has been developed in consultation with community organisations, educators, researchers and other professionals, as well as parents and people with a disability.

Autism apps workshops

Bronwyn Sutton, a Brisbane speech pathologist, offers Apps for Autism and Learning Workshops for parents and practitioners. You can find out more by visiting the Bronwyn Sutton Speech Pathology website, emailing or calling (07) 3876 9529.

iPads for learning website

The Victorian Government has set up an iPads for Learning website for educators who want to learn about using iPads in education. It includes education apps that are organised in categories by topic and subject area.

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Last updated:
28 March 2018
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