The United States Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs has three programs that are great resources for special education teachers, administrators, and technology coordinators: Tech Matrix, The National Center for Technology Innovation, and The Center for Implementing Technology in Education. Their companion websites have research-based articles, professional development resources, specialized searches, assistive technology reviews, articles, and events information related to technology and special education.
Today’s post will include information about Tech Matrix. Please come back over the next two weeks to learn more about The National Center for Technology Innovation and The Center for Implementing Technology in Education.
Tech Matrix is a free online database for teachers and parents to use to find research-based articles, professional development resources, specialized searches, and assistive technology options from various private and public online resources. This site aggregates the “best-of-the-best” resources available for learning and implementing strategies for special education. Tech Matrix helps to simplify the search of information in regards to special education. Tech Matrix is created and maintained by The National Center for Technology Innovation and the Center for Implementing Technology in Education.
There are several different ways to search for resources and research through Tech Matrix. There is a search option if you know what information you are looking for, and there are three general topic areas.
The first one is the Consumer Guides section. This section helps to connect education administrators and assistive technology companies in building relationships and making technology decisions for special education students. This PDF document includes information on funding, standard alignment, and implementation in an easy to read format.
The second section in Tech Matrix is the EdTech Locator. This portion of the website allows teachers, administrators, and tech coordinators to see where they stand on integration of technology in the classroom. This would be a great resource for a professional development course. The user takes a short quiz to see where they stand and the program has tree targets – early, developing, and target integration of technology. This site can help teachers to reach the goals of integrating technology in the classroom without feeling overwhelming and making sure that the technology integration is meaningful and helping the students achieve their academic goals.
The third section in Tech Matrix is the Hot Topics section. This section includes the information from the content subject areas. This is the most helpful section for the tech-savvy instructor who wants to learn more about technology integration in the classroom with special needs students. Topics include reading, science, math, and writing for struggling readers along with differentiating instruction, technology integrating and transitioning with technology. When you select on one of these topics you will find information related to the topic including relevant research papers, links to other online resources that answer hot topic questions, and technology product reviews. Many of the resources are pulled from www.ldonline.org, a PBS national education service.
Don’t hesitate to take a look at the Tech Matrix pages above and leave a comment about the resources that you found the most helpful.
Article By Laura Ketchum
Picture By Ranoush