Ira David Socol, USA, All Sectors, Special Educational Needs
Ira David Socol is a Special Education Technology Scholar at Michigan State University in East Lansing, Michigan, USA. He is also an Assistive Technology Specialist with the State of Michigan's Vocational Rehabilitation Agency. His research is focused on the use of technologies in ways that make classrooms fully inclusive at all age levels, with an emphasis on the use of free and ubiquitous devices and software whenever possible, because these are the solutions most likely to serve student needs throughout their lifespan.
An important part of his work is what he calls, "Toolbelt Theory." The idea that all learners need to assemble a variety of technological solutions which support their learning needs. This shifts the decision making to the student and helps the student learn how to analyse and choose technology now and throughout their life.
Ira uses assistive technologies himself to assist in reading and writing. He entered the field by searching for solutions to his own issues. Then completed the Assistive Technology Applications Certification Program at California State University - Northridge. He has presented a conferences in the US and Europe on his research, and is the author of one novel (The Drool Room) and one short story collection (A Certain Place of Dreams).
SpeEdChange looks at technological changes, structural changes, and pedagogical changes which can make the classroom, the school, the university truly inclusive.
Theme: universal Design, inclusion, special needs, multicultural, ICT, web 2.0