Assistive technology (AT) is anything that is used to increase, maintain, or improve the functional capabilities and independence of persons with disabilities, aging populations, and people with non-communicable diseases. AT enables people to live healthy, productive, and dignified lives, and promotes inclusion and participation in education, the labor market, and civic life.
AT comes in many shapes and sizes and for a variety of individuals; in fact, more than two billion people around the world are expected to need at least one assistive product by 2030. Some may associate wheelchairs, hearing aids, glasses, and prosthetic devices with AT, which are all accurate representations. However, some other commonly used, but overlooked examples include spell checkers and autocorrect, voice recognition, iPads and tablets, braille displays, text apps, audio books, automatic soap dispensers, and systems designed to remotely control appliances.
AT is everywhere and can range from no and low-tech solutions to high tech solutions to fit the diverse needs of the human experience.
Allows people with disabilities to compare the features and benefits of a AT device by seeing it in action, touching it, and asking questions about it.
There are 12 Device Lending Libraries across the state which have AT devices for people to borrow for 30 days or more.
California has an AT Exchange, which transfers a used device from someone who no longer needs it to someone who does.
Educating the public on assistive technology, devices, and services.
State Financing Activities
Assisting individuals with disabilities to obtain funding for AT devices and services.
AT Advocates are available to support with transition planning for school to work; youth to adult; and community living.
AT Coordination and Collaboration
Working together on policies, procedures, or funding for assistive technology devices and services to individuals with disabilities, service providers, and others.
Technical Assistance and Training
Technical assistance is focused on problem solving with partners to help people with disabilities get and take care of the assistive technology they need. Training activities are designed to increase participants’ knowledge and skills regarding assistive technology.
Voice Options/Speech-Generating Devices
The Voice Options program provides speech-generating devices at no cost to eligible Californians with verified speech or language disabilities.